“I’m a pensioner, get me out of here!”

“I’m a pensioner, get me out of here!”

Today’s pensioners may not have to endure daily Bush Tucker trials to top up their shopping baskets but for almost 70% of people surveyed by the deVere Group, cost of living is the primary concern about retiring in the UK.

According the results of a recent survey of 1,231 over 50’s questioned by the international financial consultancy, cost of living is the primary motivation for quitting Britain with almost half (49.5%) stating that they have ‘seriously considered’, ‘are thinking about’, or ‘would be tempted’ to live overseas during retirement.

Other reasons cited for relocating to foreign shores included the standard of care for the elderly, quality of life and, not unexpectedly, the weather.

Gil Summers, Co-Founder of Sun Park Living, a private gated community resort exclusively for those who are retired and active, located on the Canary Island of Lanzarote, comments,

“The rising cost of living in the UK is a major driver for many of our guests to come and stay at Sun Park Living. It can be considerably cheaper for retirees to stay long term, for up to 6 months or beyond, here in Lanzarote than at home in the UK as all fuel and energy costs are included which for many pensioners is becoming an ever increasing worry.”

In terms of locations, Spain was named the top choice for relocating retirees with 27.9% of those surveyed by the deVere Group stating the south European destination, well-known for its year round mild climate, lower cost of living and positive attitude towards the elderly.

Indeed it would seem that staying close to the UK in retirement is important with France and Italy named second and third destinations of choice according to 12.6% and 7.9% of respondents respectively.

Danny Silver, Founder of The Villages Group – Rainbow, an active retirement community in south-west France aimed at the Lesbian-Gay-Bisexual-Transgender (LGBT) community, comments,

“As a man in my 60’s, originally from London but resident in France for nearly 20 years now, whose golden years are approaching, I would never even consider moving back to the UK. The quality of life here in France is far superior is almost every way to the UK; the weather, the culture, the gastronomy, the cost of living, it all outweighs life across the Channel.

“I am a member of the fabled ‘baby boomer’ generation who are finding it increasingly difficult to maintain a high standard of living in the UK with austerity measures pinching pensioners even in spite of government promises.

That is exactly the reason why we created The Villages Group – Rainbow, a community of like-minded retired but active individuals looking for a better quality of life in France.”

Fresh data from the Rightmove Overseas (September) 2013 Consumer Survey confirms this trend with almost two-thirds, 65%, of those looking to buy a second home overseas aged between 45 and 64 years.

Once again Spain and France topped the charts in terms of second home and immigration destinations with more than half (51%) looking to buy a property in the countryside.