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Place in the sun turns to pension in the sun

Nearly 50% of second home owners have invested in an overseas property as part of their pension plan, compared to 24% investing in a UK property…

– 1 in 3 people pay cash for their overseas properties
– 1 in 5 finance their overseas property through a mortgage with a European bank, compared to just 6% using a UK bank mortgage
– 40% of owners plan to use their holiday home as a permanent home at some point in the future
Concerns over pension funds are fuelling Brits to invest in overseas property as part of their retirement plans, with nearly 50% of second home owners choosing to invest in bricks and mortar in places such as Spain, Bulgaria and Turkey as part of their pension, according to a new survey out today.

The research, by, questioned over 500 second homeowners on their investments and motivations for buying. One of the key findings is the trust British investors now have in overseas property markets, with twice as many respondents choosing to invest in property overseas for their pension, rather than in the UK.

Gareth Robinson, managing director of, said:
“With overseas property investment increasingly seen to offer both security and an enjoyable asset, a growing number of people are turning to it as part of their investment and pension funds.
“As a result, new buyers and new destinations are now entering the market. From those planning for retirement, to families seeking a holiday home and first time buyers who feel priced out of the UK market – the ‘jet to let’ era is attracting new investors who recognise the potential for both solid rental returns and capital appreciation.”

The survey found that one in three owners chose to pay cash for their property abroad, while just 6% opted for a mortgage from a UK bank compared to nearly 20% choosing a European bank’s mortgage. 1 in 10 chose to take equity from their UK home.
The survey also highlighted the main concerns buyers have when investing abroad, with rental potential and buying in the right location the top issues addressed when choosing a property. Other areas of concern included trusting the advice being given, and working with an unknown lawyer.
“The secret to successful property investment is location and maximising the rental potential. With the growth of the internet it’s easier than ever for owners to promote their properties and benefit from the DIY holiday market.”

Recent figures estimate there were around 200,000 new overseas property purchases in 2006 (source: Association of International Property Professionals).
According to, 40% of the second home owners questioned said they plan to use their holiday home as their permanent home at some point in the future, underlining the growing trend for moving overseas. A recent study for the Institute of Public Policy Research found that almost 1 in 10 British citizens now live overseas.

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