Relocate to Mallorca

Moving and relocating to Mallorca

As well as being a popular holiday destination, Mallorca has increasingly become a desirable place to move to permanently. For those thinking of relocating here, some simple planning will increase your chances of settling in and enjoying your new home.

Relocating to Mallorca should be an enjoyable and exciting process. It is, however, a big step requiring research and preparation. Aside from practical points like arranging removals, schools and healthcare, you will be moving to a different culture.

Here are some things to consider when making your relocation plans. We can offer more detailed assistance when you brief us to help with your property search.

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Good holiday locations are not necessarily the best places to relocate to. Factors like access to your employment and schools become important, and you will likely want to be part of a community all year round, so seasonal resort locations are unlikely to be suitable.

If you don’t already know a location that would suit, we are more than happy to give you some initial guidance. This will help you when it comes to doing your own on-the-ground research – something that we’d recommend as being essential to a successful relocation.

There are two approaches to schooling in Mallorca: the international schools that cater for children from different countries, or the local schools which have the standard Spanish curriculum.

If the children are young, perhaps up to the age of 10 or 12, they are likely to be able to integrate reasonably quickly into a local school. If you are considering this route, be sure the locations you choose have a suitable school within reach. In countryside locations for example, schools will be smaller and more provincial.

The international schools offer more internationally-focussed learning with generally high standards of education. Many expats feel more comfortable with their children at one of the international schools and our advice is to research options as early as possible as places are limited.

Click here for a list of the international schools in Mallorca

There are many removals companies to choose from. However, many of the adverts you see will be for online brokers, so try to deal at first hand with the people that will do the moving. They should visit your home in advance and give you a written estimate detailing what they will do, and what you need to do. Be sure to check they are BAR (British Association of Removers) members.

There are two companies that specialise in Mallorca. Whites, who operate in a number of Mediterranean locations and Webbs Removals, who specialise only in removals to Mallorca.

While you can get by in Mallorca without knowing any Spanish you will get far more out of relocating here if you dedicate yourself to learning at least the basics. There are many language schools and some local Town Halls offer free classes.

The best approach is to get a basic grounding while still in the UK. Your local college may provide evening courses and private tutors need not be that expensive, especially if you group together with friends or family for lessons.

There are also many internet courses and learning CDs you can buy. Two good ones are:

  • Rosetta Stone Spanish – is a computer-based “immersion” course based on language-association with visuals.
  • Spanish with Michel Thomas – an ideal companion to Rosetta Stone, with an audio-based lesson format that will build your vocabulary and grammar.

They can both be bought online at Amazon.

You should note down the various insurance policies that you have in the UK so you can get appropriate cover for all the important things when you move to Mallorca. Insurance for your possessions and your car are obvious requirements. As in the UK, valuables may need to be insured separately.

The medical services in Mallorca are comprehensive and generally of a good standard. There are good local doctors and dentists and there are others who focus primarily on the expat sector.

Health insurance policies are not essential but will give you more choice as to which doctor or specialists you can use. Your existing UK policy may give you some cover in Spain but a local policy is likely to give more better cover and be more cost effective.

If you are an EU citizen, there are no barriers to living and working in Spain. But if you are relocating, it can be beneficial to become a Spanish resident. Bear in mind that this is different to tax residency – if you are here for more than 6 months each year, you are technically tax resident regardless of whether you have declared yourself a Spanish resident.

New regulations came into effect on 27th March 2007 meaning that residence permits are no longer necessary. All you need do to attain resident status is register at the National Police station.

We advise that you seek professional advice on this – see Personal financial management and taxes below.

It is sensible to have an accountant or gestoria to help administrate your finances and tax affairs. They will take care of your annual tax returns and advise on any other financial matters you wish to discuss.

Yearly tax returns are normally handled by a “Gestoria” or “Gestor”. There is no direct equivalent to this service in the UK. They are administrators who will undertake most activities that involve dealing with the authorities. Apart from them being native Spanish speakers and knowing the right contacts, their knowledge of “the way things work” can be a great help in getting things done.

Payment for regular services and utilities tends to be by direct debit, so you will need a Spanish bank account for bill payments of services like water, mobile phones and insurance.

Setting up an account is easy and the Spanish banks in Mallorca tend to have a more open and helpful approach than high street banks in the UK. Your lawyer, accountant or gestor are the sensible person to ask in the first instance.