Some Key Issues
This is not intended to be a definitive list but I come across so many problems amongst
UK nationals in which can be put down to poor
or even no planning. Even though there are costs, to get professional advice is
almost always cheaper in the long run. Spain
In the internet age there are huge numbers of resource waiting to be read. However, I always ask you to consider who is giving you the information. Beware of vested interests!
The more independent information you can gather, the better. The archive to my blog or my website are based on my own experiences but I encourage you to look at other resources. Financial Pages in Spain
2. Know your area before you move
If you’ve been somewhere on holiday, and loved it, do you really know it? From my experience many people move on that basis and only then begin to know the place. It’s part of your initial research really.
I found the British Embassy in
very helpful and follow them on Twitter (@ukinspain) Madrid
3. Consider ‘Rent before you buy’
My Estate Agency friends and contacts will tell you I’m wrong because there are so many bargains to be had! I still think this caution is good advice and I’ve written about it before Rent before you buy in Spain
If you do buy, the research and knowing your area are even more important.
4. Take health very seriously
5. Work out your finances including tax
I apologise if this seems obvious, but based on my INBOX, it doesn’t happen often enough!
Choosing a Bank is often an early decision. It can be a problem if you choose the wrong one. Personally, I prefer Internet Banking but it doesn’t suit everyone. Whether you can speak Spanish is another key issue, as the local service you get can vary. Another reason to ask around and see which one gets the most positive comments. There is no ‘best’ or even ‘worst’ bank but local knowledge is, in my opinion, key.
Getting Professional Advice for which there is no substitute is also very important. I often refer people to advisers that I have checked out or my contacts have recommended. After 11 years experience, in
I’ve learned only to recommend the very best advisers. Spain
Tax is vital and often misunderstood. Some people have said to me (in summary) ‘I thought it would be the same as in
’, that’s so, so wrong. From
my own experience the starting point is that it’s always different from the England ! Especially
in the early days and vitally if your Spanish is poor, you need a Fiscal
Representative, mainly to help with the endless paperwork. It maybe a service
your solicitor could provide but if you need specialist tax advice please Email me. UK
6. Get independent legal advice
If you were buying a house in the
chances are you’d choose your own Conveyancing Solicitor or one recommended by
a friend. That should apply in UK
too, but buyers seem happy to accept the recommendation of the builder – he’s
not independent or even on your side – he’s the builder’s solicitor Spain
Your solicitor, knowing your situation, is also the best person to advise on a Spanish Will which you do need
If you don’t know a solicitor, please ask around or I will recommend one if I know a proven one in your area. Certainly in your early days in
you need an English-speaking legal adviser. Email me for a recommendation. Spain
7. Put your
affairs in order UK
In many respects it’s the mirror image of what you need to do in
. I would
however suggest in particular that you tell the tax authorities. If you don’t
then HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) will chase you for years to come. Timing
your departure can also be beneficial in having a tax-free year, if applied
correctly. Email for more
The Department of Work & Pensions need to know of the change in circumstances whether or not you are retired and should be informed. You should also tell your local authority and GP.
8. Don’t become isolated
Even if you get to know many British expats, learning Spanish can really help your life in many respects. I’ve always found the Spanish very tolerant even if you only try to speak their language.
Courses are widely available and always of value
There is much more information on many subjects in my BLOG ACHIVE but the following are especially recommended;
Offering better rates and service than the banks, internet facility available 24 hours per day.
If you live in
Spain, should your savings be in the . It’s worth
Serious reasons to move to
light hearted review Spain
Financial Pages in