France A Tempting Place To Retire.
The country offers very pleasant climates in most locations, world renown food, and a health care system that covers everyone in the country, regardless of economic class or citizenship. There are some very efficient property values too, so finding a dream home for your golden years is possible.
Keep reading to learn 5 things to consider when retiring to France from the U.K.
1) Where do you retire in France?
The country is larger than it looks on most maps, as Europe is crowded with dozens of countries. Many expats prefer to retire in or around Paris, which is like no other place on Earth. If you don’t mind getting a little further from Britain, then eastern France offers the majestic Alps. If warm, sunny beaches are more your thing, then the south and the Mediterranean coast is a region to explore. For mountains not as high as the Alps but just as beautiful, the Pyrenees on the border with Spain are far less crowded. It really comes down to personal preference over whether you prefer city life over country life, and if you do prefer rural life, what sort of terrain do you want out your kitchen window?
2) How fluent is your French?
Living in and around Paris means that just speaking English could probably get you by most of the time, especially in tourist-heavy areas. Anywhere else in the country you need to speak some French. One factor to keep in mind here is whether or not you speak a second language other than French, as many Europeans know more than one tongue. Fluency in Spanish, Italian, German, or Dutch can be very handy if you move close to a border. Still, if you plan on spending the rest of your life here, it’s best to learn French itself, which you can do quickly living here. It also keeps the brain sharp in later years when you learn or expand your ability in another language.
3) When should you switch your investments?
At some point in your move, you’ll likely want to move your money and nest egg from the United Kingdom over to France. This will mean moving money in the form of English pounds into the euro. As economics and currency exchange rates fluctuate, it’s best to consult a financial adviser about when to make this switch.
4) How often or easily do you want to return home?
Even if you choose to live in France, if you’re retired, you’ll have time to travel and will probably want to get back to the United Kingdom often to see the friends and family you’ve gathered over a lifetime. Living in a major city, especially Paris, means that London and other British cities are only a train ride away, making short weekend and even day trips feasible. If you choose to live in the Alps or on the Mediterranean coast, trips are longer for you and for those that might visit you. Having said that, living near or on the Mediterranean might make the trip worth it for some!
5) Will you need a visa or citizenship?
When both countries were part of the European Union, citizens of both could live and work freely in both countries for the most part. However, after “Brexit” formally occurs, the rules and regulations will need to be re-established. Keep up with the news to know what your options and responsibilities are.
If you are considering retiring to France from the United Kingdom, consider all 5 of these points before you make the move.
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