Dreaming of a new life in the sun? Moving to Spain has an enormous allure for those looking for a new home abroad.
From the white sand beaches of the Costa del Sol, to the charming cobbled squares of Seville or Madrid, Spain has a charm all of its own. If emigrating to Spain has been in your future plans for a while, we can help you move from the UK to Spain smoothly. With Brexit looming, you may have some questions about everything from tax to healthcare, so let’s clear up the details and get you ready to make the move.
Moving to Spain after Brexit
For Brits abroad or those planning to make the move to sunnier climes, Brexit raises more than a couple of questions. For years, UK citizens have enjoyed freedom of movement around the EU, but whether this will continue after Brexit remains unclear.
The rules for setting up home in Spain after Brexit will really depend on what the UK government agrees with the EU or the Spanish government. Currently, those seeking residence in Spain must tick a number of boxes including: no criminal record, never been ejected from the country and in possession of private healthcare, and with a net income of over €799 per month. It’s likely the same stipulations will apply after Brexit, but perhaps with some more restrictions.
Getting a Spanish Visa
It’s likely those wanting to move to Spain will have to apply for a visa to live there, with or without the right to work. The Spanish consular office closest to where you currently live will likely be your first port of call to apply for, and pick up, your visa. Once in Spain, you will also require a residence card from whichever part of the country you plan to live in and to register with the local social security office.
Working in Spain
In the current climate, finding a job in Spain isn’t easy – even for the Spanish. Following the financial crisis of 2008, the Spanish economy has only recently started recovering and the unemployment rate remains one of the highest in Europe. It’s estimated 1 in 5 people who live in Spain are out of work, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t opportunities for young professionals looking to set up home there.
The consulting and IT industries in Spain are thriving, plus the headquarters of many multinational companies are set up there. If you’re already established in your career, you stand a better chance of landing a job, since Spanish employers are seeking experienced staff in mid-level to senior roles.
Remember, teaching English is always an option, and English teachers for all ages are always in demand.
Taxes in Spain
In Spain, the tax year runs from 1st January to 31st December, and tax returns are due between 1st May and 30th June each year. Working in Spain, you’ll pay income tax of between 24-43 per cent, depending on how much you earn. You should organise an E101 certificate before you leave the UK to help avoid double taxation.
Buying or Renting in Spain
The financial crisis had a knock on effect to Spain’s housing market causing a property crash, but – as with the job market – things are definitely back on the up. In fact, Spain positively encourages property investment.
For example, the ‘golden visa’ system was introduced in 2013 to boost the country’s economy which encouraged foreign property investment. Non-EU nationals would get residency if they invested €500,00 or more in Spanish property. Many are predicting this offer could be on the table for UK citizens, post-Brexit.
When looking for a Spanish home, you can check out UK websites like RightMove and Zoopla for Spanish holiday homes. If you’re looking for a property that’s a little more authentically Spanish, it’s worth checking out Spanish sites like Idealista or Kyero for hidden gems.
You can certainly buy a property before you move to Spain, but due to the increase in property scams, it’s highly recommended you actually view the house and check out the paperwork (with the help of a translator if needed) before you part with any cash. Remember that in Spain debts are transferred with the property, so make sure the mortgage and property tax has been paid.
To buy a house, you’ll require a unique financial number, which you can pick up at your local Spanish police station. In terms of expenses, you’ll have to pay property transfer tax (6-10%), notary costs, title deed tax and land registration fee (1-2.5%). The estate agent is always paid by the seller. When choosing a lawyer to represent you, check they are registered with the Colegio de Abogados.
Moving your belongings to Spain
When you move to Spain, you’re going to need a removals company you can trust. At Removal Services Scotland we bring years of experience and professionalism to every single job. We offer a door-to-door service with free packing and removals insurance to bring you complete peace of mind. We’ll take good care of moving your belongings, so you’ll arrive all set to start your new Spanish life.
Healthcare in Spain
With Brexit underway, it’s difficult to predict what healthcare you may be entitled to when you live in Spain. If the UK remains in the European Economic Area (EEA) after Brexit, then the existing EHIC healthcare scheme could stay in place.
Alternatively, expats may have to pay upfront for healthcare – making health insurance an absolute essential.
Languages in Spain
Depending on where in Spain you want to live, you may need to brush up on your Spanish. In many places along the Spanish coast, particularly those with large expat communities, English will get you along just fine.
However, throughout rural Spain, and even in inland towns and cities like the capital, Madrid, Castellano (what we think of as Spanish) is the most commonly spoken language. You may find some English speakers, but having a good grip of Castellano will definitely help you get by. In the north-east, Catalan is more widely spoken, and Galician in the north-west.
If sunshine, tapas and afternoon napping sounds like an ideal way of life to you, then it’s time to start planning your move to Spain with a free, no obligation quote. Let us help you get your new life off to the best possible start with a stress-free move.