Remain supporters eye move to Spain after Brexit vote

Remain supporters eye move to Spain after Brexit vote
Photo: AFP
The number of British citizens looking to move abroad has increased by 30 percent since Britain voted to leave the EU, with Spain one of the top destinations.

Many Britons unhappy with the result of the recent vote to leave the European Union are considering a move abroad; a recent study by the London School of Economics concluded that as many as ten percent of 18- to 25-year-olds who voted to ‘Remain’ are now considering leaving the country.

And far from being put off moving to Europe, where they are now unsure of their rights, many Brits are seriously thinking about making the move.

Spanish real estate agency Lucas Fox International Properties told The Local that it had registered an upswing in enquiries from UK-based clients interested in moving to Spain following the UK’s decision to leave the EU.

Brits are especially interested in moving to Spain's three biggest cities: Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia, where there are more job opportunities, the realtor said. 

Sebastian King, a 22-year-old living in the South of England working in financial services, contacted the real estate company just a few days after the result, claiming he felt ‘disconnected’ with the UK following the decision to leave the EU.

“I have been looking to move to Valencia for a year or so now but the Brexit result made me want to get a move on,” King says. “For me Valencia has it all – the climate, it’s exciting, full of history and culture as well as having a beach.

“Overall, I think Spain has lots of potential and for my business it is an ideal place to expand, thanks to a cheaper workforce. When I compare the UK to Spain, I see Brits simply surviving whilst the Spanish are really living”

The fall of the pound has made it more expensive for Brits thinking about moving to Spain, but not everyone is put off by the hike in prices.

“I appreciate that it is still early days but we don’t expect it to overly affect our day-to-day business,” Lucas Fox co-founder Alexander Vaughan told The Local.

“Spain will always have an appeal for the British even though it may become marginally more expensive for them holidaying or buying here. In the long term, British buyers should still benefit significantly if they buy property in Spain.”

And Brexit could have an unexpectedly good impact on the Spanish property market.

“We are hopeful that we may even see the positive impact of Brexit on the Spanish real estate market,” said Vaughan.

“Many non-European buyers have started looking at alternative city locations to London which also have good property investment potential. There is also the prospect of some London-based banks and financial institutions moving some of their staff from London to Madrid.”

It might not just be Brits eyeing a move to Spain; with their future in the UK currently up in the air and a rise in xenophobic attacks following the referendum, it might not be long before Spanish expats in the UK decide it might be time to return to Spain.  

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