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Old 04-27-2007, 07:59 AM
 
Location: new orleans
182 posts, read 751,805 times
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Oregonrain: I agree it is off topic but its also interesting to hear other people's thoughts about overseas retirement and as a single person, its something I have considered and rejected.
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Old 04-27-2007, 08:03 AM
 
Location: Journey's End
10,189 posts, read 24,906,244 times
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Please do not hesitate to add any post that feels related, even if it is off-topic.

Sharing our thoughts, experiences and desires can only benefit each of us in our own way.

Thanks to all for contributing!
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Old 04-28-2007, 10:58 AM
 
Location: Las Vegas
13,884 posts, read 25,306,858 times
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I did a lot of research on Panama, Costa Rica, Mexico, and Nicaragua. I did a little work on Margarita Island, Venezuela. All these countries want American retirees and have special deals on visas/resident status. Some require a specific monthly income or a certain amount of money deposited in one of their banks. Most will allow us to import our household goods and a car duty free. Medical care is quite good and insurance is affordable.

There are large colonies of expat Americans living in these places. Everyone has to make some money and as soon as you start looking in these gated exclusive areas, your money savings evaporate. Housing in a lot of these places is as much as it is here(in some areas). To realize true value for your dollar, you have to live like the locals live. The savings are real but there are strings attached. Some of this depends on where you live now. If you are from SoCal, it's a bargain! I recently looked at a new housing development close to Cancun, MX. 32K will buy a brand new home 3br 2 ba 10 min from the beach. The lots are small and they don't build closets. You are expected to build them after you buy the house! But you can hire a local carpenter for $15 per day.

Anyone who does this needs to be prepared for the cultural isolation of living outside the US. I would suggest anyone seriously considering this should rent and live in the country of their choice for a year or so. Lots of us are not well suited to living outside the US. Things are different. It might take you a year to get a phone or your electric and water bills may need to be paid in person on alternate Tuesdays! I have lived in other countries and loved it but the cultural isolation is still something I had to factor into the equation. Work is another consideration. We can own a business that employs local people. We can do work from home or internet based activities. We can't do anything that takes a job away from a local person. They expect us to be retired.

The work thing is what finally made me decide to stay in the US. If I have to buy the 60'' plasma TV, a vacation to India, or wonderama landscaping in my backyard, I can get a job to pay for it. Or if I find I am just bored, a part time job may be the answer.

Most of the Americans I met were very happy with their choice. One notable exception was a woman whose SO had been diagnosed with Alzheimers. She was finding it very hard to deal with the disease in a foreign country.
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Old 04-28-2007, 12:10 PM
 
942 posts, read 1,066,069 times
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Yes I agree the work thing. I work part time now, and that was difficult to find here, let alone trying to in the countries mentioned. One has to be careful with the retirement info that is published and to what retiree it is actually being marketed to, its not me. Retiring to Panama or Costa Rica or some Del Webb community outside Las Vegas or Austin, whereever they may be is geared to certain segments of the retired population. I don't feel these places are geared to people that are going to be working or the majority of them that is. So it does not bother me to remain in the USA at least on most issues that is, I would feel isolated in a number of these overseas locations.
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Old 05-01-2007, 09:43 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
34,672 posts, read 33,671,635 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ontheroad View Post
Some of the posts got me thinking, what are the different issues that come up for the single person retired or planning to retire vs. the issues couple's consider?

I know that if I had a partner, some of my choices might be different: perhaps more rural and less populated; possibly more socially challenging. But alone, I am trying to find a balance between what I most want and what is likely to satisfy me in the short and long run, knowing full well I'll be making compromises.

What are your thoughts?
As a single person, just like in non-retired life, I can pretty much do whatever I want and since I have been divorced for 16 years, I'm capable of doing things for myself. That is, I don't see too much difference in being non-retired and single and being retired and single. I'm still in my 50's though. I might think differently if I was older and/or in poor health.

The best part is not having to compromise. It's sort of like when you want to see an action movie and your spouse wants to see a romantic comedy and you settle on the number 3 choice on both of your lists, a horror movie. Neither one of you is really seeing the movie you want to see. That carries over into retirement when spouses have to compromise on where to live, what to do and who to socialize with.

I retired when I wanted to retire. I retired when I thought I had enough of an annuity to live on. I figured out what I wanted to do in retirement then researched and found a place to live that offered the things I want to do. I visited the place by making the 9.5 hour drive, staying for a week and checking out things and the people who lived there to make sure it jived with the research. For months, I read the local news and community events pages of the local newspaper in the new place on a daily basis leading up to my move (this month). I think I have a good feel for the town. I also read a ton of books related to the retirement mindset and attended a retirement mindset seminar (meaning it wasn't about finances).

I planned one move 12 years ago when I was still working (and single) so a move in retirement is not that traumatic. In other words, if you have been doing for yourself as a single non-retiree, doing for yourself as a single retiree isn't all that different including the act of moving to a new state. You can do it. The married people who "feel sorry for you" may think you are superman/superwoman (you're not, it's just not that hard and they never had to do it alone so the idea of it is scary to them) or someone to be pitied (you aren't, you're going to your Number 1 choice place unlike they did when they compromised with a spouse).

Here's where I might see a negative difference - if you are single and a very social person, and you relied on your work environment for your social activities/contacts, retirement will be harder on you than a married person who socializes with their spouse. The realization that you will see those people less and less is something some people are unprepared for. I would say move away first, then in the new place try to incorporate your former solitary activities into an environment where you are more likely to meet people. For example, if you like to fish, take some fishing classes, join a local fishing club, get a part-time job as a clerk in a sporting goods store where you will have the opportunity to talk to people with similar interests and may meet someone to fish with you. If you like to read, join a book discussion group, volunteer at the library, do part-time work at a bookstore. Consider volunteering for one time or annual town events to meet a variety of people rather than volunteering for a single organization until you figure out if volunteering is for you. In other words, there is more pressure on you to meet people as a single retiree than there is on the retiree with a spouse. On the other hand, you are not going to be clobbering the retired spouse that is now getting underfoot 24/7 and making you crazy.

Figure out what you want to do in retirement and then find the best place to do those things easily. Put yourself in a position where you are likely to meet people who like to do the same things you like to do (to make friends with similar interests). You can do this easier than a married person.

Last edited by LauraC; 05-01-2007 at 10:00 AM..
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Old 05-01-2007, 10:08 AM
 
942 posts, read 1,066,069 times
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That was an excellent post.
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Old 05-01-2007, 10:38 AM
 
Location: new orleans
182 posts, read 751,805 times
Reputation: 83
Thanks LauraC: I second the motion that it was a great post and I think your insight into the work and friends is right on.
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Old 05-01-2007, 01:21 PM
 
Location: Journey's End
10,189 posts, read 24,906,244 times
Reputation: 3840
Thanks for sharing your POV, LauraC.

I think I took several things for granted: that I would be finished with the idea of working; that I wasn't that attached to my home town (NYC) or all my buddies and (c) that having lived in one of the biggest cities in the States, I could imagine the benefits of a smaller town.

I was wrong on all accounts--but then I am dumb
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Old 05-02-2007, 06:28 AM
 
Location: new orleans
182 posts, read 751,805 times
Reputation: 83
But ontheroad:

nothing ventured nothing gained..
its the journey not the arrival
lets see what other platitudes apply.......

I don't want to one day wake up being bitter 70 year old woman because I didn't try something....which is why I move from New Orleans in search of teaching and now that I've done it would like to go back but......
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Old 05-02-2007, 09:43 AM
 
Location: Journey's End
10,189 posts, read 24,906,244 times
Reputation: 3840
I agree, and that's why I've taken as many risks, adventures and journeys I've been able to fit into this life.

My previous post was rather tongue in cheek--hard to see my cheek, though!


Quote:
Originally Posted by stormweary View Post
But ontheroad:

nothing ventured nothing gained..
its the journey not the arrival
lets see what other platitudes apply.......

I don't want to one day wake up being bitter 70 year old woman because I didn't try something....which is why I move from New Orleans in search of teaching and now that I've done it would like to go back but......
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