Moving house is a busy and exciting time, but as well as finding the right house and booking a removal van, when you move house in Spain you will also need to change your address with a huge number of different organisations.
From those official bodies that you are legally obligated to inform, to the smaller companies that updating will make your life easier, here is a full list of everyone you will need to inform when you move to a new house in Spain:
Update Your Padron Document
When you arrive in Spain you will need to register with the local town hall. This process is known as empadronamiento in Spanish but is usually abbreviated to Padron. Registering on the local padron is a legal requirement of living in Spain, and when you move house in the country (even if you are staying in the same town or city) you need to inform the town hall and update your padron, as this record is often used for official processes.
Update Your Residency Document
There is some confusion about whether or not it is a legal requirement to update your residency document when you change your address. The Spanish Immigration Department doesn’t state that you need a new document when you change your address, but some immigration offices and police statements say that obtaining a document with an updated address is necessary. In a world where it is better to be safe than sorry, you are advised to notify your local police force about your change of address: you can do this by booking an appointment at your closest immigration office.
Your Spanish ID
Updating the address on your Spanish ID document, as well as your Spanish passport if you have one, is not a legal requirement. However, it is recommended that you do so, and the update is free of charge.
Amend Your Driving License
You might be forgiven for thinking you won’t need to amend your drivers license, as Spanish licenses don’t include addresses on them. However, you will still need to inform the Spanish Traffic Authority (DGT) if you change your address. Without your correct address the DGT will be unable to share important updates, or details of any fines you receive. The amount of tax you pay for your vehicle is also determined by the region that you live, and you may also receive residential perks (such as free on-street parking) in the area that you live.
Like updating your Spanish ID document, updating the address associated with your drivers license is free of charge. You just need to show a document (such as a rental contract or padron registration) that confirms your new address, and this process can be completed online.
Informing Your Bank
This one might seem obvious, but it’s surprising how many people forget to inform their bank that they’re moving house. Unless you want strangers to have access to your bank statements, and other post your bank might send you, you should change your address with your bank. You can do this by visiting your closest branch.
Social security and tax
Only two things are certain: death and taxes. And with each autonomous region in Spain having their own tax conditions, it’s important to keep your address up to date with the tax office so that you don’t end up paying too much! Even if you stay in the same province, the tax agency will need your address to send you notifications, so this is a change well worth making, particularly if you are self-employed, as you are responsible for paying your own taxes.
You will also need to update your social security details to ensure you are assigned to a doctor's surgery that is close to your new home. You can do this by applying for a health card in your new community if you move regions, or if you are remaining in the same autonomous region you can simply update the details on your existing card.
Bills and subscriptions
Finally, every bill or subscription that you pay from your bank account each month will be linked to your old address, and these should be changed as soon as possible. This is particularly important for bills that relate to the old property, such as to your water or electricity provider, or for your internet services. If you don’t, then you could find that the person who moves into your old home runs up a huge bill on your account!
Your home insurance policy should also be changed and updated to cover your new address, instead of your old one. And even online services, such as you Amazon account, will be linked to your old property, so make sure they are on your list of people to inform about the new address too!
Thinking of taking the plunge and moving to Spain? The first step is finding your dream home! Why not get in touch with our local property experts who can help you to take that first step in the right direction today.