Navigating the Cédula de Habitabilidad: A Comprehensive Guide for Ibiza (2023)

Navigating the Cédula de Habitabilidad: A Comprehensive Guide for Ibiza (2023)

PART 1: Introduction

a. What is the cédula de habitabilidad and what is it for? The cédula de habitabilidad (habitation certificate) stands as an official document issued by the Consell Insular (Island Council), affirming a building’s compliance with minimum dimensions, sanitary installations, and facilities necessary for its intended purpose. Valid for 10 years, it ensures the building’s legality and is essential for contracting public utilities. This guide aims to shed light on its nuances, especially in the vibrant real estate market of Ibiza.

b. Types of cédulas de habitabilidad

  1. Cédula de habitabilidad de primera ocupación: Mandatory for new builds, extensions affecting 60% of usable space, refurbishments, or changes of use.
  2. Cédula de habitabilidad de renovación: Necessary for expired cédulas seeking renewal.
  3. Cédula de habitabilidad de carencia: Required for buildings completed pre-March 1987 lacking any cédula.

c. Application requirements Property owners bear procedure costs for renewal or absence cases. A (Technical) Architect’s report, approved by the relevant professional association, is crucial. The process, submitted to the Consell Insular, may take up to two months, although delays of up to a year have been observed.

d. Historical evolution The regulatory journey began with Decree 111/1986, culminating in current legislation. Recent changes aim to streamline processes, especially for new builds, by potentially repealing the need for cédulas.

PART 2: Opinions of a Lawyer and an Architect

a. What does the Law say? Cédulas serve various purposes, from utility contracts to property transfers. The Ibiza Consell Insular contemplates replacing mandatory first occupancy licenses with cédulas, streamlining processes.

b. What does an Architect think? Architect Luis Quesada emphasizes the importance of distinguishing habitability from legality. He suggests allowing the sale of habitable dwellings with illegal parts, provided both parties are informed and accept the circumstances.

c. What does a Lawyer think? Lawyers clarify that cédulas don’t verify legality. Legal status depends on licenses and certificates. The buyer should be informed, especially considering potential risks related to financing and utility supply.

PART 3: The Cédulas de Habitabilidad and the Real Estate Sector

a. How does this document affect the real estate market? Cédulas increasingly impact real estate transactions, with potential buyers scrutinizing their presence. However, widespread lack of knowledge among agents generates concern and insecurity, contributing to an atmosphere of distrust.

b. Our conclusions

  • New constructions may not need cédulas due to the existence of the Certificado de Final de Obra.
  • Legality and habitability should be separate concepts, with consideration for older buildings.
  • Unacceptable delays in cédula issuance hinder real estate operations.
  • Cédulas alone shouldn’t deter property purchases; the reasons for their absence should be explored.
  • Access to reliable information needs improvement; training for real estate agents must be enhanced.
  • In property transactions, relying on experienced professionals remains crucial.

In summary, understanding the cédula de habitabilidad is paramount in navigating Ibiza‘s real estate landscape, ensuring informed decisions and efficient transactions.

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