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 Post subject: Advice Please
PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2014 2:30 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2014 2:19 pm
Posts: 8
Hi There and thank you for taking time to read this.

Me,my wife and 3 children are considering moving to the Island in the Playa Blanca area. I am self employed in the UK and will be working here 1 month on 1 month off from now on with a salary of around £12k per month whilst working.

I would initially look to rent long term (for 3 years) before buying.

I would really appreciate any advice and obstacles I may face doing this. Such as schooling for my children, would I be better off in another part of the Island for schools, or should I look into home schooling.

Anyway thus is a small step on a big journey, and on finding this site thought it was the best place to start,

Kind Regards, Mark


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 Post subject: Re: Advice Please
PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2014 2:32 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2014 2:19 pm
Posts: 8
Sorry should of made clear, working in Uk not in Lanzarote


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 Post subject: Re: Advice Please
PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2014 10:18 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2012 6:40 pm
Posts: 477
How old are your children? Will you spend more that 183 days a year here? How far from retiring are you? What is your general health like? Why do you want to live here, what do you think the benefits are? I'm not trying to put you off, but are your reasons positive, ie you want to live in Lanzarote, or negative, it's difficult for you in UK?


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 Post subject: Re: Advice Please
PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 11:46 am 
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Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2014 2:19 pm
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Hi There,

Thank you for taking the time to reply,

I am 44,wife 34 children 12,10,8.

I will be spending 1 month on and 1 month off in Lanzarote whilst my family would be permanent,. We are all of good health(touch wood).

Reasons for considering moving to the Island are for a better quality of life. I know that I will be away for a month at a time but currently am stuck in the rat race and get to spend little time with my family, so would actually benefit from being able to have a whole month maybe more at a time with my loved ones.

We are under no illusions and realise that it wouldnt be a long holiday and that it would be a difficult change to our lifestyle, but it is a decision that we have made and both agree that this is the right step for us.

Once again thanks for taking the time to reply.


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 Post subject: Re: Advice Please
PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 9:47 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2012 6:40 pm
Posts: 477
Hi, I'll reply tomorrow. I'm currently having a mellow evening listening to Kate Bush's Aerial and reading the Sunday Times :)


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 Post subject: Re: Advice Please
PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 9:52 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2014 2:19 pm
Posts: 8
Thank you

Ahh Kate Bush. Up until a couple of years back she used to live in the next road from me. Have a mellow one


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 Post subject: Re: Advice Please
PostPosted: Mon Jul 21, 2014 10:11 am 
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Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2012 6:40 pm
Posts: 477
Rather than give you answers, perhaps I could suggest a few things that occur to me for you to research. You could do worse than reading the orange column to the left here, and look at http://www.lanzaroteinformation.com/ and https://www.gov.uk/government/world/spain for the answers

As you plan on staying here for more than 3 months, you will apply for residence. You'll need to prove you have sufficient income, and medical cover (that will have to be private unless you pay into social security here. I think that they are bringing in a new cheaper regime here for people who only want to use the Spanish NHS and don't want the other benefits - unemployment, pension etc.

You will need to register for tax after 6 months, then there will be a fairly complicated assessment of what tax you pay here, and what in the UK. The HMRC help desk is quite good, if you persevere. You may need an accountant here to help with taxes etc. I use EBF Consulting www.ebfconsulting.com run by Natasha, an English university business graduate who then became a fully qualified Spanish accountant. For a small fee, she will certainly have a meeting with you to discuss the options. She can also help with all the residencia, social security etc. If anyone else joins this thread, they may have their own favourites.

Your children will have differing educational needs over the years and they will certainly need to learn Spanish, because the local PB schools are entirely Spanish At their ages it will be a great shock to be totally immersed, but they will probably survive! Secondary education would entail commuting to other parts of the island. There are British schools but they are some distance. http://www.thebritishschoollanzarote.com/ (Tahiche) http://www.colegiohispanobritanico.com/ (Tias).
Higher education would be almost certainly off island.

Wherever you live, make sure it has good broadband, because it varies a lot, even in the same town. Most areas have very slow speeds, I get one of the best speeds and that is only 8.5 mps. There is a new service which looks interesting. http://www.internetlanzarote.com/

Is your wife going to get a social life while you are in UK a month at a time? Is she going to learn Spanish and try to integrate into the Spanish society? What are her interests, it might be worth researching activities. There are several Facebook groups now, the most useful are probably Need to Know - Lanzarote and Lanzarote Connect. A contributor called Angela Webster has lived here for many years and is a great source of sensible, accurate information. Lanzarote Gossip is accurately titled, but does get useful answers.

If you are earning enough, couldn't you reduce the separation by having weekend breaks here? - there are plenty of flights. Unless you are used to separation, it can be tough on the wife who has to take over a lot of the "husband" roles to. I found it hard when I was in the RAF, but I think the advent of the internet has made it easier.


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 Post subject: Re: Advice Please
PostPosted: Mon Jul 21, 2014 11:00 am 
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Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2014 2:19 pm
Posts: 8
Hi John,

Thank you for your response very informative and a lot to get started with.

Unfortunately when in the UK I will be working 14 hour days 7 days a week, so won't be able to make the journey during that time, it sounds like a lot but I currently do this 6 days a week so get little time to enjoy my life with my loved ones. This is one of the biggest reasons for the move, although away for a month I get a whole month with them after.

We are all starting to learn Spanish, and aim to be a very good standard by the time we come, my family aim to integrate into society as much as possible, as we feel this is the best way forward. My wife has many hobbies (dressmaking,furniture restoration etc) but would. Love to make new friends and join in with the community.

I am currently starting a file with what we need to do, and the links you have supplied will be of great value Thanks again


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 Post subject: Re: Advice Please
PostPosted: Mon Jul 21, 2014 2:29 pm 
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Joined: Fri Aug 28, 2009 9:14 am
Posts: 230
Hi Spudromeo,

First, I hope everything works out for you and your family. If you can make the new situation suit yourselves, then you can have a very enjoyable life in Lanzarote.

I have seen lots of people come and go on the island, as well as some downright disasters, so I only make the following points in the hope that they might be constructive for you to consider:

* As John said, have a look at the Facebook groups - the needs, wants and gripes of ex-pats in Lanzarote are fairly similar to the UK/Ireland. This can be a good and a not-so-good thing - everyday living here is not that much different from the British Isles, notwithstanding the climate of course!

* Lanzarote is not really a foreign country for most ex-pats - it's a small gossipy village and the parallel world of Canarian culture and Canarian people can very easily become a distant memory.

* Kids employment and education options post-secondary school: they'll have to travel to mainland Spain or back to the UK for third-level. Employment options are mostly bar/restaurant work in an Irish bar or British cafe.

* A sexist comment now: it's harder for the fairer sex in Lanzarote. Most of us men can go to the pub, watch a match and have a pint, and that'll keep us happy. For most women, they need more than that. This is of course a very general and offensive comment, but it's not always something couples/families consider.

* There's a high turnover of ex-pats, which makes it hard for those who are long-timers on the island to get attached to new people. You never know when your mate and his family are going to leave, and this forms a natural barrier between people. There's a saying about ex-pats who have left the island, "When you're gone, you're gone." The natural follow-though on this is, "Even when you're here, you're only half here."

* When you move first, Lanzarote can be a very lonely place - most ex-pats are working long hours in the bar/restaurant trade so they rarely have time to meet up with new people. And see previous point re making new friends.

* A recent case I saw was somewhat similar to yours in that the parents wanted to spend more time with the kids, but the reality of this has been very different to what they imagined - neither the kids or the parents were used to spending so much time together!

There are various other downbeat aspects to consider, but maybe these will help to get you started. And I mean that in a constructive way - I don't for a second want to put you off. But as I said, I've seen lots of families have a disaster on the island - hopefully you'll work it all out and you won't be another one.

Good luck!


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 Post subject: Re: Advice Please
PostPosted: Mon Jul 21, 2014 7:28 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2012 6:40 pm
Posts: 477
Spudromeo has actually avoided one of the biggest issues, that of having to earn money here. I think Lanzarote is a great place to live, as long as you aren't dependent on the local (ie tourist) economy. One of the other expat traps is to turn into a bar fly, but I can't imagine Mrs Spud doing that! There are plenty of groups both Spanish and English speaking (and German for that matter) who cover the whole range of activities, music, handicrafts, sports, outdoor activities. The key skill is networking, and the internet is very good for that, particularly Facebook which, now the younger element have moved to shorter-attention-span things, is becoming a very useful social conduit for the grown ups. Interest groups are good too. One I am involved in is a walking group which has about 80 members, and meet alternate Sundays for a walk somewhere or other. Not ideal for Mrs Spudromeo because of the children, but there are plenty of others which give a similar opportunity to meet people, and through them, other people. Again, FB is a great way to find these groups - and you can start now before you come!


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 Post subject: Re: Advice Please
PostPosted: Wed Jul 23, 2014 5:14 pm 
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Lots of blumin' good advice there from people who know better than I, get your kids and missus sorted with school and social life and I think with the amount your bringing in you should have a great life in Lanzarote. Just don't set your expectations too high for the first 6-12 months whilst you all settle in and expect setbacks, it's gonna be very different and will take a lot of bedding in.
Cheers and good luck ole


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 Post subject: Re: Advice Please
PostPosted: Thu Jul 24, 2014 7:51 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jul 24, 2014 7:19 pm
Posts: 2
Interesting thread :-)

Considering a very similar setup myself. Have recently bought in Playa Blanca and currently using the villa as a holiday home. Ideally the 5 year plan would be to base ourselves (just me and my wife) there and for me to come back to the UK for 3 / 6 month length contracts. Probably staying in London for 2 / 3 weeks straight and then seeing my wife on long weekends. This would then give us enough income to both live in PB for 6 months before repeating the exercise.

Also looking to setup up some additional 'passive' income in the UK from property rental to help lower the amount I need to work. Likely to include the house we currently living in so that if 'Plan A' doesn't pan out we still have a soft landing back in the UK.

Good to see that it doesn't appear to be too crazy an idea! I will keep an eye on the posts to see how you get on.

G


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 Post subject: Re: Advice Please
PostPosted: Thu Jul 24, 2014 9:58 pm 
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Mr g, the tax issues will need careful thought, depending on your residential status. I suggest you get advice from someone like EBF Consulting. - details in my earlier post.


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 Post subject: Re: Advice Please
PostPosted: Fri Jul 25, 2014 2:48 pm 
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Posts: 1024
Did I read that correctly £12k per month sterling?

Frankly I am not sure why you are bothering - I really don't. You are in the middle of your career your kids are at a crucial stage of their education, making friends etc...frankly Lanzarote is a backwater (don't get me wrong....I love Playa Blanca but I couldn't live there at this stage in my life - late 30s). We would go mad. I would love to spend longer holidays in lanza but not live there not yet.

I struggle to get the benefit - is the UK really all that bad!! And why Lanza - why not south of france? Florida etc? We've considered doing something vaguely similar but somewhere with better infrastructure.

Kids are very adaptable - but your eldest is going to struggle...and then will have to leave the island anyway for university, or for any kind of job as jobs in Lanza are few and far between.

On that sort of income you could have a lovely family home in the country and have a city crash pad for work - I have no idea of your circumstances just imagining what I would be doing!!
Also consider all the money you will be wasting with the constant tooing and froing.

If you were coming to Lanza to work or set up business that would be different but I really struggle to see the point of what you are trying to do especially at this point in your career....oh and the tax issues will be very messy too (and that's as an accountant speaking!!)

Anyway please take this in the "right" way - I just can't see the point of what you are trying to do!!


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 Post subject: Re: Advice Please
PostPosted: Sun Aug 02, 2015 12:04 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2014 2:19 pm
Posts: 8
Hi There,

Been a while getting things in order and am now on the path to making the move finally. Could you please advise on best estate agents to contact or is their a website used by local people for sales rather than the big findaproperty etc websites,

Thank you mark


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