To retire overseas is what many baby boomers have dreamt about for years while we slaved away at work. A relaxed retirement in the sun away from the harsh winter weather, with cheap food and drink and no money worries.
But the downturn in the global economic climate during the last few years has meant many of those that made the move abroad were suddenly forced to sell up and return home.
In 2015 the Eurozone continues to give cause for concern with constant uncertainty in the global monetary markets.
As with any economy crisis there are always winners and losers.
There are many retirees that have lost a great deal of money on property deals abroad in the last 10 years and of course there are just as many that will tell of the absolute bargains they've managed to pick up in desperate times.
Who knows what will happen next!
There are many countries that are still struggling with their economy and others that are torn apart with war. Is it any wonder that baby boomers are more hesitant than ever in pursuing their dream of a life in the sun. Yet it does make sense.
To retire overseas in a country that has a more temprate climate with no extremes of prolonged cold weather is surely going to result in lower outgoings resulting in pensions going further.
Have you relocated to retire to the sun?
What's the answer? Do we risk everything in our pursuit for a better life or do we have to give up on the dream to retire overseas?
I don't believe in giving up on dreams. If you really want to retire to a sunnier climate then it may just be possible if you are prepared to do things a little differently. Selling your home and investing all of your money in an unstable property market abroad may not be the best option. But there are alternatives to consider.
If your financial situation allows, the best solution to achieve your dream to retire overseas is to keep your options open.
If you downsize your current home and buy a something like a retirement apartment and then opt for perhaps an apartment or small villa overseas then you've got the best of both worlds.
Spend as much time as you want abroad safe in the knowledge that you still have a home to return to, in your home country should your circumstances change. For many retirees it's usually failing health that will make them want to return home. Health care abroad abroad can be expensive even in the eurozone.
While the financial crisis has been disastrous for many owning property and wishing to return to home it has also created a market where those buyers who are considering a retirement overseas can pick up bargains. Property prices in Spain have fallen by up to 20 per cent since 2007 and are expected to continue their slide.
Spain and France still offer opportunities and Turkey has also been popular among those searching for a holiday home.
Clare Nessling, Operations director at overseas mortgage specialist Conti Financial Services stresses the importance of getting independent expert legal and tax advice and valuations.
She recommends researching all the costs and taxes involved in the purchase, including utility charges, and checking whether there is any responsibility for previous owners' debts or inheritance issues. And never sign anything that is in a foreign language that you do not fully understand and have not discussed with your lawyer.
Clare says "You often hear nightmare stories about people who have planning disputes over land in Spain, but this is nearly always because they didn't get the right advice.
See Retiring Abroad for tips and advice on things to check before you leave and on what to do when you arrive in your new retirement location.
If you've always owned your own property it's difficult to suddenly consider renting a property but in lots of countries renting is the norm.
However if you own a property your dream of a retirement overseas could be achieved by renting out your current property to fund renting a property overseas. Again you have the security of being able to return at any time if for any reason you wanted or needed to. Rental markets in general have seen demand soar as mortgages have become harder to get during the economic downturn.
Renting a property will also give you the opportunity to see whether the option to retire overseas is for you. Some people love the change in lifestyle and think it's the best thing they ever did, but there are others that miss their family and friends, shops, theatres, and yes even those that miss the seasonal weather they initially thought they wanted to leave behind.
There is always the consideration if you are a couple, if anything happened to one of you would the other wish to stay on their own. Not having the worry of a property to sell makes returning to your home Country much easier if circumstances change.
Your greatest asset is your home, why not access your money to achieve your dream to retire overseas. If you fancy travelling and seeing more of the world, you have the freedom and flexibility of your own motor home, going where you want, when you want to.
If your dream to retire overseas really has to be put on hold for financial reasons, consider long stay overseas holidays in hotels or self-catering properties at very competitive rates, particularly during the winter months. What you save on the heating bills will probably go a good way to funding an extended holiday. I have to say this is my preferred option.
Why be tied to one place when there's a whole world out there to see and for me there's nothing like coming back home.
To consider other retirement lifestyle choices read the articles below:-
Have you any great tips to share with baby boomers that may be planning to retire overseas. Is it the best thing you ever did or do you have regrets?