The "Cédula de habitabilidad" is a document that proves that a building constructed for residential purposes meets the minimum requirements for habitation in terms of size, sanitary facilities and technical connections. It is issued by the Consell de Mallorca. Although the "Cédula" is not a mandatory document for the sale of a property, it is almost always required by real estate buyers, as it is a government document certifying that the property is recognized for residential purposes. If this "Cédula" is missing, the notaries are obliged to inform the purchasers of the property of this during the notarisation and to note the absence of this document in the deed.
The importance of a "Cédula" is also evident from the fact that without it no utility connections such as electricity, water, gas, telephone, etc. may be established. A cédula de habitabilidad has a validity of 10 years and will be extended upon application at the end of this period.
Many owners are not aware that they have this document - in some cases it helps to leaf through the last pages of the deed of sale. In recent years, more and more people have moved to attach the document as part of the notarial deed of sale.
There are several types of "Cédula":
1. Cédula de primera ocupación: This is issued upon first occupation, i.e. upon completion of a property, a major conversion and/or a change of use. For the application a proof of ownership is to be presented (purchase contract, Escritura or land register excerpt). Furthermore, the responsible architect must submit the following documents signed by him:
- Current photo of the property
- A site plan and a cadastral map extract
- Building permit and acceptance of building work
2. Cédula de renovación: This is issued when the 10 year validity period has expired. To apply for the renewal of the "Cédula", a proof of ownership must also be submitted and ideally the last "Cédula". If this is not available, an electricity bill must be enclosed for municipal real estate. In the case of rural properties, an electricity bill is not sufficient as proof; here, the “final de obra”- (or end of building) by the architect and the municipality must also be submitted. In addition, an architect must certify that the property is habitable and also provide a signed, up-to-date photo of the property, a site plan, the cadastral data and the final de obra or licencia de Obra (building license).
3. Cédula de carencia: This is granted if the property was built before 1 March 1987 and the property has never had a "Cédula". For the application also a proof of ownership as described above is required. Also here the architect has to submit a current photo and the cadastral data signed. Furthermore the following proofs are to be presented:
- That the building was built before March 1, 1987.
- That no further construction measures were carried out after 1 March 1987 for which a large building permit (licencia de obra mayor) would have been required
- That the municipality has not been the subject of a building infringement procedure (certificado de inexistencia de infracción urbanistica - issued by the municipality)