An unoccupied property is a lost opportunity to make money. After the summer, thousands of holiday apartments are vacant until the following holiday season. Many of the British who have purchased Spanish property are not using them for the rest of the year. A good option for them is to rent them out. However, many are uncomfortable to commit to long term rentals due to the slowness of the Spanish eviction system.
Having a defaulter tenant in your holiday apartment can be a real nightmare as it could take you 1 year to evict him from the property. The Spanish Government is determined to improve the legal mechanism to warrant an efficient eviction system and has recently issued new laws which, between other points, are meant to speed the eviction procedure. The aim of the laws is to improve efficiency, avoid long term bureaucracy and increase the confidence in the legal system.
Since the enactment of new laws, the petitions are meant to be resolved in shorter periods of time. Less time should also mean less cost. In fact, eviction will now be possible even without any hearings. A very simple petition to the Court will be sufficient. Once the petition has been admitted, the tenant will have two options:
A. He can object to the landlord’s petition. Then both landlord and tenant will be summoned to a hearing
B. He can ignore the proceedings, in which case he will be sentenced to evict the property and in certain cases, to pay the amounts owed.
To avoid unfair situations, the tenant will only be able to appeal the decision if he deposits the amounts owed in the Court’s escrow account.
The initiative is really positive to improve the rights of both landlords and tenants. Renting properties should be considered a worthy option.
Citizens in general will welcome the new laws, although its success will rely not only on theoretical law but in its practical implementation. Lets remember that good intentions and changes in law can prove fruitless if they do not come along with some improvements in the current bureaucratic system.
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