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15 September, 2015
More and more Britons are thinking about retiring abroad, with an estimated 4,000 to 8,000 retirees leaving the UK behind every year. After this year's cool, wet summer the prospect of moving to sunnier climes has rarely looked more appealing. However, it's not wise to just up sticks and head off somewhere sunny without proper planning. There are a number of important things to consider before heading overseas to enjoy your golden years.
Choosing the right location isn't as simple as just picking a country. Often, this will involve making choices. For instance, do you want to be near quiet scenery and beaches with few tourists by living off the beaten track, or do you want to be near all the facilities of a major town? Do you want a property that is more likely to hold or even go up in value, or are you not so bothered as long as it serves as a place to live during retirement? These kinds of questions can make a big difference to where you would be better off buying.
Climate is often one of the biggest driving forces behind retiring overseas, but it's important to think about it carefully. A lot of people only have one goal in mind as far as climate goes: move somewhere sunnier and warmer than the UK. However, you should think a bit more carefully than this if you don't want to end up regretting it. Some countries are more than just sunny; they experience extreme temperatures through the sunniest parts of the year. These can be challenging to born-and-bred natives, let alone expats from the ever-gloomy UK. Others have a reputation for sun, but are quite the opposite in winter. Most UK expats are best choosing a sunny yet fairly moderate country which tends to have sustained warm weather through most of the year.
There are two angles from which you should think about language. While English is a fairly international language, it's more widely understood in some countries than others and this can significantly reduce the language barrier. If you're going to live abroad full-time, however, then you should definitely be planning to become at least basically proficient in the local language if you don't want life to be an isolated and frustrating one. Some languages are easier to learn than others, and this is also something to think about.
Who to Tell
If you are retiring oversees, there are a number of official bodies you need to inform. You must give a forwarding address to the likes of your local council, specifically the electoral registration and council tax departments. Naturally you will also need to tell banks, building societies, and any other financial institution that you have dealings with. Lastly, while telling the post office is not strictly necessary it can be very useful, as it means that your post will get safely redirected to your new home in the sun.
For more information on international property investment, contact The Overseas Investor today.
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