It's just about now that the UK Council Tax kicks itself into life for the current year. I've just gone onto the council website to see what I would have been paying for my small 2 bed, 1 bath, 300 year old detached cottage on a small plot of land in Buckinghamshire. Keeping it simple, I'll call it £1750.
Looking at the cost of our 2 bed , 1 bath, 150 year old coastal apartment on the Isle of Wight, the cost would be £950, although I will admit that the local council did agree to give us a 10% discount when we were using the apartment as a second home.
Then I am forced to look at the cost to us in Portugal. Accepting that the exchange rate is now, for all intents and purposes 1 to 1, the cost here is £750. Even allowing for the 10% discount we got on the cheapest bill, that is still a saving of over £100 on the least valuable property we owned in the UK.
Hardly worth comparing, and certainly not a reason to abandon the UK, one could deduce.
True, except, for the £750 paid here, I am satisfying my civil indebtedness on a small 2 bed, 2 bath, casa antiga on a small plot of land, much akin to the cottage in Bucks. Oh, yes, and a further two apartments on the coast.
If I were to extend the cost of the two apartments in line with the IoW costs and discounts, I would be paying £950 plus £855, add the £1750 of the similar inland cottages, and arrrive at a total of £3555 for what I pay £750 here. A net saving of more than £2800, annually.
Is that any kind of reason to prefer Portugal? You're damn right it is!
More: Reasons, Part 1