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10 Amazing Places You Can Afford To Retire Abroad

10 Amazing Places You Can Afford To Retire Abroad

Have you always dreamed of retiring abroad? Unfortunately, your retirement account may not seem in the best shape to allow that. After all, the average 50-year-old only has $43,797 in savings. That doesn’t seem like much to retire on–especially when you’re planning on moving. But the following locations offer cheap living, giving you the perfect opportunity to retire abroad, even on limited savings.

1. Malaysia: A Tropical Paradise

malaysia

    If you’re seeking that scenic beachside retirement home where you can spend your days enjoying crystal clear waters and soaking in the tropical sun, then Malaysia should be on the top of your list. Here, it’s easy to get by on $1,700 per month, and the health care system is fantastic. Since many of the doctors have studied outside Malaysia in places like the States, it’s not tough to find an English-speaking doctor, either. Malaysia also offers a 10-year residency visa that you can get by proving income and making a down-payment.

    2. Colombia: A Comfortable Climate

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    columbia

      Colombia is a hot-spot for retirees right now because of its pleasant temperatures and beautiful landscape. Even better, it offers super cheap living. The average income here is around US$300 per month, meaning that an American couple could easily spend less than $1,500 and still be living in luxury. If healthcare is a huge concern, consider settling in Medellin, home to five of the top Latin American hospitals.

      3. Ecuador: A Happy Retirement Destination

      Ecuador

        From the jungle to the beaches, Ecuador features a scenic landscape that can’t be beat in the States. In addition to that, it offers cheap living, where an American couple could easily live well on $1,500 per month. Plus, Ecuador uses the US dollar as its official currency, so retirees don’t have to worry about currency exchange. What’s more, in the 2014 Global Retirement Index, Ecuador was rated as one of the top countries for quality of life.

        4. Panama: A Home Away from Home

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        panama

          Panama offers a dry, warm climate year round and a very low cost of living–with beach views. You can retire comfortably on $1,300 per month, and it’s one of the best countries for quality of life. What’s more, English is widely spoken, and you can use your US money anywhere across the country. The country also offers first-rate hospitals, and many of its doctors are US trained.

          5. Slovenia: A Cozy European Destination

          slovenia

            In the Global Retirement Index for 2014, the European country of Slovenia ranks among the top 30 for health and well-being. It has also maintained a relatively low cost of living over the last several years. This is a wonderful location for retirees who want to retire abroad in Europe’s lush, green landscapes backed by snow-capped mountains. The only drawback is that you may have to learn the Slovenian language. However, many locals are taught English as a foreign language.

            6. Turkey: A Mediterranean Utopia

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            turkey

              Turkey is a wonderful place to find low-cost living coupled with stunning scenic landscapes. If you’re seeking a Mediterranean culture that you can enjoy on limited savings, Turkey is the place to find it. Here, the currency exchange rate is around 2:1, and the cost of living is usually one third of that in the States. Low real estate prices allow you to purchase a quality apartment in Turkey for under $40,000.

              8. Belize: A Picture of Beachside Perfection

              belize

                While Belize is well known for its tourism, that doesn’t mean that the cost of living is high. In fact, it’s anything but. You can easily set a $2,000 per month budget. This beautiful Caribbean nation is among the cheaper ones in the area, and Ambergris Caye is a great place to snag a section of sand. While it’s easy to become a legal resident, the health care system isn’t one of the better ones on the list. However, this is a prime location for retirees looking for a place to retire abroad in the Caribbean on a budget.

                9. Thailand: A Homely, Affordable Location

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                thailand

                  Thanks to its super cheap cost of living, Thailand is a popular place to retire abroad. Your monthly rent could cost you a small $400 and you’ll be living like a king. Even better, health care is so cheap that few Americans and Canadians need insurance to cover the costs. Plus, the service is quick and professional. A great spot to settle down is in Chiang Mai, home to 17,000 other foreign residents like yourself.

                  10. Spain: A Healthcare Wonderland

                  spain

                    Spain is a fantastic location for cheap European living. Valencia features countless homes and apartments for under $200,000, but you can rent a two-bedroom apartment in the city center for as little as $780 per month. The biggest perk is that the country offers free public health coverage, providing you with healthcare at a fraction of the cost of the States.

                    Featured photo credit: archer10 (Dennis) via flickr.com

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                    Last Updated on July 10, 2020

                    The Definitive Guide to Get out of Debt Fast (and Forever)

                    The Definitive Guide to Get out of Debt Fast (and Forever)

                    Debt can feel crushing, like a weight that is always weighing you down. Looking at those numbers, it can feel as if you’ll never get out from under it. However, if you really want to learn how to get out of debt, it is possible with a great deal of focus and self-control.

                    Getting out of debt isn’t impossible. Like any big goal, all that it takes is an action plan to identify where you are and creating a plan to zero out your debt.

                    Identifying All of Your Debts

                    The first part of paying off your debt is getting a complete picture of what you owe. When you have everything written out in front of you, it makes it much easier to create an action plan. Depending on how much you owe, it might also help you realize it’s not as bad you might have originally thought.

                    Here’s how you can get started identifying your debts:

                    1. Own Your Debt

                    Before you start identifying all of your debts, take a moment to process that you have debt but want to get out of it.

                    Forgive yourself for any past mistakes, missed payments, or overspending. It might be painful to accept how much debt you have at first, but you must own it.

                    2. Make a Debt Tracker

                    It’s astonishing how few people ever created a tracker to understand their total debts. Most likely, it comes from not wanting to accept the guilt of having debt, but, if avoided, it can make it nearly impossible to get out of debt.

                    Open up a new Google or Microsoft Excel sheet and list out all of your debts. Start with the name of the creditor, interest rates, total balance, loan term length (if any), and the minimum amount due each payment. This will include student loans, credit cards, and any other type of debt owed.

                    3. Get Your Debt Number

                    Once you’ve made your debt tracker and taken the other steps, identify your total payoff number. This is crucial, as you will have a starting point and a clear goal that you are trying to achieve.

                    Prioritizing Your Debts

                    All debt is not created equal. It’s imperative to understand that there are different types of debt.

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                    1. Understand Bad and Good Debts

                    Bad debts are usually paying for things you want instead of always need. While there might be some emergencies that max out your credit cards, often times it’s excessive spending[1].

                    There are three main types of bad debt:

                    • Credit Card Debt: The average American household owes over $16,000 in credit card debt!
                    • Auto Loan Debt: According to CNBC , the average auto loan in the US is $30,032!
                    • Consumer Loan Debt: Consumer loan debt isn’t as common as credit card and auto loan debt, but it’s still considered bad as interest rates are usually between 10-28%.

                    Good debt is identified as investments in your future. Here are three common types of good debt:

                    • Student Loan Debt
                    • Mortgage Loan
                    • Business Loans

                    2. Decide Which Debt to Pay off First

                    Once you know each type of debt and their interest rates, you can begin to pay off debt quickly.

                    Focus on paying off bad debt first, regardless of if it is a credit card or auto loan. Start by paying off the loan with the highest interest rate first.

                    If you have several credit cards with different interest rates, you want to focus on the one with a higher APR. You will actually save more money by eliminating the card with the highest interest rate.

                    3. Don’t Pay the Minimum Amount

                    Paying the minimum amount digs you into a hole as interest rates will offset your payment. Even a small amount more than the minimum can help you pay off debt much faster.

                    Removing Obstacles to Pay off Debt Quickly

                    Creating a debt tracker and prioritizing a plan is simple, but avoiding temptation can be difficult.

                    1. Set a Reminder to Track Your Debt

                    “If you can’t measure it you can’t manage it.” -Peter Drucker

                    It’s so important to track your debt to ensure that you get it paid off quickly. Similar to working out and measuring your results, you need to track your debt constantly. Start with a weekly reminder, where you sign on and log your updated number. Did you increase, decrease, or stay the same?

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                    Regularly tracking your student loan balance can be incredibly motivating, as well. You will get a huge confidence boost each time you see your total debt amount decreases.

                    Set weekly and monthly goals so you can have short term wins and keep the momentum going.

                    2. Hide Your Credit Cards

                    If your biggest debt is credit cards, you need to eliminate temptation and remove them from your wallet.

                    Some people have gone to extreme measures by freezing their credit cards. Why? This would create an ice block around your card, which would require you to chip away at it slowly. This will give you time to think if it’s the best idea to buy that thing you’re about to buy.

                    3. Automate Everything

                    Willpower can be a huge downfall to paying off your debt. By automating your bills each month, you will ensure that willpower isn’t involved.

                    4. Plan Ahead

                    Getting out of debt will require some sacrifices, but with enough planning, you can make it work.

                    For example, if you know that you have a friend’s birthday or family dinner coming up, plan ahead for the costs. Whether you need to cut back on spending the week before, pick up a side job, or meet them after dinner, do what is needed.

                    5. Live Cheaply

                    The only way to get out of debt is to make some sacrifices on your spending habits. Find ways to save money each month so you can apply that amount to your outstanding debts. Here are some ways to save money each month:

                    • Live with roommates
                    • Cook dinners and prepare lunches for work instead of eating out
                    • Cut cable and choose Netflix or Amazon Prime
                    • Take public transit or bike to work

                    Finding the Lowest Interest Rates

                    The higher your interest rates, the harder (and longer) it will take you to pay off any debt.

                    If possible, you want to find ways to lower your interest rates to help get out of debt quickly. Here’s how you can get started:

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                    1. Maintain a High Credit Score

                    Your credit score will have a large impact on your ability to refinance your loans and receive a lower interest rate. If you have a low credit score, it’s unlikely you will be able to refinance your loans. Use these credit tips to increase and maintain an excellent score:

                    • Never miss a payment
                    • Don’t exceed 30% of your credit limit
                    • Don’t sign up for more than one card at once
                    • Limit hard inquires, like auto-loans and new credit cards
                    • Monitor frequently with free credit-tracking software

                    2. Find Balance Transfer Offers

                    Start by opening a free account on credit.com. Credit.com offers you the chance to open a free account and see what type of balance transfer offers you can receive. Some of your existing credit cards might already have 0% or lower APR balance transfer offers available.

                    Contact each of your credit card providers to ask about lowering your rate for a one-time balance transfer offer[2].

                    If you do take advantage of this option, make sure that you use a balance transfer and not a cash advance. Cash advances have a ton of high interest fees (15-25%, depending on your credit card) and will only compound your debt problem.

                    How to Get Rid of Debt Forever

                    Setting up a plan, removing temptations, and getting the lowest interest rates is the first step to get out of debt.

                    1. Keep Monitoring and Adjusting

                    Once you have a plan, don’t get comfortable. Track your debt payoff plan and make the necessary adjustments when needed.

                    Monitor your credit scores with a free site like CreditKarma. The higher your credit score climbs, the more likely you will be to secure a new, lower-interest loan.

                    2. Earn More Money

                    There are only so many ways to save money. Instead of clipping another coupon or making sacrifices for your morning coffee, find ways to earn more money!

                    Think about it…it is much easier to find ways to earn an extra $1,000 per month than find $1,000 to cut from your budget.

                    Here are some examples of ways to earn more money:

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                    Talk to Your Boss

                    Have a conversation with your boss about current salary and/or commission rates. If you’re not satisfied or want a change, don’t be afraid to look around at other positions. Some of them might even have a student loan debt reimbursement plan!

                    Start a Side Hustle

                    This could be coaching students on the weekends, driving for Uber, or taking paid online surveys. There are tons of ways to make money outside your 9-5. Now that you have a clear plan to pay off your debts, you’ll be more motivated than ever to figure out creative new ways to earn money.

                    Build an Online Business

                    There are so many websites and blogs that earn money from ads, affiliates, and other online products. Find your niche and get started.

                    3. Celebrate Your Wins

                    As you progress in your debt payoff journey, don’t forget to celebrate your wins. You need to always reward yourself for the hard work and discipline that is required to get out of debt.

                    While you shouldn’t celebrate so big that it increases debt, make sure to factor in little rewards to keep you motivated.

                    4. Set New Financial Goals

                    Eventually, with a plan and these steps, you can rid yourself of your debt. Once you do, make sure to celebrate your monumental achievement, but don’t stop there.

                    Now, you can focus on acquiring wealth and increasing your net worth. Set new financial goals so you have a new target to aim toward. Here’s how to set financial goals and actually meet them.

                    These could be anything now that you are debt free! Think about where you want to travel, buying your first home, or saving for your future retirement. Just like before, make sure that your goals are specific, measurable, and achievable.

                    Conclusion

                    Congrats, you can now set a plan in motion to finally pay off your debt quickly (and hopefully forever)!

                    Remember, if you want to get out of debt quickly, it’s not always easy. Just like any big goal, there will be sacrifices, challenges, and problems to overcome.

                    More Tips on Getting out of Debt

                    Featured photo credit: Pepi Stojanovski via unsplash.com

                    Reference

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