Searching for the Best Places to Retire in Europe.

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Napflion Greece, Historic shops and downtown centers

My husband and I both love experiencing new places and seeing the world. We’ve always traveled as much as possible, but never as much as we’d like to. Along with seeing the sites and famous attractions of any place we visit, what we really enjoy is getting off the beaten path, seeing the back country, and talking to the locals.

Our dream is to retire in Europe to a country with good internet access, a lower cost of living, affordable housing, and a great view. We’d love to find a house in a village on the hillside with an ocean view in the near distance. We want to submerge ourselves in the culture and become part of whatever country we finally settle into.

There are a lot of places to retire in Europe that boast beautiful views and lower costs of living, and some even offer a residence permit and access to the EU, such as Greece, Belgium, Portal, and Spain. A common means of getting residency is to purchase a home in the country, but there are some countries with alternative methods. (Follow this link to the Telegraph to view an article listing the which countries are easiest to obtain an EU residency through.)

Be aware that not all European countries will allow a US citizen to just come over, rent or buy a house, and retire. There is some planning, visas, and permits required in order to retire in European countries, and often there are restrictions on who can purchase real estate within a country. (All of these topics will be explored more in other blog posts.) Be sure to do your homework and know the requirements before you purchase your ticket or buy that great looking house on-line sight unseen!

The two countries my husband and I are most interested in at this point in our research are Greece and Italy. Greece offers residency with the purchase of a house at 250,000 euros. Italy allows applications for residency after living in the country for certain number of years (along with some other requirements), and they allow US citizens to purchase real estate due to reciprocity agreements. Both of these countries are good potentials for people from the U.S. who want to retire in Europe.

We are drawn to the Mediterranean countries (Italy, Greece, Spain), but we have not ruled out other countries in Europe. We are planning to spend the next five to seven years exploring the different areas of Europe to find the best places in Europe to retire. We will continue to share what we discover on our journey so that others can benefit from our experiences and hopefully share theirs as well. Please follow us if you are interested in retiring in Europe or if you want to share your experiences of living in Europe. If we’re prudent and plan well, we may even be able to split our time between two or more European destinations.

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