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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We have made the decision, as Ann is retiring in June, and I am already retired (since the grand old age of 53) to move to Cyprus on a permanent basis. We'll probably be heading off at the beginning of 2013 (unless we get even more hacked off with the government and the weather before then). I was based there for three years during my army service and there used to be a slot car club at RAF Akrotiri but that was in the 1970s.

Has anyone come across any slot racing out there, perhaps when out on holiday? I really do not fancy relocating the Bexhill Scale Slot Car Club/High Beech Slot Club out there - especially as it looks as if we are buying a villa in a village called Pissouri. That way madness lies.

Martin
 

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Horlicks Hero
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I know a couple of guys in Limassol with tracks. One's English, the other is Cypriot. One of our own well known members here travels from IOM to Cyprus fairly regularly. I also know the Hornby importer on the island. Slot cars are not well known there; they seem to prefer RC cars. I used to go to the school fairs and use my track for fundraising events, like this one...


When you get to Pissouri, pop into the Limanaki restaurant and say hello to the owner, Sam. He's a great guy and will take very good care of you. His food is truly excellent, and remarkably good value.

Now that's out of the way, I have to ask if you are absolutely certain that you want to live there. Words can't express just how bad an idea it is to buy property in Cyprus. Droves of Brits that retired there are returning to the UK as the switch to the Euro has made everything massively expensive, and they are unable to sell their properties due to the deeds problem or because the buildings are so badly built they are no longer habitable. Add to that the still questionable power situation after the island's main power station was destroyed last July, and you may not be headed for the gentle relaxing retirement you might be expecting. Even vast hordes of the Russians are returning home.

Living in Cyprus as an expat is a lot different to going there on holiday or even being stationed there. The mentality has changed, and 'Cyprus Hospitality' is just not what it was. I love the island, and its rich history, and I would go there for a fortnight's holiday any time. But after sticking it out for three years, I soooooo don't want to live there any more. I came back to the UK last September in the aftermath of the power station incident, and even though the bureaucracy here in the UK is mind boggling, at least you can get help. Dealing with the government/health service in Cyprus is a nightmare.

If you aren't aware of last year's incident, here's a before and after picture... http://robotpig.net/extras/cyprus_zygi/. And a news article to get you started... http://news.sky.com/home/world-news/article/16028048. I had to drive past it on my way to the airport about four hours after the blast. The motorway was still littered with smashed cars and debris. It looked like a war zone.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks both for the info regarding slot car tracks and also your take on life in Cyprus as an expat. I know the island very well, having lived there for three years (albeit many years ago), have holidayed there many times in the last decade and have also spent time there with friends for months. Many of our friends live on the island, and we hear all the gripes and moans, as well as all the highs.

Ann has suggested we rent somewhere for a year or two first, to make sure we really want to commit ourselves fully. As far as prices are concerned, I have done my homework very carefully. The tax advantages for us are - as I am sure you are aware - enormous, and both of my pensions and Ann's pension wil keep their index-linking. We have not yet decided to sell our UK property, and may let it.

As with all of these situations, and no matter how many fact-finding expeditions you make (and how many expat friends on Cyprus you consult), there is only one thing which is certain. You have to stick your toe in the water to see what it is like.

We are going out for a month or two in April, and again in October, to check out the latest situation and then ...

We have friends in Pissouri and look forward to making their acquaintance again. I'll say hello to Sam. Thanks again.

Martin
 

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As long as you go into it with your eyes wide open, I wish you all the best with it. Our philosophy has always been that it is much better to try something and know than to chicken out and always be left wondering what might have been. Renting for a while first sounds like a *great* plan. When you get settled, give me a shout, and I'll try and put you in touch with the guys in Limassol.
 

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Dave Capelen
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Hi Martin

Good luck out in Cyprus. I'm the one stoooo was referring to, who travels out there fairly regularly from the Isle of Man. I stay in Peyia, just inland from Coral Bay, the other side of Paphos from Pissouri. I did try and meet up with stoooo last year, but didn't quite make it.

I'm usually out there in September/October, and hope to make it out this year in May and maybe in between too. I have some Scalextric track out there, which I use to test cars on, as I tend to build some when I'm there: in between trips to the pool and fridge, of course.

As stoooo has said, the movement in the Euro against sterling, the general economic downturn, the power station explosion, less overseas property buyers and other factors have all affected the value you can get for your Pound and the cost of housing. I bought for the long term in 2008 and have seen the cost of living in Cyprus (particularly food, electricity and petrol) rise dramatically since then. I retired from my old day job last September, but moving there isn't as attractive for me, as there is no Double Taxation Treaty between the IOM and Cyprus.

PM me if you'd like my e-mail address and I'll let you know when I've decided when I'll go out there.

Cheers
Dave
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hi Dave,

PM sent.

Martin
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
QUOTE (stoooo @ 26 Jan 2012, 00:45) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>As long as you go into it with your eyes wide open, I wish you all the best with it. Our philosophy has always been that it is much better to try something and know than to chicken out and always be left wondering what might have been. Renting for a while first sounds like a *great* plan. When you get settled, give me a shout, and I'll try and put you in touch with the guys in Limassol.

No matter how much research you do, there's no substitute for experience. The cost of living is not an issue as we would be living there for the lifestyle - and that's priceless. I can see from my visits that prices are rising, but - all in all - life in Britain is expensive and there is not the same attraction to living here as there once was.

Renting is an option that appears sensible - especially if we decide on permanent residence. I suspect that the housing market in Cyprus may well offer some real bargains in the next coupe of years. Really tough for those wanting to sell up and return to the UK, but every cloud ...

Martin
 

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QUOTE (BexhillSlotCars @ 26 Jan 2012, 09:46) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Renting is an option that appears sensible - especially if we decide on permanent residence. I suspect that the housing market in Cyprus may well offer some real bargains in the next coupe of years. Really tough for those wanting to sell up and return to the UK, but every cloud ...
Sounds like a plan. But please be wary of the many pitfalls of buying a property there as and when the time seems right. Don't buy a place without the proper title deeds being available, or one where the developer still has a mortgage of his own on it. And especially don't buy a new place off-plan; it might not actually be finished during your lifetime.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Stoooo,

Point taken about property. There are too many sad tales on the expat forum to ignore that advice.

Martin
 
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