Thursday, September 16, 2010

Best Places to Retire

When it comes to living cheap retirees are the first ones to ask, 'Where are the Best Places to Retire?'

Retirement Living brings with it a whole new set of feelings and concerns. I don't mean to make light of the issue or to say that those who are middle aged are stingy or cheap. It's simply a reality. People live a lot longer these days and many who are looking at retirement are worried they will out live their savings. Even though many people think this is a new phenomenon due to the down turn in the economy the fact is living cheaply has been top of the mind for retirees since the since good old Otto von Bismarck first introduced the concept of the old age pension back in 1889. Everyone who retires wants to stretch their dollars as far as they can because the really don't know how long they will be around and the certainly know there is no more cash coming in.

Some people think the only way to stretch those dollars and enjoy a quality of life in retirement is to search out the best places to retire overseas. As the internet changes our society into one which is more globally inclined and less worried about patriotism this option can make a lot of sense. It still amazes me how many people stay within a few miles of where they were born and yet they complain about politics, the weather, taxes and more. Why not move? Many countries overseas saw big changes in their economies long before the still young U.S. experienced their downturn. In fact the new world was created out of just such downturns and strife many years ago. We could think about European countries as they've been there and done that. The cost of living in many foreign countries overseas and abroad along with lower taxes, great benefit programs and lovely weather can be a huge pull for those looking considering the best places to retire abroad.

So, where is the best place to retire? Well as with most questions that seem simple but are really very complex the answer is, 'It depends.' Yes, it's true it does depend on a lot of things. When Americans ask that question they are probably really thinking, where is the best city to live in USA? Ask a Canadian or European that same question and their minds inevitably reach beyond the borders of their home country to more exotic lands.

International Living has been asking this same question for a number of years and their retirement index of the best places to retire in the world is a constantly changing traget. For example their top five best places to retire in the world 2010 list names these countries:

#1 Ecuador
#2 Panama
#3 Mexico
#4 France
#5 Italy

add in these communities and you've got the Top 10 Best Places to retire.

I wonder what next year will bring? Maybe Retire Belize or Ecuador will make the list.

The International Living Retirement Index by the way ranks the top 25. You can learn more about I.L. and their retirement research here - International Living Magazine.

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