Spanish expat homeowners ripped off by property certificate scammers

Published:  29 Jul at 6 PM
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The Spanish government’s new requirement that homes for sale or being rented must be rated for energy efficiency has opened the doors for a brand new scam.

The new regulations state that a qualified assessor must rate any property built before 2007 for energy efficiency and issue a certificate. Homes built after that date should have been rated at the time of construction, but industry experts are now warning about scams on several issues.

Firstly, Spain is rife with unregistered assessors presenting themselves to property owners as qualified, offering cheap certificates or even issuing certificates without visiting the property. Secondly, others using the scam are guaranteeing the issue of A-rated certificates, which is quite simply illegal.

Adding to the risk for home owners keen to sell or rent out is the fact that several Spanish regions were slow or negligent in enforcing the rule on new constructions post 2007, resulting in many new-builds not being certificated. Those already scammed will realise their mistake when they attempt to register the certificate with the local authority as required by law.

According to the new law, all assessors must be professional technicians, engineers or architects authorised to undertake thermal installations and building projects. They must present their membership number as proof of their membership of an official provincial association, and prices per home for assessment and certification should be between €200 and €300.
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