We sent our Spanish writer out to the local bars, restaurants and shops armed with a pen a paper, so you know what you will pay for going out, groceries, utilities and transport in Spain.

Buying a home in Spain doesn’t just mean you’ll be able to benefit from a more relaxed lifestyle compared to the UK; you’ll probably be able to bag yourself a bargain property too. The average house price in the UK is £226,200, compared to just €108,200 (£95,000) in sunny Spain. But have you considered how much your new life will set you back once you have the keys to your affordable property? To help give you an idea of the cost of living in Spain, we’ve researched the price of life’s essentials so you will be able to budget ahead with confidence when you get there.

Have you considered how much your new life will set you back once you have the keys to your property?

 

You will save a cent or two on your grocery shop in Spain

 

Supermarket shop

Here are the prices of an average grocery shop in Mercadona – a leading Spanish supermarket chain – compared to similar items on the Tesco UK website.

 

Item Price in € Conversion price in £s Tesco UK price

in £s

Loaf of bread   (fresh) 1 0.87 0.75
12 medium eggs 1.19 1.04 1.75
2 litres of milk 1.55 1.35 1.30
1kg of apples 1.49 1.30 2.20
1kg bananas 1.29 1.13 0.76
500g tomatoes 0.65 0.56 0.35
500g cheese 3.75 3.28 2.50
500g chicken  breast 3.90 3.41 4
500g stewing beef 3.10 2.71 2.89
1kg potatoes 1.10 0.96 0.89
500g pasta 0.59 0.51 0.56
400g standard cornflakes 0.87 0.76 0.75
100g chocolate bar 0.75 0.65 0.45
200g Instant coffee  – Nescafé 5.25 4.60 5.69
20 teabags 0.60 0.52 1.10 (for 80)
Bottle of red wine  – Rioja 2.69 2.35 4.50
Domestic beer, 6 bottles –  San Miguel 2.29 2 5.40
1.25l Coca-Cola 1.31 1.14 1
600ml washing up liquid 0.99 0.86 1.50
100ml toothpaste 0.75 0.65 0.80
35 detergent tablets 4.25 3.72 3
1200g  tin dog food 1.40 1.22 2.50

 

The total value of this shop is almost £10 cheaper in Spain (£35.59) than the UK (£44.64).

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Home costs – The range of prices for two-bedroom apartment to a three-bedroom villa

 

Item Average cost in € Conversion to £
Electricity 58 – 170 per month 50 – 148
Internet, line rental 25 – 50 per month 21 – 43
Gas 40 – 120 per month 35 – 105
Mobile phone tariff, prepaid 1 minute 0.16 0.14
Council tax (and other housing costs, such as refuse) 500 – 1100 (varies by region) 437 – 963
TV licence N/A
Pool maintenance (if appropriate) 60 – 90 per month 52 – 78

 

According to Numbeo – the world’s largest database of user contributed data about cities and countries worldwide – the average cost of basic utilities for a two-bed apartment (electricity, heating water, rubbish collection) is around 40% more expensive per month in the UK than Spain. While the average cost of an internet connection is around 23% cheaper in the UK.

The cost of transport is typically higher across the board in Spain compared to the UK.

Transport

 

Item Average cost in € Conversion to £
1 litre petrol 1.18 1.03
1 litre diesel 1.12 0.98
One way train ticket in large town 2.15 1.88
Monthly train pass in large town 42 36.77
Taxi starting tariff 2.50 2.18
Taxi km/mile tariff in large town 1.10 0.96
Car tax for the average five door hatchback 65 56

 

The cost of transport is typically higher across the board in Spain compared to the UK. For example, a litre of petrol rises from around £1.03 in Spain to £1.15 in the UK. What’s more, public transport, particularly train travel, is considered more efficient in Spain, meaning you get excellent value for money when you compare the price of a monthly train pass in Spain (£36.77) with the UK (£60).

Social

 

Average cost in € Conversion to £
Three course set meal 12 10.50
Glass of white wine 2.20 1.92
Bottle of beer 2.50 2.18
Cup of coffee 1.30 – 2.10 1.13 – 1.83
Cinema ticket 6 – 8.50 5.25 – 7.43
Gym membership (monthly) 36.50 31.94

 

Social costs will vary depending upon your location. If you’re looking for a meal in a tourist hotspot, for example, try to avoid the high prices by avoiding the crowds. Head back a couple a couple of streets from the main plaza and look for the restaurants the locals are going to. Not only will you save a fair whack, the quality is likely to be better as well.

If you’re buying a home on a strict budget, learning a few negotiating tips could net a you more house for your money. Download our guide, How to Negotiate Abroad. It’s written by a licensed estate agent and is packed with insider tips.

 

Spain Buying Guide cover

The Spain Buying Guide takes you through each stage of the property buying process, with practical recommendations from our experts who have been through the process themselves. The guide will help you to:


  Ask the right questions
  Avoid losing money
  Avoid the legal pitfalls
  Move in successfully

Download your free guide to buying in Spain

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