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Young UK family seeks advice for our new adventure

Young UK family seeks advice for our new adventure

Old Apr 12th 2016, 7:25 am
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Post Young UK family seeks advice for our new adventure

Hello Everybody,

Me, my wife and 2 kids (8 years old boy and 10 month baby girl) looking to move to Malaysia by end of June and stay there for at least 1 or 2 years to see if this move is right for us before we commit to the MM2H.

My wife is a freelance makeup artist/teacher and I work from home on my own business which is online. I have recently structured my company as offshore and now looking to be non-resident of UK for the benefit of lower tax and put it towards more on better lifestyle and my children education. We are thinking of home schooling our boy.

In 2 weeks, we are going to Hong Kong for few days to setup business bank account and than stay in Malaysia for 3 weeks to figure out which area will be best for us.

We have some questions which would really helps us if you can answer them:

1). We don't know anybody there, we would love to get involved in groups or family activities, we like eating out, playing games, watching movies etc Which area would be suitable for this?

2). We be entering Malaysia with 3 month tourist visa, and at the end of each 3 months, we plan to travel various countries for 7 to 10 days as we love travelling and exploring. Will there be any issues re-newing our visa?

3). We are thinking if we should sell our UK house funitures and applicances or ship them over to Malaysia. Can I ship them to Malaysia with my tourist visa?

4). Are normal standard furnitures/appliances cheaper than UK? Where's the best places to shop around?

5). We initialy want to stay in mordern service apartments for the first year, get to know the local community and how things work before we eventually look for a mordern bunglow type of property. Which areas are the nice service apartments and bunglow?

Many thanks for reading my post

Warm Regards
Sahan
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Old Apr 12th 2016, 8:50 am
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Default Re: Young UK family seeks advice for our new adventure

Don't sell UK house or furniture or whatever until you are 100% sure you will be happy overseas.
And even then think twice.
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Old Apr 12th 2016, 8:52 am
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Default Re: Young UK family seeks advice for our new adventure

We won't be selling the house, we putting it on rent.
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Old Apr 12th 2016, 11:21 am
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Default Re: Young UK family seeks advice for our new adventure

Hello and Welcome to the forum

Please see my responses below in Red.


Originally Posted by sahan

We have some questions which would really helps us if you can answer them:

1). We don't know anybody there, we would love to get involved in groups or family activities, we like eating out, playing games, watching movies etc Which area would be suitable for this?

2). We be entering Malaysia with 3 month tourist visa, and at the end of each 3 months, we plan to travel various countries for 7 to 10 days as we love travelling and exploring. Will there be any issues re-newing our visa?

Yes, quite possibly. You would be an illegal visa runner. Some folks get away with it. Other folks do not and get sent back to home country. You will be taking a big chance.

3). We are thinking if we should sell our UK house funitures and applicances or ship them over to Malaysia. Can I ship them to Malaysia with my tourist visa?

No you cannot. At least, you will most likely be taxed heavily. Don't think about it.

If you get MM2H, you can then ship over your effects tax free.


4). Are normal standard furnitures/appliances cheaper than UK? Where's the best places to shop around?

Not really cheaper. Best places? Depends what you are buying and where you will be living.

5). We initialy want to stay in mordern service apartments for the first year, get to know the local community and how things work before we eventually look for a mordern bunglow type of property. Which areas are the nice service apartments and bunglow?

Which part of Malaysia?

Many thanks for reading my post

Warm Regards
Sahan

Have you been to Malaysia before? Do you know the different areas?

Noted that you will be in Malaysia for 3 weeks to check out. Where are you going to be staying? KL? Penang? Melaka?

You will need a valid visa to live here long term.

Education visa (for your child) is a possibility. MM2H might be a better option if you can meet the requirements easily.

With MM2H, you are NOT committing yourself long term. You can come and go as you please. You can also easily chuck in the visa if it doesn't work out for you.

In your shoes, I think I would check out Malaysia on your holiday. See how it feels for you. If after a week or so, you really warm to the place, go have a chat with a good MM2H agent. If you're going to Penang, I can personally recommend Alter Domus. Chat over with them. They won't charge you anything until you decide to go ahead with MM2H. Advice is free.

If you're going to KL, I have also used Yvonne at Joy-Stay and she will give you good advice.

Both of these agents are well-known and you will find many on here who have used both. They also have good websites so check them out.

And, if you want to chat more about MM2H, we have a dedicated section on this forum here:
Retirement and MM2H - British Expats

Last edited by bakedbean; Apr 12th 2016 at 11:24 am. Reason: correction
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Old Apr 12th 2016, 12:34 pm
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Default Re: Young UK family seeks advice for our new adventure

Originally Posted by sahan
In 2 weeks, we are going to Hong Kong for few days to setup business bank account....
Without wishing to pour cold water on your plans, sahan, are you quite sure they will do this for you?
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Old Apr 12th 2016, 1:16 pm
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Default Re: Young UK family seeks advice for our new adventure

Originally Posted by InVinoVeritas
Without wishing to pour cold water on your plans, sahan, are you quite sure they will do this for you?
I agree. Without evidence of a fixed place of abode, or even a fixed country of abode, I would be sceptical that a bank in Hong Kong would open an account for someone who isn't even a citizen/legal resident of Hong Kong.
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Old Apr 12th 2016, 1:57 pm
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Default Re: Young UK family seeks advice for our new adventure

Originally Posted by Pulaski
I agree. Without evidence of a fixed place of abode, or even a fixed country of abode, I would be sceptical that a bank in Hong Kong would open an account for someone who isn't even a citizen/legal resident of Hong Kong.
The OP says has set up an offshore business structure and is opening a business account. HK has tightened its rules considerably over the last year so I just wanted to know if he is sure they will open an account for him.
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Old Apr 12th 2016, 2:02 pm
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Default Re: Young UK family seeks advice for our new adventure

Originally Posted by InVinoVeritas
.... HK has tightened its rules considerably over the last year so ....
That is my understanding too.
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Old Apr 12th 2016, 4:31 pm
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Default Re: Young UK family seeks advice for our new adventure

Originally Posted by sahan
....We be entering Malaysia with 3 month tourist visa, and at the end of each 3 months, we plan to travel various countries for 7 to 10 days as we love travelling and exploring. Will there be any issues re-newing our visa?
Hi,
If you are planning on doing visa runs: a) with kids and b) 3 or more times a year, I recommend you don't. You could get into a real mess. Much better to get an appropriate visa like MM2H.

See: Malaysia Steps up Pressure on People Doing Visa Runs

When returning into Malaysia you risk being detained at the airport, being locked up until deported to your home country, and not being allowed to return to your apartment in Malaysia to retrieve any belongings, and getting your passports stamped as persona non grata preventing you to returning to Malaysia for several years. I don't think it's worth the risk.

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Old Apr 12th 2016, 7:39 pm
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Default Re: Young UK family seeks advice for our new adventure

Thank you all for your kind reply.

Opening a business bank account in HK not a problem. I have already opened a company in HK and I have an 3 year old LLC company in USA, and about to open a company in Seychelles. I have appointment with the bank manager in HK and I have already given all the paper works via email such as Monthly statements of business accounts, Invoice from supplier, Website of the products and ID's. Bank manager happy and now all is needed for me to turn up and sign.

So don't believe anyone you can't, I have hired a tax specialist who is charging me an arm and a leg to set this up legally.

My only concern is visa run, as I am getting lots of different answers. Need to find someone in Malaysia who does this with family. May be I might not rent my UK house out, just locked it up for a year.

We be looking at Penang, maybe Melaka, KL and slighty outside of KL.
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Old Apr 12th 2016, 8:43 pm
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Default Re: Young UK family seeks advice for our new adventure

Sounds good for HK.

As for Malaysia visa runs, I guess there will be lots of different answers on the internet because there is no official rule, it is down to the discretion of the immigration officer and the answers you give to his questions. Your disadvantage is your age and the age of your son. You are clearly not retired and your son is clearly of school age so it's difficult to claim you are touring round Asia with multiple visits to the same country.

On another subject, even if you are absent from the UK it may be difficult to satisfy the IR that you are non-UK resident. I think they will ask for a tax certificate from the country in which you claim to be resident. In Malaysia that will require you to show passport stamps proving you are here for more than 6 months - but to be here more than 6 months you would need a visa. Bit of a Catch 22.
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Old Apr 12th 2016, 9:37 pm
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Default Re: Young UK family seeks advice for our new adventure

Originally Posted by InVinoVeritas
Sounds good for HK.

As for Malaysia visa runs, I guess there will be lots of different answers on the internet because there is no official rule, it is down to the discretion of the immigration officer and the answers you give to his questions. Your disadvantage is your age and the age of your son. You are clearly not retired and your son is clearly of school age so it's difficult to claim you are touring round Asia with multiple visits to the same country.

On another subject, even if you are absent from the UK it may be difficult to satisfy the IR that you are non-UK resident. I think they will ask for a tax certificate from the country in which you claim to be resident. In Malaysia that will require you to show passport stamps proving you are here for more than 6 months - but to be here more than 6 months you would need a visa. Bit of a Catch 22.
What IVV says is mostly correct in that HMRC will not release you from your tax burden for income derived in the UK unless you can get a tax number from the Malaysian authorities. But for income derived off-shore you should not need to notify HMRC if you are not a UK tax resident. Renting out your house is of course UK derived income as would be any interest on investments you maintain there. You will also need to time your departure carefully. You only have about a week left to leave the UK if you want to be 'automatically non-resident' in the UK for this tax year. The other way to escape UK taxation in this year is to complete 6 months (183 days actually) in Malaysia before December 31st. Dangerous, if you plan to go down this route via visa runs as JC3 has pointed out. Starting today I doubt you will get your MM2H visa before the beginning of July so you are not going to escape tax this financial year.

Take a step back, visit Malaysia a couple of times this year on holiday and then if you are still convinced it is the right thing to do plan your escape for 6th April 2017
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Old Apr 12th 2016, 9:50 pm
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Default Re: Young UK family seeks advice for our new adventure

Originally Posted by NeonHippy
But for income derived off-shore you should not need to notify HMRC if you are not a UK tax resident.
But he is a UK tax resident.
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Old Apr 12th 2016, 9:54 pm
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Default Re: Young UK family seeks advice for our new adventure

Originally Posted by InVinoVeritas
But he is a UK tax resident.
At the moment yes, but not if he leaves the UK PDQ. If he doesn't get his skates on he will be tax resident even after leaving the UK.
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Old Apr 12th 2016, 10:01 pm
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Default Re: Young UK family seeks advice for our new adventure

Hi Sahan,

In your plans it might be worth noting that you will need to pay tax on your rental income if you rent out a property in the UK.
If you live abroad for 6 months or more per year, you’re classed as a ‘non-resident landlord’ by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) - even if you’re a UK resident for tax purposes.

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