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Should you retire overseas
Old 02-06-2015, 11:24 AM   #1
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Should you retire overseas

I'm new here but noticed the sticky topic on countries that offer retirement visas. As someone who has spent most of my retirement years living in various countries, retiring overseas is a topic I am fairly familiar with and have experience of.

When I see the sticky on 'what countries offer retirement visas', the first thing that comes to my mind is that you first have to decide whether it is a good idea to retire overseas.

There are various factors that influence that decision and having an understanding of them before you go looking for a country to retire in only makes sense.

So I thought I would start a thread on the various factors that come to my mind that someone should consider to help make that decision. Some may seem quite obvious but my experience is that some people miss even the most obvious.

One of the most obvious is the effect currency exchange rates have on your retirement income. If your income is derived in one country and you choose to live in another country then fluctations in exchange rates will result in your 'local income' going up and down with those fluctuations. The question then becomes, how to deal with those fluctuations?

As an example, many Brits who retired to Spain in the last couple of decades saw their income fall drastically due to fluctuations in the British Pound to the Euro. In recent years, they have been returning to the UK in droves because they could no longer afford to live in their 'villla with a pool' in Spain.

Many people also tend to think things will be much the same in their new home country. An example of that is that in some countries if you leave your home to say visit family or travel, a squatter may move in to your empty home. On your return, you find that to get them out of your home is a major legal battle. To avoid it, some people hire someone to live in their home while they are absent. That additional cost can obviously impact just how often and for how long you can afford to leave.

People go to a new country and buy a home. That often turns out to be a mistake. I always suggest that it is better to rent for at least one year and preferably two before buying anything. You need to find out if you are likely to 'stick'.

In my experience (no statistical data, just personal observation) for every 10 people that move to their 'retirement paradise', 5 leave within 2 years and probably 8 are gone by 5 years. Only 1 or 2 actually 'stick'. There are two factors worth understanding about this.

One, the primary reason people don't stick is simply an inability to adapt to 'different'. It's not like home and the smallest differences can become major annoyances to some people. Once they start down the road of , 'I don't like this or that', they may begin to concentrate on the negatives rather than the positives. Not everyone is suited to living in another country. Some people simply 'miss home, family and friends' In other words they suffer from homesickness. I understand the concept but have no idea of what it feels like. Some people may realize that is the case for them but most people who entertain the idea of living in another country have no way of knowing until they try it. Back to the rent for a year or two till you find out.

Second, in many places where it is popular for retirees to move to, the locals are well aware of how many don't stick and want to sell up and move back home. Consequently, while it is easy to buy it is not easy to sell. At least not at the price you bought for. Locals know you want to leave and the offers to buy your house suffer accordingly. Of all the people I have seen move to their 'retirement paradise' in other countries, not one ever left with more money than they arrived with. That's not an absolute. No doubt someone did decide to leave and did manage to find another 'foreigner' who was still wearing rose coloured glasses and bought the house for more than they had paid. But that's the exception to the general rule. The general rule is they lose money.

People tend to concentrate on the financial factors when looking at retiring to another country. The bigggest attraction other than weather is always the lower cost of living. But you have to ask yourself WHY there is a lower cost of living.

When there is a lower cost of living there is generally a lower standard in everything. That could mean many things. For example, frequent and prolonged power 'brown outs'. Poor quality drinking water. Don't expect a fully equipped ambulance with paramedics on board to arrive within 5 minutes of a call. Corrupt officals and a culture in which bribery is the norm. Want the electricity turned on to your new house? You can wait a month or you can get it done tomorrow if you bride someone. Have you ever heard of doctors in a hospital that your family give 'gifts of money' to, to insure you get attention? I have. Have you ever heard of hospitals where family brings in your meals during your stay, or you don't eat? I have. Both of those exist in Greece which is not a particularly low cost of living country anymore.

If you retire to France or Australia or any real first world country, many of those issues don't exist. But they are not low cost of living countries. So retiring to a Caribbean island or Central American country may not be as wonderful as some people think it will be.

That is not to say you can't enjoy a comfortable retirement in some low cost of living countries but it usually requires that you have money. More money than you might have thought. A country that will give you a retirement visa if you can show an income of $1000 a month is not necessarily a country you want to retire in. Yes you can live on that amount but you may not like the way you have to live to do it.

Anyway, those are a few initial factors to get the ball rolling if anyone is interested in the topic and wants to discuss it.
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Old 02-06-2015, 11:57 AM   #2
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Hey, you must have forgotten, it's all good all the time.

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Old 02-06-2015, 12:31 PM   #3
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Thanks for your insightful comments, Sojourning. Although this isn't something we've considered personally, I know others who are either considering it or have made that decision. You raise some really good points.
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Old 02-06-2015, 11:58 PM   #4
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Very excellent advice to rent for a few years first.
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Old 02-07-2015, 01:50 AM   #5
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A friend of mine is retiring to Thailand this year. He has been preparing for this for several years. He has been there about 9 times. He is dating a Thai girl that he will probably marry. He is keeping a house here in the US as a backup though. I'm going to visit him this summer so I will get an up close view of the situation.
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Old 02-07-2015, 09:01 AM   #6
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Go there and rent for at least six months during the worst-weather seasons. That's the only way to have a chance of knowing, IMO.
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Old 02-07-2015, 10:21 AM   #7
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Martyp, your friend's plan raises immediate Red Flags with me. Oh so many Red Flags. If I were a betting man (I only ever bet on sure things and winners and never buy lottery tickets), I'd bet against him.
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Old 02-07-2015, 10:29 AM   #8
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Interesting post, with good advice.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sojourning View Post
In my experience (no statistical data, just personal observation) for every 10 people that move to their 'retirement paradise', 5 leave within 2 years and probably 8 are gone by 5 years. Only 1 or 2 actually 'stick'.
I'm someone who has spent relatively little time on foreign vacation travel, but have enjoyed it quite a bit. In my thinking about this topic, I don't necessarily expect a move I might make to a foreign location during retirement would be a permanent one. It is very likely I would be part of that 80-90%, but that doesn't mean a decision to leave would be a "fail".

Sojourner, I have the impression that my attitude is the exception among the expats you have met. Reading this post, it seems you have seen relatively few who think of an overseas relocation as a temporary stop.

One other observation: I am sure there are plenty of examples of relocation remorse and financial miscalculations among retirees staying within the 50 states. If the foreign relocation drop-out rate is 80%, I would think some of the risks should be compared to the more mainstream "moving to Florida" retirement scenarios.

No criticisms intended. I'm just looking for some context as I try to get my head around the points you have made.
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Old 02-07-2015, 10:34 AM   #9
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The few people I have know who have successfully retired abroad have been either:

1. Low income (usually SS only) and living in a cheap country that allows them to stretch their dollars. I am thinking of people I knew in the 70's who retired to Mexico after the peso was hugely devalued. For them the negatives are not as bad as scratching it out in the USA. But, one thing they had to do was live like a native. A well off native, but still a native.

Or

2. People who are returning to their country of origin. Obviously, these are immigrants who are retiring to the country of their birth where they still have family, speak the language fluently, and know most of the ropes.

Some of them are both #1 and #2.
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Old 02-07-2015, 11:28 AM   #10
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As I wrote in my OP, "those are a few initial factors to get the ball rolling if anyone is interested in the topic and wants to discuss it."

So onward. My comments were about those who do plan to move permanently Htown. I wasn't trying to cover every scenario in one post. I agree some may plan to 'sojourn'.

Nor do I even see those who plan to move permanently and then don't 'stick' as being a failure. it's not about good or bad, right or wrong, failing or succeeding. People who don't 'stick' for whatever reason, haven't failed in my eyes, they've just discovered that it isn't for them. On to the next idea. Living in an RV or on a boat sailing around the world for the rest of their life maybe, who knows.

I would say you are right in that I have met more people who move intending to stay permanently than who move intending to stay a while and then move on. Why that is I don't know but again, without statistical evidence, I would say that is the case.

In my own case, I was quite clear on why I wanted to achieve financial independence. I wanted the freedom to get up each morning and say, 'so what to I want to do today' and that included stay where I was or move on to somewhere else, whether for a day or a year. Travel has always been a big part of my life and was a major reason for wanting to retire. I left 'home' very soon after retiring.

I spent the first year, living in the south of France (Antibes) and doing some crewing on sailboats before ending up in Greece and asking a bartender, 'I'm in Greece, what Greek island should I visit?' He suggested Rhodes and so I got on a ferry expecting to spend maybe a week (7 days) seeing the island before moving on. I stayed for 7 years.

When I would meet tourists and they heard I had been on the island for several years, some would ask, 'what made you decide to stay on the island?' My honest answer was always, 'I never actually decided to stay, I just haven't decided to leave yet.'

I still had no intention to leave when I went to the UK to buy a classic car. I planned to drive it back to Greece. Instead, I bought the car and then met a woman while visiting Scotland. I left the car there, flew back to Rhodes and packed up and left in one week. I then lived in Scotland for 6.5 years and got married.

Since then my wife and I have lived in several more countries for varying periods of time. I am pretty much a 'rolling stone' and do really see it as 'home is where you hang your hat' today. I understand the concept of 'homesickness' but have no idea what it feels like.

Regarding the 80% drop out rate, remember, I have no statistical evidence, just personal observation. But those observations are over a 26 year period and from living in various countries. However, in comparing it to staying in your home country, I would not expect the relocation remorse (good term Htown) or financial miscalculations to be the same. This is a topic that does go to 'should you retire overseas'.

If you retire in your home country, you know almost through osmosis how things work. If you retire overseas, you do not. That difference can have a big impact. For example, for some unknown reason, a lot of people seem to leave their common sense at home when they go to another country. If you watch TV programs like 'House Hunters International', you will see some episodes with retirees who have decided to retire overseas.

Some of them have never been to the place they pick, go for a week, are shown some houses (on the show) and buy one. In one week, with no knowledge of the place, the people, the infrastructure, the real estate laws, etc. they buy a house!

When you move to another country it's almost as if you lose all the general knowledge of how things work that you have gained over a lifetime and that can result in some bad decisions if you go at things to quickly. Retiring in your home country does not have that same risk factor. So it would seem to be common sense that you take it slowly and yet many do not.

I don't know if that helps you with context Htown but I'm happy to respond further if you have any other points you want to discuss.

Chuckanut, I agree that for some with a very low income, it can be better but only if their expectations are equally as low.

Returning to a home country is of course very common with some nationalities. I know many Greeks in that situation for example. Sell up the restaurant and house in New Jersey and return to their island with an income that was relatively high compared to locals. But for purposes of this discussion, I would not include them in the discussion. They aren't really moving 'overseas', they're moving 'home.' They do face issues depending on how long they have been away but that's a whole other topic. For now, I'm only talking about the person who has no real ties to the country in which they decide to retire.
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Old 02-07-2015, 11:45 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by martyp View Post
A friend of mine is retiring to Thailand this year. He has been preparing for this for several years. He has been there about 9 times. He is dating a Thai girl that he will probably marry. He is keeping a house here in the US as a backup though. I'm going to visit him this summer so I will get an up close view of the situation.
This is probably the main reason for many (senior) people to retire to Thailand. I had a co-worker (with good bank accounts) who retired to Thailand at his early 60s (or late 50s) and took his young partner back to our office a few times. The lady was young but looked really ugly (IMO). The co-worker ended up dead last year at 72 when he was in the U.S. to visit his family.
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Old 02-07-2015, 11:48 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sojourning View Post
I'm new here but noticed the sticky topic on countries that offer retirement visas. As someone who has spent most of my retirement years living in various countries, retiring overseas is a topic I am fairly familiar with and have experience of.

When I see the sticky on 'what countries offer retirement visas', the first thing that comes to my mind is that you first have to decide whether it is a good idea to retire overseas.

There are various factors that influence that decision and having an understanding of them before you go looking for a country to retire in only makes sense.

So I thought I would start a thread on the various factors that come to my mind that someone should consider to help make that decision. Some may seem quite obvious but my experience is that some people miss even the most obvious.

One of the most obvious is the effect currency exchange rates have on your retirement income. If your income is derived in one country and you choose to live in another country then fluctations in exchange rates will result in your 'local income' going up and down with those fluctuations. The question then becomes, how to deal with those fluctuations?

As an example, many Brits who retired to Spain in the last couple of decades saw their income fall drastically due to fluctuations in the British Pound to the Euro. In recent years, they have been returning to the UK in droves because they could no longer afford to live in their 'villla with a pool' in Spain.

Many people also tend to think things will be much the same in their new home country. An example of that is that in some countries if you leave your home to say visit family or travel, a squatter may move in to your empty home. On your return, you find that to get them out of your home is a major legal battle. To avoid it, some people hire someone to live in their home while they are absent. That additional cost can obviously impact just how often and for how long you can afford to leave.

People go to a new country and buy a home. That often turns out to be a mistake. I always suggest that it is better to rent for at least one year and preferably two before buying anything. You need to find out if you are likely to 'stick'.

In my experience (no statistical data, just personal observation) for every 10 people that move to their 'retirement paradise', 5 leave within 2 years and probably 8 are gone by 5 years. Only 1 or 2 actually 'stick'. There are two factors worth understanding about this.

One, the primary reason people don't stick is simply an inability to adapt to 'different'. It's not like home and the smallest differences can become major annoyances to some people. Once they start down the road of , 'I don't like this or that', they may begin to concentrate on the negatives rather than the positives. Not everyone is suited to living in another country. Some people simply 'miss home, family and friends' In other words they suffer from homesickness. I understand the concept but have no idea of what it feels like. Some people may realize that is the case for them but most people who entertain the idea of living in another country have no way of knowing until they try it. Back to the rent for a year or two till you find out.

Second, in many places where it is popular for retirees to move to, the locals are well aware of how many don't stick and want to sell up and move back home. Consequently, while it is easy to buy it is not easy to sell. At least not at the price you bought for. Locals know you want to leave and the offers to buy your house suffer accordingly. Of all the people I have seen move to their 'retirement paradise' in other countries, not one ever left with more money than they arrived with. That's not an absolute. No doubt someone did decide to leave and did manage to find another 'foreigner' who was still wearing rose coloured glasses and bought the house for more than they had paid. But that's the exception to the general rule. The general rule is they lose money.

People tend to concentrate on the financial factors when looking at retiring to another country. The bigggest attraction other than weather is always the lower cost of living. But you have to ask yourself WHY there is a lower cost of living.

When there is a lower cost of living there is generally a lower standard in everything. That could mean many things. For example, frequent and prolonged power 'brown outs'. Poor quality drinking water. Don't expect a fully equipped ambulance with paramedics on board to arrive within 5 minutes of a call. Corrupt officals and a culture in which bribery is the norm. Want the electricity turned on to your new house? You can wait a month or you can get it done tomorrow if you bride someone. Have you ever heard of doctors in a hospital that your family give 'gifts of money' to, to insure you get attention? I have. Have you ever heard of hospitals where family brings in your meals during your stay, or you don't eat? I have. Both of those exist in Greece which is not a particularly low cost of living country anymore.

If you retire to France or Australia or any real first world country, many of those issues don't exist. But they are not low cost of living countries. So retiring to a Caribbean island or Central American country may not be as wonderful as some people think it will be.

That is not to say you can't enjoy a comfortable retirement in some low cost of living countries but it usually requires that you have money. More money than you might have thought. A country that will give you a retirement visa if you can show an income of $1000 a month is not necessarily a country you want to retire in. Yes you can live on that amount but you may not like the way you have to live to do it.

Anyway, those are a few initial factors to get the ball rolling if anyone is interested in the topic and wants to discuss it.
The OP's points should be taken seriously.

I think many people looking to retire in an overseas country are misguided by some people who may have done that successfully. But most of them are selling their books or blogs.
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Old 02-07-2015, 12:22 PM   #13
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Anyway, those are a few initial factors to get the ball rolling if anyone is interested in the topic and wants to discuss it.
Those are all great insights. We were looking at a magazine article with one of those villas in Spain with a pool a few weeks ago. The prices are pretty intriguing. But if real estate prices are that cheap (at least compared to the Bay Area in the U.S.) rent must not be too bad as well, is that right?

I think that might be a place we would like to do some slow travel at some point.
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Old 02-07-2015, 12:35 PM   #14
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This is an excellent thread. I had professional level work in Latin America in the 70s, I got to know many mostly young expats who were funding their lives in various ways. One was a seaman who worked out of several West Coast ports, and commuted for jobs. He had a young American wife who was not Latin, who mostly stayed behind when he was working. This led to more than one sticky wicket, often involving too much alcohol. Some others were religious colonizers, looking for land to do their communal thing. IMO, these groups who were experienced farmers or herdsmen were very successful.

Most others I knew were working corporate jobs, and had no interest in staying or even in getting very involved with local life. There was not a large US presence in any of the cities where I was.

Reading this site, one gets the idea that there are young single men living in SE Asia, for lower costs and a more preferred lifestyle, and mostly older retired US couples living in Mexico, in or around expat enclaves. They like costs, weather, having servants whatever.

When I quit working down there I realized that for me it was a good place to work for a while, but no way did I want to make a life there. I like to know what the heck is going on under the surface anywhere that I am, and I realized that I had no real chance down there.

Also, I like to get my ducks in a row, and there are enough moving ducks to keep me busy right here, and way more moving (many in the dark) down there.

And I do feel homesickness. I've lived in my home city close to 50 years, and sometimes when I go back to my birthplace I feel a special connection that I do not feel here. My sons, who were born here, have that feeling about Seattle.

I think if I couldn't afford to live in what I consider to be an attractive district of an attractive US city, or one with agreeable weather, I might feel differently. Also, Medicare is quite a pull for those of us who are Medicare eligible.

Anyway, excellent posts and thread and your caveats certainly agree with what I noticed when living long term outside the country. Also +1 to the previous post about testimonials and glowing reports from various hucksters. Interestingly, at a time when every "blogger" was yakking about how wonderful was Ecuador, a neighbor across the hall from me was Ecuadorian. He spent lot of time trying to get his parents and sibs out of there and up here.


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Old 02-07-2015, 02:40 PM   #15
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Some interesting comments being made.

People retire to Thailand because it's cheap and yes because they can pick up a Thai wife very easily flyingaway. Funny though how it's always men, not women.

But did you know this. If you as a foreigner move to Thailand, marry a Thai and then buy a house, SHE owns the land. She also owns the house unless you have a legal document drawn up to say you own the house separate from the land as your personal property. No matter what though, you cannot own the land, she is always the owner. Bit different from communal property laws as most of us are used to isn't it.

You make a good point about the books and blogs on 'how to retire successfully overseas' that there are a lot of. You can paint a rosy picture of anywhere if you just leave out the bits that aren't so rosy. Don't get me wrong though, I'm not against retiring overseas, just against not knowing what you are doing when you do it.

Daylate, here is a brief synopsis of the property market in Spain. I'm reasonably familiar with it but am not suggesting I am an expert.

In the 80s a lot of people were retiring to Spain, especially from the UK. Prices were cheap and the weather was attractive. It was so popular that prices started rising steadily. They tripled from 85 to 91. Towards the end of that period, the speculators (I sometimes call them greedy vultures) moved in and started buying. Because the market was booming, it was possible to put a deposit on a 'villa' or apartment at the planning stage and flip the property for a real profit before the entry date. All you needed was the deposit.

Then the market of real buyers became saturated and the number of buyers dried up. So people who in fact could not afford to close lost their deposits. I have no sympathy for them at all, they were vultures. Then the price stabalized a bit until around 96 when it started going crazy again until the recession of 08 when they collapsed again. But it also meant that people who had genuinely bought planning to live there also saw their property values drop. In many cases, as much as 50%.
Spanish property bubble - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Then as I mentioned in the OP, many people who were living on their full income discovered what happens when the currency exchange rate goes against you. Not only was their house worth half, they didn't have enough income to live on either. So they left in droves, back to the UK where the social system provides them with a lot more for free and their income is in the same currency as their outgoing costs.

Here's another problem they had in Spain. A developer decides to build a new development near your house. He plans a road to get to it that will go right through your backyard over the top of your swimming pool. He gets approval from the municipal government for his plan and they expropriate your land for the road. You get no say in the matter. Now what? That was not a one of scenario but in fact was repeated in various versions many times in Spain in the last 20-30 years. Were back to you don't know how things work locally and expecting things will be much the same as they were at home is not going to help you. So see some of the other pitfalls of buying in Spain that have affected buyers just read a few articles here:
https://www.google.ca/?gfe_rd=cr&ei=...horror+stories

Would I personally be comfortable buying property in Spain? I have to say no. It might turn out to be a good investment but history tells me to avoid it. Renting longer term for 'slow travel' on the other hand is a fine idea in my opinion.

Haha, your comment, "Also, I like to get my ducks in a row, and there are enough moving ducks to keep me busy right here, and way more moving (many in the dark) down there.", is very well put I think and applies to any country.

Here's how I see it, it took you X number of years to know how things work in your home country. Why would anyone think they can figure it out in less time in another country? There are as you say 'way more things (many in the dark)'.

I also like your point about if it's so great in these other places, why are people from their trying to move to your home country? That's worth a chuckle really.

Here are a couple of other factors to consider for anyone thinking about it. Language can be a very big issue. Trying to deal with ordinary day to day bureaucracy (dispute an electric bill or phone bill or take back an item under warranty as examples) can be very difficult if you are not fluent in the local language.

Here's anther little example of differences that comes to mind. I bought a light bulb in Greece. They have 'screw' types as we are used to in N. America and also have 'bayonet' type which we do not usually see. I bought the wrong one for the fitting and so I took it back to the store to exchange. Eventually, the person in the store got me to understand the message which was, 'in Greece if you bought it you own it.' No refunds and no exchanges. Want a different kind, buy another one. It was a light bulb, maybe a dollar but if it had been something major? Same rules.

The thing about language that I was surprised by personally, had to do with just having a conversation. Unless you are really fluent in the local language or the person you are talking to is really fluent in English, your conversations are limited by vocabularly to a degree you might not be able to envision until you experience it. You find yourself speaking in simple English sentences if not lapsing into 'pidgin' English.

When I lived on Rhodes and the first tourists of the season started showing up, I found myself talking their ears off after having spent a winter with little chance of any serious conversations. I couldn't have discussed what we are discussing here for example.

Another is age. When you are an early retiree as I was and as those in this forum are or are aiming for, you can live with a lot of things. At 43, I wasn't particularly concerned about the lack of quality healthcare. I mentioned above, family members bringing meals to the hospital for patients. Who is going to do that for you when yu are 76 in a foreign country?

So as an early retiree it might not be an issue initially but over time it could become one. I'm now back living in Canada and while I will continue to travel and sometimes for extended periods of time (months), I don't think I will ever not maintain a home here.

One thing I have learned, as much as people at home love to complain about all the things that could be better, they have little idea of just how good they've got it compared to elsewhere. That is a lesson that only living abroad can teach you.
"I complained I had no shoes until I met a man who had no feet".

People can and do retire and live abroad happily for the rest of their lives but it takes a certain type of person, who has and doesn't have certain expectations and who is willing to trade some things at the expense of other things.
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Old 02-07-2015, 03:31 PM   #16
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Those are all great insights. We were looking at a magazine article with one of those villas in Spain with a pool a few weeks ago. The prices are pretty intriguing. But if real estate prices are that cheap (at least compared to the Bay Area in the U.S.) rent must not be too bad as well, is that right?

I think that might be a place we would like to do some slow travel at some point.
Which magazine was this?

Is it online?

I've been so Spain since the recession. Always look at the property listings when I walk by real estate offices in Europe. Even in smaller cities, the prices weren't that great.
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Old 02-07-2015, 03:53 PM   #17
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Which magazine was this?

Is it online?

I've been so Spain since the recession. Always look at the property listings when I walk by real estate offices in Europe. Even in smaller cities, the prices weren't that great.
It was one my husband brought home from a trip visiting family - not a U.S. publication and I don't think I kept it. I'll ask him if he remembers the city and try to find the listing online. But if you just look at an online real estate sites you can get a look at the prices - many large villas with pools for 100 - 200K GPB (half again as much in US dollars). I don't know the areas so they could be high crime or have something else wrong - but there are a lot for sale and online at least many look pretty spectacular.

Added:

I think this was the villa in the article:

http://www.zoopla.co.uk/overseas/det...htlhouw8Myh.97
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Old 02-07-2015, 05:00 PM   #18
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Retiring abroad is not all its cracked up to be; it can be enjoyable and a financial arbitrage for sure- if you keep your wits about you.


I spent 10 years in Thailand and now I'm in Guatemala. For me, its about adventure, learning a new language and checking out what is over the horizon.


But at the end of the day, life is pretty good in the USA IMHO.
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Old 02-07-2015, 07:54 PM   #19
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Medicare is quite a pull for those of us who are Medicare eligible.
This. I will, from time to time, think about moving to England or Ireland. Every time I do contemplate such a move, the obstacle of health insurance as you age seems to be a fairly high hurdle.

If you qualify for residency (thru investor exemptions) I assume that after getting residency status you can access national health, but I am not certain. Plus, it would mean having to renounce US citizenship.

So in the end spending twilight years abroad seem to be more of a pipe dream for me...
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Old 02-07-2015, 10:17 PM   #20
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This. I will, from time to time, think about moving to England or Ireland. Every time I do contemplate such a move, the obstacle of health insurance as you age seems to be a fairly high hurdle.

If you qualify for residency (thru investor exemptions) I assume that after getting residency status you can access national health, but I am not certain. Plus, it would mean having to renounce US citizenship.

So in the end spending twilight years abroad seem to be more of a pipe dream for me...
I don't know about Ireland but if you are a tax paying resident you get full access to national health in the UK. No need to renounce US citizenship or become a UK citizen.

Am I entitled to NHS treatment when I move to England? - Health questions - NHS Choices
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