How to Book?
STEP 1) SUBMIT DOCUMENTS
- Students: 2 documents = Passport or DNI copy + University Admittance Letter copy.
- Workers: 2 documents = Passport or DNI copy + copy of document showing income (payrolls of last 3 months or labor contract).
- Companies: 3 documents = last year Benefits & Tax declaration (“Impuesto de Sociedades”) + last four VAT & Taxes declarations (“IVA”) + tenant’s Passport or DNI copy.
STEP 2) CHECK BOOKING DOCUMENT
We’ll send to you the Booking Request document with all main lease conditions filled in. It will show your booking commitments. Please check it carefully.
STEP 3) PAY BOOKING FEE
Kindly pay the booking request fee = 10% of one year rent + 21% VAT. We’ll provide the payment details to you.
STEP 4) CONFIRM BOOKING
Once the fee is in our account, the landlord will formally reply to your request. We will inform you. It may be:
- 4a. The landlord accepts –> Congrats! He/she booked the apartment for you under the conditions of the Booking Request document. We’ll proceed to step 5.
- 4b. The landlord accepts but proposes some change –> You may accept it, refuse it or negotiate it with him/her. If you reach an agreement, we’ll proceed to step 5. If you don’t and thus you refuse to rent the apartment, we’ll pay you back the full booking fee immediately.
- 4c. The landlord refuses –> We’ll pay you back the full booking fee immediately.
STEP 5) SIGN LEASE CONTRACT & PAY
We’ll draft the lease contract and send it to you for evaluation. You and the landlord may propose changes to the general text. We may invite both of you to a whatsapp chat group with us, to ease the discussion. Two scenarios:
5a. If the landlord and you agree the contract general text:
- Both of you will receive an e-mail with an invitation to sign the lease contract online.
- In parallel, please pay your first rent + lease deposit to the landlord (see contract for details).
- Once signed, you’ll receive an e-mail with the signed contract. This will be the original version, fully valid for any legal purpose, for instance City Council empadronamiento or NIE.
5b. If the landlord and you don’t agree the contract general text and thus you don’t rent, we will refund your booking fee fully as long the two following conditions are met:
- You keep your will to rent under the lease conditions stated in the Booking Request document. You have not withdrawn on your own and you’re not asking to change any of them.
- Your proposed changes to the lease contract text meet the LAU (Spanish Law of Urban Leases). You’re not asking to introduce any requirement out of Law. See Law here
STEP 6) CHECK IN !
Get in touch with your landlord (see contact details in the lease contract) and coordinate your check-in. Welcome to your marvellous new home!
Booking Specifics & Warnings (MUST read if you book)
Step 1) YOUR DOCUMENTS – SPECIFICS & WARNINGS
Your documents are handled with extreme privacy. They are seen only by one person in flatzoom, who manages the booking with you, and by the apartment owner.
Please, excuse us for requesting information that may be a bit personal or sensitive. We understand that in other countries this may be uncommon, but here in Barcelona it’s very usual that landlords request it. They value knowing who will be leasing their apartment.
Depending on your profile and the landlord’s criteria, he/she might ask for further documents than those required initially, stated in this webpage.
If you’re living in Barcelona now, you may put us in touch with your current landlord to provide references about you. This greatly increases your chances to get your new apartment.
If the landlord provides any preliminar reply, we’ll let you know. If positive, it is considered as a pre-acceptance to your profile, NOT a full acceptance to the lease because the main conditions have not been set yet. The apartment is NOT blocked for you yet. You must complete the booking process before anybody else books the apartment.
Step 2) BOOKING DOCUMENT – SPECIFICS & WARNINGS
The Booking Request document will state:
- all the Specific Conditions of the lease (start date, end date, compulsory period, monthly rent, first rent and deposit),
- the Booking Fee amount,
- the Booking Terms and
- the Cancelation Policy (conditions for reimbursement).
The lease contract is not available at this stage because it’s drafted afterwards (step 5). We may send a lease contract model at this point, for your reference and peace of mind. It will only be a guideline, NOT the actual final version because it’s not drafted yet. Once drafted, it will be subject to evaluation and discussion by the two parties (landlord and you).
Why is the lease contract not discussed prior to booking? Because this protects the interests of both sides: the landlord and you. The demand in Barcelona is very high. Many people and agents deal with a given apartment at the same time. If you start a discussion about the contract details without booking, it would be in parallel to other candidates in the same situation as you, so a true mess and a great situation for pressure, overexpectations, slowness, misunderstandings, concerns, losing the apartment, frustration and potential complaints actually not due to us. If you start contract negotiation without booking, somebody else may just take the flat in the meantime and you would lose it. Booking is meant to give you the chance to check the contract under exclusivity, without pressure.
Step 3) BOOKING PAYMENT – SPECIFICS & WARNINGS
Payment methods allowed:
- Payment origin European Union, USA and Canada -> bank transfer or cash
- Payment origin rest of the world -> credit card or cash. No bank transfer possible due to international banking restrictions by countries authorities that cause delays or cancelations
At this stage your booking is NOT yet confirmed. It must be confirmed by the landlord (step 4).
If you pay by bank transfer or credit card, we’ll request the landlord’s booking confirmation once the money is in our bank account, not before. We’ve had issues with people paying by transfer or card, sending some receipt and then no money reaching us due to unforeseen banking issues or similar. If there is any payment delay, blockage or return, we will not manage it with the banks nor be responsible to pay any cost due to it. You’re supposed to be ready for smooth transfers from your country since you are coming here. You choose the payment way that you want (method, bank, origin country, origin sender, etc), so you are responsible for the consequences. Beware that the banking authorities (worlwide, EU and Spanish) periodically check the transfers and may ask you or us for documents to validate them before allowing cash in. For instance, if the money sender is different than the tenant, they may block the transfer and ask for documents proving your relationship. Bank transfers and credit card payments take at least 24 hours to reach us (and could be more). This may delay your booking chances.
If you want to get a fast booking confirmation, we recommend cash. If you pay cash, we’ll sign the corresponding receipt, of course.
By paying, you’re totally committing to rent the apartment under the conditions in the booking document. This step is important. You cannot revert it. Act wisely. If you withdraw from renting afterwards due to you, you’ll lose this payment. See our Cancelation Policy below for details.
By paying, you request to book the apartment under the conditions stated in the Booking Request document and you accept them. You’re NOT YET accepting the full lease contract because it’s not been drafted yet. If a lease contract model is sent, it’s only a guideline. The lease contract will be agreed AFTER booking and in case of no agreement, the fee will be refunded (see step 5).
During this booking process, your fee is kept by flatzoom, not the landlord, for your safety and peace of mind.
This fee equals and will become flatzoom’s fee when you sign the lease with the landlord (step 5).
Usually, bookings are not permitted if you haven’t viewed and checked the apartment physically before, in order to avoid later concerns. The landlords want you to know and be entirely responsible for what you book.
Many apartments on offer are occupied by the current tenants and cannot be viewed yet. Some of those may be ‘pre-booked’ as an additional advantage to you. It means that you may: 1. secure it for you now, 2. view it when you can and 3. claim your payment back if you don’t like it. Flatzoom staff will let you know about these specific cases.
Step 4) BOOKING CONFIRMATION – SPECIFICS & WARNINGS
No formal answer is given by the landlord before the payment. You hold no booking rights before the landlord’s answer, no matter how long your previous talkings with flatzoom have been. This is the standard process in Barcelona market, due to its super fast dynamics and competitiveness, with many agents and tenants dealing with the same apartment at the same time. This agreed procedure in the market ensures order and transparency, so everybody involved knows clearly the booking status at each moment.
We flatzoom tell you the booking acceptance on behalf of the landlord. Landlords work with many brokers and agents at the same time, so we flatzoom cannot provide acceptance on our own. After his/her acceptance, the landlord is the only responsible to hold his/her acceptance, not flatzoom.
Our notification of the landlord’s acceptance is not a valid lease contract according to Spanish law, so it does not entitle you to occupy the apartment yet. The lease contract must be signed by the landlord and you (see step 5). The time this takes depends solely on the landlord and you, not on flatzoom.
Step 5) LEASE CONTRACT – SPECIFICS & WARNINGS
The lease contract will include the Specific Conditions of the lease (same as the Booking Request document) plus the General Conditions of the lease (general wording about scope, duration, rent, deposit, apartment delivery, use, maintenance, end and parties’ obligations).
The Specific Conditions cannot be changed since both parties agreed to them when booking (step 2).
The General Conditions of the lease are very standard and straight-forward. However, changes to them can be requested by the landlord or you. If so, a discussion may be needed and thus time.
flatzoom nor the landlord bear no liability if the booked move-in date is not met because your replies are delayed throughout this discussion process, or if you didn’t read, understand or follow the present booking process. In such case, the first period rent would not be modified.
Step 6) CHECK-IN – SPECIFICS & WARNINGS
The check-in date is agreed when booking (step 2). After that, all sides (landlord, flatzoom and you) must work proactively and positively through the following steps 3-6 to accomplish it.
Most actions depend on the landlord and above all yourself. Here’s a guideline:
- Landlord reply to your documents (pretty fast)
- Booking document ready (depends on flatzoom, typically fast)
- Your booking payment (depends on YOU, can be slow, see here)
- Landlord booking confirmation (typically fast)
- Lease contract draft (depends on landlord and flatzoom, takes time)
- Your ok or comments to contract (depends on YOU, potentially slow)
- Contract details discussion (depends on landlord and YOU, potentially slow)
- Contract signature online ready (depends on us, typically fast)
- Contract signature (depends on landlord and YOU, pretty fast though slow when flatmates)
- Rent+deposit payment to landlord (depends on YOU, potentially slow with unexpected delays. Beware!)
Typical time between we receive your booking payment and actual check-in is 5 labor days.
Planning a lease start before these 5 labor days is typically not feasible and risky for your own interests. There are many steps to do (see above) key to you. They involve important matters: your new home and your money. They need to be done well, without hurries. Hurrying is your decision, not ours. Please beware of the consequences.
The booking document states a check-in date, based on your requirement PLUS the assumption of an early booking payment on your side. If your booking payment is delayed and thus you enter the 5-labor day period, you risk missing the check-in date that you yourself need. If this happens, only liability relies on yourself. You’re free to chose when to book but please keep this information and risks in mind.
Arrange your previous days in Barcelona accordingly. Kindly DO NOT expect or plan an urgent check-in right after apartment choice, because that is impossible. It will just harm yourself in such things as contract signature pressure, payments concerns, overall mistakes, home not clean or ready, complaints to landlord or us (actually due to your own slow progress or poor planning), check-in delays, bad start at your new home and with your new landlord, etc. Beware: most foreigner tenants arriving in Barcelona tend to underestimate these risks due to novelty. As a result, sometimes they don’t meet the check-in date without realising it’s due to them and occasionally even might blame others unfairly.
Landlords and flatzoom typically manage to accomplish their part of the process, because they know well the market and practices, but as a foreign tenant new to the market, you may fail to accomplish your part or slow down the full progress, due to your own liability and worse, without noticing. Rely on flatzoom expert staff who are there to guide and protect you. Our process is designed to make it all work smoothly, built upon years and hundreds of leases same as yours now. Stick to it and everything will work. Do not try to go your own way or will risk concerns.
Transfer of first rent and deposit is typically made by bank transfer to the landlord directly. Not possible by cash or credit card. Make sure you’re ready to make it happen smoothly. You’re the only responsible for this and supposed to know already how to do so regardless of your country of origin because you come to ours and will have many payments to make here. Tenants typically underestimate this step and suffer unexpected delays in this regard, right before checking in. Any payment delay whatever the reason, will postpone your check-in.
If your deposit and initial rent payment are not present in the owner bank account on time, you cannot check in the apartment until they are, according to Spanish Law and the contract. Landlords never accept any exception to this. If you check in later for this reason, you cannot ask for a reduction in the initial rent due to the days passed by. The agreed rent is due.
If assisted by flatzoom staff, the check-in will be in a labor day (10am-6pm), not on a Holiday. Beware that Saturdays, Sundays and August 15th are Holidays in our country.
FEE REIMBURSEMENT – BOOKING CANCELATION POLICY
The booking fee is paid back ONLY in the events explained in steps 4b, 4c & 5b above (see here). It is NOT paid back in any other circumstance, such as changing your mind, finding another apartment, concerns within your team of flatmates, not settling in Barcelona or any other except 4b, 4c & 5b above.
In case an apartment is ‘pre-booked’ (see step 3), you have the right to request the fee back after you have viewed it. The act and agreement of ‘pre-booking’ is identified by a specific contract that you sign with the landlord. This contract states the specific conditions for the reimbursement.
If paid through credit card, we’ll revert the payment to the same account it was debited to. If paid through bank wire, we’ll wire back to a Spanish national bank account that you instruct us to. It is NEVER paid back through international bank transfer.
In case the landlord finally refused to sign the lease contract after booking due to him/her, your fee is paid back upon above but flatzoom holds no other liability and no complaints can be raised towards flatzoom.
When you rent any apartment in Barcelona, you as tenant must pay the ITP tax (Impuesto de Transmisiones Patrimoniales) to the Generalitat de Catalunya (Catalan Public Administration). More information can be found here.
PUBLIC LIABILITY INSURANCE
It is highly recommended that you hire an insurance covering the damage to third parties (neighbours, building…) due to potential events like a fire or so caused by you, as well as the value of your belongings in the event of a theft. These damages and costs are not covered by the regular home insurance that the landlords typically have. Landlords’ home insurance covers the damages to the apartment and to third parties if caused accidentally or by the landlord himself, but not tenants. In case of theft, it covers the belongings of the landlord but not the tenant’s. The public liability insurance benefits you, not the landlord. If not hired, you may be liable to pay hundreds of thousand EUR.
The cost of this insurance is typically 139 €/year. Some landlords require it to avoid liabilities, involvement or management time in case of an event. For some specific apartments, we will hire it on your behalf.
Flatzoom Real Estate Service
Flatzoom real estate service includes the following topics:
- to find the apartment, check it physically and meet the landlord,
- to evaluate them under strict own admission criteria and decide if to accept or discard,
- to make pictures, video and floorplan and present the apartment in flatzoom database,
- to take care of questions by interested tenants,
- to take care of viewings,
- to assist online in the negotiation and contract drafting. In this process, the two parties communicate directly and flatzoom assists
- to assist the tenant online to setup up his/her public liability insurance with our insurance company Allianz, if required,
- to prepare the contract signature, to be done online,
- and to help coordinate the check-in.
It does NOT include any other topic not stated above, specially:
- to assist in check in as this is done by the landlords,
- to set up utilities and Internet,
- to advice on or manage taxes that the tenant should pay or any other legal o tax liability applying to the tenant due to the lease contract,
- to assist the tenant in any issue regarding the apartment condition or during the stay. Condition of the apartment and support during stay are under the landlord liability per Spanish law and must be dealt with the landlord as per Spanish law and the contract.
- to assist in the check-out or the deposit refund, at the end of the lease.
Flatzoom real estate service finishes when the tenant signs the lease contract.
The tenant signs the lease contract with the apartment owner. Flatzoom holds no liability for the contract terms freely agreed among the two parties nor for any issues that arise during the lease period.
Flatzoom may provide information and guidance about taxes to be paid by the tenant or any other legal or tax liability due to him/her, solely for information purposes, and not as part of the service. Any difference between the information provided and the actual legislation or any action taken by the tenant related to his legal and tax obligations is not under flatzoom’s liability but only under the tenants liability.
Flatzoom real estate agency fee is 10% of one year rent +21% VAT. Credit card payments may imply bank fees. The fee is regardless of your booked time or your actual staying time. It is set as 10% of one year rent in order to make it proportional to the apartment value NOT to the lease duration. It applies to rentals shorter than one year as well as longer duration terms, even if you stay years in the apartment. This follows the standard in Barcelona rental market. If you extend your lease contract NO new fee is applied.
Information Accuracy and Liabilities
The apartments offered in flatzoom are not owned by flatzoom but by independent landlords. All the information provided by flatzoom, like apartment features, equipment, quality, condition, availability, monthly rent, lease conditions and any other data, depend on the apartment owners.
Please, note that the information provided about the apartment features, equipment, quality and condition is for information purposes not contractual purposes. Note that it might contain errors occasionally due to unaccuracy of text, human mistake, miscommunication with the landlords, changes in the conditions, etc. For instance, it may have improved or worsened after our pictures or video were taken due to tear and wear. You must check the actual status by viewing the apartment or refer to the lease contract.
If you decide to book an apartment without actually viewing it physically, no complaints can be raised towards flatzoom.
The tenant signs the lease contract with the apartment landlord and not with flatzoom. You as the tenant and the landlord are the only responsible for the lease agreements that you reach and sign together. Flatzoom holds no liability for the contract content and terms freely agreed among the two parties. The only legal mean of setting the apartment identification and content leased, is not the advertisement, the pictures nor the videos. It’s the lease contract. The landlord is the only liable to hold his commitments as per the lease contract signed.
Please, note that flats in Barcelona are let very fast, in an average of 1 week and sometimes in one day or even just hours. Flat hunters in Barcelona typically don’t realise until they start their searching adventure. Also, apartments are typically offered by many agents at once. Therefore, the availability dates of apartments change very fast and in some specific cases it may take some time until one is updated in flatzoom. This depens on the landlord not on flatzoom. Flatzoom bears no liability for the accuracy of this information.
Flatzoom does not provide support during your stay in the apartment. Spanish law states that this support is provided by the apartment landlord. Any issue must be settled in the scope of the private lease contract that both parties sign freely and, in case of conflict, solved following the procedures and jurisdiction you both agree per contract. Flatzoom holds no liability for any of such issues.
At flatzoom your trust means everything to us. That’s why we respect your privacy and protect it with strong encryption, plus strict policies that govern how all data is handled.
We only use your personal data for one goal, your goal: to find the best apartment in Barcelona. Thus, your data is only used internally to send you housing options matching your needs and it is not shared with anybody else. It is not given to the apartment owners, except for the apartments you ask to view or want to book. Your personal data is not provided to any other company or individual, for advertisement purposes or any other purposes. It is kept strictly confidential within flatzoom.
You may delete your account with us at any time. For so, please contact us here.