Whether you are considering buying a house in Spain or if you already own one but don’t live in the country for most of the year, it is important for you to know what your obligations are with regards to the Spanish tax system.
The annual non resident tax, is paid by non resident property owners even if their property is not rented. However, if it is rented, you need to declare these earnings and pay tax quarterly:
First quarter runs from January through to March. The second quarter runs from April through to June. The third from July to September and the last quarter covers October to December. The deadline for these periods is the 20th.
The official deadline to pay it is 31st December and that covers the previous year. Remember that fiscal year in Spain equals natural year.
We advise you to take this matter seriously as Spanish Authorities are taking this extremely seriously and are looking for ways to identify those who do not pay their taxes. They cross-reference information such as electricity consumption and other house-related bills in order to match the information they have on that particular property. Most foreign buyers who do not live in the country permanently think it is a good idea to hire or appoint a fiscal representative in Spain so that he or she is in charge of representing them before the Spanish Ministry of Tax and so that any notification is sent to them first.
Should you fail to meet your fiscal obligations in the country on time, the amount you owe the state can easily mount up due to late payment interest and sanctions, so do your best to stay up to date with your tax payments. A continued tax offence might result in seizure of your bank account.
First of all, be prepared to get told there is a document missing, even if you did your best to bring all the documents you thought were required. Read everything carefully and be sure not to miss anything! Also avoid peak hours in the morning, especially during the Spanish “merienda” (mid-morning snack, one of the spanish customs), as queues can be seen while a few employees are out enjoying a sort of second breakfast. This can be the case in banks or post offices.
Not a lot gets done in August. This is particularly true if what you want to do does not relate to tourism or any of the activities that come with up, be it having dinner out, enjoying the beach or staying at a hotel. Most big cities get empty as people flock to the beautiful beaches so a lot of people are on holiday, even within the country. You should try to avoid leaving any important tasks for August if possible!