How many metres can be built on rustic land? The information you need

When it comes to building on rural land, many people have doubts: How many metres can you build on rural land? What kind of buildings can you build? Is it necessary to use it for agricultural purposes? It is important to find out and resolve all these questions before starting to develop a project. This will avoid legal problems in the short and long term. What information should be considered?


Requirements for building on rural land

First of all, it is important to know that the Autonomous Communities are responsible for town planning. This means that each one will have different legislation, which will try to adapt to the particular circumstances of its own territory. If they do not have their own legislation, the national legislation applies, so it is this that should be consulted.

It is also necessary to consider the protection that may exist on the land where you wish to build. For example, it is not the same to build in an area within a nature reserve as it is to build in a field without this condition. In principle, it is not possible to build a house on rustic or undeveloped land, although this may vary from one Autonomous Community to another.

If it has been built illegally, a legalisation process can be initiated, but this also varies from region to region. For example, in Andalusia there is the procedure of assimilation to out-of-order (AFO) and in the Valencian Community the procedure of minimisation of environmental impact. Both allow you to obtain a certificate of habitability through regularisation, although this is not full legalisation.

It is also important to know how many metres can be built on rural land and what type of building is allowed. To illustrate this situation, the legislation in force in Galicia (Law 2/2016) will be used as an example. According to this, the following buildings can be built on rural land in the community: facilities for agricultural, livestock, forestry, mining and aquaculture activities, tourist camps, constructions and renovations for tourism, buildings of an artisanal nature and dwellings linked to agricultural and livestock holdings.


The importance of the metre in rural construction

Continuing with the example of Galician legislation, it is important to note the restrictions on the number of metres that can be built on rural land. First of all, the minimum size of the plot must be 2,000 m² and it must have access to a public road and basic services (electricity, water and refuse collection). The building to be constructed must not occupy more than 20% of the surface area of the plot. It must also be in keeping with the surrounding area in terms of its construction and aesthetics. The maximum height of the building is 7 metres, or two storeys, and its visual impact and effect on the topography of the plot must be minimised.

The situation is different in other Autonomous Communities. In Castilla-La Mancha, for example, a detached house can be built on a plot of land of at least one hectare, provided that it does not exceed 200 square metres. If the land is rural land of special ecological interest, it must be at least three hectares and the house built must not exceed 2% of the surface area.

In addition to these guidelines, municipalities have a certain amount of leeway to adapt the regional rules to their own circumstances. This means variations in the number of metres that can be built or in the conditions that must be met. For example, the General Plan of Logroño allows the construction of detached houses of up to two storeys, but the plot must be 5,000m² in irrigated areas and 20,000m² in non-irrigated areas, and depending on the latter, a certain number of metres can be used: if the plot is between 5,000m² and 10,000m², the house can be 150m², for example.

On the other hand, in the General Municipal Plan of Langreo (Asturias), new dwellings on rustic land or land not intended for building may occupy a maximum of 300m². In addition, the plot on which they are located must have access to electricity, water and an access road. These circumstances must be justified before applying for planning permission.

"In Valencian Community the minimum plot must be at least 10.000 square meters to be able to build a new finca"


Where can I find information on how many metres can be built on rural land in each region and municipality?

The information on rustic land in each region of Spain is available on the Internet. Each Autonomous Community has on its website the different regulations published in its Official Bulletin or Official State Gazette. As far as the Town Councils are concerned, in order to find out how many metres can be built on rural land in a given locality, the Town Councils show on their websites the plans they apply.

In this way, citizens can check whether or not their land meets the requirements for building. However, in order to avoid problems or possible fines - the amount of which varies according to the area - it is advisable to consult an expert in the field. He or she will be able to advise you on how to proceed on a case-by-case basis.


What procedures do I need to follow to build on rural land?

Each local council requires different documents. However, there is a certain homogeneity that can be useful. First of all, you need to obtain the application form. In addition, a copy of the DNI, a document from the delegation certifying the representation of a technician, proof of payment of the relevant fees and a technical project approved by a registered architect must be submitted.

The latter must provide a series of data, such as a map in digital format, a site plan, a pre-work plan, a budget, a report describing and justifying the action, an explanatory report and annexed plans for fire protection, installations, specifications and a waste management study. There are also dimensioned plans to scale of the plans, elevations and sections of the building and the topography of the site. This shows how many metres can be built on rural land.

It is possible to build on undeveloped land. However, it is necessary to comply with the regulations of each Autonomous Community and each municipality. The differences can be considerable, so it is necessary to study them carefully. In this way it will be possible to construct the desired building in accordance with the law.


If you are looking to buy either a rustic plot of land or an existing finca or country house in the Moraira and Benissa region, we invite you to take a look at your selection of property by clicking here for Benissa and here for Moraira.


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