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How to retire in Belize?

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ChrisM
3/13/2016 22:58 EST

I'm looking to retire to Belize. It's imperative that the area be an expat community. In addition, I'm looking for a safe and affordable condo near water/canal. I've read that realtors are not necessary and that I should look for sales by owner. Does anyone have advice and or referrals to resources that may be able to help me find a good area? Any help is greatly appreciated. I'm looking to take a vacation there soon. Does anyone recommend an area to stay that would allow me the opportunity to get a true feel? Thanks

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FredAr
3/14/2016 09:38 EST

Chris, I believe you should be more specific, because when you mention 'safe', 'expat community', 'condo', 'affordable', 'good area' and a 'true feel', those are a lot of personal requirements someone would have a tough time guessing what you really mean by them.

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ChrisM
3/14/2016 12:52 EST

Hi Fred,
By safe I'm referring to a low crime area, condo is a desire to live in a resort/ condo complex on or near water, preferably with a community pool, expat is referencing a community with expats living in it, true feel is regarding my question of where to visit when I come down to look at properties... As where should I stay to search for properties that would help me attain my above goals. Thanks

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Kenubelizeit
3/14/2016 17:38 EST

There are many expat communities maybe you should start with the cheapest and more established like Consejo shores and move on down to the Mayan seaside Royal colony and southend almond tree eventually going to the more luxurious orchid bay in the Corozal district. If u head down Central try Castleton Estate and others in that vicinity. Take a stop at Camino del Rio or Better in Belize. Down South try Hopkins Maya beach and Placencia and then fly to San Pedro there you have it with expat communities or write to me at kenubelizeit@yahoo.com for more information.

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bobbyveee
3/15/2016 07:16 EST

Ambergris caye has the most expats by far and many high end secure communities, its just how much you have to spend. Think $500k fish for a nice condo in a secure resort type setting, prices go up well above a million.
AC is very much a party,fishing, snorkeling , eating drinking Caye. Really depends what you want and can afford.

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FredAr
3/15/2016 09:53 EST

There is one spot in Placencia I know of that MAY fit what you looking for to perfectiopn. It is the condos at Sunset point, Placencia, in the very end of the peninsula in town. Expat community, is on the canal, harbor, duplex-type condos (up and down each unit) and a really exclusive nice area. They also rent out very well. The price that I know of from last offering was in the upper 200k range. They have recently build two more double units. Listed by David Kafka, Remax, Placencia. Perhaps worth a look.

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Cap1Aquarius
3/16/2016 13:56 EST

I have not been to Belize yet, however I am going in May, and again next April for a month. I have been told by almost everyone that I need to stay at least a year renting before buying anything. I have also bee told that Corozal is expat central. It is also near the water. I plan in being moved to Belize by next July-August. if I can help in anyway just answer here.
Dale

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bradinbelize
3/17/2016 11:26 EST

Chris, What it sounds like you want (a fairly robust ex-pat community), a condo and water, then there are really only two choices for you, as follows:

1) San Pedro (Ambergris Caye) - largest ex-pat community in Belize, safe, secure, condos and it's the island of Ambergris Caye

2) Placencia - peninsula with plenty of water and the same.

San Pedro is busier and more hectic , fast-paced (nothing compared to US though), while Placencia has a little more laid-back, slower vibe. Placencia probably a little more expensive in terms of real estate. Living expense relatively similar, with some items in San Pedro being more (but that's personal preference kind of stuff, with minimal adjustments, it can be cheap).

Depending on your age, Corozal might be an option but the ex-pat community there is very strong, mostly older, retired (late 60's and older) so if you're younger and more active, that might not be the place for you.

I just turned 50, my wife is 38, we live in San Pedro (did live in Hopkins for awhile). Placencia for us is a nice place to visit but a little too slow at times (we are active folks). Hope this info helps

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ChrisM
3/17/2016 12:13 EST

Thank you e retine for all the advice!

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dmcghee4
3/17/2016 17:49 EST

anyone know anything about Orchid Bay development? Or really anything about that area. I have been on different posts and we are about to buy something in Belize and want to be near a rescue for animals so that we can invest our time in retirement, but also be near water. We looked at Hopkins but some said it floods a lot. Now seeing the Sartenja area and wondering what anyone knows. Welcome all thoughts. Thank you and I do appreciate the back and forth from a couple of you. Gives a good picture of things.

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hrlee7804
3/18/2016 09:01 EST

I have tried to get to Orchid Bay a few times. Once from Orangewalk and once from Corozal town. The roads are horrible and I know it gets a bunch worse when it rains a lot. If you don't mind a bad road drive for an hour to get to a loaf of bread or a gallon of gasoline then it might be for you. I have always thought that area was for someone to vacation at and wanted to be remote. I think it is closer to Corozal town by water than road. We wanted to like it out there but seemed way too stranded for us. I am not the most social guy in the world but more social than that area.

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dmcghee4
3/18/2016 12:27 EST

Thanks that would be us as well. I am not real social, but I don't want
to be isolated either. We looked at sanctuary Belize and never made it as
the road was long and again isolated and we figured you know this isn't
what we want. They sell a lifestyle and I have never been that. I love to
fish ( a bit reversed as my husband doesn't) love birds, nature and
animals. I am looking to come and have a purpose like volunteering at a
rescue and meet some people. I should have known from the ads that this
place was not us. Appreciate your commenting

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bradinbelize
9/27/2016 08:33 EST

Go to Orchid Bay for yourself. It is beautiful. It is also way off on it's own and you are basically Gilligan and the Skipper stuck there on your own. If you are a "hermit" type it is the perfect place. But if you need to get to a town, go out to dinner and others, it would drive you mad. If you want a beautiful place to sit and write your book - you got it! or a one week secluded get-away great! Otherwise, you'd better be careful because you're alone out there, isolated.

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mgammo
9/27/2016 09:40 EST

I believe it is out in the boonies as well.....

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roxydale
9/29/2016 13:14 EST

Thanks for the read.
I too am looking to retire to Belize and have virtually little knowledge of where to buy.
we like the idea of buying sooner than later with the idea of using it as income property until we eventually retire for good. I am 51 and husband is 55 so we might need a few more years.
I am new to this blog and am hoping to learn as much as I can before we make the step.
In your opinion do you think we can buy a small home very close to water and local resources that would be ideal for tourists as income property?

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bobbyveee
9/29/2016 15:10 EST

Hi We had a beach bungalow on Ambergris caye, so the highest letting potential in Belize, we got $1250/month long term , if you do short term, you'll have to register and pay tax, It was just a two bed one bath property built of reinforced concrete and raised 3 ft up. we got $250 k usd for it , dont think id call it cheap. But it was hurricane proof and had a/c and proper windows, not just shutters. Ive never heard of cheap property in Belize, if you want a wooden house with shutters and no a/c , then yes you can buy cheap, if you want to be comfortable and have a sound rental bringing in good income, then you got to pay for it, especially by the sea.

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