Friday, July 27, 2007

Retire to Crete

When you are approaching the age of retirement, if you find yourself feeling low, remember that you'll be able to do plenty that wasn't possible before.
After an active working life, you will be free to spend your time as you like and to retire wherever you want -- speaking of which, you couldn't do much better than retire in Greece.
Greece and especially Crete, will offer you the best of everything when it comes to a low cost of living, beautiful surroundings that are steeped in history, friendly people.
Larger cities such as Salonica and Athens are rather more expensive.
You'll find housing relatively cheap here and it certainly does add to the sense of history here.
Greece is also gaining ground over other European countries as the cheapest place in which to retire. This is widely regarded as a government initiative to popularize Crete as a destination for retirement.
It is here that you will be able to find the best of bread, wine, beer and olive oil.
Living in Crete, you can have your fill of wonderful sights in locations (for more read relative articles here) just a few of the numerous places that you can visit again and again if you should choose to retire here.
So remember -- if you have always wanted to live in a location that would offer you a low cost of living, surround you with scenic beauty and a sense of history, you have found it in Crete.

Retirement Homes

There are many different types of properties available for retirees. With such a vast array of people and a growing market with different desires and needs, finding your ideal retirement home has never been easier.
Ktimatoemporiki Crete's property sections give you access to a wide variety of retirement properties to help you in your search. You can search by location, price, developer or property type.

Overseas Retirement
Retirement is something we all look forward to - an opportunity to do all those things we longed to do whilst we were busy working or bringing up the family.
However, if you are about to retire or are already in retirement, you may be finding it increasingly difficult to fulfil your retirement dreams. The increasing cost of living, council taxes, falling annuity rates or low interest rates could be affecting your savings.
Thus, a move to a hospitably and still cheaper country, in regards to living costs, such as our island of Crete can give you the freedom enjoying your life and living from your pension or savings.
Crete's cost of living is one of the lowest in Europe but the quality of life is the highest. All health care and social benefits are the same as the rest of the European Community. The diet in Crete is mostly of organic produce and the average longevity of life is the highest in Europe.
And with the introduction of Self Invested Personal Pensions (SIPP's) in 2006 there are many reasons why investing in properties can help you fund your retirement other than in the form of a pension.

Considerations when searching for a retirement property
You might want to consider how far away you want to live to ex-pats areas or near to friends. In addition consider if you don't have your own transport, where the local transport links are and how far it would be for you to get into the town centre.
Many retirement properties feature waist high fixtures and fittings, and have extra wide doors to allow for walking frames or wheel chairs. If you have specific needs, it is advisable that you check that the development caters for your requirements. If you are looking for a resale or renovation check with your architect if changes can made.
Consider what type of development you would like to live in. You may prefer a home to an apartment, and if an apartment then you might want to think about what floor you would like to be on, and whether there are lifts available and if not what the alternatives are.
When looking for a new retirement home, you might want to consider the types of facilities available, such as if you are a keen outdoors person, is there a big garden and/or pool and who can take care for it, should you at one stage not want or can do it anymore on your own.

Assisted Living Homes
What is a retirement property?

Retirement homes can range from those that are completely independent, to homes that are specifically aimed at home buyers that need to have assisted facilities available.
Retirement homes with assisted facilities include amenities such as:
  • Excellent security and fire alarm systems in place so that residents can get immediate help in emergencies, as well as 24 hour emergency call facilities
  • A House Manager or Warden on hand to assist with any queries
  • Convenient features such as waist high plug sockets and lifts
  • Individual apartments with ensuite bathrooms and kitchens giving residents complete independence
  • Communal areas such as a central lounge, waitress service restaurants and garden
  • Conveniently located close to the local shops and transport links
Until now there are only a few such assisted retirement homes in the towns established in Crete, but as we at Ktimatoemporiki Crete are sure that the demand is encreasing we are in contact with investors. If you feel such a property is exactly what you are looking for in the future, just send us an e-mail to with your full details keeping you informed on the development.

Inland revenue / Leaflet IR138
This leaflet is for individuals who live or retire abroad. It provides information about the tax treatment of your income from UK investments, or your UK pension. It only deals with income tax and does not cover other liabilities you might face such as capital gains tax or inheritance tax.
This leaflet explains how the income from your investments in the UK and your UK pension will be taxed if you live or retire abroad.
More information on this issue and the leaflet you can get by contacting HM Revenue & Customs at