Certificate of habitability in Mallorca

What does a certificate of occupancy on Mallorca actually have to say so that you can buy the apartment?

Many lawyers on Mallorca “open a barrel” with a missing certificate of occupancy, as the saying goes. The cardboard called “cédula de habitabilidad” in Spanish (because it used to be displayed on cardboard) is blue and comes from the Consell de Mallorca, the island’s government.

The basic idea is that the island government gets an overview of all properties on the island that are used for residential purposes. In this respect, this cédula comes at the end of a whole series of administrative processes. So if you’re shown a Cédula when you buy a property, that’s pretty good. It is a sign that your object has been confiscated.

Certificate of occupancy, the administrative procedure

How do you actually get a certificate of occupancy? And can a real estate developer speed up the process in order to be able to sell their property more quickly?

At the beginning there is the acceptance of the building of the community. Every project developer is obliged to have their construction work approved by the municipality. The approval of the building by the municipality is often wrongly confused with the approval by the “Dirección facultativa”. This is the building acceptance by the architect.

The architect approves the construction and sends this certificate to the municipality. She then comes with her own architect and checks the finished property. The legal department of the municipality creates the so-called “Licencia de primera ocupación”, which in turn is then sent to the Consell Insular.

Every project developer is well advised to speed up this process by checking with the municipality about the situation from time to time. Unfortunately, there are no other options open to him. So it means: wait and drink tea.

What happens if I don’t have a certificate of occupancy for a property in Mallorca?

What happens if there is no certificate of habitability for a property in Mallorca? What is the legal situation?

Basically, nothing happens at first with a missing Cédula. Because you are of course free within private contract law to enter into contracts – also notarially. In very few individual cases, it may of course be the case that the property never receives a building permit from the municipality. Of course you should check that. But as a rule, project developers sell even before the certificate of habitability is available. This is always risk-free for you if the project developer has already built several identical houses in the same urbanization.