Whether it’s a choice between the bustling city life, with their parks, museums and cafés or the sun-drenched beaches along the Costa Del Sol of Andalucia, Spain holds a fascination for the British like no other European country. But when you’re looking at retirement homes in Spain, there’s more to consider than just the weather.
Of course, good weather and the laid-back lifestyle of Spain will always appeal to anyone looking to retire there. But when it comes to packing up your life and moving to a new country, there’s a lot of pros and cons to weigh up. But let’s look at some of the bigger practicalities you’ll need to consider.
Finding The Right Retirement Homes In Spain
This may sound obvious, but permanently moving to Spain is wildly different to being on holiday for a couple of weeks. You should always carry out lots of research on your preferred area, deciding on whether you favour a home within a short walking distance to the beach, or if you want to take advantage of somewhere further inland like some of the more secluded Mijas villas.
There’s lots of other things to take into account for retirement homes in Spain as well, such as proximity to shops, restaurants or doctors and dentists. Also try considering what life might be like in 10 or 20 years time. You may well be fit and active when you retire and move, but think about whether your new home might be in a particularly hilly region or have lots of steps to tackle and how it might affect you.
Health And Healthcare
Planning ahead and getting your healthcare arranged before you retire is essential. Though Spain has a good national health system for locals and visitors alike, there may be some restrictions as to what treatments and services you might be entitled to as an ex-pat.
Many retirees arrange for private healthcare if they can afford it, making sure they have access to all services with a considerably shorter waiting time. If this is an option, your health insurance should be valid and kept updated.
Secure Your Finances
It’s important to get professional advice from an independent financial advisor before you retire to Spain for clarity on any issues. When it comes to your UK State and private pensions, speaking to the HMRC beforehand should guarantee your State pension remains, but they’ll also be able to give you important advice on any tax issues.
State pensions can either be paid into a UK bank account as normal or a Spanish bank account in Euros. If you choose the latter, it’s worth noting that the amount could change due to fluctuating exchange rates.
Embrace The Culture
While there’s a lot to think about beforehand, living in Spain opens up a whole new chapter in your life with much to look forward to. But searching for retirement homes in Spain, whether you’re choosing between luxurious Mijas villas, comfortable townhouses or beachside apartments, should be just the start of your adventure.
While the day to day Spanish way of life might come as a bit of a culture shock at first, embracing their lifestyle and traditions will soon help you to settle in and feel part of the community – especially the food, wine, and siestas!