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5 Tropical Islands You Could Actually Afford

5 Tropical Islands You Could Actually Afford

It’s easy to hang your head and sigh with longing when you hear that someone like Mel Gibson or Johnny Depp has purchased an exclusive private island somewhere in the tropics. But did you ever consider the possibility that even an ordinary person like yourself could own their very own piece of island property?

Believe it or not, a number of affordable options exist for those who want to own a tropical island without (completely) breaking the bank. The number of available island properties for sale is even greater if you widen your search to include smaller lots or parcels on larger islands with other inhabitants.

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But assuming that the whole Robinson Crusoe type of solitary existence is what you’re seeking, here are five entire tropical islands that can be yours for $500,000 or less. (Source: privateislandsonline.com)

Isla Alhambra, Brazil – $247,629

This completely undeveloped 9-acre island has all the ingredients for a tropical daydream. Pristine white sand, crystal clear water, and lush vegetation. Beautiful pineapple and palm trees complete the picture. And since it’s only a short distance off the coast, the popular mainland beach town of Itacare is only a short boat ride away. Its proximity to mainland Brazil also affords it some breathtaking views of the surrounding area. This island would be perfect for a residential development.

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Little Gaulding Cay, Bahamas – $275,000

This gem is part of the group of 30 islands and almost 100 cays that make up the Berry Islands. A popular destination among sailors and fishermen, these islands are known for the seclusion and privacy they offer, although they’re still easily accessible from Miami via a 1-hour flight to nearby Chub Cay or Great Harbour Cay. This island is 2 acres of completely undeveloped land with deep water access.

Secret Island, Belize – $350,000

Located just a few miles off the coast of Belize, this 2.5-acre island offers the double benefit of privacy combined with easy access from the mainland. It’s surrounded by red and black mangroves and shallow water that’s only knee deep at 30 yards out. Though currently undeveloped, it has room to build several houses, an area that could be cleared for a beach, and a cove with deep water for building a dock. As a bonus, this entire region is part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

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Isla Paloma, Panama – $380,000

Located near Bocas del Toro, this .75-acre island is move-in ready. There’s a home on the island with 2 bedrooms plus a loft. You’ll also find a workshop, party shack, boathouse, and swim dock. The island itself has a beautiful white sand beach and is home to a variety of tropical plants, including fruit trees, herbs, and flowering species. It’s also a great place for bird watching, surrounded by a shallow lagoon and an arc of mangroves that protect is from waves and erosion. You’ll be sure to enjoy the beautiful sunset views and an annual average temperature around 80 degrees.

Pink Pearl Island, Nicaragua – $500,000

This 2-acre island lies 3 miles off the coast of Nicaragua in the Pearl Cay group of islands. The turnkey property is currently being operated as a tourism business and comes complete with a main house, 3 cabanas, bunk house, restaurant, and workers’ cabin. It boasts pristine sand beaches and sparkling turquoise water and is even free of mosquitoes and sand flies. Additional bonuses: A pier and swimming pool. A 25-foot speedboat, “The Black Pearl,” is even included in the purchase price.

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With options like these, it’s entirely possible to imagine that even you could one day own your very own private island. Take a look; you just might be surprised with what you find.

But you had better act fast before some A-list celebrity swoops in on your bargain paradise.

Featured photo credit: caribbean-17009_1280/PublicDomainPictures via pixabay.com

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Last Updated on September 28, 2020

The Pros and Cons of Working from Home

The Pros and Cons of Working from Home

At the start of the year, if you had asked anyone if they could do their work from home, many would have said no. They would have cited the need for team meetings, a place to be able to sit down and get on with their work, the camaraderie of the office, and being able to meet customers and clients face to face.

Almost ten months later, most of us have learned that we can do our work from home and in many ways, we have discovered working from home is a lot better than doing our work in a busy, bustling office environment where we are inundated with distractions and noise.

One of the things the 2020 pandemic has reminded us is we humans are incredibly adaptable. It is one of the strengths of our kind. Yet we have been unknowingly practicing this for years. When we move house we go through enormous upheaval.

When we change jobs, we not only change our work environment but we also change the surrounding people. Humans are adaptable and this adaptability gives us strength.

So, what are the pros and cons of working from home? Below I will share some things I have discovered since I made the change to being predominantly a person who works from home.

Pro #1: A More Relaxed Start to the Day

This one I love. When I had to be at a place of work in the past, I would always set my alarm to give me just enough time to make coffee, take a shower, and change. Mornings always felt like a rush.

Now, I can wake up a little later, make coffee and instead of rushing to get out of the door at a specific time, I can spend ten minutes writing in my journal, reviewing my plan for the day, and start the day in a more relaxed frame of mind.

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When you start the day in a relaxed state, you begin more positively. You find you have more clarity and more focus and you are not wasting energy worrying about whether you will be late.

Pro #2: More Quiet, Focused Time = Increased Productivity

One of the biggest difficulties of working in an office is the noise and distractions. If a colleague or boss can see you sat at your desk, you are more approachable. It is easier for them to ask you questions or engage you in meaningless conversations.

Working from home allows you to shut the door and get on with an hour or two of quiet focused work. If you close down your Slack and Email, you avoid the risk of being disturbed and it is amazing how much work you can get done.

An experiment conducted in 2012 found that working from home increased a person’s productivity by 13%, and more recent studies also find significant increases in productivity.[1]

When our productivity increases, the amount of time we need to perform our work decreases, and this means we can spend more time on activities that can bring us closer to our family and friends as well as improve our mental health.

Pro #3: More Control Over Your Day

Without bosses and colleagues watching over us all day, we have a lot more control over what we do. While some work will inevitably be more urgent than others, we still get a lot more choice about what we work on.

We also get more control over where we work. I remember when working in an office, we were given a fixed workstation. Some of these workstations were pleasant with a lot of natural sunlight, but other areas were less pleasant. It was often the luck of the draw whether we find ourselves in a good place to work or not.

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By working from home we can choose what work to work on and whether we want to face a window or not. We can get up and move to another place, and we can move from room to room. And if you have a garden, on nice days you could spend a few hours working outside.

Pro #4: You Get to Choose Your Office Environment

While many companies will provide you with a laptop or other equipment to do your work, others will give you an allowance to purchase your equipment. But with furniture such as your chair and desk, you have a lot of freedom.

I have seen a lot of amazing home working spaces with wonderful sets up—better chairs, laptop stands that make working from a laptop much more ergonomic and therefore, better for your neck.

You can also choose your wall art and the little nick-nacks on your desk or table. With all this freedom, you can create a very personal and excellent working environment that is a pleasure to work in. When you are happy doing your work, you will inevitably do better work.

Con #1: We Move a Lot Less

When we commute to a place of work, there is movement involved. Many people commute using public transport, which means walking to the bus stop or train station. Then, there is the movement at lunchtime when we go out to buy our lunch. Working in a place of work requires us to move more.

Unfortunately, working from home naturally causes us to move less and this means we are not burning as many calories as we need to.

Moving is essential to our health and if you are working from home you need to become much more aware of your movement. To ensure you are moving enough, make sure you take your lunch breaks. Get up from your desk and move. Go outside, if you can, and take a walk. And, of course, refrain from regular trips to the refrigerator.

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Con #2: Less Human Interaction

One of the nicest things about bringing a group of people together to work is the camaraderie and relationships that are built over time. Working from home takes us away from that human interaction and for many, this can cause a feeling of loss.

Humans are a social species—we need to be with other people. Without that connection, we start to feel lonely and that can lead to mental health issues.

Zoom and Microsoft Teams meeting cannot replace that interaction. Often, the interactions we get at our workplaces are spontaneous. But with video calls, there is nothing spontaneous—most of these calls are prearranged and that’s not spontaneous.

This lack of spontaneous interaction can also reduce a team’s ability to develop creative solutions—there’s just something about a group of incredibly creative people coming together in a room to thrash out ideas together that lends itself to creativity.

While video calls can be useful, they don’t match the connection between a group of people working on a solution together.

Con #3: The Cost of Buying Home Office Equipment

Not all companies are going to provide you with a nice allowance to buy expensive home office equipment. 100% remote companies such as Doist (the creators of Todoist and Twist) provide a $2,000 allowance to all their staff every two years to buy office equipment. Others are not so generous.

This can prove to be expensive for many people to create their ideal work-from-home workspace. Many people must make do with what they already have, and that could mean unsuitable chairs that damage backs and necks.

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For a future that will likely involve more flexible working arrangements, companies will need to support their staff in ways that will add additional costs to an already reduced bottom line.

Con #4: Unique Distractions

Not all people have the benefit of being able to afford childcare for young children, and this means they need to balance working and taking care of their kids.

For many parents, being able to go to a workplace gives them time away from the noise and demands of a young family, so they could get on with their work. Working from home removes this and can make doing video calls almost impossible.

To overcome this, where possible, you need to set some boundaries. I know this is not always possible, but it is something you need to try. You should do whatever you can to make sure you have some boundaries between your work life and home life.

Final Thoughts

Working from home can be hugely beneficial for many people, but it can also bring serious challenges to others.

We are moving towards a new way of working. Therefore, companies need to look at both the pros and cons of working from home and be prepared to support their staff in making this transition. It will not be impossible, but a lot of thought will need to go into it.

More About Working From Home

Featured photo credit: Standsome Worklifestyle via unsplash.com

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