Depending on your circumstances, renting can be an attractive alternative to buying a property on the Costa del Sol.
For some, renting can offer attractive benefits. Apart from the flexibility of a rental home, a monthly rent is often cheaper than a comparable mortgage repayment, especially when community fees, local taxes and maintenance costs are taken into account, as they are generally the responsibility of the landlord.
However, looking for a property to rent in Spain can be a frustrating experience. While landlords who offer short-term and holiday rents are required to have a licence, there is no law regarding minimum standards required for long-term rental properties. As a result, some homes for rent on the open market are well below the standards found in holiday rentals.
Estepona Property Rentals
At Terra Meridiana, we only offer rental properties that meet the standards of a home that we ourselves would want to live in, so that we can offer them with confidence. As a result, we only work with reliable, reputable landlords who respect their obligations. We personally visit all our properties to ensure that they, and their owners, meet the grade, and act on your behalf to remedy any issues that may arise.
What does rent include?
In general terms, the rent paid for short- and long-term rentals in Spain includes all taxes and costs pertaining directly to the property – such as municipal property taxes and refuse collection – but it normally does not include utility bills or other costs that depend on the own tenant’s use and consumption
Repair costs are normally paid by the landlord, but you should check the contract carefully to ensure this is the case. In contrast, any improvements the tenant wishes to make require prior approval from the landlord and are normally be paid by the tenant themselves.
If the property is part of a community, community costs, including cleaning of shared areas, may be included, but this is not always the case. As these can be high, especially for communities that have a swimming pool, gardens, gym, spa, security, concierge reception, tennis courts, pool bar or other amenities. You should always check first if they’re included or negotiate the rent accordingly.
Since June 2013, all long-term rental properties in Spain are required to have an energy efficiency certificate, stating, on a scale rated A to G, how much carbon dioxide the home emits per year, based on heating, cooling and other energy use. Although this doesn’t directly affect the tenant, it can be a useful tool to work out the general cost of utility bills.
Spanish law requires tenants to pay landlords a minimum deposit that is equivalent to one calendar month’s rent for unfurnished properties and two months for furnished properties.
Many landlords, however, will ask for up to six months’ rent in advance or even demand a bank guarantee (aval bancario) naming them as the beneficiary in case of non-payment. Also beware that some landlords of long-term rental properties will want you to vacate in August, so they can rent the property out by the week to holidaymakers. If you don’t mind doing this you should be able to negotiate a good rental rate, but as most long term tenants don’t like the idea it is good to check the contract carefully first and make sure this clause is not included.
In addition to offering a first class selection of short and long-term rental properties in Estepona and the surrounding areas, Terra Meridiana will advise you on these issues and make sure you always make informed decisions. Contact us now if you are looking to rent a property in Marbella, Estepona, Benahavis and surroundings.
Originally published in November 2009, updated by Adam Neale in August 2018