Moving in : Sao Paulo

Gas, Electricity, Water in Sao Paulo

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Mains gas distribution in the State of São Paulo is provided by Comgás but only a minority of people has access to mains gas so gas is usually sold in tank form (or butijão) and is distributed by private companies. The biggest of these companies are Ultragaz and Liquigás.

Although they have sales points throughout the state the most common way to buy gas is by exchanging an empty tank for a full one from a company truck. These trucks travel through the streets playing a hard-to-miss melody from their loud-speakers. Tanks range in size but people normally use the 13 Kg format. It’s a good idea to stock two so when one runs out there is always a reserve on hand to continue cooking. However it’s possible to call the gas company and have one delivered within a few hours. A butijão in São Paulo state capital costs R$36 if bought from a store, or R$40 if purchased from a truck or via special delivery.


The electricity company serving the São Paulo metropolitan region is AES Eletropaulo. If you’re moving into an apartment building the owners of the block will normally arrange for you to be connected but you will need to provide your tax number and a proof of identity such as a Registro Nacional de Estrangeiro or Registro Geral.

If you need to register online click on the ‘Clientes Residenciais’ link on the AES Eletropaulo website and then choose Ligação Nova em Apartamentos on the scroll down menu. Follow the instructions. After successful completion of the online form an Eletropaulo engineer will then visit your flat within two days to establish the service, at which time the original copies of the CPF and proof of identity must be presented.

Electricity remains the most popular form of heating in Brazilian homes.


The state-owned water utility company Sabesp provides water services to about 60 percent of Sao Paulo State’s urban population. When moving into an apartment arrange directly with the supervisor of the building for the water to be turned on. The water bill is normally incorporated into the condominium charges.

If you’re moving into a house you’ll need to contact Sabesp Customer Services in order to have the bill transferred to your name: 08000 119 911 (São Paulo Metropolitan Region). You will be required to provide the residence’s reference number or RGI (found in the top right-hand corner of an old bill; the previous owner or estate agency can provide this) as well as your Individual Taxpayer’s Number (Cadastro de Pessoa Física - CPF). Once these details have been registered a Sabesp technician will visit the residence within one to three working days to connect you.

When renting accommodation it’s not necessary to contact Sabesp to stop the water when you leave, the owner of the property is responsible for this.

Update 13/12/2010


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