How To Figure A Budget For Your New Life Overseas
Jan. 4, 2011, Medellin, Colombia:
Dear Live and Invest Overseas Reader,
How much will it cost you to live in the overseas Shangri-la that's calling your name?
The bulk of any budget is given over to housing--rent or a mortgage, if you have one--so start here. Are you going to rent or to buy?
I strongly recommend that you rent at least at first, for 6 to 12 months, to give yourself a chance to try the place on for size before committing. However, if you do eventually decide to invest in a home of your own, recognize that property ownership comes with carrying costs. As a home-owner, you'll have maintenance and repair costs, insurance, in some places property taxes, maybe grounds-keeping, etc. As a renter, you have none of these liabilities, which is why renting long term can make a lot of sense for the retiree abroad.