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The lure of retiring to a cheaper country
Old 01-01-2006, 10:53 AM   #1
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The lure of retiring to a cheaper country

Reading some posts I was following on another retirement board (sorry, forget the name. It's on my computer at work and I'm home now). Anyway, much talk about the benefits of retiring to Belize; English the primairy language, inexpensive living, garden of eden weather, etc. At any rate, one of the boosters of Belize gave an information site for the others to look at (again, sorry, don't have the info here). Well, the writer tells of his adventures driving to Belize (he'd lived there for some time in the past and was going back). Everything was swell until his house in Belize was burgled. He complained to the police, who then threatened his life! We also find out that a favorite ploy of the Belizian police is to search a gringos home and find a single shotgun shell. Off to jail (for possessing unregistered ammunition), face a $10,000 dollar fine and basically be required to bribe your way out of the mess. The guy finally fled the country in fear for his own safety, selling all his worldly goods there for .20 cents on the dollar.

Kind of sad, but amusing and educational as well.
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Re: The lure of retiring to a cheaper country
Old 01-01-2006, 11:25 AM   #2
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Re: The lure of retiring to a cheaper country

Hi Rich--

Any country takes solid research and an understanding of the culture. Yes, even in our country we have speed traps, dishonest cops and judges, all manner of scam artists and identity thieves. In some cities, it is not safe to walk down the street--and that is in every country.

I guess what I'm saying is that you have to weigh the good with the bad; no place is perfect. Do the benefits of ex pat living outweigh the liabilities? For some the answer is a resounding "YES"!!!!!!

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Re: The lure of retiring to a cheaper country
Old 01-01-2006, 11:56 AM   #3
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Re: The lure of retiring to a cheaper country

Why do Americans ignore Australia or New Zealand as Retirement destinations, or Spain and Portugal, cleaner, safer, relativly cheaper?
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Re: The lure of retiring to a cheaper country
Old 01-01-2006, 01:36 PM   #4
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Re: The lure of retiring to a cheaper country


Going by recollection only, the last time I took a look at AU & NZ, they were difficult to get into and/or money traps--more expensive than expected for one reason or another. Years ago, I knew folks who worked there for a time and brought back negative reports on those issues. But at least we can read the laws in our own language. Things may have changed since. See Escape Artist web site for a series of articles on moving to the area. Just DO YOUR HOMEWORK before you spend a lot of $us there.

In re Spain and Portugal, they are EU countries. There was a fellow on another board who had been living in Cyprus and was going somewhere else because the coming EU rules and taxes he found odious. I think it is better for an EU national to retire in Spain or Portugal than for a Yankee. BUT, once again, DO YOUR HOMEWORK.

I apologize for not having facts to support my ravings today. All I have is a warning.

I have outlived most of the people I don't like and I am working on the rest.
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Re: The lure of retiring to a cheaper country
Old 01-02-2006, 12:03 AM   #5
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Re: The lure of retiring to a cheaper country

There is the draw of the cheaper but other issues are even more important. What about medical care? Some places it is good but the cheapest places are probably not so good.

One problem I have is the places I would most like to live are the most expensive. I lived several years in London when I was younger. I would love to live there a bit again. My wife would probably like Paris, or Switzerland or urban Germany. We like Tahiti and the South Pacific. It would be nice to find some place to live where there was great alure and cheap was just a side benifit.
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Re: The lure of retiring to a cheaper country
Old 01-02-2006, 03:40 AM   #6
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Re: The lure of retiring to a cheaper country

Why would anyone buy a house and sink money in a cheap (and often unsecure) country instead of renting and keeping assets in appropriate and safe countries having proven so for centuries (e.g. US, UK, Switzerland) ? When things go wrong you just relocate somewhere else leaving behind the stuff you dont care much about.
As far as medical services are concerned some are excellent in developing countries like Tunisia and very cheap. Doctors graduate from French univesities and have latest equipement at disposal. Treatment costs are 25% of what they are in France for example.
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