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Re: ER overseas
Old 05-16-2005, 01:40 PM   #21
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Re: ER overseas

Quote:
Originally Posted by dougdo
It's certainly an interesting way to find out how it would feel to ER overseas. Going down and renting a house for 4 months is a very different experience than traveling for 4 months.* Probably I'll end up spending more and more time somewhere and less and less somewhere else and that will really determine where home is.
Hi DougDo!

This is intersting, I would like to hear more about your experiences down there. I spent some time in Costa Rica some years ago and enjoyed it. But I wasn't alone and there seemed to be lots of gringos especially in San Jose but also out in the countryside, so it was pretty easy to have companions.

When you go to Guatamala, is that what you do? Rent a place for 3 or 4 months? In Antigua, or out in the boonies?
What does something like that cost you? Is it farly easy to find social connections, even with no work associates to depend on?

Mikey
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Re: ER overseas
Old 05-16-2005, 08:57 PM   #22
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Re: ER overseas

Guatemala 2003-2004 a friend and I rented the top floor of a house in Antigua: two bedrooms, two bathrooms, our own kitchen and big rooftop deck and hammocks. All for $100US/month each!* Of course, there's much cheaper in Guatemala but this was a good deal for what it was.

I was doing the language school thing off and on for most of the time there so that was my main way of making connections. But if I actually lived there for more than a few months I'm not sure what it would be like since I got the impression that most people were just passing through. If I went back and spent the whole winter there or longer I think I'd go to San Marcos in Lago Atitlan. Amazing place--full of counter culture types offering massages, yoga, meditation, etc. And very cheap too. Here's a link to my Guatemala page if you want to read more and see pics: Travel Blogs Guatemala.*

And here's one of my fave pics of Lago Atitlan:


Costa Rica had a lot more expats and also a lot more educated locals so I feel like it's easier to make connections there. I hung out with Ticos (Costa Ricans) and foreigners in equal numbers there but found I had trouble connecting with Guatemalans in Guatemala on a social level. Of course prices are higher in Costa Rica.* I rented a 2 bedroom/2 bath house in the jungle in Costa Rica this winter for $550/month. Of course, it was the whole house plus a 1/4 acre so not really comparable to the Antigua one.

Doug.
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Re: ER overseas
Old 05-16-2005, 09:09 PM   #23
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Re: ER overseas

Doug, any experience with Panama?

I have heard from many sources that Panama is the best retirement location for a number of reasons.
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Re: ER overseas
Old 05-16-2005, 10:53 PM   #24
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Re: ER overseas

Thanks Doug. I'll look at your Guatamala blog. I read some of the Costa Rica blog that I think linked off your friend's article.

Nice writing.

Mikey
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Re: ER overseas
Old 05-17-2005, 10:38 PM   #25
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Re: ER overseas

Doug,
my old boss is ER'd in Antigua Guatemala and loves it. Here is a link to their place if you are ever there and want to stop by. They are right near the train station. Have restored a guest house and rent mostly to aid workers and people coming to Guatemala to adopt babies.

http://www.cernikovsky.com/
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Re: ER overseas
Old 05-18-2005, 07:20 AM   #26
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Re: ER overseas

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Originally Posted by wildcat
I Could some people post their observations, tips or experiences?* Sounds significantly cheaper to spend a few retirements years overseas but what do you do about a home base?* *
It's definately cheaper for me in Thailand. Here I spend USD $1 k permonth. I rent an apartment and walk out my window to get to the pool (abot 75 feet)

I don't use a mail forwarding service; my sister forwards the crital stuff (ATM card, credit cards.) I use the internet for investment & banking statements, mutual fund management, etc. I even call my parents online (Net 2 Phone, US 4 cents per minute.)

No home base for me-I sold the house, car, etc before moving here. I did visit 5 times before relocating here though.

Not for everybody but works for me.

Lance
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Re: ER overseas
Old 05-18-2005, 10:50 AM   #27
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Re: ER overseas

Hey ESRBob, I know that Antigua house! Used to walk by there every day. Beautiful house from the outside for sure--no idea it had rental apts.

GTM, regarding Panama, I've been very curious about it myself but haven't been. I've heard many of the same things and planned to go this winter but never did. I've heard Panama City has everything, and it's on the coast unlike the Costa Rican and Guatemalan cities (although that means it's very hot).

A friend considered the Bocas del Tora area of Panama (on the caribbean side) which is very big right now, really being discovered, but finally put it aside as a little too caribbean in attitude, i.e. not much gets done and chose the carbbean coast of Costa Rica.
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Re: ER overseas
Old 05-18-2005, 12:47 PM   #28
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Re: ER overseas

Quote:
Originally Posted by dougdo
I've spent 4-6 months each of the last two years in Costa Rica

Here's an article a friend wrote on the topic of ER in Costa Rica: Living in Paradise
I'm surprised that none of this has yet mentioned Costa Rican surfing...
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Re: ER overseas
Old 05-18-2005, 02:21 PM   #29
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Re: ER overseas

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Originally Posted by Nords
I'm surprised that none of this has yet mentioned Costa Rican surfing...
This would've been the perfect winter to add surfing to my slacker resume..sigh. I had the best of intentions, there was a great beginner/intermediate surf beach just a few minutes from my house...
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Re: ER overseas
Old 05-18-2005, 09:25 PM   #30
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Re: ER overseas

My wife and I took a vacation in Panama in January, some time in Panama City, but most time on the Pacific side, some in the mountains (Boquete, Volcan, Guadalupe) and little in a beach resort (Las Olas). None in Bocas.

I think Panama is very possible, although places like Boquete have had a large influx of "gringos" and the prices have gone up accordingly -- and perhaps made the place more homogenized and less interesting. We loved the mountain areas (including Boquete) and it's still possible to find reasonable prices, depending on what you want. But prices are going up quickly in some areas.

PC is also very interesting. There's a HUGE amount of condo building going on there--perhaps being over-built. One of the reasons is they offer a 20-year abatement of property taxes on new construction, so people who have only 10 or so years left look for a new place to extend while those laws are still intact (there's some speculation that this will not last). I certainly wouldn't buy now, but wait and see what happens. My wife and I liked the city, vibrant, busy (noisy! you want to be careful where you live!), lots of great restaurants (at very reasonable prices), etc. Cabs to most places in the city were less than $2.

Here's an apartment for rent, NOT cheap by Panamanian standards or ours even, but see what's possible for not too much money ($750/mo): http://www.time-to-relax.com/apt.htm

You can get much cheaper apartments, depending on what you want, how much space you need, where you want to live, etc. As I say, I wouldn't buy now anyway -- there may be much bigger bargains down the road.

Panama also has a retirement visa (Pensionado), which has some advantages to non-Panamanians. You have to prove that you have at least $500/mo pension income (plus another $100 for each dependent). They also currently have a 90-day tourist visa, although there's also been discussion on the various yahoo boards (go to yahoo boards and search Panama) that this may end. The yahoo Panama boards have gone downhill, in my estimation, with too long discussion of small topics and not much real help figuring out what it'd be like for an American (or Canadian) to live there. But look back for specific topics and you can find out a fair amount.

I would also say that the more US-like infrastructure (due to our long ownership of the canal) makes it more attractive to some. In Panama they also use the USD (called the Bolivar) -- same $ as here, the coins are minted there, but the same size and values. All very easy!

All-in-all, my wife and I would consider Panama for retirement (but also Thailand like Lance, or a PT lifestyle like the Terhorsts or the Kaderli's -- in fact, the PT lifestyle is what attracts us more than anything else right now).

Best wishes as you contemplate possibilities!

Richard
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Re: ER overseas
Old 05-23-2005, 06:59 PM   #31
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Re: ER overseas

I/We (wife and 2.3 kids) are considering RE (temporarily) 3 to 5 yrs) in Brasil. I think we could do it as my budget in Brasil would be 25k and my savings 401K, IRA's, personal and house is 750K which is 3.3% withdrawl rate. I would rent there to lower the risk of the govt stealing the money which they have done in the past. We are still a growing family so i probably would not retire permantenly. I would like about 1.2 to 1.5MM to finish up. With some luck and time likely I would go at 50 to 55.
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Re: ER overseas
Old 05-23-2005, 09:01 PM   #32
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Re: ER overseas

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I/We (wife and 2.3 kids) are considering RE (temporarily) 3 to 5 yrs) in Brasil
Wouldn't that be awfully difficult to move back into a cubicle after several years of freedom?

Sometimes I want to quit for a while but my fear is that there is no way that I would ever want to go back. I am trying to hang onto my job for as long as I can (within reason of course, just a couple of years)

Vicky
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Re: ER overseas
Old 05-24-2005, 05:57 AM   #33
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Re: ER overseas

Yes,

That is a struggle for me too. I would like the kids to learn portuguese before they start 1st grade so my drop dead date is sometime next year to go. But first I may have a possibility to move back to my home (living 15 hours away) and let the kids grow up there. my preference is to go back home. If that happens then I can ER in about 10 years while living where I want and working from home.

But i do worry about getting off the train at 40 and having a difficult time getting back on if need be.

job
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Re: ER overseas
Old 05-26-2005, 10:06 AM   #34
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Re: ER overseas

obryanjf , why brasil? Sounds like you have some continuing connection with the country since you spell it correctly (i.e., not Brazil)! I would be interested in where you are locating in brasil as my wife (a brasilian) and I are thinking of buying a second home there. We are looking for a beachfront home in the Buzios or northern brasil area. The dollar is falling rapidly, so our plans may have to go on hold. It would be nice to find a fellow ERer in brasil!
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Re: ER overseas
Old 05-27-2005, 06:12 AM   #35
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Re: ER overseas

My wife is from Brasil and the 2 children and both passports. We would move to floripa (i cannot spell the right way). She is originally from Porto Allegre but her family lives in the Floripa area now. It ia a wonderful place, lots of beaches, country side if you like and a city center if you like. Take a peek at www.ifloripa.com to get a flavor. The cost of living is low, so it is really possible to get by on little if want to. It is easy to get an apt or condo and live on or near the beach.

I have travelled in the South mostly, but recently went to Salvador. Great place for what you can see in a couple of days. Lots of beaches, low cost of living and lots of great weather.

I would not care much for Rio or SP, just too crowded and the crime is getting terrible.

On ER'g there, if my move back to KY while keeping my job does not work out , then my plan is to cuts the rope and go to Brasil for at least 3 maybe 5 years.

Additional thoughts or caveats.

job
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Re: ER overseas
Old 05-28-2005, 12:59 AM   #36
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Re: ER overseas

I'm a great booster of ER overseas but only if you're doing it because you're attracted by the culture of the place you're going to. If you're going because the dollars and cents make your ER dream a reality...well...i'm guessing in the end you'll be disillusioned or become one of those loony ex-pats

Since your wife is from Brazil that's probably not your motivation but passing this on for general interest.

Part of the appeal for ER for me is to get away from our comsumer culture and rat race. Not that this doesn't exist elsewhere but seems lower in the priority scale some other places. This was a rant on why I travel: I Choose Something Else
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Re: ER overseas
Old 05-28-2005, 09:12 PM   #37
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Re: ER overseas

Doug,
Loved your riffs, especially the second one. My best thinking is still done sitting right here staring out the window of my study. Travel seems to have a lot of logistics and accomodating that rarely gives me the time to really unwind and think the way I can at home where I've got everything organized, my exercise routines, my right diet etc. But my hat's off to you if you find the opposite --- and I think then that the semi-perpetual-traveller lifestyle will probably bring you the clarity about the 'something else' you're seeking.
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Re: ER overseas
Old 05-29-2005, 05:02 AM   #38
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Re: ER overseas

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Originally Posted by ESRBob
Doug,
Loved your riffs, especially the second one.* My best thinking is still done sitting right here staring out the window of my study.* Travel seems to have a lot of logistics and accomodating that rarely gives me the time to really unwind and think the way I can at home where I've got everything organized, my exercise routines, my right diet etc.* But my hat's off to you if you find the opposite --- and I think then that the semi-perpetual-traveller lifestyle will probably bring you the clarity about the 'something else' you're seeking.
Hello ESRBob! I feel just the same. I think perpetual traveling
is great for those who enjoy it. I would not. And, it's not an age thing. I felt exactly the same when I was a young man. It's not
that I didn't enjoy some travel and still do (I'm doing a lot in June),
just that I really need my home base (bases). When I first
learned about the Terhorsts, I didn't understand it (PT) at all.
It still has absolutely no appeal.

JG
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Re: ER overseas (Brasil)
Old 05-31-2005, 02:57 PM   #39
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Re: ER overseas (Brasil)

Como Via, gente?!

My wife (a Brasileira ) and I hope to be able to do a 6 month/ 6 month thing when we retire. Unfortunately, right now we're in Texas and fleeing the summer here means dealing with 'winter' there (kind of chilly and rainy). I think our plan might be to move to some cheapish northern area in the USA with pleasant summers. I recently saw some areas in upstate NY that were surprisingly affordable. Are there any others out there that plan a part time overseas retirement?

Jeff
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Re: ER overseas
Old 06-01-2005, 11:29 AM   #40
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Re: ER overseas

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