Architects in Spain: what you need to know before you hire one

When hiring an architect in Spain, you need to do plenty of research to make sure the one you hired is the best for your project.

If you’ve decided to build a house in Spain, you’ve probably worked out that things aren’t quite the same as in your native country and that hiring an architect that’ll serve as a trusted guide on your journey is invaluable.

Here’s everything you need to know about hiring an architect in Spain so you don’t make the wrong choice for your villa design.

What are the responsibilities of an architect in Spain?

An architect in Spain drawing out plans
Photo by Daniel McCullough on Unsplash

On top of drawing out the blueprints for the house, your architect is responsible for ensuring that the house complies with Spanish building regulations.

They also need to ensure that the building conforms with the contract and therefore with the scale drawings, specification, and bill of quantities (which together form the proyecto de ejecución) that has been agreed with you.

When your architect signs off on your project, they are declaring that all of the above is to a high standard and that they are liable to provide redress if it’s later found not to be the case.

But it’s not only the architect that bears the responsibility for your building being above board.

Facultad Directiva: the team you need to build your home in Spain

Securing your architect in Spain is just one piece of the puzzle – you actually need a team of three construction professionals working together, which in Spanish is called the Facultad Directiva.

Your architect is the senior figure on the team, but the responsibility is shared by the other members:

  1. The Director of the Works,
  2. The Works Manager, and
  3. The Health and Safety Officer

The law states it has to supervise every building project and the three professionals have collective responsibility. The responsibility extends to materials and good practice.

Need some advice on putting this team together? Contact Eco Vida Homes today and we’ll put you on the right path to a beautiful, energy-efficient home in Spain, architect included!

What guarantees and protection should an architect in Spain provide?

An architect drawing up plans for a villa in Spain

Should things go wrong when building in Spain, you are protected by three mechanisms: statute, the law of contract, and the College of Architects that regulates professional standards.

Of the three, by far the most powerful is the architect’s statutory responsibilities as they are written down in the L.E.O. Ley Ordenacion Edificacion (building regulations).

The law specifies that responsibility of the direccion facultative extends for the following time periods:

  • 10 years for the structure
  • Three years for the installations
  • One year snagging (minor faults)

Naturally, responsibility is limited to defects in villa design and construction. Should it be necessary, a judge will look at the facts and allocate responsibility between the three.

Are there architects in Spain that speak English?

There are some – in fact, you’re reading the blog of one right now!

Whether you need an architect in Marbella, Costa Del Sol, Costa Blanca, we can put together a team for you to make your dream home in Spain a reality.

Eco Vida Homes is a team of english-speaking architects, technical architects, builders, an engineer, and a chartered surveyor.

We help people build beautiful, energy-efficient homes designed for Mediterranean living in Marbella and southern Spain. There are two things that make us stand out: a sharp focus on our clients’ needs, and that everything we do is comfortable and energy efficient. 

And if you’re looking for land for sale in Spain, we can take care of that for you too. 

Contact Eco Vida Homes today and we’ll answer any other questions you might have about hiring an architect in Spain.

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