Madrid introduce regulations for holiday rentals

Back in June we reported that Madrid would go ahead with the regulation of private holiday rentals. This was part good news, part bad, as the draft decree implied that any rental, categorised ‘Vivienda de Uso Turistico’, would only be able to offer a minimum stay of four nights. 

The final decree for holiday rentals in Madrid was published on 31st of July 2014, remaining more or less akin to the draft we discussed in our last article. The Spanish Association of Hoteliers and Tourist Accommodation (CEHAT) - swapping two of those letters around might be a more fitting acronym, have unsurprisingly expressed their satisfaction with the published decree.

Let’s take a look at the main points and how to apply if your holiday rental conforms with the requirements.

What are the main points to watch out for?

You can apply for a licence for your ‘Vivienda de Uso Turístico’ if you have an apartment, studio, bungalow, townhouse, villa, etc. There is no restriction based on the ‘type’ of property.

If you have four plus apartments in the same building, you should apply under the category ‘Apartamento Turístico’. 

As in the draft decree, ‘Viviendas de Uso Turístico’ may only let their homes out for a period of five days or more. Considering the average stay booked in the capital is four nights, this ruling makes competing in the weekend/city break market very difficult, if not impossible for private holiday homes. 

*Apartamentos Turisticos (Tourist Apartments) are not affected by this stipulation.

You may not rent out individual rooms or space within your home. Similarly, you may not partition off living space to make singular accommodation. 

Your property must be rented out for a minimum of three months during the year and you must not reside in the property, or use it as a permanent residence, or for any other business. 

What are the minimum requirements?

There is no mention in the ‘minimum requirements’ for Viviendas de Uso Turistico on criteria such as fire safety regulations, quality of accommodation, appliances, etc. There is a clear criteria list for Apartamentos Turisticos, which you can find in the decree. 

It’s unclear if owners will be given further instruction when they apply for their licence, or if they just overlooked quality standards for holiday rentals, paying more attention to requisites such as number of nights.

  • Homes should have at least a living/dining area, kitchen, bedroom and bathroom. And in the case of studio accommodation, there should be sleeping arrangements in the living area for a minimum of two guests.
  • You must leave a permanent telephone number for guests, on which they can contact you or a manager in case of an issue or emergency. 
  • Your holiday rental should be offered furnished, fully equipped and with a Wifi connection.Your rental prices should include cleaning costs, bed linen and utility costs, including electricity and water. Prices must be displayed inside the entrance of the property.
  • Once you have received your licence number, it must be clearly displayed on a plaque outside your front door. You can find a sample of the design in Annex III of the decree.

How to apply for your holiday rental licence in Madrid

You must present your application, titled a ‘Declaración Responsable’ at a government administration office - ayuntamiento (town hall), regional tourism office, the post office or, if you are outside of Spain, you should also be able to apply through the local Spanish ‘Consular’ office. If you have an electronic signature, you can apply online.

There is a copy of the application in Annex III of the decree. You must also submit a floor plan signed by a registered technician (architect or building professional) and endorsed by the relevant professional body. 

Once you have presented your application, you must then register the property on the Regional Tourism Register. 

Your property will receive an inspection to verify it conforms with the criteria set out in the decree.

You must report any modifications to your property that have been carried out after your application is presented, or at any time in the future. 

Your property must have a first-occupation licence or certificate of occupancy.