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International Moving - Spain
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Sep 26, 2022·0 min read

Moving to Spain

Visiting Spain once, you are doomed to fall in love with temperamental Spaniards, outrageously delicious cuisine, and unforgettable beach parties in Ibiza. The standard of living in Spain is one of the highest in the EU. The mild, warm Mediterranean climate provides comfortable living almost all year round.

Lots of sunshine, unique landscapes, social security, and stability - Spaniards are proud of their homeland, no wonder why so many decide to move to Spain permanently. But before you start packing your bags to move to Spain, let's take a look at how to move to Spain and what to expect once you are there.

Spain is located in southwestern Europe and occupies about 85% of the Iberian Peninsula. The total area of the country is 505,990 km2. The land is divided into 17 autonomous communities that are subdivided into 50 provinces. Spain has a population of about 47 million people, almost 85% of whom are Spanish: Catalans, Andalusians, Castilians, Valencians, Galicians, Basques, and 15% foreigners.

Moving to Spain, consider the natural contrasts: while the northwest of the country has one of the highest rainfall rates in Europe, the south of Spain, is the driest area in this part of the world. One finds almost African semi-desert landscapes with thickets of fan dwarf palm, the only wild-growing palm in Europe.

How to Immigrate to Spain

Citizens of the EU, EEA, and Switzerland do not require a Span visa to work and live in Spain, only a Fiscal Identification Number (NIF) or the Foreigner's Identification Number (NIE). The following ways of immigration to Spain are solely applicable to citizens of non-EU/EEA countries.

Family Reunion


Receiving higher education is one of the ways to legally immigrate to Spain. Upon getting your certificate you will be eligible to stay and look for a job so your employer would make you a job offer and sponsor your work permit. Apply for a type D visa for studies that last longer than 6 months.


In order to move to Spain through a work visa, you have to secure an employment contract in Spain and your employer must apply on your behalf. First, you will receive a work permit, after which you are eligible for a work visa. If you are a freelancer moving to Spain, you are required to apply for a self-employed permit yourself.

Family Reunion

If you are looking to move to Spain through a family reunion and obtain a residence permit, or later citizenship, you must fall under one of the following categories:

  • If your parent or grandparent holds citizenship in Spain
  • If one of your close family members has already received a residence permit and works in Spain
  • Children born in Spain are eligible to receive Spanish citizenship
  • Your spouse is a Spanish citizen


The 'Golden Visa' for investors - a residence permit in Spain with the widest possible opportunities. Once you gain it, you and your family will be able to live and work in Spain. A golden visa does not require investors to stay in Spain for any particular time period to maintain their visa status.

  • Purchase a property in Spain costing more than €500.000
  • 1 million euros deposited to the bank in Spain
  • Investment in the share capital of a Spanish company from 1 million euros
  • Investments from 1 million euros in Spanish shares that are listed on the market
  • Invest 2 million euros in public debt
  • Launching and investing in a business project of importance to Spain

First Steps upon arrival in Spain

  1. Get Foreigner’s Identity Card - Tarjeta de Identidad de Extranjero (TIE).

    Once you have moved to Spain, the first thing you should do is get a TIE card. It is a document confirming your legal status as a foreign citizen in Spain. Every foreigner moving to Spain for longer than 6 months must obtain it.

  2. Get Foreign Identity Number - Número de Identidad de Extranjero (NIE).

    The Foreign Identity Number is a unique number of 7 numbers and 2 letters that each foreigner moving to Spain for longer than 6 months must obtain. This number will be shown in all of your documents. You have one month to apply for it after the move to Spain.

  3. Get Fiscal Identification Number - Numero de Identificacion Fiscal (NIF)

    The NIF is a Tax Identification Number in Spain that is required for anyone living in working in Spain for tax purposes.

  4. Open a Bank Account.

    To open a bank account in Spain you need to have a valid passport, TIE, proof of employment, and proof of residence.

Healthcare in Spain

The Healthcare system in Spain, called Instituto Nacional de la Salud, is divided into public and private sectors. Public healthcare in Spain is funded by the government through taxation, therefore, covers citizens and legal residents for free.

The main document required to receive free services in state clinics is the individual health card Tarjeta Sanitaria (TSI), which all working and living in Spain residents are eligible for. With a TSI card you will be able to:

  • Make an appointment with a doctor for a consultation
  • Get a prescription for a required medication ( frequently with a 5%-50% sale)
  • Receive required treatment
  • Ambulance services
  • Benefits for retirees

The only drawback of public health care in Spain is the waiting time and limited treatments option. Individuals who desire to have more coverage purchase private healthcare insurance.

Earning and Spending in Spain

Income in Spain
Taxation System
Cost of Living

As of July 2022, the minimum wage in Spain is €1,166 per month (if paid in 12 installments) working at a full-time position, which is €7.82 per hour. The average monthly salary in Spain is estimated to be about €18,000 - €21,000 per month.

The Spanish tax system is one of the youngest in Europe. The first step in its creation was the reform of 1845, which led to the unification of the tax system throughout the country. The personal tax rate in Spain is called Impuesto de Renta sobre las Personas Fisicas or IRPF.

A single person moving to Spain is estimated to spend without rent about €635 - €700. A family of 4 - €2,300 on average. The cost of living in large cities such as Barcelona and Madrid is 10% - 15% higher. Monthly utilities cost about €120 - €200, public transportation monthly pass is €40, and monthly groceries expenses range from €100 - €300 depending on your family size.

Renting vs. Housing in Spain


A contract in Spain can be either for a short-term rental signed for up to 12 months (with a potential renewal) or a long-term rental for 5 or 7 years if rented by the business. Prior to renting in Spain, request the owner documents that prove the ownership.

The average rent in Spain for a 1 bedroom apartment ranges from €600 - €750 per month, for a 3 bedroom apartment expect to pay about €930 - €1300 per month. Rent in big cities like Madrid and Barcelona is higher and ranges between €760 - €1,000 for 1 bedroom and €1,230 - €1,700 for 3 bedroom apartments.


Buying property in Spain as a foreigner is easy. Currently, there are no restrictions prohibiting or complicating the purchase process. If the estate exceeds €500,000 you will be eligible to apply for a Golden visa allowing you to work, live and do business in Spain without a national sponsor.

If you are looking into getting a mortgage, remember that the bank will cover up to 80% of the total price. Before buying a home in Spain, save up 35% of the property cost, 20% for the downpayment, and 15% for related expenses, fees, and taxes.

The average property cost in Spain heavily relies on the city and location within the city you are moving to. Costs for the properties vary from €304 per m2 in small towns to €5,078 per m2 in the city center of Madrid. The average house price in Spain ranges from €150,000 to €220,000.

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Wow. Hercules exceeded my expectations. Moved from a 2 bedroom condo to 3 bedroom town house this past week (July 7 2017). The 3 young men were on time, polite and respectful of all my belongings. I was nervous about this move as I had never hired a moving company before, usually moved with friends and family. And with the negative press about movers I wasn't sure how well it was going to go. It went better than I expected for less money too! Would recommend this company without reservation.
Homeowner Toronto
Outstanding small moves service. The company exceeded my high expectations! The moving crew members were friendly, efficient, proficient and caring, and worked as a cohesive team.
Hercules has a phenomenal staff. They know what they are doing, they offer impeccable service and they are very courteous and hard working. We could not have asked for more in our recent move from Guelph to Unionville. Thanks!
This is a very heavy old piano. Came out of a house in Oakville and was delivered to my house in Toronto. These guys did a great job, went above and beyond to make sure there was no damage to the piano or either of the houses. I was not looking forward to this day, however hiring these professionals made this a great experience! I live in a townhouse with an awkward entrance and tight hallways and these guys ensured they didn't damage anything!From what I saw today, I will definitely recommend these experts to move anything and everything for anyone.A+++++
Stephanie Rice
Hercules Guelph movers excelled in their customer service even calling me shortly after the crew finished to inquire how the move went. I would recommend this company to anyone wanting a reliable moving company with reasonable rates and amazing service. I'm a very satisfied customer.
My heavy piano was transported within a few hours, taking into account the time for descending it from the second floor and lifting it to the fifth floor using the freight elevator. The price at first seemed to be a bit high, but after calling other piano moving companies in Ottawa, I’ve realized that it was no more expensive than others, even a bit cheaper.
This experienced company was very impressive. The staff were impeccable in takedown, storage and setup. They cared for our homes on pickup and delivery with extra floor coverings and the commitment to customer service was outstanding. Thank you Igor. Valdas and Vides. W & J (and the dog)
Private User
These Burlington movers did a great job moving my wife and I out of our downtown condo. Took care of everything they moved, and did things quickly and efficiently. The quote itself was reasonable and compared well to others. Will use them again for future moves.
The Hercules team was great! The were very helpful and were very careful when they were in my house when moving the piano into place. They even fixed a part on the piano that had been broken for ages. I would highly recommend them to move anything you need moved. Thanks Hercules!!
Kannan Sau.
All four movers were excellent, courteous and very professional. These Surrey movers took good care of our furniture, Piano and other things during the move. we were very pleased and will always use them & recommend them for any moving projects.
I want to express my sincere gratitude for the organization of the relocation of our office in Ottawa. Hercules office movers were very polite, neat and responsible. Packing, loading and unloading were logically adjusted, so I could relax and completely trust the process. Special thanks for the ease of communication: I was nervous, and there were problems with the concierge and the use of freight elevators, but these guys saved my day and behaved tactfully as real professionals. I can recommend this company to anyone who cares about quality of office relocation.
These guys really did a great job. Newmarket movers did not skimp on wrapping everything properly and moving all my sensitive and expensive equipment carefully. Call them for a quote and you won't be disappointed.
I was very worried when I knew I had to move my piano and I did some research online to see how can I get it done and I found Hercules Moving Company and I decided to give them a try. I was astonished how quickly and easy they did that without leaving a single mark on it. I was pleased and surely will call again!!!
Nancy Powell
Hercules assisted me in moving antique furniture. Igor who arranged the move for me was prompt in returning calls and updating me on timing for pickup and delivery. The drivers both in picking up and delivering were punctual despite bad weather conditions. The employees were very courteous and helpful. All furniture was carefully wrapped and reassembled on delivery. I would not hesitate to recommend Hercules to anyone for a complete move or for speciality moving.
A++++++++. Hercules Moving is the only company I would ever hire if I had to move again. The crew was amazingly fast, professional, and very careful with our stuff. They wrapped all the fueniture with pads and plastic wrap making it very difficult to scratch. Not only to mention the excellent customer service they provided all along. Hercules is simply the best!
If you still in doubt of what piano movers in Toronto to choose - hope you read my review :) Hercules Movers did an excellent job of relocating a grand piano from a music school to my house and additionally advised me a professional piano tuner. Extra care service, friendly and skilled movers, which were extremely accurate and protected the piano as well as floors, walls and stairs.
This professional moving company set the bar very high with their service, attitude and dilligent staff. From the start of the move until the end I observed the only the best from the Hercules staff. My household assets received the highest level of quality and delicate handling from this professional moving company. There can't be any professional moving company that can compete with Hercules Moving. I am very happy to have been introduced to this company and will be happy to recommend them to anyone seeking a professional move performed to the highest level of quality and service.
I had to move my entire food operation in a day. Hercules quoted me quickly and showed up on site 2 days later ready to move. I was worried about all my expensive and sensitive machinery but they pulled it off safely and without issue. Very reasonably priced and highly recommended. Great Oakville movers!
This company was very professional. There was a minor delay, they fixed that very satisfactorily which in my opinion is the best sign of a professional, reliable company. The delivery went smoothly, guys were polite, efficient, professional and on time. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend and use these gentlemen again.
Andrea Phillips
I have used the hardworking gentlemen of Hercules Moving twice now for work related moving circumstances. Very professional and quickly executed moves. They are my go to movers from now on.
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