Loving Spain but hating the paperwork!

Matt Wilkie - La Mata, Spain 2014-12-10 12.31.49 - Photo copyright of Matt WilkieWe hit a month in Spain today and slowly working our way through the paperwork for residency. Its not difficult just time consuming and already completed several documents that getting others to do would have cost enough to buy a TV. Well in fact it did buy a TV as we bought a 32” LED TV with the money we saved from doing it ourselves as a bit of a treat. Although I don’t watch much TV the kids are spending time absorbing kids shows in Spanish that they are familiar with. The result is they are picking up Spanish quickly.

For me though getting documents processed is the typical process of going from A to B to C and onto D. As each piece of paperwork gathered results in opening more doors. Registering as being here opens up getting a tenancy as most people want the number and a bank account. The tenancy agreement and alien registration (NIE) then opens up getting registered with schools, self employment and medical system. This then works towards residency and adding April and the kids onto my paperwork but it just takes time as each piece of paperwork seems to be in a different office and everyone wants you to be there at 7am even though they open at 9am. Can see why some pay to do it but to be honest I don’t mind going to the places as I have met a few new people that have made the move to Spain interesting. A woman at the registry office from Venezuela was explaining to me how much she hated the government there. But also worked at Harrods until she retired and was married in Knightsbridge. Another new friend Tracy is here with his wife from Thailand and children and like me has moved away from the UK as “home”. They already are and have been living in the UK but decided to move to Spain as Tracy’s money goes a lot further in Spain and the multilingual aspect for the kids. Very similar in the way we think and we are already looking at business opportunities with the 4 of us (the guys and wives).

Today though was the first time I got back out on my racing bike as its been sat up since before I left the UK. I simply got too busy and being in Spain with the kids around us all day and trying to translate documents, do a college course in the evenings and be at offices at 7am started to take its toll. But was refreshing to hit the road and wake up a bit. I find cycling gives me more energy throughout the day once my fitness levels start going up again.

Would I recommend doing this for others? I am currently working on a few videos on explaining why I do recommend it as I find the UK becoming too expensive to justify living there full-time. Spain has high unemployment but it has good airport access and cheap properties both for rental and buying. The corruption seems similar in many ways to the Philippines so sort of see where some of the bad habits came from in the first place! But beyond that I find the Spanish nice people and if anything just need to get all the paperwork done so we can settle down and I can get back to work.

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