• Home
  • Europe
  • Retirement overseas? Italy, Spain and Portugal make it possible.

Europe

Retirement overseas? Italy, Spain and Portugal make it possible.

Retiring overseas might be for you if you’ve always dreamed of traveling but rarely or never had the time or money to do it. Or if you want to spend the rest of your life on a beach instead of in the landlocked state where you currently reside. If you’ve had a yearning to learn a new language, immerse yourself in another culture, and try new and delicious cuisine on a daily basis. Your options and adventures can be nearly endless if you choose to live the rest of your life overseas. Looking at a globe and choosing where you want to retire can be overwhelming. But a low cost of living, affordable health care, and residency programs not only make it feasible to put down roots overseas. So why not consider Italy, Spain or Portugal?

ITALY

Fascinating culture and history, mouth watering cuisine and breathtaking landscapes, in addition to the ‘dolce vita’ lifestyle have attracted visitors to Italy in masses. However, it is no longer just a holiday destination, in the past decade the country has undertaken several measures to attract pensioners and retirees from all over the world. Italy passed a legislation in December offering a reduced tax rate of 7 percent for five years to pensioners that choose to relocate from abroad to its depopulated south — communities of less than 20,000 in six southern regions, and the islands of Sicily and Sardinia. People of retirement age will be spared paying any taxes for a decade as long as they live for more than six months in their new home. The project aims to repopulate areas of Sicily, Calabria and Sardinia that have seen a massive decline in the population in recent years, by encouraging retirees to settle there with the promise of paying no taxes for ten years. The average couple would spend €20,000-25,000 a year, helping to boost the local economy, the government calculates.

Furthermore buying property in Italy comes with a long list of advantages. Many countryside homes are very large and come with big pieces of land, providing a high value item. Italy also offers a wide variety of architectural styles, a growingly stable real estate market, and secure purchasing procedures. But most important is the integrity of real estate agents and notaries, as in Italy, you need to have an official license to act as an agent.

PORTUGAL

If you dream of retiring in Europe, Portugal is worth considering. It boasts a rich culture and a Mediterranean climate, all at an affordable price. There are sunny beaches in Algarve, wine in Porto and a historic metropolis in Lisbon. What’s more, the Portuguese government has taken steps in recent years to make the country easier and more affordable for tourists and expatriates. In 2009, the Portuguese government introduced the Non-Habitual Resident (NHR) tax regime for anybody who has not been resident in the previous five years. It provides beneficial tax treatment for the first 10 years of residence.

There is an exemption from tax for certain foreign-source income, provided certain conditions are met. For retirees who intend to live off pension income, interest and dividends from investments, this could mean almost tax-free income for 10 years. In addition property in Portugal is less expensive than the European average and unlike most expats elsewhere, a large number of foreigners living in Portugal actually opt to buy property rather than renting. Portugal’s low cost of living is one reason it has recently been cited as a good choice for retirees from the United Kingdom. You can qualify for permanent residency in Portugal simply by showing a reliable minimum income of at least 1,100 euros per month. To maintain this residency status, you must be physically present in the country at least half the year, or 183 days or more.

SPAIN

Spain remains the most popular destination of choice with more British expats there than any other part of Europe. Of the 300,000 UK nationals officially living in Spain, almost half are over 65. The number of retired Brits living there more than doubled in the 10 years to 2016, according to statistics produced by the UK’s Office for National Statistics and Spain’s Instituto Nacional de Estadistica. The cost of living in Spain is on average almost a fifth lower than in Great Britain. If you’re looking to rent a home, it’s something like one-third cheaper to do so in Spain than in the UK (regional variations apply, of course). Day-to-day outgoings are lower, too. A meal at a cheap and cheerful restaurant can be as little as 10 euros, a local beer is 2 euros and a cappuccino 1.50. Getting around is also much cheaper fares on trains, metros and buses a fraction of what most people are used to paying in the UK. British buyers usually find the purchasing process of real estate here to be relatively uncomplicated, as there is no requirement to be a Spanish resident to buy a property.

The country actively encourages investment from outside the country in the property market, with a Spanish NIE tax identification number being the main legal requirement. However it is vital to remember that choosing a reputable property agency can help buyers reduce the risks they face during the house-buying process. Many homes have been built in recent years that do not have the appropriate planning permission ‒ a knowledgeable agent will be able to avoid them.

The country actively encourages investment from outside the country in the property market, with a Spanish NIE tax identification number being the main legal requirement. However it is vital to remember that choosing a reputable property agency can help buyers reduce the risks they face during the house-buying process. Many homes have been built in recent years that do not have the appropriate planning permission ‒ a knowledgeable agent will be able to avoid them.

0 thoughts on “Retirement overseas? Italy, Spain and Portugal make it possible.

Leave a Reply

Contact Us

By using this form you agree with the storage and handling of your data by this website.