Are you planning your retirement and wondering where best to settle down to enjoy a more relaxed lifestyle after years of hard work to get there? Why not consider Spain as your destination?
Spain has long been considered an ideal destination for holiday homes. It is also becoming a popular retirement haven. It is home to over 5.5 million foreign nationals, with many of those being British citizens. Most people choose Spain for its near-perfect weather. Its temperate climate means there is sunshine year round. The interior getting hot, clear summers and cold, sometimes cloudy winters, while most coastal regions having moderate, cloudy summers and cool winters. It really is beach weather for much of the year.
The banking crisis in 2008 did hit Spain hard, leaving a lack of employment and low property prices. While the situation has been stabilising, property prices remain affordable by European standards and, as a retiree, you wont be competing in the job market.
Spain has a lot to offer a foreign retiree looking for a place to relax and enjoy a near stress-free and safe lifestyle. Spanish culture promotes a slower pace of life than you might be used to, encouraging the enjoyment of life, cuisine, and culture. Most Spanish cities and towns boast all the services and facilities you could ask for from an urban setting, as well as a proliferation of parks, green spaces, and easy access to the countrys natural beauty.
Retirees usually have two main financial considerations; housing and medical services. Spain has much to offer in terms of housing, whether you intend to buy or rent. Smaller towns and villages are much cheaper than the big cities like Madrid or Barcelona. Spain has a very well regarded public health system, which residents have access to. However, to avoid long waiting periods for non-emergency medical treatments, many expats consider getting private health insurance.
The most popular region for foreign retirees to settle is the beautifully sunny Costa del Sol. Due to its popularity, it is relatively expensive, but it is easy to settle into due to the fact that there is a lot of English spoken in the area, so accessing services and getting information is relatively easy, even if you dont speak Spanish. The region has been criticised for being more British than Spanish, though. So you may want to investigate other regions if you would prefer a more authentic, Spanish experience.
Other popular regions include the Costa Blanca, Costa Brava, and the Orange Blossom Coast. Click here for a Costa Blanca property search. If you are considering inland towns, Seville, Granada, and Córdoba are also favourites. Consider renting in a region before buying, just to make sure that particular setting is what you are looking for. Also consider transport accessibility (which is very good in most Spanish cities, even the small ones) both for exploring the country and for relatives to visit.
Foreign residents are subject to various taxes, including taxation of foreign income, and property taxes. It is a good idea to employ an accountant to assist with optimising your taxes, home and abroad.
If you are dreaming of a sunny retreat, with cultural and natural diversity, fantastic cuisine, and a relaxed pace of life, Spain might just be for you.