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New Costa Blanca Renting Regulations

The Tourist Authority for Valencia has introduced new regulations concerning the renting of tourist establishments, which became effective on 4th July 2009. DECREE 92/2009

This article endeavours to explain the new regulations, which only recent passed to law. Although it has been discussed at length, in the press and Internet, the full meaning of every article and clause is by no means clear; but then lawmakers everywhere do have the endearing habit of writing in a way that cannot be easily understood.
Additionally it still remains unclear how the law we actually be administered and possibly the Tourist Authority is still trying to work it all out.
Consequently the various topics can only be studied briefly at present and, as time goes by, it is my intention to expand the article as the various topics are completely clarified.

The Tourist Authority: Delegation for Tourism to the Generalitat Valenciana. (DTGV)
The DTGV is empowered by the Madrid central government and has jurisdiction over all tourist matters in the state of Valencia which includes the provinces of Castellon, Valencia and Alicante.

The Decree 92/2009 was published in the official diary of the state of Valencia 2009/7961 in Spanish and Valenciano. It is actually an update to the previous regulations 30/1993, of 8th March 2003 which it extends and enhances.

See also a further detailed article about complying with the new renting regulations.
Help Advice and Comments about this Article.

The Decree 92/2009

PLEASE NOTE: The following is a translation from the Spanish text, condensed to include only the important points, in italic text are my observations and clarification notes.

It begins with a Preamble, which states its motive and objectives -

It states that the previous decree, of 2003, had the following objectives -

a) To guarantee the quality of facilities and services - in this respect it was successful.

b) To try to diminish the number of tourist establishments that escaped the control of the administration - in this respect it left much to be desired.

Firstly, there was some confusion with other establishments governed by the Law of Urban Renting.

Secondly, the emergence of new and faster forms of commercialization, direct and without intermediaries, especially via the Internet.
Having an Internet connection a user can both offer and contract a rental without the intervention of a third party to the transaction.
This ease of use leaves a lot to be desired in some cases in respect of quality of service, optimum conditions of renting and minimum guarantees and also facilitates the circumvention of the regulations, as much touristic as of another nature, and it makes it difficult for the administration to investigate any infractions that could be committed.

"as much touristic as of another nature" I think here they might be referring to frauds, such as the recent "Morairway Scam", the result of which was that millions were lost by holidaymakers who booked non-existent properties. Their proposed registration scheme would certainly make future similar scams extremely difficult because the perpetrators would be instantly identified and it would be almost impossible to register a property that did not exist.

Faced with this situation, the regulations attempt to resolve the described dysfunctions as well as orienting itself towards the following goals:

1. To reinforce the quality of the establishments.

2. To contribute to the professionalization of the sector and setting up the tourist rental agencies as a "corner stone" of commercialization.

3. To affect the manner in which the tourist rentals are publicized and the rights and obligations are incumbent on all parties. Specifically it is indicated that the publicity will have to adjust to the exigencies of veracity, objectivity and good faith, with special emphasis on Internet publicity.

4. To clarify the responsibility of companies, individuals and organizations that manage tourist rentals and to establish a list of failures in the contract of tourist lodging.

1. Specifying the properties considered to be tourist establishments -

Article 1. Object and scope of application: These regulations apply to  tourist dwellings denominated apartments villas, chalets, bungalows and similar and the management agencies, companies and individuals dedicated to the cession of their use and enjoyment

Article 2. Definition of tourist establishment: Tourist establishments are considered the buildings, of any type, available for a price consideration for habitual use by tourists for holidays or leisure use.
"Habitual use" is considered whenever any of the following circumstances exist -

a) It is made available for use by a tourist rental agency.

b) It is put at the disposal of tourist users by the owners, regardless of what period of time is contracted and whenever the accommodation is serviced. "Serviced accommodation" shall mean cleaning of the building, supply and change of domestic linen, safekeeping of suitcases, laundry, repairs, maintenance and similar - considered as services provided by the hotel industry.

c) When channels of tourist commercialization are used. "Tourist commercialization" is considered to mean through tour operators or any similar channel, including Internet or other system of new technology.

"Commercialisation" is used frequently throughout the decree and it would seem that it is through advertising, particularly on the Internet, that non-compliment will be detected.

2. Defining those concerned directly with tourist rentals and have to comply -

Generally concerned are those who arrange holiday rentals in the tourist establishments defined above and these include -

Rental agencies and property management companies in Valencia - who were previously regulated.

Tour operators, travel agencies & holiday rental companies (both in Valencia and elsewhere).

Villa and apartment owners who rent directly (Spanish nationals and others, resident and non-resident).

That fairly means everyone. Property owners who rent directly are also included but there may be an exception to the owner of 1 single property who does not advertise at all. Obviously, if the owner of a single property rents through a 3rd party then that that 3rd party is regulated.

There is a provision for sanctions due to non-compliment but how this is to be enforced is not clear either, especially in the case of all 3rd parties except Spanish rental agencies.
For example, if a non-Spanish tour operator or holiday rental company was found guilty of non-compliment would the DTGV proceed against the owner (easy enough) or the 3rd party (not so easy at all).
My guess is that it would be the owner because the property is vulnerable and easy to attach a lien against if a fine is not paid.

3. Defining the obligations of all those who are regulated -

a) Inscription in the registry as a rental agency. This applies to a company or private individual who offers for rental 5 or more tourist establishments, being the owner or agent for the owner. There is nothing new here as Valencia-based rental agencies already doing this.
It is unlike that those outside of Valencia would have to register because the DTGV has no jurisdiction.

b) Inscription of the property in the registry, including declaring the category (Superior, Primera, Estándar) Superior, First-Class or Standard in accordance with the Annex.

c) Complying with quality requirements as detailed in the Annex for the category.

d) Quoting the registration number for the property in all advertising and the rental agency registration (as the case may be).

This is completely new and a serious consideration for everyone who advertises rental property. Cases of non-compliment are easily detected now the ispectors can proceed to prosecute without leaving their office desks.
Previously it was a question of proving that an illegal rental had taken place and was a question of collecting signed statements from tenants. Now it is an offence to even offer the property for rental without registration.

e) Displaying a notice in the property with the registration number and category.

ANNEX - Technical requirements for the selected categories.

1. Access, communication and parking.

 

Superior

1st-Class

Standard

"Clients Only" Entrance (Apartment Block)

YES YES YES

Lift - in excess of floors (Apartment Block)

G + 2 G + 3 G + 4

"Clients Only" Staircase (Apartment Block)

YES YES YES

Off-Street Parking for Clients

YES YES -

 

2. Services and Installations

 

Superior

1st-Class

Standard

Thermal and Acoustic Insulation according to current regulations

YES YES YES

Power points in a bedrooms marked with the voltage (*)

YES YES YES

Minimum level of lighting in accordance with current regulations.

YES YES YES

Off-Street Parking for Clients

YES YES -

Air Cond. in Bedrooms (**)

YES - -

Air Cond. in Living Areas (**)

YES - -

Heating in Bedrooms (**)

YES - -

Heating in Living Areas (**)

YES

YES

-

Telephone and Internet Access

YES - -

Hot Water

YES YES YES

Communal Gardens (Apartment)

YES - -

Private or Communal Pool, if not front line to beach

YES YES -

Individual Safe for Valuables

YES YES -

Emergency exit sign and plan (Apartments)

YES YES YES

Visible sign listing emergency and interesting phone numbers

YES YES YES

The provision of services, such as cleaning, laundry, linen change, repairs, maintenance and rubbish collection shall be in accordance with the contract for renting.

(*) The sign indicating voltage on each power point my be substitute for one that applies generally and placed so that it is clearly visible.

(**) There must always be the possibility of adjusting the temperature in accordance with current regulations relating to energy-saving.
The control must be for each individual room in respect of superior category. For other categories there may be one common control for all areas.

3. Dimensions of the Establishments

 

Superior

1st-Class

Standard

Double bedroom, including the wardrobe M2

12 10 8

Master bedroom (*), including the wardrobe M2

14 12 10

Individual bedroom, including the wardrobe M2

9 8 6

Each place in bunk beds M2

- 4.5 3.5
Living room with kitchen M2 26 22 18
Living room without kitchen M2 20 17 14
Bathrooms or shower rooms (**) YES YES YES
Bathrooms or shower rooms M2 6 5 4.5
Kitchen M2 8 7 5
Washing Machine YES - -
Studios (***) M2 (****) 34 29 24

Bathrooms or shower rooms for each establishment.

6 persons or more

4 persons or more

less than 4 persons

1 bathroom
+
1 bathroom or shower room
2 bathrooms
or shower rooms
1 bathroom
or shower room

(*) Minimum one for each establishment

(**) Bathrooms must have a bath with shower, basin and WC and the shower rooms a shower stall, basin and WC.
In the superior category, if there is only one bathroom or shower room then this shall be a full bathroom with bath and shower, if there are two then one may be a shower room.

(***) Establishments that have a living/dining/bedroom (incorporating a kitchen or not) and a bathroom.

(****) Area does not include the bathroom.

4. Facilities to be provided at the establishment.

Generally the establishment shall be equipped with furniture, cutlery & crockery, cleaning equipment, household linen and other utensils & accessories necessary according to capacity.

All bedrooms must have a wardrobe, either inside or outside, otherwise they cannot be categorised.

Establishments of superior or 1st-class category shall have a colour TV.

 

Superior

1st-Class

Standard

All kitchens shall be equipped as follows -

Hob (*)

YES YES YES

Refrigerator

YES YES YES

Electric Iron

YES YES YES

Oven or Microwave

YES YES YES

Smoke extracto

YES YES YES

Automatic Washing machine

YES YES -

Dishwasher

YES - -

(*) The hob must have at lest 2 burners if the capacity is 4 or less, otherwise it shall have 3.

See also a further detailed article about complying with the new renting regulations.
Help Advice and Comments about this Article.

EXTERNAL LINKS

Official diary of the State of Valencia 2009/7961 - the full text in Spanish and Valenciano.

New regulations for private holiday home rentals in Valencia - from HolidayLettings.com

© M J King 2009. This article may be reproduced party or completely providing that authorship and copyright are recognised with a link to the full article as follows -

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