Buy land and build

This topic contains 13 replies, has 10 voices, and was last updated by  Anonymous 12 years, 4 months ago.

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  • #52879


    Is it worth to purchase land and build a house? Or is the hassle too big to do that in Spain?
    Do you know how much is the approximate price for building per m^2? Does the construction price vary from one region to another (not the cost of land but the cost of the actual construction)?

    Thank you.

  • #72019


    Hi Ralita

    if you are looking at purchasing land then before you think about how much per sq M you need to know the type of land.

    Rustic land is basically agricultural land and cannot be built upon legally unless you have more than 10,000M (whatever you are told by agents this is a plain fact ).

    However there is a category of rustic land (and I cannot for the life of me remember what it is called in Spanish – I think aperos) which is arable land and cannot be built upon full stop – it is purely for grazing – at the very best you can put a small casita which can be used for weekends only – but no water or electricity will be permitted unless it is used for growing things and then it wont be agua potable.

    Urbanised (Urbano) or urbanisable (buildable with project and permission) is basically a plot that can be built on straight away – it is urbanised and you only need to present a plan of works to the town hall.

    Naturally the latter two are more expensive

    Factors that effect price

    Rustic land

    I can only speak for where I am (Valencia Region) in terms of price 0 but generally rustic land that is arable usually will fetch no more than €1-2 (if you are absolutely lucky – however a new use has been found – renewable energy and if it has a licence to put solar panels on then it can fetch upto €10 per M)

    Rustic land in general that can be built upon.

    You can pay from around €5 per M to about €40 per M depending on location (the former for Inland or rugged terrain, the latter for flat land by the beach)

    For buildable land – well it really depends on what the permission is and how much. If it is in an urbanisation and has permission to build for example 210% of the actual land and can put apartments on then you could pay €2,500 per M by the beach or in a city centre (or more than this in the case of Valencia City) However I dont think this will effect you.

    Land to build a house on – you should generally look for about 1000M because most town halls have minimum land size from between 500 and 900 (or more) to build a house on. They will also state an edifcable – that is a percentage of the land that can be built on. So if you have 1000M and have an edificable (sometimes known as coefficient) of say 35% – you can build upto 350M – which depending on the town hall may include terraces and balconies etc Some count this in the total build allowed others count half others don’t count it.

    Prices for this sort of land – again depends on where but inland upto an hour you can pay upto €100/m (though I would suggest this is over the top) and by the beach around €150- 300 per M

    To get a better idea of the kinds of prices you can expect to pay for the area you are looking at go to and check out – you can search by all the land types I mentioned and the town you want.

    These are generally sellers direct (a few agents advertise land on there but not many) and these are asking prices so negotiation is possible.

    But at least it will give you a flavour

    Some other things you should be aware of

    The permission will dictate the type of property you can build
    You will need to present a project.
    Always make sure there is potable water or electricity. If it isn’t there it isn’t likely to be there (I know of one place here where there are pylons with cable hanging ready to be connected – and it is only months to be connected up – only I heard that same story 5 years ago)

    So no water and electric means you ain’t going to get any – you may be lucky but don’t take the chance

    In saying that most places you can get by very nicely with solar panels they have come on a long way. AND if you are close to a med tension pylon you can sell electricity back to Iberdrola at a rate nearly 6 times more than you pay (under a law passed two years ago)

    However whilst it is possible to put a deposito in the ground and get water delivered to you – if this is a route for you then make sure that the lorries can get there to off load the water – you don’t want to be stuck bringing it up in large buckets

    If telephone is important check with telefonica that you are likely to get one and how long (and then don’t believe a word they say cos they lie better than REA’s)

    There are other options now for telephone and Broad band – satellite systems will do the trick but can be expensive for telephone if you are the only one in the area wanting one.

    And I think that covers it

    Sorry to have gone on a bit but hopefully it covers any lingering questions you may have had

    Best wishes


  • #72130


    I have just registered with the site but have been browsing (lurking?) the forum for a little while. I notice that there had not been many replies to this query which I suspect is most likely because of Ralita’s response to Vince’s reply! However, I am interested in the question of building costs and was wondering if anyone had any information.

    We have a piece of land in Asturias that we plan to build on at some time in the future. We are fully aware of current building regulations for this plot and have a full report from the Ayuntamiento. In addition, my wife is a native Spanish speaker and we have a good (I think/hope) local lawyer. We also know about the taxes, fees etc that are applicable. What we have little idea about are the costs of materials and construction labour.

    I realise that the correct way forward is to speak to an architect to obtain an initial rough idea of costs. In fact we did this in January when we were last in Asturias. Unfortunately, the architect has not sent us the information agreed (or indeed anything) nor replied to our emails. I don’t want to push it any more with them as I now have no intention of using them for the work.

    It is likely to be a couple of years before we are next there and able to visit architects again and I am curious to know the (very) rough cost of house building. I have heard of costs of 800 to 1000 euros per m2 for ‘average’ quality materials. Does this sound reasonable? Is the area referred to the land covered or the living space (i.e. each storey counted separately)? This is probably one of those “How long is a piece of string?” questions but I would just be happy to work out the rough cost (perhaps to the nearest £50,000) of an average quality house of about 120 m2 per storey.

    I would be grateful for any information or advice that you may have.


  • #72132


    Very interesting information. Please also note that VAT on the land is charged at the higher rate, not the 7% you pay when you buy an off plan.

  • #72137


    Hi Bradness…

    One piece of advice…don’t wait until you want to start building to find an architect and builder…it is EXTREMELY hard to find good builders here who are not fully booked up for the next year or more! This is NOT an exaggeration!

    Also, I know some people who brought a house nearly 2 years ago and still have not got planning permission to renovate..OK so they want to do some fairly radical things by Asturian standards but its a long process.

    Fairly normal for people to ignore emails here as well….you need to sit on them a bit!!

    Good luck, why not come here a little more frequently, or was it a misprint as you said a few years?


  • #72138


    Hi Bradness

    Costs of construction vary quite a bit depending on the local economy. I don’t know the Asturias so cannot comment on whether what you quote is a good or bad price, but it seems about right. Down here building costs for an average house is 1000-1200/M if you get a local builder or if you get a big company this can go to about 1500. If the quality is high then obviously you can expect to pay more.

    If the property is inland it will affect the prices too. 1 hour inland from here it is possible to get a local builder to build you a house for about €650/M finished – using decent quality (obviously not gold fittings and expensive tiles – but not crap either).

    Also a lot depends on where you buy the materials. Here for example in Oliva things such as plasterboard costs €30 per sheet (a sheet being 2.4M x 1.2M) whereas a 45 minute drive to Valencia and you can get the same sheet (same manufacturer etc) for €5.95 a sheet. A Huge difference if you are plastering a whole house. Same Applies to other materials.

    One other example – tiles. I know of a local ceramica who has a shop in Oliva – he charges about €6-8/M for floor tiles and a bit mofor wall tiles. This is not bad compared to the tiles shops that charge between €14 – €35 for similar quality tiles.

    However go to his yard where he has them stored and you can get them for about €4.50/M

    So you may be as well sorting out an architect and a project manager before you find a builder – a good project manager will be able to source your materials

    Obviously if you are not here it is difficult to know where to go – and therefore you will have to trust in your judgement of the people you select, but as you can see if you are building a 120M per storey x 2 storey house, and plaster boarding it you would need approx 200 sheets just to do the ceilings and external walls (not counting the internal walls)

    If you were to buy these locally here you would be paying €6,000 as opposed to €1,200 if you went to Valencia (plus delivery of course from Valencia)

    So sourcing materials can make a difference to the price – this is why it really is “How long is a piece of string.

    However to keep it simple I would use a figure of €1500/M and if it is less then you will be quids in – but it leaves room for contingency.

    Also remember you will need to factor in architects costs – usually about 8% of the build costs.

    Hope this helps and apologies if it is simple advice that a five year old could give – but thats all I know

    Best of luck on your build


  • #72140


    Thanks for the replies, they have been really useful. I know that it is a bit of a difficult question to answer (even for an intelligent 5 year old 😉 ) – a bit like asking how much a car costs. However, you have given me some good points to think about.

    Unfortunately it’s true Heather, Asturias is out of the question for me this year and seems unlikely for next year too (other family commitments). However, as soon as I can get back for my fix of sidra and fabada I will!


  • #72148


    I have watched many people build properties here in Spain – and I have managed to build an 90m2 extension to my own villa as well as a swimming pool.

    My advice is:

    1. Find a local architect and prepare complete plans and leave him to get the necessary permissions before moving to the next step.

    2. Find a couple of builders and get full written quotes based on the plans. Do not accept recomendations from the architect or estate agent or lawyer. If you do, then hidden backhanders will inflate prices.

    3. Use a lawyer to prepare a contract. Put a penalty clause in the contract for late delivery.

    4. Find somebody to translate for you. Pay him. Make sure he is unrelated to the builder or the architect.

    5. Do not hurry. Pay as the work is done. Keep a written note of every conversation.

    6. Do not make any changes to the plan prepared by the architect and agreed by you and the builder. Any changes will cost you dearly. Do all the planning at the beginning and not as the job progresses.

    7. Pay on presentation of invoice. Do not give your bank details to anyone other than the utility companies.

  • #72169


    @shakeel wrote:

    Very interesting information. Please also note that VAT on the land is charged at the higher rate, not the 7% you pay when you buy an off plan.

    Since when?

    I bought a plot of land and there was certainly no IVA to pay.

  • #72204


    I think a friend paid 17% IVA when he bought a plot of land.

  • #72214


    VAT on land is 16%.

  • #72292


    It depends on the seller.

    If you buy from a private individual there is no IVA. Only registered companies can charge IVA.

  • #72293


    When we bought our land in 2001 (in pesetas) we paid a tax of 6% on the declared amount. I have a yellow piece of paper (Modelo 600) which shows the amount paid.

  • #72304


    That’s right – we paid 6% – but no IVA.

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