Lease Agreements in Spain and Portugal
A Guide to the Best Lease in Portugal and Spain.
What is a Lease Agreement?
A lease agreement is a contract that allows an individual to use a property in exchange for a payment, like monthly rent. Typically, if a person needs to stay in a residential property for a period of time, but are not looking to purchase a home, they often sing a lease agreement to formally live in the property..
Depending on the time period for a lease agreement in Spain and/or Portugal, the following options are outlined below:
Types of contracts
The contract must be signed in front of a notary.
There must be a written contract but there’s no obligation to notarise it.
Landlord must register the contract on the Property Registry
Landlord must register the contract with the Tax Authority but this doesn’t impact the contract’s validity
Automatic renewal (for long-term leases only)
Only the tenant can choose to automatically renew the contract during the first give years. The rent increases are in line with the Consumer Price Index
Only the tenant can choose to renew the contract in the first three years
Eviction for unpaid rent
After one month without payment, the landlord may send a notarised order of payment. After 10 days, the landlord may file a lawsuit to evict the tenant
After three months of unpaid rent, the landlord can evict the tenant. If the tenant doesn’t leave, the landlord can pursue a lawsuit
How do I get the right Lease Agreement?
- Contact one of our real estate lawyers to verify if the property fulfils the legal requirements for habitation
- Draft a contract which:
- Identifies the parties
- Identifies the type of property
- Carefully describes each parties’ responsibilities.
- The parties sign an agreement
- Register the contract
Process of Purchasing Property?
Although each buying process differs from client to client, the general timeline is listed as follows:
- Tax and Budget Planning: The costs of acquiring a house are mainly paid by the buyer, and vary from region to region. Taxes and other paid by the buyer include:
- Property transfer tax 6–10% (existing properties) / VAT (or IVA) at 10% (new properties);
- Notary costs, title deed tax and land registration fee 1–2.5%;
- Legal fees 1–2% (including VAT).
- Obtain your NIE: Contact the Spanish administration to get your tax identification number.
- Search for properties in Spain: Our expert attorneys can help find properties in Spain.
- Reservation agreement and Letter of Intent: A letter of intent may be presented by one party to another party and subsequently negotiated before execution (or signature).
How can a lawyer help me?
- Our real estate lawyers can verify if the property is registered for the correct use
- They can draft a contract that protects with strict adherence to the law
- The can help you assess and choose the best legal option for you
¨We will be with you each step of your journey.¨
– Immigration Team
What's involved in getting a Lease Agreement?
- Gather the correct documentation – this typically takes up to 15 days
- Review and verify the documents – we estimate no longer than 10 days for this
- Draft a contract – we allocate up to 10 days here
- Sign the deed
- The landlord registers the contract
Find you Immigration Lawyer
Frequently Asked Questions
In Portugal, a long-term residential lease agreement ranges from a year to 30 years.
In Spain, the agreement is at least a year but there is no maximum.
The tenant must leave the property if the lease expires without automatic renewal.
Anyone can prepare a rental agreement but it’s best to work with a real estate expert, who can protect your interests. Choose an experienced professional to verify the contract sent and eliminate the small details that may lead to greater costs in the future.
No. It’s illegal for a tenant to use a property in a period that has already passed.
Yes and we can support this arrangement.
If your tenant refuses to sign a lease you should go to court and follow these steps.
- Ask the court to recognize the existing lease and the agreed payment terms.
- If you can prove the tenant’s refusal, you can ask the court to recognize the legal “inexistence” of the lease and issue a judicial order to evict the tenant.