Moving to Spain
If you are moving house to Spain, Greens Removals provide international removals to all parts of Spain including the cities of Barceona, Madrid, Granada, Seville, Bilbao, Valencia, Cordova, Santiago de Compostela, San Sebastian, Salamanca, Malaga, Cadiz, Zaragoza and Burgos. We provide international removals to Spain from the UK, removals from Spain back to the UK and between most other European and international destinations.
Greens Removals are BAR registered and have over 40 years experience providing removals to Spain. We offer two types of service for moving house to Spain:
When arranging your removals to Spain, please let us know well in advance of any access problems at your new Spanish address. This may include narrow lanes in rural areas which pose a problem for our large removal lorries or issues with parking at city centre addresses. Advance warning will ensure that we can find solutions to these problems, to avoid delays and extra costs on your moving day.
Moving to Spain : Our Guide
A move to Spain is exiting and many Brits have made the leap to live here. However moving to any foreign country can be overwhelming. You need to think about opening a new bank account, mortgages, residency permits, medical cover, registering cars and drivers' licences along with all the other procedures. Here is our guide to getting started, to help make things a little easier for you.
Moving to Spain : Before You Leave
It is advisable to check with HM Revenue & Customs before you go to make sure you do not have to pay tax while you are abroad, or if are liable for any taxes before you leave. Contact the Pension Service to notify them of your intentions, and change of address, and ask them for a state pension forecast.
Moving to Spain : Gestors
Using a Gestor (Gestorias) is a good way of getting all the paperwork done, especially if you do not know the language, find the system confusing or have limited time. They are basically professional book keepers and for a small fee, can help with all the paperwork connected to your Spanish move, such as residency permits or driving licences. Always get an estimate first before using the service of a gestor, (found in the Paginas Amarillas). Sometimes the gestor asks for a down payment to cover the whole fee, which is not unusual. Many people use the services of a gestor, even Spanish nationals.
Moving to Spain : Residence Requirements
EU nationals will need to apply for a Residencia (or residency permit) which you can get from the local Oficina de Extranjeros (foreign office) in your nearest town. At the same time you will be given an NIE (a foreign identification number, which is a tax number for foreigners). Non-EU nationals will need to apply for an NIE first.
Residence cards are not compulsory for everyone. However, it is advisable to get one because is it better to carry around than a passport, and it makes it easier to carry out all the other administration procedures if you have one.
You don't need a residence card you are a UK national who is employed in Spain, or self-employed, are a student, and EU national dependant of an EU or Spanish national, or are a pensioner who has worked in Spain and is eligible to a pension from the Spanish Social Security system pension.
Those who must get one are pensioners who have retired to Spain, those of independent financial means, dependents who are non-EU nationals.
There are two types of cards: temporary residence cards, for stays of more than three months but less than a year. Ordinary residence cards, for stays of more than a year but this must be renewed after five years.
To apply for a residence card you need to get an application form from the Officina de Extranjeros, or Comisaria de Policia (local Police Station) and present it to the Officina de Extranjeros with your passport, three passport sized photographs and a photocopy of the original. The card is issued at their discretion.
Moving to Spain : Foreign Identification Number (NIE)
If you are a resident, you can get this from the local police station. Fill in the application form and take along your passport and photocopy of the original. You will have to prove you live in Spain legally and show why you want an NIE.
Moving to Spain : Buying a Home - Mortgages
You can apply for a mortgage from either a UK or a Spanish lender. However, with a Spanish lender you can expect to pay an additional ten to 14 per cent of the cost of the house in fees and taxes.
With a Spanish mortgage, you also need a Spanish bank account. There are regular and savings banks and charges can be high. For example, you will pay 20 euros for having a current account..
Moving to Spain : Banking
UK nationals who live in Spain can open an account with a residence card, or with their passport and NIE.
Visitors who do not live in Spain can open a bank account with a non-resident certificate which can be obtained from the local Spanish police office. Take along a completed application, a passport and copy of the original. This account should be closed if you become a resident..
Moving to Spain : Capital Transfers
Importing capital into Spain is not restricted. However, it is important to keep records to show that money was transferred from abroad and did not come from income earned in Spain.
Residents can take 6,010.12 Euros in cash in or out of Spain without having to declare it. Above this amount you will have to make a Customs Declaration (or form B1 on entry to Spain).
Moving to Spain : Taxes
Britain and Spain has a double tax agreement, to make sure you do not pay tax on income in both places. However, due to the complexity of tax laws, it is worth seeking advice. Residents (including the retired) will have to pay tax on income earned in Spain or from Spanish property. This includes Property or Real Estate Tax, Wealth and Capital Gains Tax, VAT (IVA), Inheritance tax and local charges. "Taxation Regulations for Foreigners" is a guide published in English by the Spanish Finance Ministry which explains all this in more detail.
Moving to Spain : Education
This is compulsory for children aged 6 - 16 and free up to the age of 18 years. Pre-school education is not compulsory and although free, not every child can get a place. It depends on where you live and the demand. Schools are available offering an English-style education, details of which you can get from The British Council.
Moving to Spain : Health
It is advisable to take out private medical insurance if you are not covered by the Spanish social security system.
Long term residents who are not pensioners, not employed in the country or are not officially resident in Spain, do not qualify for Spanish state health care. They will also not qualify for NHS health care because they are not ordinarily resident in the UK.
Moving to Spain : Employment
UK nationals employed in Spain are covered by the Spanish Social Security system and entitled to national health care. The employer will make deductions from the monthly pay packet.
To get full medical cover, you must first get a social security number card from the local social security office. Take this to the local medical centre (ambulatorio) with an accompanying form, which will entitle you to a medical card (tarjeta sanitaria) and full medical cover.
Self-employed people must first get a NIE from the police or a residence card, and the Alta Fiscal from the hacienda (local tax office). These documents should be taken to the social security office, where you ask for an Alta de Autonomo and the Inscripcion en la Seguridad Social. You will then receive a social security number card to take to the local medical centre and receive a medical card.
Patients usually pay 40 per cent of the cost of medicines, unless it is for a work-related illness or accident, in which case the prescription is free. Prescribed medicines are free to pensioners and their dependents.
Moving to Spain : Pensioners
Spain receives a yearly sum from the UK to cover health costs for each UK pensioner in Spain. This means UK pensioners who live in Spain and receive either an old age pension, or disability pension, can get the same free medical treatment as Spanish state pensioners. In order to receive this you must first get an E121 form from the UK DSS office. Then go to the local INSS office (Officina del Instituto Nacional de Seguridad - Spanish Social Security Office ) to register this form. Bring with you your passport and residence card application. (You must apply for a residence card first).
Those wanting to settle in Spain to enjoy early retirement (below 60 for women and 65 for men) should contact their local DSS office to find out about medical cover and the E106 form before travelling.
Moving to Spain : Care Homes
UK citizens who have lived in Spain for a lengthy period may be cared for in a Spanish state home, but these always have limited places, even for Spanish pensioners. For more information on this contact the pensioner's local Consejeria de Trabajo y Asuntos Sociales. Private residential homes are expensive and have Spanish speaking staff, although there are some British run homes in certain areas of Spain.
It is wise to have private insurance which can cover medical and dental costs and also a return to the UK.International Removals to Spain - contact us now to discuss your move, or click here for a Moving House to Spain Quote