Expat Property Abroad News

Latest 10 news items tagged Property Abroad

23 Apr at 6 PM 2014

Should expats be wary of cashing in their pensions under the new rules

Experts are warning that UK retirees living overseas may face tax implications if they choose to cash in their defined contribution pension pots. The new rules outlined in the chancellor’s 14 March Budget speech appeared to offer enhanced flexibility, but the finer details have yet to be worked out. Although the present rules as regards forced annuity purchases are to be scrapped and savers will be allowed to withdraw the total amount or opt for flexible pension drawdowns, cash taken from the pot will be liable for tax in the year...
15 Apr at 6 PM 2014

Advice for expat confusion over living in Singapore

Given that Singapore is now the most expensive world city for expat living, a few useful pointers can ensure financial survival as well as having a great time. Most expats arrive in the booming city aiming to stay several years at most, and rush out to rent an apartment rather than buying straight away. Experienced expats consider renting is a waste of money and buying is sensible, as most arrivals love the Singapore lifestyle and stay far longer than they first intended as a result. Early application for permanent residency is...
14 Apr at 6 PM 2014

Expat homeowners in Cyprus fear repossessions after new law stalls

A new law protecting expat homeowners in Cyprus from banks attempting to claw back bad debts through repossession has stalled in the island’s parliament. Expats on the island, many of whom are retirees, had expected the law to be passed within a few weeks, but are now terrified the delay will allow banks to go ahead with repossession orders. The scandal came about when developers borrowed finance against property, then sold on the homes to expats via mortgages before defaulting on the loans. Resulting confusion over the ownership...
10 Apr at 6 PM 2014

Wealthy Brits overseas rushing to buy into booming UK housing market

International buyers, including wealthy UK expats living in the UAE, France and Switzerland are rushing to take advantage of Britain’s booming real estate market and weak sterling exchange rates. A survey by a British bank has revealed that the boom in house prices in London and the Home Counties combined with a weak pound has attracted attention from an increasing number of overseas buyers as well as high-earning expats. Over a third of those surveyed were planning to purchase UK buy-to-let properties during the next two years....
9 Apr at 6 PM 2014

UK government cracks down on expat second home owners

In a move aimed primarily at expats but sure to hit UK residents as well, the government has announced a crackdown on ‘flipping’ as a means of tax avoidance. Flipping, the practice of changing which of two properties is an owner’s main home in order to avoid capital gains tax on a sale, was notorious as part of the MPs expenses scandal. Certain MPs were discovered to have flipped between their constituency and London homes, thus slashing their liability for tax. The government’s plan, originally conceived to squeeze...
1 Apr at 6 PM 2014

Britons make up one in every 20 Australians

According to the latest Australian census, the country hasn’t lost its popularity as an expat destination for disenchanted UK citizens, as 5 per cent of Oz’s total population are Britons by birth. A total of 1.1 million Brits are now living in Australia, according to the survey ,and outnumber New Zealanders, the second largest group, by more than double. The census also pinpoints immigration trends as regards location and marital status. Melbourne and Sydney are the most popular destinations for migrants, home to almost half the...
27 Mar at 6 PM 2014

Singapore now the world’s most expensive city

Due to the high cost of cars, rents, property prices and the state’s strong currency, Singapore is now the most expensive city on the planet. The annual Worldwide Coast of Living Report released by the Economist Intelligence Unit named Singapore at the top of its latest list of pricey cities. Tokyo, long an unwilling winner in the upscale contest, has now dropped to sixth place along with Geneva, Melbourne and Caracas. Paris came out as the second most expensive city, followed by Oslo in third place and Zurich in fourth....
24 Mar at 6 PM 2014

Expats in Spain urged to make Spanish wills as well as UK wills

Uncertainty about the necessity of a Spanish will as well as a British will covering assets still held in the UK is causing controversy in Spain’s expat retirement havens. Given that a good number of expats living in destinations all over the world don’t have a will in either their home of their host countries, confusion over the issue in Spain might not hit the headlines as a major issue. However, Spanish inheritance and property disposal laws differ from their UK equivalents, especially in cases of complicated bequests. Quite...
21 Mar at 6 PM 2014

UK Budget block on annuities spurs thousands to scrap contracts

Following the surprise budget announcement that, from April 2015, converting a defined contribution pension to an annuity will no longer be compulsory, retirees who signed up over the last 30 days are rushing to cancel. Experts estimate that up to 250,000 savers are stampeding to cancel their poor value pensions before the door slams shut 30 days after the signing of contracts. Annuity providers have been swamped with calls over the last two days, many thousands of which were from savers at home and abroad who'd been considering an...
20 Mar at 6 PM 2014

Expat lifeline in Shanghai reports financial insecurity causes most stress

Counsellors at Lifeline Shanghai, China’s only English-speaking helpline, are reporting that worry over financial security is now a major cause of stress in the expat community. Launched in 2004, the unique charity’s majority of calls at that time concerned lonely housewives distressed by their cheating husbands. Ten years later, Shanghai’s many female expats are more concerned about money than mistresses. Programme manager Allan McDean says that husbands starting relationships with Chinese women were the top of the tree for...