well hi and a happy new year and all that sort of stuff...
its great that you took the time to write, very kind and useful...ok here are some details, nothing worthy of a private message yet...
Born in London, moved to a town between Gatwick and Brighton 16 years ago...I am in the fire service and have nearly done my 30 years (yea!!!) and will be out with a pension by age 50.
3 grown up kids from 1st wife; like a mug re-married 5 years ago.
Mother in law probably will join us, she is retired and in her 60s..If she come over she will buy her own place..shes actually a nice old bird so I dont mind.
Right so why move abroad......mmmmm in order?
1........ weather, Im half Italian and love the sun, I suffer bad with 'SAD' in the long dark months, get all grumpy..
I have ALWAYS wanted to live abroad, never in my dreams could I consider staying in this country..think it was being brainwashed as a kid watching Robinson Crusoe..Spent several years in various places including the Far East..
choice of where to live, we have come down to 6 countries.... in order, with good bad points ...
DR good, weather & reasonable property prices, reasonable scuba
bad, crime rate, hurricanes
Bahamas good, weather, scuba diving speak English
bad, expensive, hurricanes
Turks & Caicos good, weather, cheaper than Bahamas
Italy can speak lingo, nice weather
bad, you think UK red tape and tax is bad? try Italy
not that cheap and its well spain(yawn)
France, would be lovely except for the french being there.
bad, high tax ...and the french
2.... money, we have a very nice house here but with a £300k mortgage plus the bills we are running to stand still. A 2 bed flat here is now £280 k
Fuel at over $8 a gallon (4.5 litres)
council tax £250 per month
gas bill £100 per month
could go on.........
3....WHEN we sell up we will have cash at todays prices about 500,000 US $ (not £), this is it...we will need to ship stuff , buy new stuff, get a car etc etc so my guess is 400k for the house give or take a bit and 100k for a nest egg.
Its enough for a good retirement in the DR, but would mean that if we stayed here we would spend the rest of our life in a flat...
4...my pension if Im abroad is paid gross, if I stay here I loose about £300 per month in tax
ok, so other bits of info...I speak Italian and find Spanish just about understandable, bit its like a Londoner speaking to someone from Newcastle!!
Neither myself or my wife Alison speaks a word of spanish...yea I know learn some, I will if it all works out.
No need to worry about schools, well I hope not!
As I have a max of 5 years to go, the plan is .... this year decide on a country. years 2, 3 and 4 decide on an area...maybe we will fall in love with an area on our first trip and buy, maybe we will hate it, who knows..
year 5 sell up buy, rent or tour the world . If its a good idea to buy land as soon as we find something suitable we will, then sit on it and have our house built in year 3 onwards.
I cant see myself needing to leave any cash etc in a UK bank, will probably go for an offshore account unless you know of a reason why not to...
Im a scuba instructor so if needed I guess I could get work..
Is there anything ie food you miss from UK?
whats better north, south or east coast? heard south gets hit hard by hurricanes..
well thats it for now, we arrive in DR on 3rd March and plan to spend my birthday on the 9th in the SUN....its now jan 10th, 9 days of heavy rain.