What Are Homes Like in...Spain?

What Are Homes Like in...Spain?

Written by Katie Cullen
Written by Katie Cullen
12th November 2014 (Last updated on Monday 4th June 2018)

Are you considering making the move to Spain? Spain is an extremely popular holiday destination amongst Brits and therefore has some of the highest number of expats living here, than any other country.

Check out our article on  how to move to Spain from the UK for more information on planing your move.

But whether you are considering retiring to a Benidorm apartment or starting a new life with your family in a rustic retreat, get to know the Spanish property market first.

Here are the main types of property you may find here:


Spanish chalet - International Removals

(image: Fuengo Blanco)

You will be forgiven for thinking chalets are only in France, but in fact, this is a common term used for Spanish villas.

A Spanish chalet is a villa on a large piece of rural land or garden, 800 to 3,000 sq. m in size. These properties are traditionally one-storey buildings, but in recent years home owners have extended to create two or even three floors.

Chalets commonly have large, well-maintained gardens with orchards, swimming pools and even out-buildings. They are commonly used as a weekend escape to the country by Spaniards who live and work in the city during the week.

A Piso is a flat in an urban area, such as in a tower block in a city centre. These rarely have any outside space, but occasionally come with small balconies. A piso is usually small, and compact. It is just a pied-à-terre, an affordable place to lay your head after a long day working in the city.


Spanish apartamento - International Removals

(image: Tomas Fano under CC BY-SA 2.0)

An apartment is simply a small flat in a tourist area, such as the holiday meccas that are Torremolinos and Benalmadena. These apartamentos are usually low rise, white-washed buildings with communal gardens, swimming pools and playing areas. They're perfect for a holiday home that will be rented out or locked-up for most of the year.

Apartamentos are often quite basically furnished, with only the essential items and a small kitchenette, but thanks to their prime locations in coastal tourist resorts, everything you need will be at your doorstep.


A Spanish bungalow is nothing like a bungalow as we know it here in the UK – they have more than one floor! Instead a bungalow here is part of a modern terrace of multi-story homes. These will have multiple terraces for catching some of the sun's rays and larger shared gardens with communal swimming pools.

These are a great option for people looking for a low-maintenance and affordable property with land.


Se vende local are properties in the city, where the ground floor level is used as a business premises, such as a shop, bar or restaurant. Above these then stand a number of apartments and flats. These are popular purchases among those who are looking to start a new career in a new country.


Spanish finca - International Removals

(image: TripAdvisor)

Fincas are large estates in the country surrounded by wooded areas – they are like large chalets! A finca will commonly have an inside patio covered with vines for added shade from the summer sun. Fincas are beautiful rural retreats but can be hard work to maintain, so be prepared to get your hands dirty if you buy one.

Buying a House in Spain

We've put together an in-depth guide on exactly how to buy a house in Spain, through an interview with an independent Spanish property expert. The article covers everything you need to know before buying a house in Spain, so if you're looking to buy a chalet or an apartmento we have you covered!

Because now that you've got to know your Spanish property types, we hope you're clued up to what you want from a Spanish home. The next step is understanding how to purchase your dream house in Spain! 

From choosing your house, to the final purchase and beyond, the process may seem daunting. It may be especially difficult for non-native speakers, as the paperwork throughout the whole process will be in Spanish. 

But have no fear, read our new guide and learn exactly what's needed for your move to Spain.

So that's what homes in Spain are like. Do you think you will be buying one? Don't forget us when it comes to your international removals!

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