Saturday, 21 January 2017
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Why Portugal Is The Country for U.S. ExpatsThere’s a lot to like about living in Portugal for an American, but you’ll have to jump through some hoops to call this country your home. If you’re prepared to put in a bit of work, you should be able to become a citizen of this fine country and start benefitting from all that it has to offer, which is quite a bit.

Beautiful Beaches
Portugal is known around the world for its beautiful beaches. If you enjoy the beach, you’ll love heading out to ocean destinations around the country. Just be aware that you can’t enjoy beach swimming all year round, and there is a distinct winter that can get quite chilly with frost, but rarely snow. There are more than 100 miles of beaches throughout the area, giving you plenty to enjoy along the Atlantic coastline.

English is Regularly Spoken
English is not an official language of Portugal, but that doesn’t mean you’ll have trouble finding people that speak it. There’s a general interest in English throughout the country and many people speak at least a little bit of English. That means you should be able to communicate most places that you go, even if you don’t take the time to learn any Portuguese.

Food is Affordable
Another excellent perk of living in Portugal is how affordable the food, local wines and locally grown fresh produce is in the area. You’ll pay significantly lower costs for all your local foods and wines in Portugal. Just be aware that if you’re going to buy clothing or imported goods from the United States, you’ll be paying a steep price increase compared to what you would spend in the US. If you don’t care too much about consumer goods this is a nice trade off.

Why Portugal Is The Country for U.S. ExpatsBring Along Your Vehicle
It’s entirely possible to send your vehicle from the United States to Portugal to stay permanently, but the process is not at all simple and you’ll have to go through quite a few steps to accomplish your goal. The first thing that you should do is get a vehicle that’s relatively new, something less than 10 years old, and then use an international shipper experienced in shipping cars to Portugal to handle moving the vehicle for you. Once you have the company, get them to send your vehicle over to Portugal to start the import process. A good location to do this is the Algarve region. Once you’ve secured shipper, it’s time to begin working with their expert that understands all about the import and licensing process. Have them handle the paperwork to get your vehicle there, and pay the fees to get the job done. If your vehicle will be staying for more than six months, you’ll be expected to convert it all into the local registration system, and pay a fee that’s around €1,000. Once it’s there you’ll enjoy easy travel and a better vehicle than many that you are likely to find locally for the price that you paid. 

Good Road System
Once you have your vehicle in Portugal you can start enjoying the extensive road systems throughout the country. They are high quality, though road tolls can be quite expensive over time.

Bright and Sunshiny Weather
With more than 3,300 hours of sunshine every year, Algarve in Portugal is an excellent place to call home and a good spot to live year-round.

Good for Retirees
Portugal is an excellent place to call home as a retiree. That’s because there are no taxes on the income of retirees thanks to recent legislation. This will help give you more money to live on overall. It’s also well-known that the area is relatively affordable and a pair of retirees can live here quite comfortably.

Portugal has a lot to offer when you sit down and look at everything the country is known for. Sure, the immigration process is time-consuming, but in the end, all that hard work really pays off.

Comments  

+3 #9 Alexis Strong 2017-01-15 13:19
RE: Retirement Residency. As an American who retired here in 2014, the 'retired' status is a qualifier for obtaining residency. Proof of that income is required, of course, but that status is valid in itself.
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+5 #8 Shena 2017-01-15 11:26
I am neither an American nor an accountant but everyone knows US citizens are taxed on worldwide income no matter where they live. This is vigorously enforced by strongarming foreign banks to ascertain whether someone is a US citizen when opening accounts (FATCA). In a treaty country they would get a credit for tax paid abroad but with NHR status that would not apply. Professional advice is essential. That said I would pay big bucks to escape from Trump's America.
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+4 #7 eMBee 2017-01-14 16:23
Quoting chez:
More importantly, they would be leaving a country that will soon be led by a semi-illiterate crotch fondling slab of rancid meatloaf :D

....... not sure, chez; might depend on how you define rancid .........
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+7 #6 chez 2017-01-11 15:18
More importantly, they would be leaving a country that will soon be led by a semi-illiterate crotch fondling slab of rancid meatloaf :D
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+2 #5 liveaboard 2017-01-08 23:10
No mention of residency permits / visas in the article. Can retiring Americans easily get permission to reside in Portugal?
I've never heard that.
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+2 #4 henry 2017-01-08 09:41
Quoting Monchique resident:
Me too - I have a UK State Pension and a small Annuity, both of which are taxed at source. Please tell me more if I can all avoid this UK tax.


Try these links for UK tax info,
https://www.gov.uk/tax-right-retire-abroad-return-to-uk
https://www.gov.uk/state-pension-if-you-retire-abroad
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+2 #3 Editor 2017-01-08 09:00
Quoting Jacqueline:
Can the author please expand on his statement that there is no tax to be paid on income for expat retirees? Is he refering specifically to US expats? I am a British expat and pay taxes on my retirement income the same as local portuguese people do.
This is the grossly unfair Non Habitual Residents (NHR) scheme.

Qualifying income includes pension, dividend, royalty and interest income.

The sole requirement to benefit from this preferential treatment is to become a Portuguese tax resident, not having been a tax resident in Portugal in the previous five years. This status is granted for 10 years. The scheme also provides for tax exemptions for foreign source income, provided certain conditions are met.

You may find that either all, or a proportion of income earned outside Portugal, including pension income, is exempt from Portuguese taxation. Existing expats pay income tax up to 48%, as do locals. Newly arrived expats can pay zero. Other of the EU nations have complained that Portugal is 'a tax haven within Europe' yet the scheme is pushed by a government desperate for foreigners to move here as Portuguese move away and the population shrinks.

The same types of scheme exist in other EU countries, notably Spain, where the agreement is showing cracks as Finns in Spain and now Portugal now have less then 3 years grace before they are fully taxed.


Search Google 'non habitual residence' or look at PWC's information: http://www.pwc.pt/pt/fiscalidade/imagens/pwc_europe_best_kept_secret.pdf
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+2 #2 Monchique resident 2017-01-08 08:57
Me too - I have a UK State Pension and a small Annuity, both of which are taxed at source. Please tell me more if I can all avoid this UK tax.
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+3 #1 Jacqueline 2017-01-08 08:07
Can the author please expand on his statement that there is no tax to be paid on income for expat retirees? Is he refering specifically to US expats? I am a British expat and pay taxes on my retirement income the same as local portuguese people do.
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