I’m pleased to tell you that today’s post finds me finally enjoying some summer weather, with the mercury pushing up to the 30C mark yesterday. It also catches me in something of a rush as I have to do double work this week in order to free up next week to have a much anticipated holiday. So, today, here is a guest post kindly provided by Ben Slade, who discusses some of the essential things to consider before moving abroad.
For many Brits, retiring to the sun and enjoying the later years soaking up a different culture is a long-held dream. With the euro currently in a relatively weak position against the pound, UK homeowners could use the opportunity to get more bang for their buck by selling their home quickly and jetting off to warmer climes on the continent.
However, there are a wide range of points to consider before making such a life-changing decision. You need to get your finances in order, of course. This involves speaking to HM Revenue & Customs for an estimate on your state pension entitlement, as well as seeking information regarding your tax liability on any income over the UK personal allowance.
Importantly, the amount of tax payable from abroad can vary depending on where you choose to live. If you’re retiring, however, you can reduce your tax liability with offshore banking. All of this can get quite complicated, so it pays to seek professional advice from someone versed in the intricacies of the tax system.
There are also healthcare considerations, which you must factor into your long-term budget for living costs. By moving to another European Economic Area (EEA) country or Switzerland to live permanently, you are no longer eligible for medical treatment under normal NHS rules. Living abroad you will need to budget for the potential medical bills you could face, including possible regular insurance payments. Again, this can get complicated if you’re retiring, so think about talking to an expert.
Buying any property can be stressful, but when you’re trying to deal with an estate agent in a foreign country it can be even more testing. Once you’ve found somewhere, you don’t want to miss your window, which is why some people use property buying firms to sell their property quickly and without the hassle of separate solicitor’s fees. Selling to one of these firms also reduces the potential for your plans to be scuppered by problems further down the buying chain, as the deal can be completed according to your timescale.
The thought of upping sticks and living abroad can be daunting, but with careful planning – and the right assistance – you can achieve that dream move.
I’ll be back soon – I’m working on the next section of my Portugal A-Z, which I will try my best to post before I go off on holiday!