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Relo Moveto Cabo

MOVING TO CABO

“If you are a baby boomer, time is not on your side.Many baby boomers see retirement age fast approaching with littleto nothing in the way of retirement assets that will allow them to actually retire and live a comfortable lifestyle in the U.S.”
Will Rogers

Have you ever thought about retirement in México? …it’s a very real and wonderful possibility. The US Department of State estimates that out of the approximately four million Americans living overseas, between 600,000 and one million are in Baja and elsewhere in México – up from about 200,000 a decade ago.

Here in this land of majestic mountains and rolling countryside, you will find a gentle people willing to welcome you into their hearts. With the passage of NAFTA several years ago, México has stabilized economically and socially. English is spoken in many areas. Access to the United States is quick, and in most cases, fairly easy. Gringos can buy and sell property. The weather is warm, and in some areas, the climate is tropical. There are places where the weather stays mild even during the summer.

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It is possible to stay in the country for longer than six months at a time without having to make a trip to the border. And maybe most importantly, older citizens who retire in Mexico are respected. Moving to México and maybe retirement in México beckons for all of these reasons and more!

Many of the residential areas are gated communities much like the communities north of the border with a great twist; most are beachfront properties at prices much lower than state side. The beach here is one of the finest in México. In Baja California, an estimated 100,000 Americans have created the first North American land rush of the 21st century. Officials at the American embassy estimate that there are “officially” more than 600,000 American citizens living permanently in México, but concede the actual number is closer to 800,000. Treasury Department officials in Washington estimate that the number of Treasury checks — Social Security, Veteran Administrations, tax refunds
— sent to México is “in the ballpark of 750,000.”

Many gringos that choose retirement in México settle in the Baja, but North Americans can be found nearly anywhere in México. Where you decide to live depends on a number of factors, including how immersed in the Mexican culture you want to be and how inexpensive you want your lifestyle to be. Areas with a higher concentration of gringos tend to be more expensive than more remote areas.

México has a multi-layered immigration system. Tourists with an FM-T visa (commonly known as the tourist visa) are allowed to stay in México for 6 months without crossing a border to renew the visa. For those who want to stay longer than 6 months at a time without having to make a semi-annual trip to the border, the next step in the immigration process is the FM-3. If you purchase a home or property in Mexico, and intend to live year round at Lands End, an FM-2 would be in order.

But why México, you might ask? Well, for one thing, most Americans and Canadians can drive to México in a car. A bigger reason is that México is a bargain compared to the USA and Canada. There are also a large number of Europeans retiring in Mexico. Mexico is rich with history, steeped in culture, having perhaps a more pronounced culture than any other nation in Latin America with the exception of Brazil and Argentina. México has great food, great architecture and many areas with excellent climate. México is modern, with better highways than many parts of Latin America and an infrastructure that allows foreigners to connect via telephone and internet to the rest of the world. Even though the current level of infrastructure is not as advanced as in the USA and Canada, it isn’t available in Nicaragua or Guatemala, and this is an important factor for the retiree who doesn’t want to be inconvenienced by inconveniences in the autumn years of their life.

There’s less stress here, too. Once you adjust to the “mañana” attitude, and remember that “mañana” doesn’t necessarily mean tomorrow-it just means not today, you will realize that everything will eventually get done that needs doing and with far less frustration. Rather than worrying, go to the plaza, sit on a bench, and watch village life pass before your eyes. You will see a family out for a stroll, a little boy riding on his father’s shoulders while Mom buys her daughter a balloon. You’ll probably notice a lot of hand-holding going on. Children hold their parent’s hands while out in public until even the child is well into adulthood.

Compared with the hustle and bustle of everyday life in other countries, you’ll find the slower pace of Mexico almost unnerving at first, and within a short span of time, you’ll find it almost impossible to imagine any other lifestyle.