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How to Move to Spain from Australia

How to Move to Spain from Australia

Why Should Australians move to Spain?

There are many reasons why Australians might want to immigrate to Europe. Spain, however, is especially alluring to those seeking to immigrate there.

In addition to its delectable cuisine, awe-inspiring scenery, and diverse culture, Spain’s excellent global reputation is attributable to its pleasant weather and Mediterranean lifestyle. This democratic country is located in southern Europe.

Also, it’s close to other European countries such as France and Portugal, making international travel simple.

What Australians living in Spain can enjoy is listed here.

¨We will be with you each step of the journey.¨


Peaceful, welcoming, and safe are three qualities that define Spain.

Spain is one of the world’s most progressive nations. The European Social Survey found that 80% of the population can be “liberal.”

Individuals are often at ease living in Spain, where people from diverse cultures and backgrounds coexist peacefully. This makes Spain a top-rated destination for ex-pats.

Because of the many different groups, Spain has a diverse culture.

Living in such a nation is relatively simple to get used to. People across Spain are accepting and familiar with minor differences that come with ex-pats.

Having ex-pats as friends can help you avoid cultural discomfort. In addition, those who befriend Spaniards are typically rewarded with a more enriching experience.

Expanding your circle of friends to include locals is a good idea, as they can help you integrate and even learn Spanish.

There are ex-pat communities all over Spain, as it is a popular destination for European and non-European residents.

You will discover individuals with the same thoughts and experiences as you, who also left their home country to begin a new life in Spain. 

Having been through the same process, you can profit from their assistance. Furthermore, because of the large number of people moving to Spain, making new friends is typically simple.

You can split your time between the beaches of northern Spain, the Costa Brava and Andalucia and enjoy a chilled vibe. Alternatively, Spain has incredible terrain with mountains perfect for hiking or skiing. 

Great food is everywhere in Spain. Each region has its delicacy and unique gastronomic experience.

Renting a one-bedroom apartment in the city centre in Spain costs $600, around 50% less than in Australia. Likewise, you can get an apartment outside the city centre for about $600, a fraction of that Down Under.

You can receive a Golden Visa if you invest more than €500,000 ($702,000) on a property in Spain, whether you are a foreign resident. There is no restriction on how much you can spend.

You may live in Spain for two years with a Golden Visa or for five years to gain permanent residency, just as you would with a regular visa. Then, after living in the country for ten years, you may also become a Spanish citizen.

It is cheaper to buy fruit and vegetables in Spain than in Australia, and they can be even more affordable if you buy local produce.

Spain’s meat, wine, and cheese are renowned for their excellence, and all three are less expensive there than in Australia.

Spain indeed has a rich culinary history. Dining out in Spain is significantly cheaper than in the United States and Europe.

How Australian citizens can move to Spain

This step-by-step guide explains how you start enjoying life in Spain.


Choose the visa or residence that suits you best.


Working with a lawyer is crucial to understand visa requirements and whether your situation qualifies.


You can either apply for a visa in Spain or file your application from your home country if you are visiting.


Collect all the required documents and send them to the correct Spanish embassy or consulate.


Then, travel to Spain once you have your visa.

You must obtain an employment visa before working in Spain if you are not an EU citizen. Working in Spain differs from working in Australia, so remember to get a work visa before you begin working.

Those seeking to live permanently in Spain may want to consider the Entrepreneur and Investor Visa. This is a more expensive but potentially more rewarding approach.

You may apply for a non-lucrative visa to move to Spain, but you may not work here as an Australian citizen with this visa.

Australian citizens can study in Spain with a student visa and become de facto temporary residents. After their studies, they may remain in the country and seek employment.

Step 1 – Understand Your Situation.

In Spain, there are different residence permits, each with its procedure. A work permit, for example, requires a different process than obtaining a non-lucrative visa.

You must first choose the visa that best meets your needs and situation.

It is more complicated for Australians to apply for EU citizenship because they are not citizens. However, we can assist you and make the process simpler. Despite all the requirements and conditions, you may find satisfying them challenging.

Our team can assist you in determining whether a Spain residency visa is the right solution for you, as well as help Immigration officials because we speak Spanish. 


Step 2 – the immigration procedure

The process typically begins in your home country unless you are applying for an entrepreneur visa or a highly skilled professional visa. The process typically starts in your home country.

Before travelling to Spain, you must first apply to the Spanish Embassy or Consulate in your home country or the location where you are legally resident to obtain a Spanish visa. 

Once your application has been approved, the Embassy or Consulate will issue you a visa so you may enter Spain and remain there.

Ensure that you travel within 90 days after the visa has been issued. 

Next, you must apply for a residence permit after receiving your NIE number. This is essentially a residency card

You may live in the country for a year with this residence permit. Afterwards, you can renew it for two more years if you still meet the exact requirements.

After living in Spain for ten years, you may apply for Spanish nationality.


Step 3 – Working in Spain

Working in Spain as an ex-pat requires a work visa.

Those hoping to live in Spain who cannot meet the demanding standards for other types of visas may find the work visa an appropriate alternative.

  • Most applications must be made from outside of Spain.
  • All work permit applications require a Spanish job offer.
  • You can only work in roles where the government has identified a shortage.

Step 4 – Moving to Spain but not working.

You can live in Spain as an Australian citizen without working on a non-lucrative visa. However, this visa would be ideal if you have enough money to sustain yourself there. 

With this visa, you can use your private or state pensions to support your lifestyle while living in Spain.


Step 5 – Getting an NIE

Once you have obtained a visa at the Spanish Embassy in your home country and arrived in Spain, you should first get your NIE number.

Everything requires an NIE number in Spain. For example, an NIE number is required to open a bank account, purchase a property, and more. In addition, it is used to identify foreigners.

You must complete this process at your local police station to apply for an NIE. However, the process is relatively simple if you know the steps.

Step 6 – The paperwork

Each residence permit in Spain has its documents, but you will need the following. 

  • A clean criminal record in Spain and your home country
  • Proof that you can financially support yourself if you are applying for a student visa or non-lucrative visa
  • Full public healthcare coverage
  • A passport and two photo IDs

More involved visa applications require more paperwork. For example, the Golden Visa in Spain demands proof that the applicant has purchased a Spanish asset. In addition, the entrepreneurship visa requires the applicant to develop a business plan.


Step 7 – Translate the documents. 

Everything must be translated into Spanish, and the documents must be certified with a Hague Apostille. These documents are rejected if presented in the client’s native language. Therefore everything must be translated into Spanish.


Step 8 – Move with your family.

Family members may apply for a residence and work permit if the main applicant has lived in the country for more than one year.

The following counts as a family:

  • Your parents
  • Spouse or unmarried partner
  • Your spouse’s parents
  • Your children

To apply for the family reunification residence permit, the family member you wish to bring to Spain must not be in the country while you apply.

Permanent residence

Australians who live in Spain for a year or longer can seek permanent residency immediately. This is common for those who initially plan to move on a short-term basis as they become enticed by the country’s pleasant climate and opportunities. For many, it’s the natural path to choose Spain as their home.

You must live here for five years to get a permanent residency permit.


Golden Visa

Australians can become permanent residents of Spain through the Golden Visa Program. Investment in several fields and real estate is available. The programme is open to non-EU citizens, such as Australians.

Australians can start and operate businesses using this programme if they wish to immigrate to Spain. Our lawyers can help you with that.



The Wealth Visa programme offers entrepreneurs in Australia the most significant advantages when starting and operating businesses. Australians may also become Spanish citizens through this programme. However, it’s important that they understand their tax resident status

It takes at least five years for Australians to acquire Spanish citizenship, though periods may vary depending on how the foreign resident arrived in Spain.

Those with Spanish family roots or married to a Spanish citizen may have a significantly shorter wait time.


We are a department formed by qualified legal experts who have been trained in the field of immigration law. We work on these residency permit requests every day. It’s our passion. Our work goes beyond having a general interest.

For us, Lexidy is a way of life and what excites us the most is to be able to deliver the happiness and satisfaction of a successful immigration process. We want to help you achieve your goals and dreams, whether it’s residence in Spain or simply an investment.

Laura Fuste

Laura Fusté

Head of Immigration Europe
David Planes

David Planes

Cristina Negro Vizoso

Cristina Negro Vizoso

Mónica Isern López

Mónica Isern López

Lawyer, Head of Immigration Spain
Gabriela Baly

Gabriela Baly

Francesca Coluccio

Francesca Coluccio

Legal Advisor

Sandra Faura

Carolina Gimeno

Carolina Gimeno



Eugenia Yanes

Eugenia Yanes

Legal Trainee
María Laura Arreaza

Maria Laura Arreaza

Immigration Administrative
Manuel Lorenzo

Manuel Lorenzo


See what our customers have to say about our services

We get to know about Spanish Golden Visa by property investment through web searches but as a foreigners we have limited knowledge about Golden Visa application compliance and property sales and purchase governing rules and regulations.There are many websites out there listing out how Golden Visa legal system or property ownership in Spain works but we know it is even beyond language bearer that we need an experience, responsive and dedicated specialist to do the job.We come across Lexidy Law, which specialized in assisting foreigners in Golden Visa application and in our case through the property purchases (there are few types of ways for qualifying on Spanish Golden Visa application).Because of the straightforward services price structure of Lexidy and easy to understand explanations of the home-purchasing process, we felt confident after meeting with Mr.Alejandro who is the first person we met of the application process.During our property purchase, the sale of the house has come to a halt and become a complex and problematic deal as a result of sellers’ family dispute on the sales proceed distribution. The argument lasted for two months, pushing back the completion deadline.The Lexidy real estate team has done an excellent job, in particular with the lead by Señor Juan Diego.Juan is highly knowledgeable, competent and down to earth practical lawyer in this field; his previously work experience in real property gives us good spectrum of views and advices with alternative or solutions and he shows his capability in ranking them logically so we do the decision to choose the best fit for ourselves.He promptly provides updates on every development and highlights complication or consequences from both the seller and buyer perspective (nearly every day). His effective and fluent communication skills in written and spoken English saved thousand words for non Spanish language speakers like us; He maintain his client's best interests in mind yet remain independent in giving his advices.Lexidy's real estate team has spent a considerable amount of time and resources helping us have a successful closure to this property purchase.Yes, we are now proud house owners, and Lexidy didn't charge us extra for the additional work and efforts on the process hiccup. We are impressed and thankful with the professionalism.Thankful Lexidy, it would be impossible for us to have a flawless closure and a successful property transaction which now lead us to the final path of Spanish Golden Visa process which handle by Ms.Laura and her team.It is truly a blessing and we sincerely hope that our review might also benefit you in finding a correct choice of Spanish Golden Visa application service provider.
Yaw Kevin
Yaw Kevin
02:00 27 Sep 23
A great law firm that covers anything an expat might need. I needed help with real estate initially, and they also helped me with immigration, taxes, and corporate legal matters. Fantastic people to work with. Alejandro from their real estate and immigration department is my main contact and he is an absolute pleasure to work with. Highly recommended!
Jonathan Elron
Jonathan Elron
07:37 13 Aug 23
Alejandro was helping me navigate the process of nueva obra construction to gain Spanish golden visa. He proved to be very knowledgeable and we had a great phone call where I learned more in 20 minutes than I would have from months of internet research. Unfortunately the property I was looking at ended up not being suitable, which was discovered thanks to his due-diligence, so I was not able to go through the entire process, so I can't provide a review of the full legal process. But I'll be engaging with Lexidy again if I find a suitable property for me in the future!
10:47 24 Mar 23
Comment from Radostin and Kaloyan Bulgaria:We could recommend working with Lexidy and especially with Juan Diego Muñoz to everyone. Our assessment is defenitely 10 out of 10!Strict professional who cover full end-to-end journey in buying real estate and successful relocation to Spain in our case. We highly appreciate efficient and effective approach and providing us and supporting us in each step of the journey in buying property in Spain. Without support of Juan Diego we would be lost, he provides us with daily support in most critical days before finalization of the deal and also there was not even a single question to which he could not provide us details in most structured way.Thank you Juan Diego Muñoz, thank you Lexidy we will be happy working together in the future.We wish you lots of success in your innovative and trustful approach in supporting your customers in a holistic way.Radostin and Kaloyan
Radostin Denev
Radostin Denev
09:47 27 Oct 22
I worked with Juan Diego de Muñoz for my real estate lawyer. His help was invaluable to me! He worked with the sellers and real estate agents who were reluctant to engage in the due diligence process for the property I bought. He smoothed that over and helped me obtain a thorough check of my flat and the building it’s in, which yielded important information. Juan Diego made sure my every question and concern were addressed the same day that I raised them. Metaphorically, he held my hand through the whole process, but also made sure I was the one making informed decisions. I highly recommend him and Lexidy Law Boutique!
Linda Sparling
Linda Sparling
15:32 04 Oct 22
We are working with Lexidy for our immigration and real estate needs. Our real estate lawyer, Juan Diego Muñoz, has been amazing to work with throughout the entire process. His diligent communication during the real estate purchase has not only kept us informed every step of the way, but helped us to understand the differences and intricacies of purchasing property in Spain. We can't say enough great things about Juan Diego and the team at Lexidy.
Rick Estrada-Stone
Rick Estrada-Stone
15:05 16 Jul 22
I am looking to to buy my first property in Spain and had my intro call with Alejandro today- very pleased with the valuable insights gained and your guidance on the legal aspects of the Spanish property market, sales cycle, mortgage application process and risk mitigation. Alejandro, thank you so much for your advice and invested time, I'm genuinely looking forward to working together on this exciting project:)
12:34 04 Jul 22
Yet another amazing experience with Lexidy. My boyfriend and I are going to start the pareja de hecho process together in Madrid. Cristina has been so knowledgable and helpful in answering my questions about the process, and has even taken the time to investigate more complex questions that I had about different approaches to this process. She has also been extremely responsive via email, which has been much appreciated. Feeling very reassured that I am in great hands with her, and with Lexidy.
Casey Maher
Casey Maher
17:44 18 Aug 21
Lexidy have been a godsend. As a British freelancer in Spain, I felt uncertain about the wealth of complicated paperwork, especially as my Spanish still needs improvement. Lexidy have been helpful with setting up my status as a freelance, organising my tax information, as well as guiding me on immigration issues due to Brexit. The team has been brilliant, if I ever have an issue or need know something, they will be patient and responsive (very quick) with accurate and useful information. For the services and professionalism they offer, it is very well valued. I plan on using Lexidy for all my legal needs. Highly recommended.
Sam Dale
Sam Dale
11:16 29 Jan 21
I couldn’t be happier with my experience with Lexidy and their excellent attorneys. After months of trying unsuccessfully to navigate the maze of Spanish bureaucracy, I finally got the help I needed. Max Agazzi Paulet and his team were extremely professional and knowledgeable and were able to quickly give me the information I needed to successfully move forward with my application. Without hesitation, I would recommend Lexidy to anyone dealing with Spanish immigration law and/or real estate issues.
Daniel Zuckerman
Daniel Zuckerman
15:04 10 Nov 20
I have had the pleasure to work with a lot of Lexidy's departments. Working with Max Aggazi Paulet to achieve everything needed for my residency was incredible. he help endlessly until everything was accomplished. Soon after i began working with their Real estate department. It has been a journey and they have stuck with me every step of the way. They have gone beyond the scope of their duties to help my dreams of purchasing a property in Spain come to fruition. I would like to thank Alejandro Cano and Jordi Aranda for for everything. Last but not least through the entire Process I have had the absolute pleasure to work with Camila Broderson. She is a Gem. She has guided me in every step to work on opening my LLC in Spain and has also gone beyond the scope of her duties to assist and be available at any time. I plan to continue to work with team at Lexidy and would highly recommend them to everyone. Thank you Lexidy team for everything that you have done so far! I look forward to continuing our partnerships and friendships!
Michael Sandoval
Michael Sandoval
16:44 19 Oct 20

Frequently Asked Questions

Many Aussies pick big cities like Madrid, Barcelona, and Valencia when choosing to live in Spain. Some go for a slower pace of life on the Balearic Islands, the Costa del Sol. There are also charming smaller Spanish cities such as Malaga, Granada, and Bilbao.

Like anything, you need to weigh up the pros and cons of what you’re looking for from a location.

Compared to Australia, the cost of living in Spain is much lower for groceries, rent, the healthcare system, and eating out. In addition, public services provided by Spain’s well-established social security system are of higher quality and available to a more significant proportion of the population. The cost of living outside of major cities is also much lower, although there is less public transport.

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