Getting the right work/life balance

05 May 2023

Moving lock stock and barrel to a new location is a big decision to make. Whether the motivation for the move is a change in lifestyle, career progression or taxation driven, it’s an exciting prospect. But navigating the inevitable residency, employment and other requirements may seem daunting. Luckily, relocating to Guernsey is pretty straightforward, and the local ‘Locate Guernsey’ team acts as the main point of contact within the island’s government to coordinate and assist with all business and personal relocation requirements.

The island’s two-tier property market offers straightforward residency options. For those looking to relocate to Guernsey for work, employment permits (issued on a short or long-term basis) are available for certain specialised roles, providing residency within the island’s local market. Individuals moving to take up new roles will often be bringing the entire family. Unlike many other jurisdictions, a spouse or partner of the permit holder can seek work freely which, as Jo Stoddart, Director of Locate Guernsey told us, is a benefit for both parties.

“Many other jurisdictions have restrictions in place that mean a spouse or partner of an employment permit holder isn’t allowed to work. In Guernsey that isn’t the case, so a partner doesn’t necessarily have to put their career on hold. For the island, this means that we are gaining additional skilled individuals who are entering the employment market.

“We do have instances where a partner will take the opportunity to move into a completely new area perhaps working within the charitable sector, re-training in a new role, or even setting up a small business. Guernsey offers lots of options.”

It’s also possible to set up a business or relocate one to Guernsey. Setting up a company can be done quickly and with a minimum of fuss. If the business owner holds a British or Irish Passport or Settled Status in the UK, it’s straightforward. However for nationals of other countries, an application would need to be made for an Entrepreneur Visa. This means that for new start-ups, a minimum investment of £200,000 is required and the business performance will be reviewed after a two-year period. The island has a ‘can do’ attitude to business and its entrepreneurial spirit and willingness to adapt to world markets have resulted in many centuries of commercial success across many industries. A low tax regime, as well as a world-class legal and professional services network, makes Guernsey an attractive option for entrepreneurs.

There are approximately 1,600 properties on the island on the open market housing register. Residents of these properties can work in the island as much or as little as they wish. It’s as simple as that; there are no wealth tests or governmental assessments to meet.

People are increasingly seeking a better work/life balance. Consequently, Guernsey continues to prove an attractive relocation proposition. Forget the three hour commute, instead residents can be on the beach within half an hour of leaving work and enjoy quality family time. Although many people initially consider relocating to Guernsey because of its favourable tax regime, ultimately they move here and stay thanks to the fantastic quality of life which islanders enjoy. If you are relocating with your family and want to explore employment options, or if you are settingup a new operation/moving an existing business and need staff, get in touch.

Find our list of the key employment information you’ll need here:

NB anyone who is not a UK or Irish passport holder or has the right to remain in the UK will need to gain immigration clearance in addition to any employment-related permit to relocate to Guernsey. Regulations are currently under review and subject to change. Visit for up-to-date information and the latest guidance.