'Ambitious, but necessary': the European Union should get ready to admit new members by 2030, EU chief Charles Michel says
One of the most controversial factors of the Brexit debate was the freedom of movement. Photo: AFP/FREDERICK FLORIN AFP News

Since the UK officially left the European Union in 2016, British nationals can only spend up to 90 days, within a total period of 180 days, in any EU member country.

While tourists from the UK are still exempt from buying a Schengen Visa, UK nationals are unable to study, or work in European nations without an appropriate visa – considering the UK has been named as a 'third country'.

Staying in one of the 27 EU member states for longer than 90 days, could result in a fine, immediate deportation or being banned from returning to the country.

The UK nationals who are homeowners in Spain have been hit the hardest by Brexit's restrictions and are unable to enjoy their properties freely.

According to official figures, around 800,000 to one million Britons own a property in Spain – predominantly near the coastline.

Amongst the mass number of second-home owners, just 370,000 said that they have already registered as residents and have the right to move freely between the UK and Spain.

After leaving the EU, the homeowners who are without residency, are unable to visit their holiday homes without planning how long they will be in the Schengen area, which includes the Netherlands, Czech Republic, Poland, Austria, Germany, Malta, Iceland, Portugal, Greece, Spain, Italy, France and more.

However, there has been progress towards a potential scrapping of the 90-day rule in Spain.

Hector Gomez, Spain's acting Minister of Industry, Trade and Tourism, hinted that Madrid may be considering a lift in the 90-day cap for UK Nationals who are second-home owners.

According to Gomes, the Spanish government have already hosted an "important meeting at the Foreign Office with the Director of Consular Affairs and Crisis, Jennifer Anderson, in which they discussed issues of interest regarding the stays of British tourists in Spain and discussed collaboration projects for future seasons".

The Spanish government has also declared that it will continue to push the immigration amendments onto EU members in Brussels, persuading them with talks of economic recovery and financial gain.

According to reports, Madrid has also recognised how banning UK nationals, including non-EU second homeowners, for six months each year is counter-productive and only punishes those who may not have even voted in favour of Brexit.

The limits on tourism, employment and emigration only has a negative effect on Spain's economy, the government also claimed.

This news comes after the French Senate passed a legislation amendment that immediately allowed British second-home owners in France long-term visa rights.

The emergency bill amendment, which was considered a rebellion against EU lawmakers and member-states, was then discussed by the French National Assembly.

After discussing the new changes, which would have allowed British second-home owners immediate long-stay rights, the legislation was rejected and dubbed "unconstitutional" by a French court.

Although the amendments were already approved by the two houses of the French Senate, without an appeal in France's Constitutional Court, the decision to reject the adapted immigration bill is final.

Since leaving the EU, French students who have resided in the UK for years, have also faced the brunt of Brexit.

In a conversation with Magali, a 21-year-old French passport holder, she told International Business Times UK: "The post-Brexit situation has caused important decisions in my life as a student because my degree is now not recognised abroad and I cannot work in my field in my home country."

"My mum was a mature student and was studying during the Brexit referendum, she moved back to France after 5 years of work only to find out that her master's degree is now not recognised," she added.