The number of third-country nationals, obtaining Spanish residency permits surged by 3.6 per cent in 2021. | STRINGER
The latest figures show that the number of Britons officially resident in Spain has increased by 9.5 per cent from 2019 (286,753) to 2020 (300,640), 313,975 in 2021 and, as of January 1 this year, 407,000. The British now account for the third largest foreign community in Spain, officially there are only 185,000 German residents for example.
But, the big question is whether the increase in the size of the British community is due to Brexit and for Britons living in Spain to register as legal residents or is it because the Balearics and Spain continues to be a very attractive second home destination? Last year, for example, the number of third-country nationals, obtaining Spanish residency permits surged by 3.6 per cent in 2021.
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52% voted Brexit. But when the restrictions became reality that they will be treated, unless very few exceptions, as any third country, many started to moan. No more EU line for passports, limited time in any EU country, no free movement for working where you like, and suddenly for far too many started to complain and blamed other countries UK citizens where treated badly. No one loved them anymore and on top of it suggested it was all a revenge due to Brexit! I'm astonished you leave "a club" and still believe you have all the rights as when you were a member. So it's about time to make up where to live. Still according to the article UK citizens still are big buyers here. Could it be those with dual citizenship?
Well, it's a good question. Many, if not most pre-brexit Brits were never resident but eternal tourists. They could do this as EU citizens, though technically, they were supposed to be tax resident after 180 days. My observations have been that of the handful of Brits we've known here, most of them didn't have deep enough roots here to bother becoming legit resident, so moved back to blighty. Others owned flats here that they'd occupy for a few months per year, then make good money by putting it up as a tourist let the rest of the time, tax free, money in pocket, undeclared. That was before turismo changed the laws and began enforcing them. So, they couldn't Airbnb their flats tax free anymore, and sold up. The last group are the ones who have deep roots here, and pulling up those roots wasn't in the cards, so they had to register, start paying tax, get a Spanish drivers licence, et al. I suspect the last group constitute the bulk of the ones that are now showing up on the radar. It's probably a substantial number. It was easy to live under the radar before Brexit. And it's pretty hard to leave this place once you've got roots in the ground. So, they're forced to go legit, or go home.