Guide to rent a house in Spain

Guide to rent a house in Spain

2021-08-24 17:07:14

For those that want to study or work in Spain, having a safe and friendly temporary home is very important. This article will guide you through the important steps and tips that you need to bear in mind when searching for your next home.

1. You need to figure out your objective before searching

Before beginning with the search, you need to decide which are the most important factors for you. You can ask yourself questions like:

  • Do you need to live on a tight budget, or do you want to enjoy the Spanish lifestyle to the fullest?
  • Do you want to live alone, or do you prefer to get to know new people?
  • Do you want to stay near to your school, or you like to live in a vibrant cultural district?
  • What are the necessary household appliances that I cannot live without?

It will save you a lot of time since you can apply filters to your searches on major renting websites.

2. Inform yourself of the types of accommodations available

If you are a working professional, usually you have the following options to choose from:

  • homestay or au pair: living in a family that welcomes professionals, international students, or tourists. This is a fairly economical way to save money and the quickest way to experience the culture.
  • sharing a room (compartir una habitación): sharing a room with someone else. This means that you will share a bedroom with someone else. With this option, you can usually pay much less but you need to manage well with the co-living life.
  • Sharing an apartment (compartir un piso): sharing an apartment with someone else. The difference between this option and the former one is that you will have an individual room but share the rest of the facilities with other roommates.
  • Studio Apartments (estudio): an independent living option usually with 1 or 0 rooms. It’s the ideal option for people who want to live on their own and don’t like to share an apartment with other people. It´s usually more expensive than the two options mentioned above since you will have an individual kitchen, bathroom and will afford all the living expenses individually.
  • Flats or villas (piso, chalet): renting a whole apartment/a villa for single or family use. This option is bigger than a studio, resulting in a higher price on average.

For students there are other available options:

  • Room in university residence: room in a residence hall of a specific university. In Spain, many universities have their own residence hall, located near to the campus. Price is often similar to the room in a student residence. If you want to choose this option, it’s recommended to book a room as early as possible since the number of rooms is highly limited.
  • Room in student residence: often a well-designed and fully equipped room with essential facilities for personal use. Students need to apply for a reservation.Usually, the residence will ask for credentials like an invitation or enrollment letter from the university. The rooms are sometimes available for the whole academic year. You can choose whether you want to share the room with other students or no. The price is usually similar to or less expensive than the studio price of the same city.
  • Rooms or apartments available only for students: can be usually found in student housing agencies. This type of housing is different from a room in a student residence since they are normal houses to be rent. But they are organized and prepared to rent to students only by the agency.

3. Begin with your search and contact agencies/landlords

Besides talking with housing agencies offline, there are also several popular online housing search engines operating in Spain:

4. Steps after seeing your ideal home

After seeing your ideal home on the websites mentioned, don’t hesitate to contact the agencies involved or the landlord directly if possible.

  • In most cases, if you want to rent the whole place, such as a studio or an apartment. You might encounter many agency contacts.
  • However, if you want to rent a room in a sharing apartment, you will have more possibility of contracting directly with the landlord.

It’s hard to decide which of the two possibilities is better since contacting directly with a landlord may save you the agency fee while contacting a reliable agency might assure you more security. Therefore, the determinant is the rental contract. It should be in Spanish and contain all the required items because you need to present this contract in the city town hall in order to get the city town hall registration (empadronamiento) done. It’s also recommended that you check with the agency or the landlord if their contract or they themselves can help with the city town hall registry before signing the contract.

After renting the house and get your empadronamiento certificate, you need to present all the required papers (including the health insurance certificate. Get to know Adeslas´ expat insurance, the insurance that fulfills all the visa requirements) to the national police station (Policía National).


[1]guides, S., & Spain, S. (2021). Study in Spain: Housing & Living Costs. Retrieved 21 July 2021, from

Our contents will be updated according to the most recent legislation. Last update: 24/08/2021

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