How to Get Your Electrical, Gas Utilities and Water in Panama

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Panama Electrical, Gas, & Water Utilities

The first thing you need to do to get electricity and water services in Panama is to get a permanent address in Panama.  You cannot obtain utilities in Panama from another country.  You must be able to present a housing lease agreement or title to a home or an apartment (condo) along with your passport and appear in person to make an appointment to have the services installed and turned on.

Panama Electrical & Gas Services

Required Documents for Electrical & Gas Connections:
Natural Person:

1.  Copy of passport or national ID card (cedula or carnet issued by Panama
immigration
);

2.  Copy of the Title Deed of real property ownership or Certificate of Public Registry
of a Lease or Certificate of Address issued by a competent authority certifying
ownership or legal possession of the real property.

Legal Entity:

1.  Copy of the Certificate of Public Registry of the Panama corporation or Panama
Private Interest Foundation
;

2. Copy of the Title Deed of real property ownership or Certificate of Public Registry of a Lease or Certificate of Address issued by a competent authority certifying ownership or legal possession of the real property.

3. Original notarized letter authorizing a 3rd party the right to act on the legal entity’s behalf regarding obtaining electrical and gas services;

4. Copy of the ID of the legal representative (passport, cedula, or carnet issued by Panama immigration);

5.  Copy of the ID of the person authorized to act on the legal entity’s behalf
(passport, cedula, or carnet issued by Panama immigration).

In Addition, if this is a new building or unoccupied facility:

1.  Copy of the Occupancy Permit

Gas Connection

Many apartment buildings in Panama City provide central gas services which are included with the Condominium Homeowners Association (HOA) which is not the responsibility of the apartment owner or tenant.  The gas is always available so
re-connection services are not required.

In Panama City bottled gas is provided by two companies Panagas and Tropigas.

Older apartment buildings in Panama City have a line from the kitchen to an area outside where large gas tanks can be connected which last a lot longer than the smaller bottled gas containers.  You must call the company providing the service to replace the large gas can when it runs out.  In the meantime, you can attach a small gas bottle while you wait for the gas company to show up.

Houses require contacting the gas company to purchase a new gas tank if one is
not on the premises.  After calling the gas company to turn on the gas it takes from two to five days to have that done.  When the tank is near empty call the company to have the tank refilled which also takes from two to five days.  You pay for the refill when the company refills.

Here are the Panama City phone numbers for the two gas companies:

Electricity Connection

One company provides electricity in Panama, Union Fenosa.  Take the housing lease agreement or the property’s title deed to the company along with your passport (or photocopy) and pay a deposit.  An appointment is made to have an employee come to your home to switch on the service.  This can take from 1 to 2 weeks so it is advised to begin this process as soon as you have the title deed or
housing lease agreement.

Electricity Bills

There is an electricity meter which is read every month.  The electricity bill is left near the front door of the apartment building or the gate at a home.

Electricity bills can be paid online or by going to a Rapid Money or E-Pago kiosk located in malls and supermarkets.  Just give the clerk the bill and pay.  While the Rapid Money payments can take several days to be credited, the E-Pago payments only take a few hours.

Late Electricity Payments

After 2 months of non-payment, the electricity is turned off.  You can immediately pay for both months when the 2nd bill arrives to retain the service.

Panama Water Service

Panama City water is provided by IDAAN which is a government owned company.

After purchasing a house take the title deed to IDAAN along with your passport (or a photocopy) and pay a deposit.  An appointment is made for an employee to turn the water on.  It is the owner’s responsibility to maintain the water supply inside the house while IDAAN is responsible for the water supplied up to the house.

When leasing a house the tenant must pay the water bills.  The process for turning on the water supply is the same as a homeowner’s except you must present a copy of the lease agreement to IDAAN.

Apartment (condominium) buildings always have the water turned on where the Homeowners Association (HOA) pays the water bills.

Panama City tap water is safe to drink along with most of the country.  The Bocas del Toro province does not have safe tap water requiring bottled water which is
affordable and readily available.

Water Bills

You can pay the water bill online or go to a Rapid Money or an E-Pago kiosk located in supermarkets and malls.  While the E-Pago payments are credited within a few hours, the Rapid Money payments may take a few days.

  • IDAAN
    (Instituto de Acueductos y Alcantarillados Nacionales) (in Spanish)
    Telephone: 523 – 8567

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