Buying a flat is a big decision, one must make with a lot of planning and thinking in advance. Over the past decades, as Barcelona grew into an important commercial and entertainment center of this part of Europe, the interest in Barcelona’s real estate market grew and the number of property purchase surged.

We have been part of this real estate market since 2001, and since we have specialized in helping international buyers to successful invest in properties in Barcelona, we’ll share this process of buying a flat in Barcelona.




Making a decision

The first step is making a decision. As said, a decision to buy a property, such as a flat in Barcelona, is a pretty big one. Chances are you’ll make this kind of decision once or twice in your life, so you want to be sure that you are indeed making a right one. Start by answering a couple of questions:

  • What are you looking for to buy?

This refers to the kind of property you are interested in, such as a flat, a house, a property that needs renovation, etc. This is the first step that later affects all other aspects in the process of buying a flat in Barcelona.

  • Why do you need this property?

The property you decide to buy may be the one that you are going to rent, or you maybe plan on living there. In some cases, buyers decide to invest into a property where they will be spending their holiday, and Barcelona is a perfect place for that.

  • What are you expecting from this property?

You should define the property you are interested in. This includes determining the exact features you will need this property to have, such as the number of rooms, the amount of daily light, a garage or a terrace, etc. Defining these aspect helps you narrow down the search for the perfect flat, as you will be only focusing on those flats in Barcelona that meet the criteria you have previously determined.


Choosing the location

The next step is choosing the location. In general, before any property purchase, it is advisable to know the territory, even if you are not a local. This means that if you are an international buyer, you could visit Barcelona and explore the city in the purpose of finding a perfect location.

Even if you are not familiar with the city territory, you could always use online tools to explore the city or rely on the help you can obtain from the locals. This help can come in a form of a friend or cousin from Barcelona, or you could get a professional to help you, such as a real estate agent.

What you need to know when it comes to location is that it affects the lifestyle, it affects the type of properties available, and it also affects the price of the property. Flats in the center of the city are much more expensive that the flats of the same size in the suburbs. It is also easier to find flats in the suburbs, as the offer is usually larger than when it comes to properties in the central area. Since Barcelona is a coastal city, the area around the beach has a particular importance in terms of real estate and property purchase. Of course, this location is considered a premium one, so if you are interested in properties in the coastal area of Barcelona, you will meet a bit more competitive prices and a higher demand. On the other hand, when you think about relocating to Spain, you might want to continue that peaceful life you already had, so finding a property in the suburbs would seem like a much better choice. Beside lower prices, you will find more extensive offer.


Getting help

Once you know exactly what you want and where you want the property to be located, you are ready to look for some help. Here are a couple of things you need to consider:

  • Do you have a real estate agent in Barcelona?

You will need someone who is familiar with the situation on the real estate market, specifically with the situation in the Spanish real estate market, as this is not something everyone is familiar with. An agent is someone who is going to assist with numerous tasks that will follow in the process of buying a flat in Barcelona so it is recommended that you think about this aspect prior to making any decision about the actual purchase.

  • Do you know the language?

If you are not fluent in Spanish or Catalan, you will need assistance when negotiating the terms of purchase. You should not try to do negotiations on your own at all costs, as misinterpretation can cause serious problems later on.

Hiring a real estate agency will help you with the whole process, starting from property search, negotiations, contract preparation, legal advice to property renovation and management.


Make up your mind

Now that you know exactly what you want and you have help, you are ready to make up your mind. This is the next step in the process of buying a flat in Barcelona. Property search requires a lot of time and dedication from your part, but if you have help, you will manage this more efficiently. The agency will narrow down the search based on your criteria, and you will be presented with the properties that fully match your requirements. When faced with a limited number of choices, you will be able to make up your mind more quickly. Plus, all the properties you will be taking into account are the ones that match your requirements, so you will not be wasting time on properties that do not.


Visit the property

The next step is visiting the property you are interested in. You could always decide to visit several properties, which is actually the best idea, as you will be able to compare them more successfully, without choosing one and risking that the real life situation is not what you have imagined. We always advise our buyers to select a couple of properties that are at the top of their list and then we schedule the meetings with the owners.


Negotiate the terms

When it comes to negotiating the terms of sale, it is always advisable to have legal help. This way you will be sure that the contract is properly designed and that it will be able to protect your interests should situation get a bit complicated or should any unforeseen events occur. This is also one of the reasons why having an agent by your side can be of great importance. Since most of the buyers do not have much experience with buying or selling property, especially with property purchase in Spain, consulting an agency is a great way to save yourself a lot of time learning about the market and exploring your options.


Prepare all of the documents

Various documents may be needed when it comes to the process of buying a flat in Barcelona, which depends on the property, on the country the buyer is coming from, etc. After your consultation with the agent who is going to help you with the process of buying a flat in Barcelona, you will get the full list of the documents you will need to make sure that the purchase goes smoothly, and that there are no obstacles to you becoming a proud owner of a property in Barcelona.

Having prepared all the documents and successfully negotiated the terms, the final transaction needs to be handled so that you can have your own keys of the flat. Again, an experienced agent will help you tremendously with this, as you need to make sure that the transaction is handled properly, that you pay taxes and that you are sure that your interests are fully represented.

As you can see, the process of buying a flat in Barcelona is very complex and there are a lot of tasks you might see as an obstacle, due to the fact that you do not have a deeper understanding of the real estate market and legal requirements characteristic of Spain. Before you can enter your own flat, you will have to go through all of these steps, with or without help. Having help is always an option most people will recommend, because real estate is an industry that demands one knowing the rules and the ways things are handled. Starting from the process of finding flats for sale to defining the terms and finalizing the purchase, the process can get complicated, especially if you do not speak the language.


Having help along the way could turn out to be the best decision you made, as you will spare yourself a lot of trouble and unpleasant situations that can occur in the process, which could potentially even make you want to question your decision to begin with. Make sure you are well-organized and familiar with all of the details regarding the purchase and you will soon become an owner of a flat in Barcelona.

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