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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We have now sold our house (subject to contract) and the buyers want to be in by Christmas so all of a sudden things are going way too fast! I am desperately trying to sort out our financial position whilst my husband lives in cloud cuckoo land and just seems to think everything will be OK....:confused: so I would really appreciate some advice re costings etc if possible?

We are under pension age but will be buying a house outright so no mortgage/rent and after paying our health cover we will have approx €1500 per month. How does that sound? Will we have to dip into our savings?
 

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We have now sold our house (subject to contract) and the buyers want to be in by Christmas so all of a sudden things are going way too fast! I am desperately trying to sort out our financial position whilst my husband lives in cloud cuckoo land and just seems to think everything will be OK....:confused: so I would really appreciate some advice re costings etc if possible?

We are under pension age but will be buying a house outright so no mortgage/rent and after paying our health cover we will have approx €1500 per month. How does that sound? Will we have to dip into our savings?
Depending on what sort of lifestyle you expect. I think you can live quite comfortable with that income. Living costs here are generally cheaper here than the UK.
 

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Depending on what sort of lifestyle you expect. I think you can live quite comfortable with that income. Living costs here are generally cheaper here than the UK.
Wouldn't it depend on where you live in Spain? I'm currently in Barcelona and €1500/month for 2 people seems awfully low to me. I guess it also depends on what type of lifestyle you're used to. Also does that include rent and other expenses? I'm confused because that seems really low in the cities. I'm sure in Andalusia or Malaga that would work.
 

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Wouldn't it depend on where you live in Spain? I'm currently in Barcelona and €1500/month for 2 people seems awfully low to me. I guess it also depends on what type of lifestyle you're used to. Also does that include rent and other expenses? I'm confused because that seems really low in the cities. I'm sure in Andalusia or Malaga that would work.

The OP has already stated that they will be buying a property outright so there will be no rent or mortgage to pay!!

OP, keep asking as many questions as you like but try to be specific as a general question will get many differing answers.

Steve
 

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We have now sold our house (subject to contract) and the buyers want to be in by Christmas so all of a sudden things are going way too fast! I am desperately trying to sort out our financial position whilst my husband lives in cloud cuckoo land and just seems to think everything will be OK....:confused: so I would really appreciate some advice re costings etc if possible?

We are under pension age but will be buying a house outright so no mortgage/rent and after paying our health cover we will have approx €1500 per month. How does that sound? Will we have to dip into our savings?
I can understand why you're in a panic and want some answers, but these questions are always going to get the same answers - it depends. It depends largely on what you want to do and where you want to live.
However, you will be able to live somewhere in Spain on that money, so that's good news!
These threads give some idea of what kind of things you might have to calculate in your monthly costs if not exact amounts
http://www.expatforum.com/expats/sp...1076210-estepona-electricity-water-costs.html

http://www.expatforum.com/expats/sp...r-monthly-yearly-costs-apartment-you-own.html

http://www.expatforum.com/expats/sp...3353-health-insurance-prescription-costs.html

http://www.expatforum.com/expats/sp...g-spain/1009722-costs-buying-running-car.html
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I can understand why you're in a panic and want some answers, but these questions are always going to get the same answers - it depends. It depends largely on what you want to do and where you want to live.
However, you will be able to live somewhere in Spain on that money, so that's good news!
These threads give some idea of what kind of things you might have to calculate in your monthly costs if not exact amounts
http://www.expatforum.com/expats/sp...1076210-estepona-electricity-water-costs.html

http://www.expatforum.com/expats/sp...r-monthly-yearly-costs-apartment-you-own.html

http://www.expatforum.com/expats/sp...3353-health-insurance-prescription-costs.html

http://www.expatforum.com/expats/sp...g-spain/1009722-costs-buying-running-car.html
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Thanks Pesky Wesky, that's very helpful. I promise not to be so vague next time!
 

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We live on less than that...no mortgage, I work so state healthcare. We live in one of the poorest regions in Spain. Our lifestyle is not for everyone, we have no utilities as we are off grid. Our biggest outlays are Petrol, car and food. We do not eat or drink out very often, maybe once a month, drinking is done at home onthe finca. We have chickens, ducks, goats, two dogs and a cat... vet bills, parasite treatment etc.
Due to illnesses and deaths in the family we have had to travel back to the U.K. more often than we had bargained for... eating into that money. I do miss " going" on holiday, especially my trips to Florida, however them's the choices


Now, that sounds like I'm being a bit dour about it all. I'm not, you specifically said will I have to use my savings, I'm saying possibly who knows. My income covers my social security payments and goes towards my pensions and my healthcare rights as a pensioner here when I retire. My NHS pension gives us a small income and the rest we top up with the proceeds from the sale of our house in the U.K. Only you know what, if anything you can live without, give up, sacrifice whatever word one chooses. For us being able to get away from 50 hour working weeks, regardless of the country house, holidays and car, is priceless.


My advice.... some mock but.... my husband has written down everything we have spent down, from new furniture to cups of coffee. Everything is budgeted for, i.e. We know eventually solar batteries will have to be replaced, that money is accounted for and sits in an account, along with potential renewal of car, pumps, cooker etc. What's left is what's left. We know of too many people who have overspent on those euro coffees and €8 menús to find the hat they've spent a great deal of money on nothing in the first year.

BUT

Yep best thing we ever did
 

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Wouldn't it depend on where you live in Spain? I'm currently in Barcelona and €1500/month for 2 people seems awfully low to me. I guess it also depends on what type of lifestyle you're used to. Also does that include rent and other expenses? I'm confused because that seems really low in the cities. I'm sure in Andalusia or Malaga that would work.
Sorry to be pedantic but Malaga is in Andalusia.

But you're right about lifestyle. It's perfectly possible to live on €1500 a month after rent and healthcare bills, but you have to be adaptable. If you jack up the heating/air-conditioning to try and get your home to an even 23ºC all year round, you will spend a quarter of your income on electricity bills. If you cook using fresh seasonal ingredients from the market you'll spend less than if you seek out imported goods from Carrefour or Hipercor. All part of the experience of moving to a foreign country!

Other factors are how much you use your car (assuming you have one), how often you visit the UK, whether you buy lots of expensive Christmas and birthday presents, do you want the latest designer clothes, shoes and bags, etc etc. In our case it was books...
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
We live on less than that...no mortgage, I work so state healthcare. We live in one of the poorest regions in Spain. Our lifestyle is not for everyone, we have no utilities as we are off grid. Our biggest outlays are Petrol, car and food. We do not eat or drink out very often, maybe once a month, drinking is done at home onthe finca. We have chickens, ducks, goats, two dogs and a cat... vet bills, parasite treatment etc.
Due to illnesses and deaths in the family we have had to travel back to the U.K. more often than we had bargained for... eating into that money. I do miss " going" on holiday, especially my trips to Florida, however them's the choices


Now, that sounds like I'm being a bit dour about it all. I'm not, you specifically said will I have to use my savings, I'm saying possibly who knows. My income covers my social security payments and goes towards my pensions and my healthcare rights as a pensioner here when I retire. My NHS pension gives us a small income and the rest we top up with the proceeds from the sale of our house in the U.K. Only you know what, if anything you can live without, give up, sacrifice whatever word one chooses. For us being able to get away from 50 hour working weeks, regardless of the country house, holidays and car, is priceless.


My advice.... some mock but.... my husband has written down everything we have spent down, from new furniture to cups of coffee. Everything is budgeted for, i.e. We know eventually solar batteries will have to be replaced, that money is accounted for and sits in an account, along with potential renewal of car, pumps, cooker etc. What's left is what's left. We know of too many people who have overspent on those euro coffees and €8 menús to find the hat they've spent a great deal of money on nothing in the first year.

BUT

Yep best thing we ever did
It sounds wonderful. Not for everyone like you say but the main thing is you are loving your life.
We are going to have to get used to budgeting...it will be weird knowing that whatever we have now will have to last since we won't be working!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Sorry to be pedantic but Malaga is in Andalusia.

But you're right about lifestyle. It's perfectly possible to live on €1500 a month after rent and healthcare bills, but you have to be adaptable. If you jack up the heating/air-conditioning to try and get your home to an even 23ºC all year round, you will spend a quarter of your income on electricity bills. If you cook using fresh seasonal ingredients from the market you'll spend less than if you seek out imported goods from Carrefour or Hipercor. All part of the experience of moving to a foreign country!

Other factors are how much you use your car (assuming you have one), how often you visit the UK, whether you buy lots of expensive Christmas and birthday presents, do you want the latest designer clothes, shoes and bags, etc etc. In our case it was books...
It's going to be a learning curve ;) We don't use much in the way of packaged goods now and certainly won't be searching out Typhoo tea etc so hopefully that will stand in our favour! The air-con will be tempting though. However if all goes according to plan we will get there in winter so will hopefully have time to acclimatise!
 

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It's going to be a learning curve ;) We don't use much in the way of packaged goods now and certainly won't be searching out Typhoo tea etc so hopefully that will stand in our favour! The air-con will be tempting though. However if all goes according to plan we will get there in winter so will hopefully have time to acclimatise!
We get friends and family to bring some with them when they visit - haven't had to buy any in 11 years (and I drink LOADS of tea).
 

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It's going to be a learning curve ;) We don't use much in the way of packaged goods now and certainly won't be searching out Typhoo tea etc so hopefully that will stand in our favour! The air-con will be tempting though. However if all goes according to plan we will get there in winter so will hopefully have time to acclimatise!
Don't throw out your winter clothes. It is surprisingly cold in southern Spain in winter - especially indoors. No insulation, high ceilings, marble floors ... the houses are designed to keep you cool in summer.

Our house goes down to around 16ºC in January and February; thermal undies and polar fleeces are your best friend. It's often much warmer outside than in. We just heat the rooms we are using, rather than the whole house, up to about 19ºC. In the UK we heated the whole house up to 23ºC. There are other threads about winter heating which I'm sure you have come across already.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Don't throw out your winter clothes. It is surprisingly cold in southern Spain in winter - especially indoors. No insulation, high ceilings, marble floors ... the houses are designed to keep you cool in summer.

Our house goes down to around 16ºC in January and February; thermal undies and polar fleeces are your best friend. It's often much warmer outside than in. We just heat the rooms we are using, rather than the whole house, up to about 19ºC. In the UK we heated the whole house up to 23ºC. There are other threads about winter heating which I'm sure you have come across already.
We live in Northumberland so are well used to cold weather and it's quite often warmer outside that it is in here! Our jumpers and thick socks will come with us just in case ;)
 

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It is impossible to advise anyone how to live on a low income. Everyone's needs are different. Don't underestimate repairs and renewals. I have just had a car bill for £790. There is insurance too, new tyres, services, other odd bits.

Visitors cost too, maybe more expensive special food, more showers etc. Make new friends and they will asking you to join them at some restaurant. Sod's law when you a running a bit low the washer, TV, computer will die. Will you be happy watching the pounds year in year out. Also with exchange rates that €15,000 can disintegrate to € 14,000.
 

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It is impossible to advise anyone how to live on a low income. Everyone's needs are different. Don't underestimate repairs and renewals. I have just had a car bill for £790. There is insurance too, new tyres, services, other odd bits.

Visitors cost too, maybe more expensive special food, more showers etc. Make new friends and they will asking you to join them at some restaurant. Sod's law when you a running a bit low the washer, TV, computer will die. Will you be happy watching the pounds year in year out. Also with exchange rates that €15,000 can disintegrate to € 14,000.
So true, we stopped "offering" to pick people up from the airport.... our daughters chip in with food costs and additional Petrol costs. Always remember a tight budget is exactly that TIGHT
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
The thing that I'm finding hard is the fact that what we have now is all we are going to get since we won't be working any more. We aren't too badly off to be fair but I am just anxious to make sure we don't overstretch ourselves. We have a few years till we get our state pensions so are resigned to dipping into our savings as and when till that kicks in but I think (hope!) we'll be OK.

We have been putting feelers out to find a good tax/financial advisor so once that's sorted it might help settle our minds a bit ;)
 

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The thing that I'm finding hard is the fact that what we have now is all we are going to get since we won't be working any more. We aren't too badly off to be fair but I am just anxious to make sure we don't overstretch ourselves. We have a few years till we get our state pensions so are resigned to dipping into our savings as and when till that kicks in but I think (hope!) we'll be OK.

We have been putting feelers out to find a good tax/financial advisor so once that's sorted it might help settle our minds a bit ;)
That's exactly the position we are in. I know nothing about tax or financial advisors, but it's really simple

You have an amount of money to see you through so many years
Take away a sum for contingencies
Allow for variance in exchange rates
Allow for rise in inflation


Divide that by amount of years...... that's your annual income....
 

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We were probably in the same position as yourselves 12 years ago, having decided to leave the 'rat race' and move to Spain with a limited income. The first few years living on a tight budget I found to be relatively easy and we didnt miss anything. (Our income at the time was less than your expected income)-

Perhaps it was the fact that rather than dashing around Sainsburys I had time to cook fresh food and enjoyed cooking. We hardly went out during the first few years, probably again due to the fact that we were hardly at home in the UK so enjoyed staying at home, and I certainly spent quite a bit of time sunbathing and on the beach, which costs nothing!!!! (something I rarely do now)

I must admit I was a bit obsessive, even reading the electric meter every day and writing down everything we spent, but perhaps, looking back, it gave me something to do, and a target to work towards :). During the first 5 years, everything we had was brand new, including a new car so there were no major expenses.

Now a couple of our pensions have kicked in, and we spend far more than 15,000 per annum, but maybe that is because we have the money to spend, but also everything now seems to be breaking down or needs to be replaced.

In my view, as long as you have capital in the bank for those unexpected items, and you have additional pensions to look foward to in the future, your annual income should be sufficient.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
That's exactly the position we are in. I know nothing about tax or financial advisors, but it's really simple

You have an amount of money to see you through so many years
Take away a sum for contingencies
Allow for variance in exchange rates
Allow for rise in inflation


Divide that by amount of years...... that's your annual income....
Yes that's what we've done. Now after so many years of dreaming we are almost doing it for real I am a bit unsure re our tax position and would be happier if someone held our hands for that bit though!
 
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