Guidelines on Renting your Holiday Property in Catalonia


Given the amount of questions we get about this subject, and following the instructions of our business administrator, we are publishing the following information about taxation of holiday lets in Spain and the current legislation regarding tourist accommodation in Catalonia.

Please note that there are various situations to consider (whether you are a Spanish resident or non resident, registered as living in the property or not) so in any case we recommend that you seek advice from a “gestor” or local tax adviser in order to find out the correct way to go about legally renting your property.


The general rules are:

Regarding taxation to the National Spanish Tax Authority

• Homeowners who rent their property in a short term basis (by day or weeks, mainly for short stays to tourists) on a regular basis and as a business activity for profit, providing services typical of the hospitality industry, should register as self-employed and are liable to Spanish VAT laws. This means that you will have to issue invoices and charge VAT on the weekly rent, and then pay this back to the National Spanish Tax Authority, Hacienda, on a quarterly basis.  

• There is a grey area between renting out and running a business, but the distinction is usually made on the basis of what extras are included for the renter, and normally if you include services typically provided by the hotel industry (such as cleaning, laundry, linens, towels, etc.) it is considered that this is renting as a business.

The services mentioned below are not considered as being typical of the hotel industry:  

-Accommodation cleaning and linen change provided at the entrance and the exit of the contracted period for each tenant.

- Technical assistance services for any repairs and maintenance such as plumbing, electrical, locksmith, appliances, etc.


If you do not carry out the activity as a business and do not include services typical of the hotel industry, then you can declare the income on your Spanish tax return (declaracion de la renta de las personas fisicas) if you are resident. There is a special form for non resident Spanish property owners called modelo 210 and the rent should be declared on one of these forms every time some is received.  Alternatively you can group all the rentals from a quarter together.  


Regarding the Department of Tourism of the Generalitat

• If the property is let out consecutively for periods of less than 31 days to tourists, you have to register the property in your corresponding town hall as accommodation for tourist use. Licenses for this purpose have to be approved by the local authorities and any property owners who venture into holiday rentals without the license are liable to fines. 

• Either the owner or a qualified representative of the owner can register the property providing a “Cedula d’habitabilitat” certificate. Please note the property cannot be occupied by more people than those stated in the certificate. 

• It is also required to provide the contact details and telephone numbers of a person –either the owner himself or the property manager- that can assist with any property related issues immediately whilst clients are in residence. 

• It is also required to provide the details of the company or the person that deals with the property maintenance. 

• All the accommodations for tourist use must be available to provide official complaint sheets to its clients. 

• They must display in a visible place the registry number and the  telephone number for inquiries or incidents. 

• All tourist accommodations must collect the tourist tax from their clients and pay it to the Generalitat. This tax obliges all customers over 16 to pay € 2.25 in Barcelona or € 0.90 in the rest of Catalonia (+ applicable VAT) for each day of their stay (with a maximum of 7 days). It is the duty of the owner or manager of the property to collect this tax, either including it in the rental price, or collecting it at the time of the arrival of the guests, and present the tax self assessment.


Regarding public safety

• It is also required that all tourist accommodations register the details of the clients staying there which must be forwarded to the Police Department in accordance with the applicable safety regulations. More information: Registro de viajeros de establecimientos de hostelería


 Please take this as a general guidance, but as stated above, always seek professional advice from a local tax adviser who will take care of the paperwork for you for a small fee.