Paperwork Issues Julie from Solutions 4 U provides us with some answers

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1. In the press there is a lot of news about illegal constructions. What paperwork should my house have as minimum?
Your property should have a Title Deed (Escritura) which describes the property and land measurements correctly. The appropriate Building Licences for the property would have been obtained for the Deed to be in order but you may not have copies of these if the property is some years old. But if you have a new property, copies of these licences should be available. You should also have a 'Nota Simple' which is a certificate from the Land & Property Registry confirming the inscription of both in your name and should be a reflection of the details in the Title Deed. You should also have what is known as the IBI which is the local rates tax form, and this should also state the plot references and the correct owner.
In addition to this there are the Catastro records in Malaga, which is another branch of the Land Registry, and here properties and land are listed. The average person wouldn't have copies of how their property is listed there, but this is something I normally can check on to be sure that this also coincides with what their Deed says.

2. If I want to sell my home what paperwork do I need to submit to an Estate Agent as we understand there has been a few recent changes?
If I don't posses this paperwork can you help?
You should give a copy of the Title Deed to the property, the Nota Simple, the IBI, copies of the owner(s) NIE and Passport numbers, and copies of a recent electric and water bill. It may also be helpful, if the property is fairly new, to give the agent copies of the planning permissions and First Occupation Licence which a buyer's lawyer will no doubt ask for.
As a minimum a property owner should always have their Title Deed and identification documents, but often, for various reasons, people do not have some of the other documentation, so I can help by approaching the necessary authorities to obtain these on their behalf, and also make sure that the details contained in these documents are up to date and correspond to the correct property. Even though people have the Deed to their property it's very common that they don't understand what it says. I've had quite a number of people whose property is on the market, come to the office and leave copies of their Deed with me and are subsequently very surprised to find that all the property they own is not listed on their Deed, or even that they are owners of the property but not the plot of land it sits on.

3. If I make changes to my home we understand we need a license however I don't speak Spanish and don't know where to go in the Townhall?
How can you help?I am happy to act as representative for customers and I always make a preliminary visit to the Town Hall Planning Department to ascertain exactly what paperwork the authority will require from the owner for his specific building proposal. I find this saves a lot of time and money avoiding preparing documents that may not be necessary, and it's best to be as assured as you can be that you will be granted the licence you are applying for. For what is classed as 'Major Building Works' i.e. structural work, extensions, an architect's plan will be necessary and I am able to arrange this. It's very often the case that within the architect's plan certain items must be included and even certain wording must be very specific, so it's important that this is done correctly to avoid the application being rejected. I basically take care of the whole process and hand over the Licence to the owner once it has been granted. If someone is thinking of changing or adding to their property I offer a fixed fee, consultation service whereby they can come for a preliminary chat at the office, bring along their property papers and I will give people an honest appraisal of the possibilities they have.

4. If I have extended my house or built a pool do I need to update my paperwork?
How can you help?
Your Title Deed is supposed to describe your property as it currently is, so if you have extended it or added a swimming pool, it should be added to the Deed. This will save time and the stress of a lawyer potentially putting off a buyer if you have a property on the market that the Deed does not fully correspond to.
I can arrange for people to have these items added to their Deed by obtaining copies of the relevant licences and certificates and accompany them to the Notary's office with a lawyer if necessary, to have them inscribed.

5. I would like to build my own villa in Competa what should be my fist step?
Can you help?
Firstly find an appropriate plot. Construction is now severely restricted in areas outside Town Boundaries so be sure you will be able to, and exactly what, you can build on the plot. Construction within the town is permissible with the right documentation. I can obtain a written certificate from the Town Hall stating what they will allow on any particular plot if necessary. If you don't as yet have any land, I can help you find something to suit your needs, but it may be necessary to obtain something that already has some construction on it and look to renovate or extend it, as the planning permission may be easier
that way. The basic utilities such as water and electric need to be accessible, just because there is an electric post in the near vicinity doesn't mean you can just take a point from that. So I would also make an application to Sevillana for electric. Water can be obtained through the town supply or through private networks and I can make applications for both of these for people.
that way. The basic utilities such as water and electric need to be accessible, just because there is an electric post in the near vicinity doesn't mean you can just take a point from that. So I would also make an application to Sevillana for electric. Water can be obtained through the town supply or through private networks and I can make applications for both of these for people.


6 Apart from providing solutions to problems what other services do you offer?
I offer a Project Management Service for quality construction, which helps people get what they want out of the builder rather than what he wants you to have, or what he thinks he's understood you want. This helps people have a good input to the details of the work, be assured they won't pay for work not done, and have a point of contact which they can reach other than just a mobile phone number which can be avoided if problems arise.
I also provide a translation service if people need letters written/understood or representation in talking to their Spanish neighbour over things like access rights, shared driveways, boundary misunderstandings. Many people find their boundaries are not correctly marked out in the Malaga Catastro office, and for this I can offer to get these rectified quickly and professionally, and there are still properties that do not have Title Deeds and I now work with an independent lawyer to follow the legal process in obtaining such.

7. I would like to sell my property but know that the market isn't at its best at the moment. Do you have any suggestions as to how I can improve my chances of selling?
Of course the obvious answer at the moment is to pitch the property at a saleable price. I am finding that there are buyers around but it has to be admitted that there is an awful lot of choice of properties for sale nowadays. I find that two types of properties are selling, those priced to sell, and those that are a little different from the norm or that have some special features that other properties do not have. So there are quite a few things that you can do to improve the appearance of your property without too much expense that will help to present the property better. Mostly these can be decorative things, like adding some stone cladding around archways, adding some decorative

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