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Cimbrone Nov 14th, 2014 03:33 PM

Health insurance: USA retirees in Spain
Forgive me if this type of question keeps reappearing. Partner and I will be retiring in our 50's in a couple of years. We have decent savings and a decent pension. As for many early retirees, the big concern is healthcare. We are interested in moving to Spain, possibly Mallorca, and want to know if a health plan there would be more affordable than one in the USA. Also, I understand that the Spanish government allows Americans with proof of income who buy property to live there year round. True? Any advice or opinions would be appreciated!

travelhorizons Nov 14th, 2014 03:37 PM

I'd contact a local insurance broker and get some expert advice on this.

iris1745 Nov 14th, 2014 03:40 PM

No advise, but best of luck as we love Spain.

Cimbrone Nov 14th, 2014 03:40 PM

Obviously. Just doing some preliminary checking with fodorites in the know.

nytraveler Nov 14th, 2014 04:37 PM

Don't know about Spain, but colleagues in the UK with private insurance seem to be a little less than in the US (assuming you are talking an all-in PPO- not a low budget HMO).

And agree that those willing to invest a very sizable sum seem to be able to qualify for retirement - but I would look carefully at the amount involved (and if it is property - such as home - or investment).

Alec Nov 14th, 2014 04:56 PM

Other than through property purchase called Golden Visa (minimum investment of 500,000 euro or $626k), it will be difficult to get a retirement visa for a couple in their 50s as their presumptions are you will try to work, despite your good pension and investment income. State retirement age there is currently 65. Health insurance should be considerably cheaper than in US, around 1,000 euro for a couple annually though it depends on cover.

Cimbrone Nov 14th, 2014 05:00 PM

Great news on the insurance. Awful news on the retirement visa!

Cimbrone Nov 14th, 2014 05:04 PM

And thanks!

Alec Nov 14th, 2014 05:10 PM

I must say that with a big population of retirees and residents from other EU countries (with around a million Brits who can come without a visa), Spain isn't trying to attract other retirees, except those with wealth and investment intentions. With their weak economy and high unemployment, they don't open door to others who will not be a substantial net contributor.

Cimbrone Nov 14th, 2014 05:16 PM

Not really logical it seems. If we buy even a modest home and contribute to the local economy on a daily basis, its still a net gain for the Spanish economy.

Robert2533 Nov 14th, 2014 05:29 PM

The first question is why Spain? Have you ever spent any time there? Do you speak the language?

Unless you qualify under some obscure law, you will only be able to stay for 90 days every 180 days on a tourist visa, property owner or not. You can apply for a long term resident visa, but you would be better off trying to buy a resident visa in Portugal, much cheaper. If you are able to buy one, then you can live anywhere in the EU.

As far as insurance goes, you will have to purchase coverage as you would not qualify for the insurance coverage the locals enjoy.

Cimbrone Nov 14th, 2014 05:35 PM

We've spent time there, I speak the language, and we have good friends who live there. We absolutely love Mallorca.

Alec Nov 14th, 2014 05:41 PM

<I>Not really logical it seems. If we buy even a modest home and contribute to the local economy on a daily basis, its still a net gain for the Spanish economy.</I>

Not really, as you will be using public services as residents and protection afforded by security services.

Robert2533 Nov 14th, 2014 06:37 PM

If you can show financial independence and insurance coverage, then go for the long term residence visa. Just be aware it may take some time.

IMDonehere Nov 14th, 2014 07:19 PM

There is a professional real estate agent ex-pat who lives in Spain who is a regular her, I am sure she can clarify many issues.

Bedar Nov 14th, 2014 09:32 PM

Today there are too many tax issues involved, like the mandatory reporting of global assets. Banks are now unwilling to open accounts for Americans because of having to make reports to the, yes, IRS ! and it goes on and on. Health insurance would be the least of your problems, no matter the cost. You might start reading The Olive Press, an English language newspaper, for a glimpse of life in Spain and its problems.

ribeirasacra Nov 15th, 2014 12:32 AM

Health insurance will not be your only hurdle to over come.
You will need a fiscal number to rent or purchase a property, open a bank account even pay your domestic bills. No drivers licence unless you pass the spanish test.
Forget about a on-line news paper read the facts.

lincasanova Nov 15th, 2014 01:33 AM

I can attest to MANY retirement visas here in Spain.. just follow the rules and have plenty of assets and disposable income of about 4,500E a month plus insurance. You could ask online at ASISA for insurance quote for Spain, I assume. Also if self- employed just pay into the Spanish system.. and ask for that type of visa.

No need to buy property to qualify for long term visa. Now driving on USA licenses is another story. Living in the city eliminates need for daily driving.. and rental companies DO allow you to drive and rent cars with USA license regardless of time in the country.

This visa will take close to a year to acquire and most likely you will be missing a paper or have turned one in they don't like oso make sure you understand exactly the certifications needed to validate whatever they are asking for.

Once with visa authorization in hand, a daunting visit sometimes is going to the local immigration department and actually applying then for the card. I suggest you take an interpreter with you for that.

Many people live here.. the husband works in Africa or in another part of Europe. Or they have come for an experience with their children. Or to semi-retire. It can be a very rewarding situation of you try to eliminate any normal surprises or oddities that will definitely exist but can easily be overcome.

Cimbrone Nov 15th, 2014 01:44 AM

This is all very helpful. Thank you! 90 days each summer in Mallorca sounds perfect. Or we can mix it up a bit in terms of locale. And having just checked out, I feel much better about the possibility of affordable health insurance here at home. Tiny premiums, big deductibles. But I kind of like that idea.

marigross Nov 15th, 2014 10:22 AM

We are hoping to spend our first 3-month stint in Valencia in 2015. :D

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