One of the most frequent surprises that some of our clients encounter when they try to sell their property is finding out that their home is a so-called “vivienda de protección oficial”. That is, a type of public housing or council housing, partly financed by governments grants and subject to price control. In this week’s article we review the main features of this type of property. In addition, we explain the requirements and conditions that must be considered if you are trying to sell a protected public house in the Valencia Region, without any trouble.
What is a Protected Public House (VPO)?.
Subsidised housing or protected public housing are properties that, when being sold for the first time, have a lower price than the market price. So that they can be acquired by people with low income who would not otherwise have access to them.
What types of subsidised housing are there in Spain?.
In Spain, “protected housing” can be public or private, depending on the entity that promotes them: the public administration or a private/cooperative entity. In both cases, the prices and characteristics are very similar.
Can I sale my property if it is a subsidised housing?.
In order to know if you can sell a protected public house in the Valencian Region, you must consider three fundamental points. 1.- The period of protection. 2.- The maximum price. 3.- The possible right of first refusal of the administration.
What does the Protection Period consist of?.
Social housing is always subject to a protection period (15, 30, 50 years) during which the property has a series of limitations. Renting it or transferring it to third parties (through a sale or donation) is usually prohibited. Although it can also occur that, in spite of being allowed, the price has a limitation. It will all depend on what is established in the Royal Decree that approved it. This period of protection is always counted from the date of definitive qualification.
What is the Maximum Price?.
The maximum price is the limit that prevents a property from being sold or rented above a certain amount. In order to calculate the maximum price, it is necessary to consider the useful surface area of the property, its protection regime, the municipality in which it is located, etc. Written confirmation of the maximum price of a social housing must be requested to the Valencian Government.
What does the administration’s right of first refusal consist of?.
The right of first refusal is a preferential acquisition right that allows the administration to acquire a subsidised housing with preference to any other person. Always under the same conditions offered: same price, same type of payment, etc.
If your property is a subsidised home, you (as vendor) may be compelled to inform the administration of the operation, before and after signing the deed of sale at the Notary’s office. Failure to comply with this obligation is considered a serious infringement, with fines of up to €3,000 (among other penalties).
What is the deadline for the administration to confirm whether it exercises the right of first refusal?.
The administration has up to 60 days to reply. Therefore, if you want to sell your property, it is essential to make this communication as soon as possible. This deadline must be considered when signing the “arras” contract, setting the date to complete at the Notary’s office, etc.
At White-Baos Lawyers we are experts in Real Estate Law: sales and purchases, donations, rental contracts, etc. If you want to gift, buy or sell a protected public house, do not hesitate to contact us. We will study your case and offer you expert advice on the matter.
The information provided in this article is not intended to be legal advice, but merely conveys information related to legal issues.
Carlos Baos (Lawyer)
White & Baos.
Tel: +34 966 426 185
White & Baos 2023 – All Rights Reserved.