Lifestyle Choice: Planning to Retire Abroad?
By Basil Preuveneers
It is interesting to see how many people are making a lifestyle choice by moving away from England. Emigrating always seems to be popular in bad times and I suppose many people are finding that house prices are much lower in other countries so it is much cheaper to maintain a good standard of living especially if you move to one of the eastern European countries like Bulgaria.
As so many people seem to be making the choice of giving up work altogether now and retiring early, I thought I would do some investigation into this by visiting “The Retirement Show” at London Olympia recently. Entry is free and it is highly sponsored by the Prudential. There are some very interesting seminars with financial advisers giving some very good advice and there were quite a few stands advising people who wanted to sell up in Britain and emigrate. Popular destinations as always include France Spain and Portugal. Cyprus is also popular because there are no language difficulties.
In order to live like a King very cheaply, Bulgaria must be a good choice.
Discussing this with people at the show and elsewhere, it is clear that you can live there for about a quarter of the price it would cost you in the United Kingdom. It is possible to buy a house in the country there for about 5000 pounds. I have visited Bulgaria many times so I know this to be true. In fact the country does have quite a long way to come up to the luxurious European standards we have got used to here but I am sure that it will happen in time.
Emigrating from England brings problems if you have children of school age. Transferring schools at any age can be difficult and if this involves learning another language that it is doubly difficult. For the elderly, the considerations are different; here they have to consider what health arrangements are in place. France is renowned for a superb hospital system but one wonders how long they can afford to keep such a luxurious system going on borrowed money. Sooner or later they will have to realise that there GDP does not warrant such lavish expenditure on their Health Service. The hospital system in Bulgaria is very good and of course very cheap.