Just one week after the entry into force of the new tourist rental regime across the Costa del Sol, thousands of homeowners, spearheaded by cautious Brits, have submitted their applications to the Junta de Andalucia regional government.
A legal loophole that allowed residents to let out their homes to tourists, without registering them with the authorities, was closed in February, with the new legislation, which threatened significant fines for any outlaw landlords, coming into effect on May 11.
Controversy over the draconian measures quickly played second fiddle to an urgent need to spread the word to expatriate homeowners, who risked crippling fines simply by being unaware of the new legal framework.
Comprehensive analysis from the Euro Weekly News and other community media has clearly helped raise awareness, given the announcement on May 18 that almost 4,500 registrations were made in a mere seven days, with a significant proportion coming from expats on the Costa del Sol.
Word of mouth also played a key role in the successful registration of thousands of homeowners, as expats look out for one another and strive to ensure that they can continue to reap the benefits of letting out their homes, without facing the wrath of Spanish bureaucracy.
In the past two weeks the pace of registration has quickened, with a fivefold increase forcing local authorities to work overtime to deal with the load.
Online portals, where homeowners can register without the trouble of travelling to local offices, are expected to attract an avalanche of 20,000 property owners in the coming months.
If you are a homeowner who advertises your property to tourists, and you haven’t yet registered with your local authority, it would be prudent to consult with a lawyer or property expert to take command of your legal situation, and join the thousands of other expats who have now secured their rights.