You found the ideal home. What next?

Awesome! You have found a house. Now, what it is important is to avoid buying a problem. We want to see your dream come true, which is only possible when not blinded by the Spanish sun and not being misinformed. Based on the positive and “less positive” experiences of Casa Propia members, we wanted to find a way to offer buyers a lot more certainty and at the same time eliminate unreasonable costs. And we succeeded: the IGP purchase inspection.

Now take some time to carefully read all the information below.


A house or apartment that cannot be rebuilt, renovated, insured, or sold in the future, due to not complying with legal requirements.


  1. CULTURE OF SILENCE: Buyers who bought a problem house in good faith (see definition of problem house) were never informed of the consequences to own a house without the legal requirements.
  2. REGISTRO DE LA PROPIEDAD AND CATASTRO: Properties are registered in these two government institutions. Contrary to mainstream belief, registration does not offer any guarantee that the legal requirements are satisfied. These institution’s documents can be misused by professionals and (mis)lead the do-it-yourself potential buyer to believe that everything is fine.
  3. TOWNHALLS: Most townhall issue a certificate stating that there are no known irregularities, but that does not mean they are not actually there.  The Certificado de no existir infracción urbanística is a misleading document that is used on a regular basis by professionals to make the buyer believe  everything is in order.
  4. NOTARIES: Buyers believe that a purchase made in presence of a notary cannot possibly involve an illegal property. Wrong! Unfortunately, that is not the case. Notaries do NOT investigate whether a property meets the legal requirements.
  5. REAL ESTATE AGENCIES: Many buyers believe that properties on a real estate’s website have undergone a legality check. Not true! Most Estate Agents refer buyers to a lawyer for an investigation (see below). Even when it is established that a property does not comply with the legal requirements, the consequences are not or rarely stated, which is logical because estate agents mostly act in the interest of the seller and/or transaction.
  6. LAWYERS: Many investigations (due diligence) are only carried out by a lawyer who never (or rarely) visits the property. In addition, a lawyer lacks the knowledge of a technical architect and is therefore, in many cases, unable to guarantee the property’s legal status. Moreover, the contracts are often drawn up in a way places the responsibility on the buyer, which makes it difficult or impossible to recover any damages. By the way, reports are rarely drawn up stating consequences of buying an illegal property.
  7. MORTGAGE AND INSURANCE: Reading on social media, you often see the misconception that a property complies with all legal requirements as you take out a mortgage and get insurance. Unfortunately, this is incorrect; the truth is in the event of significant damage you could result in an uninhabitable house, not insured, and a mortgage as an outstanding debt.
  8. THIS IS SPAIN: Many buyers think, or are made to believe, that things work differently in Spain; illegal and condoned are downplayed. Do not be fooled by the statement that even properties with problems can easily be sold. Thanks to the information we provide, you will see that your predecessors probably were not aware of the consequences and possibly may have made a different choice. It is a pyramid scheme where it can go well for a long time, but there will be an owner sitting on the blisters if, for instance, someone has a lot of damage due to water, fire or storm.
  9. DO-IT-YOURSELF: You might think you can do it yourself, as there is a lot of information on the Internet and tips are regularly given via Facebook. But if you carefully read this page, you will understand that much of the information provided on the internet is incorrect. Do not do-it-yourself: you take irresponsible risks and on top you will not save any costs. (See cost savings IGP inspection).
  10. SPANISH LANGUAGE AND LAWS: Foreigners do not know Spanish laws and do not speak Spanish, with little or no control over the process. Most buyers appear to have insufficient or no idea what they are signing for and fully rely on the professional’s ethics (see ethics).
  11. ETHICS: This is perhaps the hottest issue. If virtually no website explains the consequences of non-compliant properties, and nothing is disclosed during the transaction, it is evident that ethics is a serious issue. Buyers do not appear to be informed of what is going on in the background. Remember: friendly, ethical, and professional are not synonymous.

The IGP purchase inspection: it could not be safer.

Examines the most important aspects of the real estate

  • INDEPENDENT: To avoid a conflict of interest, the professionals conducting the verification must not be involved in the transaction or be recommended by a Estate Agent who does not have objective and impartial interest.
  • RELIABLE: The inspection is carried out by an architect (on site), a gestor and a lawyer. They all sign an integrity statement and are supervised by an arbitration committee consisting of members of Casa Propia. In other words, no colleagues who judge each other. The inspection is performed according to a fixed protocol and leaves no room for free interpretation.
  • TRANSPARENT: You will be kept informed of developments and if you wish, documents can be translated into your own language, for you to examine.
  • COST REDUCTION: At the moment, a buyer pays an average of 1% to a lawyer without guarantees on paper. For an average of 5 hours of work, this can come down to several hundred to even thousands of euros per hour for a real estate transaction. During the IGP inspection, a technical architect, and a gestor work on a report at realistic rates. A lawyer can therefore fully concentrate on the legal aspects at a fixed lower rate. So, there is certainly no question of cheap-expensive purchase: we reduce the costs to reasonable proportions.


The IGP inspection means there is no longer reason to stick to the “old” way.

You will be guided to a safe purchase in 5 clear steps. Everything will be arranged for you!

  • Step 1

    Take the first step by yourself requesting a Pre-scan via our contact form. Then we will accompany you step by step. Based on the outcome of the Pre-scan, you will know whether it makes sense to proceed with the purchase before incurring in unnecessary extra costs for lawyers or with an IGP purchase inspection. If the Pre-scan is negative or you do not want to continue, the process will stop without sustaining any additional costs. If the result is positive, we proceed to step 2.

  • Step 2

    Great, the Pre-scan is positive, but we are far from over. The lawyer prepares a reservation contract. This document is your reservation agreement and releases you from obligations if the IGP purchase inspection reveals serious problems. The IGP inspection is included as a resolutive condition.

  • Step 3

    When signing the reservation contract, the IGP purchase inspection is carried out by a technical architect on site and a gestor. They examine the most important aspects of the property in order to prepare a report.

  • Step 4

    Now it is up to the lawyers to analyse the report and provide the potential purchaser with thier findings.
    This is when we know whether the property is actually legal and meets all legal requirements or whether there are still things to take care of, if possible.

  • Step 5

    If everything is in order, the deed of delivery will be drawn up on behalf of the notary. If certain matters still must be resolved, an option contract with its conditions will be first drawn up. The deed of delivery will only be drawn up when all conditions are fulfilled.

‘Felicidades! You own a problem-free dream home’

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Casa Propia is the only independent community for foreign buyers and property owners in Spain