Everything you should know about the new Spanish Rental Law 2019

New rules for renting property in Spain

In Spain on March 6th, 2019 new legislation regarding rental law came into force. They called it “Ley de Arrendamientos Urbanos (LAU)”

Here is an outline of the most important changes, establishing the new rules for renting property in Spain, that came into vigor with the amendment of this law.

If you have any more questions after reading this article, please contact us at Property Management Barcelona.

Also check out our post: How to rent an apartment in Barcelona (a 10 step guide)

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Initial Rental Period

Rental periods have been extended to five years instead of three. If the landlord is represented by a legal entity (for example a corporation) the minimum length will be seven years.

Only the tenant will be able to cancel the contract within these time frames. Failing to do so will result in an automatic renewal of the contract

Renewal Period

Renewal periods have been extended to three years instead of one.

Landlord Notice

Should the landlord require his property for a family emergency or a similar issue, he will be able to claim his asset. However, this will only apply if the first year of the contract is already up, and if he gives a minimum of two months notice.

what you should know about the new rental law in Spain 2019

If the property is sold

If  the tenant registers the rental contract with the Registro de Propiedad (Spanish Federal Real Estate Registry), he will be guaranteed an automatic and silent renewal even if the property is sold (post: How to sell your flat in Barcelona, in 10 easy steps).

Deposit according to the new rules for renting property in Spain

The rental deposit remains at one month’s rent. If agreed in the contract this could be altered once the first five- or seven-year lease is up.

Also the owner had the option to ask for additional guarantee, meaning extra months in deposit. So in a practical case a rental agreement could look like “one month deposit and 2 months additional guarantee”

Additional Financial Guarantee

The complementary or additional financial guarantee (locally called “Garantía adicional”) is capped at a maximum of two months rent. The only exception would be if the initial period is longer than five or seven years respectively.

everything you should know about the new spanish rental law 2019

Rent Revision

Any changes to the rental cost will be applied according to the IPC index (Indice Precios Consumo). This index tracks the inflationary cost of consumer goods in Spain.

All other rent revisions should be established in the initial terms of the agreement.

Maintenance Costs

The Spanish norm is that maintenance costs and service costs will be the responsibility of the tenant. Be that as it may, everything should always be reflected in the contract. As a landlord you’ll have to specify the amount of IBI (property tax) and community expenses the tenant is paying.

Property Improvements

Once the first five- or seven-year lease is finished, and if the landlord during that time has made improvements to the property, he may increase the monthly rent, according to the new rules for renting property in Spain.

He may only do this if he has previously informed the tenants in writing, detailing the costs of the improvements and adding a calculation for the new rent amount. In any case, the rent increase can never be more than 20%.


The ITP tax (taxation on patrimonial transmission) is supposed to be paid whenever some patrimony switches hands in Spain. In long term rental contracts the government has decided that the tenant does not have to pay this tax. They will have to present the tax form (modelo 600) dough and upload the rental contract, even no payment is required.

For short-term rental contracts the tenant will have to pay this tax. It corresponds to 0,5% of the total rental income. If the rental income is 1500€ / month for a period of 8 months, the corresponding ITP tax would be 60€ (1500*8*0,5% = 60).

Vacation rentals and communities of owners

Under the current Spanish “Horizontal Property Law” there must be a unanimous decision to allow or prohibit properties within a community to be registered for holiday leases. After approval of the law of March 6th, this has been amended to a 3/5 majority vote by owners.
If the decision has a favorable outcome the changes will be made to either the individual properties and/or any community spaces.
A specific community fee must be established, or the community fees of the affected properties should be adjusted.
This requires another 3/5 vote, but will never be a bigger increase than 20% of the total fees. These agreements are not retroactive.

In any case to operate a vacation rental, the landlord should hold a tourist license, which in Barcelona are no longer issued. The only way to acquire one is by buying an existing one. 

meeting about the new spanish rental law 2019

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