EU: British expats ‘suffering’ over visa backlog says expert
We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you’ve consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info
Millions facing sky-high fuel bills as the British winter turns cold will be warmed by thoughts of a retirement in the sun. It is still possible but takes a bit more effort and money than before Brexit.
Brits may now be classified as non-EU citizens but that hasn’t stopped them from snapping up Spanish properties, latest figures from specialist builder Taylor Wimpey España show.
Sales and marketing director Mark Pritchard said while many are buying holiday homes a growing number want full-time residency to work or retire in the sun. “Demand is incredibly strong, even as new Omicron travel restrictions are imposed.”
Britons can visit Spain without a visa but can only stay for a maximum 90 days, in any 180-day period.
That’s less than six months a year in total.
For longer stays, you can apply for something called a non-lucrative residence visa, also called a non-profit or retirement visa.
This allows non-EU citizens to live in Spain provided they do not carry out any economic or professional duties in the country.
You need to show you can generate enough income from your pensions, savings, investments and other assets such as a rental property.
From January 2022, this has to total at least €27,792 (£23,482) a year. This rises to €34,731 (£29,346) if a dependant family member joins you.
These limits vary according to the country. From January, Portugal demands that you match its minimum wage of €8,460 (£7,147 a year). Adult dependents require another €4,230 (£3,573) and children a further €2,358 (£1,992) each.
READ MORE: British expats will need more cash for 2022 Spain & Portugal move
You also need to check whether you qualify for free local healthcare. If you receive the UK state pension you may qualify by completing form S1 (find out more at gov.uk). Brits who take early retirement may have to take out medical insurance instead.
Another way to get permanent residency is to apply for a Golden Visa. To qualify, you need to buy a Spanish or Portuguese property for at least €500,000 (£421,872).
If you qualify, this opens up the entire Schengen Zone.
Take specialist advice as you have to buy the property first and cannot risk seeing your Golden Visa application turned down afterwards, said Mark Wilkins, a consultant with ROS Abogados in Marbella.
British expats: Best destinations in the Middle East named [REVEAL]
Couple spends Christmas in a van in Portugal – ‘no Christmas feeling’ [INSIGHT]
Five European cities with rent under £500 – most affordable for 2022 [ANALYSIS]
If you live in Spain for 183 days a year or more, you may have to pay Spanish tax on your worldwide income. “Some expats will be happy with that, and can then stay in the country year round,” Wilkins said.
Next year could bring a new stumbling block, warned Jason Porter, business development manager at international advisory firm Blevins Franks. “Most UK pension plans are exempt from Spanish wealth tax but that could change as a result Brexit.”
For those worried, one option would be to transfer their pension to a QROPS scheme in an EU country such as Malta. “We will know more about whether this is necessary next summer,” Porter said.
The retirement in the sun dream lives, but Brits will have to work harder to make it a reality.
Source: Read Full Article