ANDALUSIA: Owners will have three months to register tourist rental properties

Javier Fernández, head of the Tourism and Sports Department of the Junta de Andalucía

Javier Fernández, head of the Tourism and Sports Department of the Junta de Andalucía

Owners who rent out their Andalusian homes to tourists will have three months to register with the local authorities or face stiff fines, reports the local press.

The regional Government of Andalusia, known as the Junta, has just passed a decree regulating tourist rentals in the region, following in the footsteps of other regions like Catalonia, the Balearics, and the Canaries.

Owners who wish to rent out all or part of their property to tourists on a short-term basis will have three months from the date the decree is published in the Junta’s Official Bulletin to register with the Andalusian Tourist Register (Registro de Turismo de Andalucía), run by Javier Fernández (pictured), boss of the Tourism and Sports Department.

The alleged purpose of regulating tourist rentals is to improve quality, reduce tax fraud, and prevent “unfair” competition for hotels. A powerful hotel lobby is the driving force behind most tourist rental regulations in Spain.

The Junta estimate that around 80,000 private homes with some 400,000 beds are offered as tourist rentals in the region. The Register will be operative by May, says the Junta, and tourist rental activity fully regulated by the summer.

Owners who fail to comply with the new regulations, which also require owners to satisfy detailed rules on furniture and other characteristics, could face fines of up to €150,000, reports the local press.

For more information on the latest situation regarding tourist rental regulations in different regions of Spain see: Region-by-region update on Spain’s holiday rental laws.

+ Related: Decree as published in the Boletín Oficial de la Junta de Andalucía – Decreto 28/2016, de 2 de febrero, de las viviendas con fines turísticos y de modificación del Decreto 194/2010, de 20 de abril, de establecimientos de apartamentos turísticos, dated 2nd February 2016 (pdf in Spanish)

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38 thoughts on “ANDALUSIA: Owners will have three months to register tourist rental properties”

  1. Jane

    Hi

    I’ve been expecting this! Now how do we go about registering our property and do you have a link to what requirements each property has to have? I know there was talk of air conditioning in each room, I’m hoping that has been dropped. You say the register will be open in May so presume we have three months from then?

    Thank you.

    Jane

    1. Jane

      I have also found this on a solicitors blog:

      We are pleased to report that we have held another consultation with the Junta de Andalucia, the regional government, and the information they have provided confirms our interpretation of the law. The Junta states:

      To have the classification of tourist apartments there must be 3 or more apartments (or properties) integrated in the one establishment. One or two apartments cannot be marketed or promoted for tourists using the term tourist property.

      With regard to the rental of properties that are not classified as tourist apartments or tourist property the law of urban rentals will apply. This law sets out the rules on rental of private property which is for non-residential or short term use. In this case the property can be rented out always provided the term “tourist” apartment or property is not used and the rental contract complies with the Law on Urban rentals.

      You can therefore rent out your property if it comprises one or two apartments or properties provided you do not use the phrase tourist property or anything similar to this to advertise, market or promote your property. You can rent on a short term or weekly basis and in every case you have a fiscal obligation to pay tax on the rental in Spain”

      This leads me to believe that if we don’t mention the word “tourist” in any advert then we don’t need a licence….

      1. Susan

        This is interesting. If it is part of an urbanisation off many apartment all privately owned, and we don’t use the word tourist, will be be ok? I can’t really afford any more spanish taxes. €600 euros for not living there is a bit steep!
        susan

          1. Penilla

            Dear Louise

            I understand that long term is still legal so my question to you is How long is the minimum amounth of weeks… to rent out for it to be legal?
            Best regards, Penilla

      2. Profile photo of Louise Brace - Rental TonicLouise Brace - Rental Tonic

        Dear Jane

        The information you have read is out-of-date. All holiday rental properties will have to register from May. If your property is classified as an apartamento turistico you should already be registered. But single homes will have to register as per this article from May.

        1. Jane

          Thank you for the info. We have a house which is just outside the village so should we have registered it already as a viviendad rurales? Where do we go to do this and what do we need to register? Do we still need the new licence? All very confusing!

          1. Jane

            Hi Louise

            Can I send you an email through your rental tonic website? Would prefer to do that than discuss it here if that’s ok?

            Many thanks
            Jane

      3. Profile photo of Louise Brace - Rental TonicLouise Brace - Rental Tonic

        Dear Jane

        The information you have read is out-of-date. All holiday rental properties will have to register from May. If your property is classified as an apartamento turistico you should already be registered. The same for Viviendas Turisticas de Alojamiento Rural (rural properties.) But single homes must register as per this article from May and you will need to include your licence number in all advertising.

        Best wishes
        Louise

      4. Profile photo of Louise Brace - Rental TonicLouise Brace - Rental Tonic

        Hi Jane,

        You can’t advertise on any tourist channel, without registering. You can put a se alquiler sign on your balcony, but you can’t advertise on HomeAway, Spain-Holiday, Holiday Lettings, etc. Or use any reservation system or booking agent, without registering.

        The above information is talking about Apartamentos Turisticos, which are not single holiday rental properties. If you own three plus properties in the same complex, or urbanization, you will fall under this category, anything less, you will fall into the category of Vivendas con Fines Turísticas. If you need help registering, get in touch (louise@rentaltonic.com).

    2. Profile photo of Louise Brace - Rental TonicLouise Brace - Rental Tonic

      Hi Anne

      If you visit our article on Rental Tonic and scroll down to the Andalucía section. There is a link to download a pdf with all the requirements we know to date. These are taken from the last draft decree, published in December 2014. This is the most up-to-date. As soon as an updated version is published. We’ll update the article.

      Link to article: http://rentaltonic.com/applying-for-your-holiday-rental-licence-in-spain/

    1. Strudelbaum

      When the law was in preparation I remember the line was 30 days.

      Another thing is that if I’m only renting out a certain part of the year then do I have to register and what would that mean in practise? Sprinklers, first-aid kits, pool guards etc?

  2. Schilly

    In Iznajar, Cordoba province this has been the case since 2010 by law. It’s nothing new….a lot of people were fined for not registering….some 56 in just our area. I’m surprised how the rest of Andalucia wasn’t forced before now. People didn’t even know they had to register at the time. We did it about two years ago. There was no cost just an inspection. Air con was not on their list but that may have changed. Some very silly illogical things that had to be done and things you might expect not included. Suspect each province may have it’s own set of rules!

  3. Greg

    Does this Andalucian registration requirement apply for Spanish-company-owned property (the Spanish company comprises only a single foreign director) which is let out to holiday makers always, given that the company declares the income from all rentals in its annual tax return?

  4. Schilly

    Thanks Louise…..it is the same register though isn’t it? (even though the classification may be different)….and I would presume similar rules apply? It wasn’t a massive deal to do….fire extinguisher, emergency lighting (which sounds worse than it is)….
    I presume that purpose built tourist apartments may now be included where they were exempt before?
    I don’t think it matters how long you rent a property during the year it will apply if you are advertising it for short term holidays. The worse thing is not doing it and carrying on, as previously they trawled all adverts on the internet and the Guardia were not sympathetic to anyone’s pleas.
    My suggestion would be to ask the regional tourist board for the regs in your area. I promise that it really wasn’t that difficult and I would imagine this is no worse than what we had to do.

    1. Profile photo of Louise Brace - Rental TonicLouise Brace - Rental Tonic

      Great feedback Schilly, thank you!

      I think the problem is, some media are using this as a scaremongering situation and it shouldn’t be. As you say, it should be easy to register, it’s free. In the case of this new decree for Viviendas Turísticas the criteria is pretty unrestrictive. The only thing for owners is that they will have to declare their income, but any income or employment is taxable in this life.

      The regional tourist boards won’t have registration references yet. They haven’t even published the decree in the BOJA yet, but we’ll keep looking out for updates.

      Louise

      1. Adrian Forsell

        Louise

        Many thanks for your useful information Louise. I have 2 holiday homes that I rent out and will be looking out for further information of when we can start registration in May. I have read that to get registered the property has to be inspected- is this true?. If it is then it will potentially be a massive workload for the authorities. I am not worried about the conditions as we meet them all virtually already and have 5 star TripAdvisor reviews on both properties.
        Previously I have declared my income from the 2 properties on my UK tax returns as the income I receive is virtually all in sterling though the purchases/expenses like water and electricity are not.
        What expenses can be offset against the income if a declaration in Spain is required.

        1. Profile photo of Louise Brace - Rental TonicLouise Brace - Rental Tonic

          Hi Adrian,

          Thanks for your comments. I am not a tax expert, but with the collaboration of a legal advisor, I wrote a couple of articles for Spain-Holiday awhile back. I hope they may help a little:

          http://www.spain-holiday.com/rentalbuzz/what-are-my-tax-and-iva-responsibilities-as-a-holiday-rental-owner
          http://www.spain-holiday.com/rentalbuzz/declaring-the-tax-on-your-spanish-holiday-rental

          The second link provides some background on what you can and can’t offset against income, but definitely check with your accountant on this one.

          Best wishes
          Louise

  5. Schilly

    Louise you have provided some excellent information….thanks!
    I am still unclear on – if a property/apartment (privately owned) is within a complex and managed/promoted by a management company it looks like it will fall into the category of ‘Tourist Apartments’? Are/or will the regs be different? Who is responsible?
    Doesn’t affect me but will other people I know, or some reading this.

    1. Profile photo of Louise Brace - Rental TonicLouise Brace - Rental Tonic

      Hi Schilly

      Thanks so much for your kind feedback! The property would only change category, to Apartamento Turístico, if the property management company also managed other properties in the same complex (three plus) and they were all being registered in their name.

      A property can be registered by a company, but the Junta have made this complicated, because of the three property rule. The criteria for Apartamentos Turísticos is more complex.

      If the property is registered separately, it should still be classed as a Vivienda Turística. I have just been informed that the decree has been published in the BOJA. So I am going to read through today. If I found any discrepancy in the information I have given, I’ll come back to you.

  6. Jane B

    Hi Louise
    I am still a bit lost. This is from the Andalucia requirements you published in NovemberÑ
    Essentials: Free Wifi, Cooling and Heating System, can offer single room occupancy
    How can you offer single room occupancy in a house that is intended as a holiday rental for up to 10 people or are there different regs for these?

    1. Profile photo of Louise Brace - Rental TonicLouise Brace - Rental Tonic

      Hi Jane

      The new decree was published in the BOJA on 11th February. http://www.juntadeandalucia.es/export/drupaljda/Decreto%2028_2016%20Viviendas%20con%20fines%20tur%C3%ADsticos.pdf

      It no longer includes the stipulation that you must offer Free Wifi, but it does still include the point that you must offer a cooling system for the summer months (May to September) and a heating system if you rent the property out in the Autumn/Winter months (October to April).

      You may offer single room occupation if you are living in the house at the same time. Like a guest house. In this case you can offer up to six guest places. You would then register the property as a Vivienda Turística por Habitaciones.

  7. Schilly

    Thanks Louise…you’re a star!
    In the case I am talking about the management company manages numerous (much more than 3) in the same building. Look forward to reading your update.

    1. Profile photo of Louise Brace - Rental TonicLouise Brace - Rental Tonic

      Hi Schilly

      I have just spoken to Apartsur. They have told me that a representative from the Junta de Andalucía explained last week that if three plus properties are owned by the same owner, or company, then they will have to apply as Apartamentos Turisticos. But if three or more properties are just managed by an agency or property manager, then they won’t be subject to this point.

      However, she did say that the point needs further clarification. Although it came from the Junta de Andalucía, it was a point that needed definite confirmation.

      That goes half way to answering your question, but I’ll still need to wait for a further update here.

      Best wishes
      Louise

  8. Bridie

    I too am seeking clarification.
    I have an apartment in nerja which is rented out through a uk agency. I declare the income and pay tax here.
    It has air con in the main room but not in the bedrooms which are cool and shaded. The heaters are portable
    Do I have to change all this? If so it becomes unaffordable as the electric charge is high in summer

    1. Profile photo of Louise Brace - Rental TonicLouise Brace - Rental Tonic

      Hi Bridie

      The decree does state that a cooling system must be installed in the bedrooms and living area. Are you based in Spain, or have a property manager here? I would recommend you register, and then when the inspection takes place, see if you can get away without the cooling system in the bedrooms. If not, they give you a year to install equipment.

      Louise

      1. Bridie

        I live in the uk and the flat is rented out through an English agency.
        I rarely get out there as my husband is now disabled and can’t use the flat.

    1. Profile photo of Louise Brace - Rental TonicLouise Brace - Rental Tonic

      Hi Keith

      The decree states a maximum of 15 guests in a Vivienda con Fines Turísticas. It’s the same whether it’s privately or company owned. When you say it’s owned by a charity, do you rent out for special needs visitors? There may be special circumstances. Can you give me a bit more explanation?

      Many thanks
      Louise

  9. Denise

    I am considering renting out my property during the 6 weeks summer holidays and have no problem registering as we have all the necessary items required . The rentals will be for a short time only because other owners in the same area tell me that that’s all they achieve even though they advertise all year around. If I do this I will make a loss overall after payment of management fees and mortgage interest etc.

    Given this situation will I need to pay tax to Spain?

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