Retire in Latin America for a Lot Less than the U.S.

Retiring in Latin America can make economic sense for many

The U.S economy and stock markets have been through recent challenges, robbing many future retirees of the nest eggs they need to retire comfortably.

As the stock market lost ground, so did the retirement portfolios of millions of workers. In addition, millions were laid off and many of their jobs will never return.

Many Latin American countries now offer affordable opportunities for retirees to spend their golden years in comfort at an affordable price. There is also the temptation of pristine beaches, sparkly, cool clear water to swim in, cheap food, and gorgeous sunsets.

If you can handle the lack of a few conveniences, no smog, no city, no rush hour traffic, no dashing around to get things done including your job, then you may be ready for retirement in Latin America.

Life in countries like Panama, Ecuador, Bolivia and Argentina is much cheaper than the US, due to the comparative spending power of the U.S. dollar in these countries.

Panama for example, the winner of many surveys, advertises:

..  tropical weather,low cost of living, 3) reliability and efficiency you don’t find in other Latin American countries, 4) favorable offshore banking laws, 5) stable economy (with the U.S. dollar as the currency), 6) government investment incentives that slash tax rates and fees for entrepreneurs…and give retirees discounts on everything from doctor visits to utility bills, 7) diverse geography (from mountain ranges to tropical islands…from a booming metropolis to vast jungles), and 8 ) the fact that it is still a relatively undiscovered paradise.

After taking a vacation to one of these destinations, some retirees now choose to turn their stay into a permanent one.

What are the Benefits?
If you are getting close to retirement, Latin America may be worth looking at. For the elderly, the warm climate is thought to help with ailments like arthritis and fibromyalgia. Panama City and Coronado in Panama; Cuenca, Ecuador; and Merida, Mexico are some great choices to check out.

In Panama City,  A two-bedroom, 1.5-bathroom top-floor condo with stunning, unobstructed views of the Panama City

Tucan Homes in Panama are good examples of retirement living

skyline from a 400-square-foot terrace is just $141,000.

In Ecuador for example you can pay $300/month for a 1-bedroom condo or bump yourself up to $500/month for a two bedroom.

If you need to buy a house, under $50,000 will get you a decent place. Want a nice Colonial home? For $100,000, you can move to Mexico and purchase one, complete with maid service.

A prime beachfront property is $200,000 in Panama, and you can walk out your front door straight onto the beach as your back or front yard.

Latin America has a rich, cultural history which you will be able to share with your family when they visit.

If you have a home based-business, there are plenty of Internet Cafes and Internet in the home in a many places. Just check around of course before deciding to pack up and move.

Paypal is also accepted in plenty of countries. You just have to see if there are any fees to receive money when using a Latin American country.

Are There Risks to Retiring in Latin America?
Naturally, there are some disadvantages to retiring in Latin America. The first is that you will be further away from your family if you have them. Invariably, you will end up seeing them less often.

For some this is not important. Maybe you don’t see them that often anyway, or perhaps you might get to see them more as they now choose to take their vacations with you. In any case, this is an issue all retirees should consider.

The second major issue is that of healthcare. Healthcare in Latin American countries is not up to U.S. standards, so if you have chronic health issues, retiring in Latin America may just be impractical. You may end up being too far from the medical facilities that you need.

Security is a third issue to consider when moving to Latin America. Now, it is true that none of the countries in Latin America is as secure as the U.S.

However, many have taken the issue of security seriously for expatriate communities and provide more than adequate security in an effort to attract the dollars that retirees bring.

Therefore today, security is not the issue it once was in many Latin American countries, with gated communities and a proper security presence in expatriate retirement neighborhoods.

All in all, moving south can make a serious difference between struggling to pay bills in the US and living comfortably. It may be worthwhile therefore to check out the many and numerous opportunities to retire in Latin America for a lot less than at home.

  • William

    With many Americans losing their homes after retirement because their social security benefits cannot cover the expense, moving to somewhere where the dollar has more buying power might just be the answer.  From my point of view, I’d rather give up a few creature comforts in exchange for owning a home without the threat of being taken away somewhere in Latin America.  

  • Elle

    With the state that our economy is in, it has become harder to get by daily.  How much more for those who have retired because they will be ones affected greatly for their pensions would not suffice to finance all their expenses.  Living in another country, like those in Latin America,  does have its advantages and disadvantages.  The only thing that I can say is that, before moving anywhere, consider all monetary values.  There are always pros and cons when moving but we have to consider to getting the most of our dollar.

  • Navia

    I would love to retire in Panama if that is the last resort. I would still have to plan everything right so I won’t be having any problems in the future. This article helped thanks!

  • Brian Dsouza

    We have a house in Panama And would love to lease it. If anyone is looking for a house to lease in panama. Please see my web site