July 29, 2019 — There is a small but significant number of Americans who will retire outside the U.S. If you think you might be one of those people, Topretirements suggests you put Costa Rica on your list of possible countries. Located in Central America, it has many advantages and relatively few drawbacks. In this article we will explore retirement in Costa Rica, and why we think it just might be your best place to retire. This is Part 2 in a series, the first was “Costa Rica: Bucket List for Thrills and EcoTourism“.
About 413,000 American expats currently receive Social Security benefits outside of the U.S. The most frequent countries where they live are Canada, Japan, and Mexico. One estimate is that about 50,000 Americans (of all ages) currently live in Costa Rica. Proximity to the U.S. and family ties, often related to prior military service in those countries, are two reasons why some countries have so many retired expats. Americans also retire to a different country for economic reasons, trying to stretch their Social Security benefits and savings. Some move for a better climate or a different lifestyle. A Costa Rica retirement can certainly deliver on cost of living, climate, and lifestyle.
Costa Rica. The country is bordered by Nicaragua to the north, Panama to the southeast, the Pacific Ocean to the west, and the Caribbean Sea to the east. The weather is very good year round, although there is a rainy season. The beaches are fabulous and the interior is mountainous.
A few years ago our friend Dennis asked us where we thought the best place to retire was – internationally. The question took us by surprise, partly because it came from a man who has traveled the world extensively, and who also has a home in Costa Rica – wouldn’t Dennis have a better grip here than us? The question got us thinking.
November 20, 2016 — Editor’s Note: This article was written for our Tips & Picks section by Andrew Mastrandonas and Preston Gitlin, who lived and developed property in Costa Rica for many years (they have since moved on to other adventures). We have updated it and moved it here to the Blog so that people will have an easier time commenting on it. Their insights and advice remain true not only for Costa Rica, but for buying real estate in any foreign country. It is the First of a series.
Costa Rica is an alluring place for many people. With a terrific climate, stable and democratic government, proximity to the United States, lower cost of living, unbelievable scenery and wildlife, plus many outdoor and cultural activities, it is no wonder this country only the size of West Virginia remains one of the best in the world for retirement, investment, or a vacation. Over one million people visit Costa Rica each year generating about (more…)
December 17, 2014 — The Obama Administration and Raoul Castro opened up the way to a normalization of relations today. Although limited in scope, it appears that family travel will be permitted, remittances will be made easier, and the U.S. will open an embassy in Havana. Americans will also be able to bring back up to $100 worth of cigars and rum, which is likely to be very popular (your editor was in Cuba in November, and wished he could have done so!).
Everybody loves the 1950s American cars here
The news also has implications for retirees. For one, it will be easier to visit, (more…)
November 4, 2014 — Have you ever dreamed about retiring on an island? A relaxing place with warm breezes, the gentle sound of lapping waves, endless sunshine, and friendly locals? You certainly wouldn’t be the only person to share that dream. This article will review the pros and cons of island living, plus share 2 list of islands that might be good retirement spots – a domestic list we created and another, the 10 best tropical island retirements from NextAvenue.org.
There are islands – and there are islands
Some people’s idea of an island for retirement might be domestic, such as an island on a big lake in Michigan, one of the many off of the Maine coast, Catalina Island near (more…)
We realize that not everyone wants to own property even if they have the assets to do so. Some people might not want to tie up their net worth in real estate but they have cash flow upon which to live, perhaps to enjoy vacations and foreign travel. Maintaining a comfortable lifestyle in the States can be costly. You might still have a mortgage, there are home repairs and property taxes, the price for owning and maintaining a car is high, and don’t forget about dining out, groceries and entertainment costs. For a modest-yet-comfortable home life you can pay three to four thousand a month easily.
June 11, 2014 — Our friend Rick recently wrote us with a great question on how ex-pat retirees deal with healthcare and healthcare insurance when living in another country. We thought we had addressed this question in the Blog before, but after careful searching it doesn’t look like we did that in any great depth.
Here is the question:
Recently one of our Bayview Park tennis players was traveling to Mexico, where he fell gravely ill and needed an emergency operation… Now it seems, since he first got sick on the plane flying there, Medicare will reimburse him for medical costs in Mexico… I will be traveling to Mexico soon myself, where I used to live, and may be spending more time there again. My question is about medical care and coverage abroad. I understand there are Medigap policies that may cover this, but I was wondering if (more…)
February 3, 2014 — You have probably seen the ads with the alluring promises – live in luxury on your Social Security income, kick back while a maid and gardener toil away for just a few dollars a week, enjoy great food and fresh fruit, and experience wonderful medical care complete with inexpensive house calls. While all that might be true in some instances, there is a darker side of international retirement that the ads aren’t going to tell you about. This article will show you the other side of the coin, so you can make a more educated decision.
International Retirement Is Great for Some Folks
For some people an international retirement is a terrific (more…)
November 19, 2013 — Note: Since this article was written we have added more country guides to the original 10, and will continue to add them here.
There is an intrepid group of people out there whose dream for retirement involves moving far away to an exotic location in a foreign country. For citizens of the US and Canada, that often means retiring to Mexico, Costa Rica, Central America, or a country in South America. Retirees in Europe and the UK tend to favor southern Europe or even Southeast Asia. Such retirements bring with them a number of challenges, along with advantages. Today we are pleased to announce new mini-guides to international retirement in 10 countries. We plan to add more (more…)
Updated January, 2020 — (originally published April 23, 2013) — Note: This is Part 7 of our “Retirement 101” series.
You have probably seen articles on the Internet that promise an international retirement as your ticket to paradise. A place that includes maids and gardeners at your beck and call, cheap but glorious real estate, doctor house calls for (more…)