How would it feel if you were lying on comfortable sun lounger on a Mediterranean beach knowing that your life’s savings were securely invested in a tax efficient container ready for you to access any time you liked?
That’s how it is if you make the most of the island Malta as a safe and secure QROPS jurisdiction. Plus other tax benefits such as a 15% flat tax rate for all of your income and it’s only 3 hours from London.
Let’s take a look at why Malta appeals to so many retirees as the ideal place to settle.
Enjoy warmer and shorter winters whilst you save money
A fabulous climate, low crime level, good food and excellent health care attracts many expats to the Mediterranean surrounded islands of Malta, Gozo and Comino. There are beaches, cultural events and a lot of very interesting architecture to enjoy. If you like great sea views, the beach, golf, tennis and walking then you’ll feel right at home.
With a population of around 400,000 there are plenty of other nationalities on the island, with the biggest sector being Brits and Scandinavians. The lifestyle of the islands recently won an award in International Living Magazine where Malta pipped 192 other countries to the post for top residential country.
Enjoy a flat tax rate of 15%
Malta offers several residential schemes and if you opt for the High Networth Residential Scheme and meet the necessary criteria – you’ll be able to enjoy a flat tax rate of 15%. You’ll be able to select a property on the island to live in or to rent and enjoy a sunny lifestyle that is not possible in the UK with it’s long winters and lack of sunshine.
Buy property without capital gains tax
There are plenty of property styles to choose from and if after 3 years you change your mind and decide to live elsewhere, you will be able to sell your property and avoid paying capital gains tax. However, you will have had to be living in your property as your primary residence – but in Malta – what’s not to like!?!
How about living in a quaint renovated farmhouse overlooking the green fields with the Mediterranean sea glistening on the horizon? After a lifetime of working hard, you deserve to enjoy your later years living a dream life. You might even opt to build a swimming pool, grow a few olives and tomatoes and take up photography so that you can remind your friends in the UK where you are now and how nice your new life is.
You’ll like to know that the property prices in Malta have stayed more stable than in other European countries throughout the tough economic times. Property specialists have stated that this could be due to the local culture valuing buying of property versus renting.
Enjoy access to a 30% lump sum
Unexpected events are what make life interesting, with a QROPS pension in Malta you will be able to withdraw up to 30% of your pension pot as a tax free lump sum at retirement age. You’ll have the funds to pay for the schooling of your grandchildren, to support your son’s new business or you can even buy some stocks and shares with your lump sum.
How to live in Malta as a resident
You don’t have to be a high net worth individual to live in Malta, just as long as you meet the Maltese government set criteria when it comes to being able to financially support yourself with your income. If you can, then you’ll be welcomed with open arms. You can sign up with the Ordinary Residency program and any income that you bring in from overseas will be levied with a 35% tax rate.
If you opt for the High Networth Scheme then you will enjoy the 15% tax rate but you will need to be a property at more than €400,000 or rent a property that costs you at lease €20,000 per annum. You’ll also need to subscribe to a health insurance policy in case you need it. You’ll be asked to reside in Malta for a prescribed number of days per year in order to secure the benefits that the scheme affords.
How to transfer your pension to a QROPS in Malta
If you are interested in transferring your pension from a UK scheme to a Malta QROPS (Qualifying Regulated Overseas Pension Scheme) then you should do your homework first. It is recommended that you discuss your unique, individual situation with an experienced and competent advisor who will be able discuss the most suitable and beneficial options.
The regulators on the island are the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA) and have reported that they will run a strict policy to avoid abuse, we covered this here www.iexpats.com/malta-qrops-regulator-issue-another-tax-warning/
Remember the QROPS schemes are only available to those who are either already a non-resident of the UK or those who plan to become non-resident. You can transfer up to £1.8 million in lifetime allowances before you will be taxed.
If you want to find out more about how to live on a sunny Mediterranean island whilst your pension is safe, contact us now.