Retirement in Portugal

A guide to successful retirement in Portugal with tips on considerations and plans to make

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Retirement in PortugalThere was recently a very interesting programme on TV about a couple who were retiring abroad to Portugal – the programme was actually focused on them downsizing and selling off their personal effects and the money they could raise through so doing – but what was most interesting was the fact that the couple made the decision to retire abroad to avoid getting bored!

They made the plan ten years prior to retirement to give themselves time to find land, build a property, plan and save – and by the time the programme was made about them, they had achieved their dream.  Well, if your dream is one day enjoying your retirement in Portugal, it’s clearly never too soon to start planning.

In this report we’ll look at three of the main consideration you need to make as part of your planning process: -

Location - Portugal is a nation that covers over 91,000 square kilometres and traverses many different geographic regions.  You can enjoy one of the most temperate and gorgeous climates in the Algarve region in the south of the nation, whereas the further north you go, so the worse the weather can become in the winter months for example.

Other ways in which you need to consider where abouts in Portugal you would like to retire include examining what your budget will afford you and where, and where you are more likely to meet like-minded people.

With a location in mind it’s time to spend time living in Portugal before you actually commit either to a home purchase or full on relocation overseas.  You should consider taking a long vacation in Portugal and even renting a property in Portugal for at least a few months before you make your final commitment.

Accessibility - When you relocate overseas you leave behind familiarity.  This relates to familiarity of family and friends as much as it does to the familiarity of handing the day to day intricacies and elements of life - from knowing where the best greengrocer is to having the phone number of a good doctor to hand.  When you move abroad to somewhere like Portugal you have to work hard to replace all this familiarity.

You have to make sure you live somewhere that is accessible so that you can return home for visits and so that family and friends can come and visit you.  You have to ensure you have accessibility to a town or city where you are more likely to find everything you need for day-to-day living, from a supermarket to expat networks for example. 

You might think living in rural Portugal in retirement sounds like bliss – but when the reality of having to travel distances to have any social contact whatsoever bites, you may suddenly feel lonely and isolated.

Affordability - and finally, the number one reason why expatriates of any age fail to make a go of their new life abroad is a financial one.  You should not under estimate how much it is going to cost you to start a new life in retirement overseas.  You will have to find accommodation, transport, you will have to ship furniture and personal effects, you will have substantial initial outlay when you retire abroad.  Factor this in, factor in money for travel back home to visit friends and relatives, factor in money for healthcare and also, when you spend time in Portugal before you move out there to live, try and get a realistic idea of what it will cost you to live day to day in Portugal.

Yes the cost of living is lower than the UK…however, don’t forget all the initial outlay you will have and be careful of your money so that you can make it last and work for you.

If your dream is retirement in Portugal then there is nothing to stop you making a go of it – just ensure you put plenty of planning in place prior to the relocation and all should go smoothly.

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