August 01, 2012
Who hasn’t dreamed of living near the vineyards of Provence or eating amazing Italian meals day after day under the Tuscan sun?
Whether you envision your retirement including warmer weather, a sandy beach, or a mountainside village, retiring abroad is easier than you might think with a variety of countries that offer world-class arts and culture, convenient transportation, and in some cases, lower costs of living and financial incentives for an upgraded lifestyle.
“A lot of people retire overseas not to lay in a hammock all day, but to pursue lifelong ambitions or dreams they have waited their whole lives to achieve,” says Michael Manville, founder of RetireWorldwide.com, an online community of prospective retirees, expatriates and seekers of unique lifestyles.
“Whether it be sailing the Caribbean, starting an orphanage, or tending a vineyard, often these dreams are related to the unique characteristics of overseas destinations.”
But it does require some planning.
If retiring overseas is something you’re considering, start researching and preparing right now, says Kathleen Peddicord, author of How to Retire Overseas—Everything You Need To Know To Live Well (For Less) Abroad, a book that offers step-by-step instructions for planning and executing a fulfilling retirement abroad.
“No matter what stage of life you’re in, this can work for anyone, at any age,” Peddicord says. “The biggest regret I’ve heard from readers over the years is that they wish they’d made the move sooner.”
Charting Your Course
To choose the perfect location, Manville recommends exploring your top three prospective communities. “It is difficult to make judgments without actually visiting new locations, meeting with other foreigners living overseas and seeing things with your own eyes,” Manville says.
Keep in mind that the short duration of these research trips isn’t indicative of what your day-to-day life would be like as a local there, especially when it comes to how much money you will spend.