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Retirement options?


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#21 Daveyboy

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 12:55 PM

I met a number of people who retired to the mid-island in Parksville and Qualicum who wished they had not left the larger city.  After living in Qualicum for 25+ years, we were quite happy to retire to Victoria, probably going against popular consensus.  Much more to do here and we have loved the experience so far.



#22 Mattjvd

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 01:28 PM

For the last 30 years of my life I have known people that have headed south to retire. That has always been an argument against, yet seems to not really ever happen.


Mexico is more violent than Iraq or Afghanistan:

https://www.google.c...546982785525985

#23 todd

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 01:45 PM

Huh? Systemic ongoing issues in Nicaragua, Honduras and vast swaths of Mexico now come to mind immediately. Not to mention the never ending issues with corruption and violence throughout the region.

Anyway, my point is I personally would not put all of my eggs in the Central America basket, so to speak, but if you do, I don't care.

This was the story of the week last time I was in PV: https://www.vallarta...ng-drug-cartel/

Also went to what I thought was a legitimate pharmacy after purchasing I realize they were obviously fraudulent products went back to complain she said she was insulted she was a healthcare professional but if I wanted we could take them together. I politely left and threw them in the trash.

Scariest part seem to be the taxi ride by far some of the craziest driving ever seen. Only saw one dead guy on the road however.

You give up a lot of your public safety that we’ve come to expect in Canada. Safety is perspective I guess. Beautiful place however.

Edited by todd, 07 January 2019 - 02:00 PM.

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#24 Victoria Watcher

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 01:52 PM

viagra?

#25 todd

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 02:01 PM

viagra?


Yes but it’s for a different purpose when you’re an octopus

#26 spanky123

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 04:12 PM

This was the story of the week last time I was in PV: https://www.vallarta...ng-drug-cartel/

Also went to what I thought was a legitimate pharmacy after purchasing I realize they were obviously fraudulent products went back to complain she said she was insulted she was a healthcare professional but if I wanted we could take them together. I politely left and threw them in the trash.

Scariest part seem to be the taxi ride by far some of the craziest driving ever seen. Only saw one dead guy on the road however.

You give up a lot of your public safety that we’ve come to expect in Canada. Safety is perspective I guess. Beautiful place however.

 

Like any country it depends where you are. Take a evening stroll in downtown Toronto or the east side of Vancouver if you want to test public safety!



#27 James Bay walker

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 04:45 PM

-if you can work part-time, that may be helpful.

-it's a huge contrast to go from full-time work to being retired, and not just for the worker but their house mate, too -- who now has you under foot most of the day, which could prove to be a big stressor

-leaving the workforce can be a really big deal (somewhat traumatic), I urge not making any major lifestyle decisions (such as moving), until a year's passed and you've achieved a sense of how well or poorly you've been coping

jbw

ps. Reminder: if your home's value has escalated ridiculously, and your property taxes are uncomfortable (and, an appeal has not been effective), for a nominal annual administration fee, you can arrange to allow unpaid property taxes to accumulate against your property's title (let your heirs deal with the property's sale value being diminished by the taxes plus a low interest rate)

Edited by James Bay walker, 07 January 2019 - 04:47 PM.


#28 shoeflack

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 04:46 PM

For those with firsthand travelling or ideally living experience in say Panama, Spain or Portugal are those places you would consider retiring to, or not? Why or why not?

 

Having just spent a week in Bocas Del Toro, Panama, and having a good friend who lived there for a year, I'd give it high marks. Real estate is still cheap, absolutely stunning place year-round. Not a bad place to open a little hostel or eco-resort as well if that's your fancy.

 

All the pros of a major Caribbean resort destination without the tourist traffic of those major destinations. Still no chain hotels or resorts, all still mom and pop shops. Though there are a few Canadian-owned eco-resorts and restaurants.

 

Loved every minute of it and can't wait to go back.


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#29 AllseeingEye

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 06:26 PM

Having just spent a week in Bocas Del Toro, Panama, and having a good friend who lived there for a year, I'd give it high marks. Real estate is still cheap, absolutely stunning place year-round. Not a bad place to open a little hostel or eco-resort as well if that's your fancy.

 

All the pros of a major Caribbean resort destination without the tourist traffic of those major destinations. Still no chain hotels or resorts, all still mom and pop shops. Though there are a few Canadian-owned eco-resorts and restaurants.

 

Loved every minute of it and can't wait to go back.

Panama is intriguing for many of the reasons cited above; both my parent's and I respectively have had friends either move to or live in Panama for extended periods, who mostly echoed the comments above.

 

Another couple I know in Vancouver are currently making their exit-retirement plans for their post-Vancouver life. They of course will be cashing out big time on their south Vancouver town-home and huge property, and as noted above are seriously contemplating owning and running some form of eco-tourism venture in Costa Rica where they have vacationed extensively.

 

Another friend has been running an all-female founded, owned and managed wellness retreat in Costa Rica for years and swears by the area. She spends about 6 months a year there, a few months in Bali running a similar program and the balance of the year here. I'll definitely be checking into it further. Spain is certainly high on the list too and checks lots of boxes - weather, culture, things to see and do, proximity to other great European destinations and I've lots of extended family in the UK. 

 

And of course I can't completely dismiss this country either as my mother's side of the family all live in Nova Scotia, which as I re-discovered in 2016 is crazy-cheap in terms of housing and property costs compared to Victoria.

 

Thanks for the thoughtful comments and input to date. Lots to consider and still plenty of time to do so since I have a few years to go yet in the work world.



#30 tjv

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 07:08 PM

My dad traveled to Central America for business a couple of times. He was shaken out of bed by a big earthquake once but the big fright was when he and his colleagues were on a bus tour and they got stopped at a road block and some fellows armed with AK-47s jumped out and ordered them all off the bus and lined them up at the side of the road. Dad thought this was adios but they checked their papers and sent them on their way. Maybe because they were part of a government-sponsored delegation.

 

Mind you, this was the 80s when things were hairy but jonny's point is to be careful. Look at Ortega in Nicaragua. Back in the 80s he was the young rebel overthrowing the corrupt dictator--now he's the corrupt dictator and who knows what's going to happen next year or into what neighbouring country a rebellion spills into.

I've never had a problem in Mexico.  Its common to see police driving around in pick ups in the back, maybe 3-4 fully armed with semi automatic or fully automatic rifles.  Occasionally you see a helicopter go by along the beach, low to the ground, and there is a guy in the back with one foot out the door positioned on a mounted massive gun.  I've also seen fully armed police standing outside the banks as well

 

Personally I think its a lot for show, to show the gringos that they are protecting the wealthy areas.  I certainly don't see that show of force in the non tourist areas



#31 LJ

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 07:24 PM

Panama would definitely be my first choice for Central America, relatively cheap housing and you can join their health care system.

 

Portugal is too damn cold in the winter. Spain's med side is nicer but more expensive.

 

Try living somewhere for a couple of months, explore around, and then the next year try somewhere different. 

 

You don't have to make it permanent either, 6 months south, 6 months in YYJ works for us.

 

Get a subscription to this mag for a couple of years and make some choices...https://www.wheretoretire.com/

 

PS you should have retired 5 years ago


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Life's a journey......so roll down the window and enjoy the breeze.

#32 Cassidy

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 07:26 PM

I'm currently 62, so have put some effort into researching the possibility of retiring someplace affordable, and warm.

One of the largest Canadian ex-pat communities in the world is Lake Chapala, Mexico.

Near perfect weather year around, and an extremely well developed infrastructure for Canadian ex-pats.

Proximity to Guadalajara (15-40 miles) means a fairly short and simple two-hop flight from Vancouver or Seattle.

 

Crime is usually the main concern for Mexico, and it's all quite real. Although I'd not recommend delving too deeply into this website, and may not reccomend it at all for those easily upset ... here is a regularly updated site detailing what goes on daily in Mexico for those planning on living there, traveling there, or returning to a home they already own there:

http://www.borderlandbeat.com

Use caution if you visit this website, and if a link says "graphic", think twice before clicking it.

 

But I know folks who live in Lake Chapala full time, and they see no crime, hear no crime, and essentially live with crime having zero effect on their day to day lives.

That would be easy to change if one were frequently going into Guadalajara for nightlife, or traveling extensively on backroads to the West towards the Gulf ... but generally, for retired Canadians living a normal life, it's not a factor.

 

For a little cooler weather, I also know a couple who have long lived in the stunning colonial town of San Luis Potosi in Mexico - and they have had zero exposure to crime of any kind.

Again, it's an easy two-hop flight from Vancouver or Seattle, about the same time wise as flying to Miami.

 

For me, the dream would be 70 to 75 degrees fahrenheit year round, with close to perfect weather, relatively low humidity, no wind, and a secure political climate.

This rules out almost all of Central America, and all of the Caribbean due to heat, humidity, and unstable political machinations.

My list of desirable places is essentially near the equator, but with the effects of high temperature and humidity moderated by higher elevation - or by being an "island in the stream".

 

  • Lake Chapala, Mexico
  • Cuernavaca, Mexico
  • Quito, Equador
  • Canary Islands

 

The above locations are all highly desirable in terms of folks moving there from somewhere else to live ... they are, in effect, places with the best weather in the world, in countries that are stable politically, and safe if you don't seek trouble out, and are vigilant in avoiding it.

The result is that they're not the most inexpensive locations to move to from Canada, but still magnitudes less expensive than living as a retired person in Victoria.

 

Personally, I'll be making a holiday trip to Lake Chapala and Cuernavaca to have a look around, with an eye to some sort of retirement arrangement.
I'll not be giving up my Canadian citizenship as part of the initial move ... but depending on my personal health and how much I come to dislike being obliged to spend time traveling back and forth, I wouldn't be against giving it up eventually in order to remain in one place permanently.


Edited by Cassidy, 07 January 2019 - 07:27 PM.


#33 AllseeingEye

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 08:16 PM

/\......Mexico and specifically San Jose del Cabo on the Baja was definitely on the radar; the weather - 29 C on average - is perfect for us. I've been to "Cabo" (the general term covers the cities of Cabo San Lucas and SJdC) three times. SJdC is intriguing because its close enough to the *other* Cabo that if you want higher end shopping, dining and nightlife etc., its a mere 20 minutes away by car.

 

SJdC OTOH is cheaper, precisely because its not *that* Cabo, has far better beaches and some of the warmest sea water you'll ever encounter, and within a few short blocks of the beach resorts you can experience a bit more of the 'real' Mexico; the locals are very friendly, most speak English or at least enough that between their ability in our language and your pigin Spanish you can communicate easily. A few of us went on a real estate tour and at the time you could purchase a new 1200 s/f 2 bedroom, 2.5 bathroom condo, in a waterfront development just south of the main tourist area, for about $300K US.

 

Its also in the same T-Z as BC and barely a four hour flight to YVR. We have - and may well again in the future - consider the area, although as with many places in Mexico one has to be aware of where you are, when and with whom. Although crime in the lower Baja was practically non-existent in my experience there was nevertheless at the time (2010-4) some cartel activity in La Paz, the state capital.


Edited by AllseeingEye, 07 January 2019 - 08:17 PM.


#34 Sparky

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 08:55 PM

All this talk about Mexico is stirring up ghosts for me.

Baja is beautiful. There are lots of great spots there. Mrs. Sparky and I schlepted our way to Cabo in a Cessna 150 a couple of decades back.

This shot was taken on an island across from Mulege.

IMG_0635.JPG
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#35 Cassidy

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 11:37 PM

 

SJdC OTOH is cheaper, precisely because its not *that* Cabo,.......

Not so safe these days.

Perhaps as a temporary tourist you'd be OK, but San Juan del Cabo has serious issues ongoing.

 

In the website (blog) I linked to, do a search for "cabo".

Don't do the search if you're not interested in the hard facts, which can be pretty gruesome.



#36 todd

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Posted 07 January 2019 - 11:52 PM

Just don’t worry about it.

#37 nerka

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Posted 08 January 2019 - 12:00 AM

Its also in the same T-Z as BC and barely a four hour flight to YVR. We have - and may well again in the future - consider the area, although as with many places in Mexico one has to be aware of where you are, when and with whom. Although crime in the lower Baja was practically non-existent in my experience there was nevertheless at the time (2010-4) some cartel activity in La Paz, the state capital.

The southern part of the peninsula is on Mountain time. This makes sense since Cabo San Lucas is east of Edmonton.



#38 AllseeingEye

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Posted 08 January 2019 - 01:02 AM

Not so safe these days.

Perhaps as a temporary tourist you'd be OK, but San Juan del Cabo has serious issues ongoing.

 

In the website (blog) I linked to, do a search for "cabo".

Don't do the search if you're not interested in the hard facts, which can be pretty gruesome.

Cass I presume you mean San Jose del Cabo (never heard of a San Juan del Cabo); it may or not be more violent than when I was last there (2015) but ultimately anywhere you can name has an element of risk associated with it. To that end in some respects I adopt Todd's approach, i.e. at the end of the day I tend not to worry as there are certain things in life beyond my control. My own on the ground experiences in Mexico, in Baja and the Mayan Riviera region specifically, have never been anything but extremely positive. Also admittedly I have a bit of 'biggest guy in the room syndrome': at 280 pounds (a result of weight training and not too many cheeseburgers...) I find more often than not people tend to leave me alone, heh.

 

Bottom line re: Mexico is this: I'm not into drugs; I don't use them nor do I transport or buy them. That said could I be at the "wrong place at the wrong time" one day or night and suffer the ultimate consequences? Sure, no question. Just as assuredly as I could in East Vancouver, or the north end of Regina (per capita the highest crime rate in Canada and I guarantee not a place the average Victorian should ever venture into especially at night), certain sections of LA, Boston, London, Bangkok and a 1000 other places.

 

So while its good to educate yourself about local conditions - crime trends and otherwise - and its likely a very good idea not to run around certain Mexican states like Sinaloa with a tee-shirt that says "Cartels Suck!" at the end of the day and beyond those fairly obvious self truths, I tend to just go about my business and trust that the universe will unfold however its meant to, all the while being mindful about where I am, and who is around me - and of course being constantly on the lookout for good fishing grounds and big waves for surfing...! :)


Edited by AllseeingEye, 08 January 2019 - 01:02 AM.

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#39 spanky123

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Posted 08 January 2019 - 08:43 AM

A couple other issues to consider if you are looking to relocate down south. For a relatively small investment, small countries will give you a passport. Some countries allow you to purchase and own property without being a permanent resident. Some countries offer very favorable taxation regimes.



#40 Rob Randall

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Posted 08 January 2019 - 09:09 AM

[A] St. Kitts passport, available for $250,000 or a $400,000 real estate investment, allows him entry to more than 100 countries without having to get special permission. It's a legal way to circumvent visa controls that nations set up to screen people coming into their country. But it's also an opportunity for shady characters to mask their true identities, and avoid suspicion as they travel around the globe. The business was born here in St. Kitts when Chris Kalin struck a deal with the government a decade ago following the collapse of the islands' sugar industry.

 

 

https://www.cbsnews....ports-for-sale/


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