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Old 01-16-2018, 12:21 AM
 
Location: Silicon Valley
16,975 posts, read 20,873,405 times
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I moved to Mexico with the idea of retiring early, and it was the worst mistake of my life.

People in the US think that they must leave the country to get a better deal than they currently have. But, they don't really look at other options within the US first.

Most other countries won't give you all of the amenities, freedoms, security, etc., that you have in the U.S. Not when you really look at the facts.

Unfortunately, just like me, most people won't be talked out of their idea that they must leave the U.S. to get a better deal.

If I could convince them of just one thing, based on my experience of doing it and wishing I hadn't - I'd tell them to not sell their property. To first go live there at least a full year, without coming back to the US, before selling their US property. And without going back to the US for healthcare or any other reason.

Buy everything locally - all of your groceries, hardware, everything you need, get internet and cable TV and electricity and a phone number. See how easy that all works out, at least. I am chuckling at the memory of myself trying to get a phone number and internet and how I had to find someone local to bribe someone at the phone company to get me a phone number, after living without one for over 6 months....on and on.

You don't get to move the U.S. quality of life to another country for just a cheaper price, but just as much security and trustworthy insurance, etc. I knew Canadian friends I met who bought a property and then relatives of the sellers came out of the woodwork claiming ownership. You also can't trust your property ownership, because title insurance doesn't exist. Basically, when you move out of the US, you get what you pay for. If you're lucky LOL.

So, don't sell the farm. Go check it out. If you decide it's not for you, come back to your farm. I wish I hadn't sold mine. Just sayin'.
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Old 01-19-2018, 02:41 AM
 
1,622 posts, read 895,713 times
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I got a visa for retirement at age 50, for Thailand. Been in Chiang Mai for four years. Not perfect, but very nice for the price. Driving is horrendous, but I live in a superb location by a top university, and can walk about everywhere, including three hospitals, a 24 hour dental emergency clinic, and an international airport. Western food is expensive; Thai food is cheap and good, but you better like spicy. I will probably be back at 65 for Medicare, but a voucher plan like Romney had would be win-win. I pay Tokio Marine 105 per month for 250 deductible and a million in coverage. Covers accident and sickness. To me the biggest ripoffs in the US are dental, medical, and most services...all much less here. I go to Immigration once per year, pay 58 bucks, and show my bank account. 90 day reports online.
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Old 01-20-2018, 11:26 AM
 
Location: equator
2,649 posts, read 1,151,845 times
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Sorry it hasn't worked out for some, but for us it has. We retired to Ecuador 18 months ago, and couldn't be happier. I'm looking at a huge, deserted beach and crashing waves right now from my bed. We have built-in friendships and social occasions here at our condo, plus a thriving expat community.


According to the Retirement Forum, we had a "Lifetime of poor decisions" LOL. Love that phrase.


But we were able to retire here on a fraction of what "they say" you need. And that list the OP posted? did anyone notice those costs are "per person"? Not very cheap when doubled for a couple.


We are getting by just fine on less than $1,500 a month for both of us.


Health care, taxes and insurance is what drove us out of the U.S. The national plan here is $80 per couple.
Husband just spent 3 days in the hospital---no paperwork, no co-pay, no deductible. Only difference besides that, was no TV in the room.
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Old 01-20-2018, 12:34 PM
 
Location: Oklahoma City, OK
3,647 posts, read 3,919,148 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sand&Salt View Post
Sorry it hasn't worked out for some, but for us it has. We retired to Ecuador 18 months ago, and couldn't be happier. I'm looking at a huge, deserted beach and crashing waves right now from my bed. We have built-in friendships and social occasions here at our condo, plus a thriving expat community.


According to the Retirement Forum, we had a "Lifetime of poor decisions" LOL. Love that phrase.


But we were able to retire here on a fraction of what "they say" you need. And that list the OP posted? did anyone notice those costs are "per person"? Not very cheap when doubled for a couple.


We are getting by just fine on less than $1,500 a month for both of us.


Health care, taxes and insurance is what drove us out of the U.S. The national plan here is $80 per couple.
Husband just spent 3 days in the hospital---no paperwork, no co-pay, no deductible. Only difference besides that, was no TV in the room.
I've f'd up a marriage and had my finances f'd up by the great recession. I had to start completely over at 44. So I'm really looking into this, preferably a country that isn't only inexpensive, but one where the women like American men. I want another chance at marriage and I won't get it living where I live now. So this is a 5-7 year plan before I'm too old. Adding Ecuador to the list of countries. Medellin, Colombia is also one of my top 2-3.
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Old 01-20-2018, 12:48 PM
 
1,622 posts, read 895,713 times
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A friend likes Armenia, Colombia.
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Old 01-20-2018, 01:25 PM
 
Location: East Coast of the United States
15,753 posts, read 18,383,632 times
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My father worked in the United States for 25 years and retired in the mid-1990s. He took all of his assets, bought a piece of land near a major city in India and built a house.

It turns that it was the best financial decision he ever made. His investment has appreciated at least 300% since that time and the cost of living there is still very low.

This is an excellent thread. Wish it could be pinned.
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Old 01-21-2018, 12:26 PM
 
510 posts, read 420,548 times
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Out of this list, I think the best is Portugal.

You are in Europe, you are in one of the most advanced technological wise countries in terms of everyday life. Great infra structures for the most part - speaking of Lisbon mostly here - good roads, great outdoor life, great beaches and very cheap.

Until 4 years ago, you could have a 1400 sq foot high end apartment in the most center of the city for about 140k dollars. Now its pricier since a lot of people "rediscovered" the city lifestyle and are moving from suburbs to city again.

If you don;t like being in the city center of everything, then you can have big Villas by the beach, within 30 minutes of the city center and public transportation available for about 100$ sq foot.

Example:



25 acres of gardens... tennis court, swimming pool, 6500 sq ft ... horse stables ... 750k dollars

of course this is a huge property... plenty of smaller properties:



This one for 340k ... and you are 200 yds away from desert beaches..and this one is still considered big.

Plenty of cheaper things.

With 1500$/month a single person can live like a "king" almost. Consider than going out to eat costs about 10-15$ person with full meals including wine ... food at supermarkets is cheap and good quality - normal beef looks like grass fed beef organic sold at US grocery stores. Drinks are cheap, you can expect to pay 1-1.5 dollars for a pint at a restaurant. Supermarket expect to pay 20 cents a bottle.

Internet+TV+Cell Phone+Landline is cheap. Usually all together will cost you 25$/month with 100/100 Mbps speeds ... on the other hand, gas is expensive like any other european country... and electricity is 2x as expensive as in US (based on 10cents per kwh) ... public transportation is cheap however... a monthly pass is about 40$ for subways, bus and train.
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Old 01-21-2018, 04:54 PM
 
11,827 posts, read 5,615,485 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NoMoreSnowForMe View Post
I tried this and ended up with a fresh new love of my country, and won't ever consider moving anywhere outside the US again. Maybe visit. But, never to live.

I, like many, got into a mindset that I had to leave the entire country to get out of the situation I was in, in a particular city/county/state. But, right within our own country, there are very affordable places. And you'll understand the language, the customs, body language, can trust the police departments, as well as insurance companies and mortgage insurance, just on and on.

My advice is to keep looking for what you want within the US. And travel for fun. Been there. Wish I hadn't sold the condo first. So, add that to my advice - if you do decide to try living outside the US, rent your house for at least a year, while living in a different country (and rent there, too) and then decide if you still want to sell it and stay.
Yeah I found out I can't even stand living outside Texas, so another country would be a no-go! Also, Texas is pretty low cost of living. It's pretty hard to beat unless the place is highly dangerous. I'd probably do better to move to more rural South if I wanted to live cheaper than Mexico or wherever.
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Old 01-21-2018, 05:10 PM
 
Location: Central IL
13,637 posts, read 7,307,015 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adjusterjack View Post
Thailand sounds good. I understand that the $1000 per month living cost includes a live-in female companion.

...might be a maid with no extra benefits...but that works better for me!
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Old 01-21-2018, 10:08 PM
 
Location: Silicon Valley
16,975 posts, read 20,873,405 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jencam View Post
Yeah I found out I can't even stand living outside Texas, so another country would be a no-go! Also, Texas is pretty low cost of living. It's pretty hard to beat unless the place is highly dangerous. I'd probably do better to move to more rural South if I wanted to live cheaper than Mexico or wherever.
Smart thinking. There is a really good reason - actually many reasons - why people want to move to the US instead of stay in their own country.

So, I guess at minimum, a person should look at how many people from the country they are thinking of emigrating to - would rather live in the US.

For instance, when I moved to Mexico, educated Mexicans with advanced degrees asked me why on earth I'd rather live in Mexico when they were all trying to get to the US.

You just really need to look at things through their eyes and not with blinders on.

It's pretty impossible to get a better deal outside the U.S.

So, the smart thing to do is to find the best deal for you, personally, within the U.S. Because it's most likely here, and they just haven't explored all of their options yet.

Living outside the U.S., at least in third world countries, is a bit scary. There are police with automatic weapons on the streets, and you don't have the same protections you have in the U.S. And it's common for the "cops" to want a bribe for "protection" if you run a business. The Mexicans I met who had small grocery stores in the neighborhood, told me they couldn't wait to be able to move to the states, so they wouldn't have to pay all of their profits to the local police for "protection." They told me they were amazed to learn that in the states the cops actually helped you, instead of bled you dry with bribes in order to stay in business.

People just have some kind of fairyland idea of some cheap paradise outside the US. My experience led me to the point where I'm happy to pay my fair share of taxes in order to have the protections I get here in the US.

As I say, there's a reason pretty much everyone would rather live here than anywhere else. So, just take a minute and think about that, before you do something stupid like sell your property in the US and lose it all to the thieves on the internet assuring you that life will be better somewhere else.

I did just that. Stupidest thing I ever did. Hope to stop others from doing the same thing. But, unfortunately, I've learned that nobody will listen to logic. They want to believe the dream. Oh well. I tried.
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