Sale of inherited property in Spain

If you have to sell an inherited property in Spain

You and your siblings have just inherited your father's single-family home, and they have decided to sell it to share the amount. The first thing they must do is accept the inheritance to put it in the name of the heirs. See how.

If there is a will

Certificates. When there is a will, the first thing to do to proceed with the acceptance of the inheritance is to obtain the corresponding certificates from the Civil Registry (you can do the process electronically at :

  • Literal death certificate (24 hours after death).
  • Certificate of last will (proving that a will was made and before which notary).
  • Certificate of death coverage insurance contracts (to check if the deceased had any life insurance).


Will. With the previous documents, request an authorized copy of the last will from the notary before which it was granted. Note. You will find the notary's details in the last will certificate.

Estate. Also prepare all the documentation that proves your father's assets and debts on the date of death (property deeds, bank account balance certificates, etc.). Attention! The bank cannot charge commissions to the future heir for issuing a certificate of balance or last movements. You can only charge a commission if:

  • It provides an effective service that the latter has expressly requested (never if the bank has imposed it unilaterally).
  • It would be the case that you request verifications beyond the mere issuance of the certificate on the date of death, or if you request some type of advice.


Acceptance. Once the indicated documentation has been gathered, you and your siblings may appear before a notary to grant the deed of acceptance of the inheritance. Attention! Then they must:

  • Liquidate the Inheritance Tax, as well as the municipal capital gains (regarding the property or properties, if there are several).
  • Register the deed in the Land Registry.


If there is no will

Heirs. When there is no will, it is essential to carry out an additional procedure (before acceptance): the declaration of intestate heirs:

  • If children, parents, spouse or grandchildren of the deceased must be declared heirs, they can carry out the process before a notary (providing two witnesses). Note. In other cases (brothers, nephews...), the process is judicial and longer.
  • After the notarial declaration, it is necessary to wait 20 business days to be able to close the record. Therefore, the process delays the signing of the inheritance acceptance deed.


To move forward...
Due to the above, it may take several months until the property they intend to sell is registered in their name. During this period they can put the property up for sale with a real estate agency, warning them that it does not belong to them yet. Attention! If you find an interested party and sign a deposit, agree on a long term to notarize (for example, from three to six months), and specify that this will be extendable if the procedures are delayed.

"The procedures for acceptance of the inheritance can be delayed, especially if there is no will. Meanwhile, they can put the property up for sale. Of course: if they find a buyer and sign a deposit, agree on a comfortable deed term."

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