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AARP on Mexico

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Vince
2/29/2004 18:54 EST

The February 2004 AARP magazine had a very enthusiastic article on retiring in Mexico.It claims that retired Americans are living there happily on $600/month.

John Howells' book "Choose Mexico" is less enthusiastic about the cost of living.

My wife and I are seriously thinking of retiring in Mexico and are not seeking employment.

What does it cost to live comfortably in Mexico?

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cericksenj
3/1/2004 08:39 EST

The best answer one could give here is to do as I will do starting next week..Go there and see for yourself..I too read the article, but cost of living is only one factor in my decision..the people, climate, atmosphere/living, are others..But, my standard maybe different than yours..But, If you go there thinking you can do all you do Stateside, you maybe in for a surprise..continue your research, but go there again and again..then it will become clearer..I did see many rentals for $600/month, but for all costs to be @ that level would be suspicious

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bstory
3/2/2004 09:54 EST

Yes, after visiting several places in Mexico, we decided that Mazatlan would be the best place for us to spend our retirement. But we took the advice of many who went before us and rented a home here for a year in order to be sure that we had made the correct choice. It also gave us plenty of time to look for our perfect home - I think my wife and I looked at every house that was for sale within a 50 mile radius - we finally found a 3 bedroom, 2-1/2 bath home on a private dead-end street in an upscale neighborhood for US $75,000 and were able to find a 30 year US mortgage for less than US $500 per month. We manage quite well on our US $1,500 per month income.

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RevImmigrant
3/24/2004 05:36 EST

There is a good website, www.chapala.com, on the lake Chapala area, which is where many of the retirees live in Mexico. In fact it has been said that the biggest community of Americans outside the US is in the Lake Chapala/Guadalajara area. This website has a number of interesting topics, including a list of prices for food and other items. I would suggest you check this out. I am presently living in GErmany, but am getting ready to go back to Mexico because there is a significant difference in the cost, i.e. beef filet is less than $6 USD a kilo. Here in the German stores it is about 22 Euros per kilo and it is almost $19 USD a pound (about 460 gm) at the military commissary, which is more expensive than the German stores on many items. Maids are inexpensivein Mexico, as are most personal services. I paid mine about $7 USD a day for all the cleaning, laundry and ironing and she stayed about 3 1/2 hours. Here I pay 10 Euros per hour just for cleaning. I have to pay extra for ironing and do my own wash. Before I came over here, I was saving $700 USD a month from my VA disability and Social Security disability and without my German government widow's pension. The dollar is high against the peso and is in toilet in respect to the Euro and this is the main reason I am going back. I enjoy living where I do not look like a foreigner (German father, Norwegian mother), but I can't take the cost of living anymore, so I'm going back to Mexico within the next month or two. Going there to check it out first is a good idea.

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enyasharen
3/25/2004 15:24 EST

Hello RevImmigrant - and others,

Many thanks for your reply. Your suggestions re. cost of living and Lake Chapala website were most insightful.

Of all the locales I was considering, the Lake Chapala area does appeal to me, but I am not at the retiree stage in life, so employment/business opportunities are crucial.

I would appreciate any advice re. contacts & websites pertaining to business and/or expat associations, as well as various industry and government contacts there, if possible.

Muchas gracias,
Enya Sharen - Canada

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Vince
3/26/2004 16:06 EST

Well, Folks, I'm almost on my way. On May 1 I will be flying to Guadalajara for a week of looking around. A group from a local church is going to meet me, and I willl be looking around the Lake Chapala area with them.
I'll let everyone know what happens.

Best regards, Vince

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Vince
5/12/2004 17:13 EST

Folks, remember that AARP article on living in Mexicp for $600/month? The gringoes around Lake Chapala hate that article.
However, IF you own your own house, and IF your health is good enough to get onto the Mexican national healthcare plan, you can do it.

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suspirar
12/9/2009 21:57 EST

...and that last comment comes from someone living in Honduras....LOL.

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Olympia
4/16/2010 14:47 EST

Why did you select Maztlan over other areas? Weather?

How hot is it there in the summer?

My husband and I are looking around at different countries for retirement and are considering Mexico

Thanks

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RVGRINGO
4/20/2010 10:28 EST

If you want the best weather, Chapala is the only real choice. Homes there don't have furnaces or air conditioning. That tells you something.
The coastal locations are OK for a winter 'getaway', which we do for a week in December, but living through the long, hot & humid season is unbearable for most expats. Those who can, have a second home somewhere cooler. On the other hand, there are other wonderful towns at even higher elevations, up to over 8000 feet, where the winters are too cold. Chapala is a microclimate and is 'just right'.

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