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Inexpensive Mediterranean climate for retirement?
Old 01-18-2016, 01:57 PM   #1
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Inexpensive Mediterranean climate for retirement?

Hi, I'm brand new to E-R. We'll be empty nesters in 2018 and anticipate retiring, downsizing and moving from our home in Virginia sometime after then. I'm originally from Sonoma County and desperately miss my dry CA summers without mosquitos, chiggers or AC. As much as I'd love to move back there, housing prices are crazy to the point where it just doesn't make economic sense until/unless the bubble pops.

Having said that, I would love to compile a list of suitable domestic or intl retirement destinations that have a Mediterranean climate and a low or moderate COL. I would prefer being within 30 miles of the coast so a far inland climate (with hotter summers) wouldn't be my first choice.

Looking forward to your responses!


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Old 01-18-2016, 02:11 PM   #2
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If you go outside the touristic areas - Sicily meets your criteria. Climate is similar to San Diego (think citrus and palm trees and bougenvilla).

Southern Sicily has great beaches and great weather. But the places I'm thinking of - you'd need to learn Italian.
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Old 01-18-2016, 02:57 PM   #3
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To get a Mediterranean climate, there's nothing like, er, going to the Mediterranean. It may not be cheap, however.

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Old 01-18-2016, 05:56 PM   #4
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The only good places in the Mediterranean to live are members of the EU. Unless you're a college student, forget getting a Visa to live within the EU. The Schengen Agreement states that U.S. citizens can only stay in the EU 90 days out of 180 days. The UK is not included. Obviously, the EU countries are not allowing Americans coming over to use their National Healthcare systems.

We're going to visit Malta 4/29. Although it's just south of Sicily, they speak English and Maltese there. And it looks like a glorious place to live. I don't know about being a US expatriate and living there, however.
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Old 01-18-2016, 06:05 PM   #5
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Cape Town South Africa has a Mediterranean climate. Is it cheap?
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Old 01-18-2016, 06:05 PM   #6
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I've heard good things about Costa Rica and Panama if you want to live outside US. There are some reasonable places in Florida Keys. We watch a show Beachfront Bargains on HGTV that you may want to checkout.

Just observations, I never lived any of these places, but may be starting place to explore.
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Old 01-18-2016, 07:06 PM   #7
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Rabat? Tangier? Oran?

Also Pacific side of Baja California


If these sound a little dicey to you, realize that in the US, coastal California is it. And a very nice it!

Ha
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Old 01-18-2016, 07:09 PM   #8
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We're going to visit Malta 4/29. Although it's just south of Sicily, they speak English and Maltese there. And it looks like a glorious place to live. I don't know about being a US expatriate and living there, however.
I thought Malta was in the EU? Regardless, my father was stationed there in the early 1960's, so I was there about 10-11 years old. It is a nice, warm sunny
place.
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Old 01-18-2016, 07:10 PM   #9
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Some parts of the southern cone of South America, such as Montevideo Uruguay, Buenos Aires Argentina, and central Chile.
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Old 01-18-2016, 07:17 PM   #10
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... We're going to visit Malta 4/29. Although it's just south of Sicily, they speak English and Maltese there. And it looks like a glorious place to live. I don't know about being a US expatriate and living there, however.
I have not been to Malta, but have thought of visiting for some time. Malta has a program to grant permanent residency to retirees who can demonstrate some income or net worth. The requirements are rather modest at EUR 24,000 annual income or EUR 350,000 networth.

Malta used to be part of the UK Commonwealth and only became a republic in 1974. So, the fact that English is spoken makes it easy for an American expatriate.

See: Taking up Residence in Malta: Conditions of Retiring in Malta - Legal Malta.
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Old 01-18-2016, 07:58 PM   #11
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Rabat? Tangier? Oran?

Also Pacific side of Baja California


If these sound a little dicey to you, realize that in the US, coastal California is it. And a very nice it!

Ha
How about east coast? US Virgin Islands, or Puetro Rico?
My friend got a small home on gulf side of Fla for about $200K
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Old 01-18-2016, 08:17 PM   #12
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New Zealand around Auckland. You can retire there, but bring money
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Old 01-18-2016, 08:55 PM   #13
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To get a Mediterranean climate, there's nothing like, er, going to the Mediterranean. It may not be cheap, however.

Thought I should provide a bit of background.

The above song, Méditerranéenne, sung by Hervé Vilard with French lyrics is originally a hit Italian pop song by Toto Cutugno released in 1983.

While the original song was written about being a real Italian ("l'italiano vero"), the French lyrics is about falling in love with a gypsy girl in Saintes-Maries, a town in the marshland of Camargue of France, a bit west of Marseilles.

From the Web:
Lasciatemi cantare / Let me sing
con la chitarra in mano / with a guitar in my hand
lasciatemi cantare / Let me sing
sono l'italiano / I am an Italian.

Buongiorno Italia gli spaghetti al dente / Good Morning Italy with your spaghetti al dente
e un partigiano come Presidente / and your partisan for President
con l'autoradio sempre nella mano destra / and always fiddling with the car radio with your right hand
e un canarino sopra la finestra / and keeping a canary above the window

Buongiorno Italia con i tuoi artisti / Good Morning Italy with your artists
con troppa America sui manifesti / with too much of America in your posters
con le canzoni con amore / with your songs of love
con il cuore / with heart
con piu' donne sempre meno suore / with more and more women and less and less nuns


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Old 01-18-2016, 09:14 PM   #14
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Cape Town South Africa has a Mediterranean climate. Is it cheap?
We found Cape Town to be very cheap for vacations. Food and wine were stunning, and 60 bucks for dinners for 4 including 2 bottles of wine. Not sure about long term housing, and they have serious immigration issues from other parts of Africa. Stellenbosch was breathtaking.
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Old 01-18-2016, 09:19 PM   #15
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I've heard good things about Albania but never done much due diligence on the place. It's pretty cheap and looks beautiful in pictures.

Southern Spain is fairly inexpensive (prices are similar to southeastern USA from what I've seen). I've been following Bucking the Trend blog for a few years and they moved from the upper Midwest to Spain for a year of early retirement (with 2 kids!) and decided to extend their stay. They obtained a non-lucrative resident visa to stay for 1+ years. I think the weather is like the southeastern US minus the humidity (cool, sometimes cold winters; excellent spring and fall; hot but dry during the peak of summer).

I bet there's somewhere in southern CA where property prices aren't ridiculous if you keep driving inland from the coast. Some would call those areas armpits, and that's probably where you'll find the sweet spot of price and climate (if not culture).
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Inexpensive Mediterranean climate for retirement?
Old 01-18-2016, 09:20 PM   #16
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Inexpensive Mediterranean climate for retirement?

I recently saw a list of top international destinations had Abruzzo as an affordable area in Italy with coast and nearby mountains, similar to California. Also Algarve, Portugal. I do not know anymore than what the article said:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/kathle...b_8917292.html


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Old 01-18-2016, 09:58 PM   #17
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We found Cape Town to be very cheap for vacations. Food and wine were stunning, and 60 bucks for dinners for 4 including 2 bottles of wine. Not sure about long term housing, and they have serious immigration issues from other parts of Africa. Stellenbosch was breathtaking.
Got to understand the crime situation before you move your family to South Africa

But the boerwurst and biltong is excellent.

Ha
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Old 01-19-2016, 12:09 AM   #18
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The 55+ housing areas / retirement complexes in California tend to have lower prices than regular homes, though they still are generally more expensive than housing in other states.
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Old 01-19-2016, 12:55 AM   #19
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The west coast of Mexico has the climate you're looking for, but the threat of violence there might still be unacceptable.

Look around a little bit more in Sonoma County. There are still some reasonable places to be had there, especially if you don't need a villa or McMansion. That's where we plan to retire as empty-nesters later this year.
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Old 01-19-2016, 01:18 AM   #20
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What about Croatia? Never been but supposedly more affordable than neighbor Italy to the west.

Yeah southern Spain was overbuilt supposedly during the housing bubble 10-15 years ago. In fact I remember seeing one House Hunters International ep. from several years ago where a young couple, who lived more inland, was looking for a weekend condo near the coast. Apparently buying second homes was common back then. They were nondescript condos but with ocean views.

The thing is, a lot of these areas are nothing but resort areas which has mostly vacation rental housing and not much else going on the rest of the year.
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