Utilities (organising and paying for gas, electricity, water, phone, Internet and Cable TV) in Madrid
If you are an expat searching for a home in Madrid, it is important to consider the maintenance costs of the property, as it will greatly affect your future monthly expenses.
What to look for? It is important to note how the property is insulated and what kind of windows and doors it has. Madrid’s climate is extreme: it is very cold in winter and very hot in summer.
It is also very important to look at the home heating installation, which will determine your comfort and monthly gas/electricity bill.
In Madrid properties you will find three types of heating:
1. Individual gas heating.
Usually it has a modern system. It is the best option, because you can regulate the temperature as wanted and turn it on and off depending on your needs.
The installation and maintenance of the boiler are mandatory and normally landlord´s responsibility to maintain and repair. We recommend that a service of the boiler is undertaken before you occupy the property.
2. Electric heaters.
This is the worst option because it is not comfortable and is very costly in the winter months. They also tend to be installed in older properties.
3. Central heating.
This is a good choice. This system is found in many flats in Madrid, both in the center and in the outskirts of the city. The installation is shared between all the neighbors of the building. It is the residence community who decides the time of the year and how many hours each day it is switched on.
It offers comfort at home. Its expenses are included in the cost of the community housing, usually paid by the landlord. It is very likely that its cost is included in your monthly rent.
Payment of utilities in Madrid: water, electricity and gas.
The day of the hand over of keys of your new home in Madrid, you have to agree with the landlord the payment method of the utilities, which have to be paid in addition of your monthly rent.
Commonly, you will have to contact the electricity, gas and water companies to change the name of the holder so you can start receiving your bills and paying for the services.
You will be asked for your Spanish bank account number to arrange the direct debit payments. That is, the utilities supply companies will automatically withdraw the amount from your account. It is easy and avoids having to go to the bank to make transfers.
You can ask these utilities supply companies to send you the invoices to your new address or subscribe to the electronic billing option. In that case you can consult and download your bills from their websites.
Another option is that the landlord keeps being the holder and paying the utility bills. In this case, periodically he will send you the bills and ask for the payments.
In general, utilities supplies in Spain are very expensive and their prices are constantly increasing, so it´s important to take care of their use and management.
Depending on the company, payment of electricity, gas and water are monthly or bi-monthly.
Gas in Madrid:
“Gas Natural Fenosa”, among other companies, distribute gas to your property for all the appliances in your home.
The installations are very controlled, safe and clean. All you have to do is turn on the boiler for its use.
Electricity in Madrid:
The voltage used in Spain is 230V and 50Hz.
Most kitchens in Madrid are electric.
Not all homes have air-conditioning. The best option is to have the installation throughout the house, providing the same ambient temperature. But is very common to have only individual wall-mounted air conditioners units, in the living room and in the master bedroom.
We recommend that a service of the air-conditioning is undertaken before you occupy the property.
Water in Madrid:
“Canal de Isabel II” is the company supplying water in Madrid.
Tap water in Madrid is excellent and all citizens drink it. No need to buy bottled water.
Fixed phone and internet services in your home:
As in any other country, there are several providers offering similar services. The prices vary, so it is wise to compare before selecting your provider. The most popular are Movistar, Orange and Vodafone.
To have internet at home and use a Wi-Fi, it is mandatory to have a fixed telephone line. Local phone calls in Spain are free.
If you hire an ADSL service, the installation is very easy. If you require fiber optic cable, the installation can take a long time. The fiber optic is more expensive but much faster, although it is not available in all areas and not all the providers offer it.
It is important to note that any of them will ask for your Spanish bank account number to access their services. Also many of them will ask you for your NIE (foreigners identification number in Spain).
Cable TV in your home:
You can hire cable television with the same provider you hired your internet services. In this case, the company will send one bill for all the services.
However, there are other independent companies such as Canal+ that are worth taking into account, as they offer better packages at very competitive prices.
Internet and Cable TV are never offered by the landlord. If you want the services, you must hire them by independently.
It is very difficult to find suppliers attending their clients in English. If you do not speak Spanish, it is worth seeking help to arrange the services required and payment options.
Please do not hesitate to contact us for further information about how we can help you.