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Old 26.04.2011, 09:00
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Thinking of retiring in Switzerland

Hello to everyone at EF.

I am thinking about the option of leaving the UK and retiring (early - 56 years old) to Switzerland with my partner.

The key question that I need to help make up my mind is the cost of living and the net income that I would have from my personal pension. I have read hundreds of posts in the forums on the cost of living but can find nothing so far on the tax and social security position for someone who is retired.

All of the government and other web sites that have tax calculators assume - not unnaturally - that you are working and require an input for salary and then provide automated deductions that don't seem to apply to my situation.

Also I can't seem to find anything on EF or elsewhere on the internet about whether we would need to pay any of the social security deductions. (I am fully paid-up for a UK state pension).

I'm very happy to provide any other details if that enables someone to assist me better.

Thanks in advance for your help.
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Old 26.04.2011, 09:12
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Re: Thinking of retiring in Switzerland

Good Morning Chelski and welcome to EF. I suspect you may be better to check on the likelihood of obtaining a residence permit before looking at the financial details. For that others are more aquainted with the facts but I m sure a quick trawl on either the Swiss German or Romande official websites should get you there.
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Old 26.04.2011, 10:23
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Re: Thinking of retiring in Switzerland

All your pensions and income are taxed as earned income, along with all your worldwide assets. The income tax varies, but assume about 15% total.

Once you live here there are no other fixed deductions. However, the first problem is to prove that you are able to support yourself and any spouse.

The minimum pension you will need to live on, is calculated at about CHF 1'800 per month per person. A major problem you will have is the strong Swiss Franc, and it doesn't show any sign of dropping in value.

When I first visited in 1955 it was fixed at CHF 10 to 1. Today it is CHF 1.4496 to 1.

Why don't we simply swap homes for alternate months each year?

Last edited by Ittigen; 26.04.2011 at 10:40.
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Old 26.04.2011, 18:36
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Re: Thinking of retiring in Switzerland

For general advice why not google "retiring to Switzerland" or try www. micheloud.com who have pages of general advice on what you may need to survive here. I retired here 3 years ago from the UK and it was the best move I have made, At present the exchange rate is not helpful but hopefully it will improve a little in due course. Best wishes if you decide to make the move.
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Old 26.04.2011, 18:51
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Re: Thinking of retiring in Switzerland

Chelski, in addition to researching the tax issues, make sure you research health care. You need to determine if, given your age, you will be able to get the kind of insurance you feel appropriate to meet your health needs.

You will of course get basic insurance; this is mandatory, no one can be denied, regardless of age or health history. Supplemental insurance, however, can be denied based on many factors.

Many people are quite happy with only the basic coverage. Some find it woefully inadequate.

---

We have been here many years, but have decided that we will likely not stay after retirement. Health care is one of the primary reasons behind that decision.
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Old 26.04.2011, 20:07
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Re: Thinking of retiring in Switzerland

I suggest that you spend at least one winter and one summer here before making any expensive decisions
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Old 26.04.2011, 20:37
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Re: Thinking of retiring in Switzerland

There is a Bilateral agreement in which you pay the first 300CHF claimed in a year and 10% of all claims.
All pension must come from the UK.
This is administered by the Institution Commune LAMAL Solothurn.
www.kvg.org
The documents are in English
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Old 26.04.2011, 21:11
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Re: Thinking of retiring in Switzerland

If your pension is a UK sterling one, you also need to take into account the rather poor exchange rate at the moment as it will have an effect on your ability to afford to live in CH.

Cheers,
Nick
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Old 27.04.2011, 21:13
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Re: Thinking of retiring in Switzerland

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Good Morning Chelski and welcome to EF. I suspect you may be better to check on the likelihood of obtaining a residence permit before looking at the financial details. For that others are more aquainted with the facts but I m sure a quick trawl on either the Swiss German or Romande official websites should get you there.
Thanks very much for your advice.
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Old 27.04.2011, 21:15
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Re: Thinking of retiring in Switzerland

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All your pensions and income are taxed as earned income, along with all your worldwide assets. The income tax varies, but assume about 15% total.

Once you live here there are no other fixed deductions. However, the first problem is to prove that you are able to support yourself and any spouse.

The minimum pension you will need to live on, is calculated at about CHF 1'800 per month per person. A major problem you will have is the strong Swiss Franc, and it doesn't show any sign of dropping in value.

When I first visited in 1955 it was fixed at CHF 10 to 1. Today it is CHF 1.4496 to 1.

Why don't we simply swap homes for alternate months each year?
Thanks very much for your advice. I have a personal pension which, to me, is sufficient to live on and hopefully the canton authorities will agree. Swap home? ... not a bad idea!!!
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Old 27.04.2011, 21:19
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Re: Thinking of retiring in Switzerland

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For general advice why not google "retiring to Switzerland" or try www. micheloud.com who have pages of general advice on what you may need to survive here. I retired here 3 years ago from the UK and it was the best move I have made, At present the exchange rate is not helpful but hopefully it will improve a little in due course. Best wishes if you decide to make the move.
Thanks very much for your advice. I have done lots of burning the midnight oil looking at internet sites and, indeed, Micheloud was one of the first that I reviewed. Do you know how much they charge for their services and whether it is money for something that I could easily do myself?

It would be great to seek more detailed views from you on life in Switzerland as an ex-pat retiree. As I am totally new to forums, I don't know the convention of how to do this ... are we allowed to privately correspond?
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Old 27.04.2011, 21:26
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Re: Thinking of retiring in Switzerland

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Chelski, in addition to researching the tax issues, make sure you research health care. You need to determine if, given your age, you will be able to get the kind of insurance you feel appropriate to meet your health needs.

You will of course get basic insurance; this is mandatory, no one can be denied, regardless of age or health history. Supplemental insurance, however, can be denied based on many factors.

Many people are quite happy with only the basic coverage. Some find it woefully inadequate.

---

We have been here many years, but have decided that we will likely not stay after retirement. Health care is one of the primary reasons behind that decision.
Thanks very much for your advice.

The health insurance is very much top of mind and I am doing a lot of checking. At the moment, it seems like doing the basic insurance will be ok as there are no current health problems.
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Old 27.04.2011, 21:27
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Re: Thinking of retiring in Switzerland

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I suggest that you spend at least one winter and one summer here before making any expensive decisions
Thanks very much for your advice - that is exactly our plan!
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Old 27.04.2011, 21:27
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Re: Thinking of retiring in Switzerland

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... are we allowed to privately correspond?
If you mean are members permitted to contact each other without going through the open Forum - Yes, using the Private Message facility. As a new member you only have a limited number per day though, so go easy on them. email is also a possibility but please do not put email addresses or phone numbers into normal posts - they will be deleted.

If you click on Motorsportsnorton name (when it is underlined as here) you will find the link to his profile and in the options is 'Contact Info' (tab furthest right) and in there you find the send Private Message....
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Old 27.04.2011, 21:28
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Re: Thinking of retiring in Switzerland

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There is a Bilateral agreement in which you pay the first 300CHF claimed in a year and 10% of all claims.
All pension must come from the UK.
This is administered by the Institution Commune LAMAL Solothurn.
www.kvg.org
The documents are in English
Thanks very much for your advice and link.
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Old 27.04.2011, 21:30
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Re: Thinking of retiring in Switzerland

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If your pension is a UK sterling one, you also need to take into account the rather poor exchange rate at the moment as it will have an effect on your ability to afford to live in CH.

Cheers,
Nick
Thanks very much for your advice. I am looking at the current exchange rate and a downside of 10% worsening in my cost of living calculations. Hopefully, I am not being too optimistic!!
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Old 27.04.2011, 22:29
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Re: Thinking of retiring in Switzerland

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Do you know how much they charge for their services and whether it is money for something that I could easily do myself?
A lot! And you don't need them. In fact, as an EU person they may not take you on as a client considering there is so little work for them to do it's probably not worth it (even though they charge alot! lol).

Welcome to EF & soon to CH!
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