Effects Of Panama’s Presidential Election On Foreign ...

Why Expat Retirees And Investors Don't Have To Care About Local Politics

April 7, 2014, Panama City, Panama: Local politics have little effect on foreign retirees and investors anywhere in the world.

Dear Live and Invest Overseas Reader,

Elections took place in Afghanistan over the weekend. Voter turnout is estimated to have been more than 50% of those eligible despite concerns over safety at polling stations. Elections began today in India and will continue over the coming few weeks. The country has to stretch out the process. There are more eligible voters in India than the entire populations of the United States and Western Europe combined. 

Closer to home for me, elections are less than a month away in Panama. Voters have been showing their support in rallies, including one last night for presidential candidate Juan Carlos Varela. The parade of honking cars with flags flying and banners waving circled our apartment building for a couple of hours. No, we weren’t under attack. Coincidentally, Varela lives in the same building we do. The parade was followed by a fireworks show on the Cinta Costera that put some Fourth of July celebrations I’ve seen to shame. Latinos like their fireworks.


Retirement Choices In Granada, León, or San Juan del Sur.

Three Affordable Retirement Choices In Central America's Most Misunderstood Country

April 6, 2014, Panama City, Panama: Nicaragua offers three primary retirement lifestyle choices

Dear Live and Invest Overseas Reader,

Earlier in the week I introduced you to Nicaragua, a frontier land with a troubled past that is an increasingly appealing option for the low-maintenance retiree. I promised to follow up with recommendations for where, specifically, the would-be retiree might consider settling in this beautiful, affordable, and misunderstood little country.

Nicaragua offers three primary retirement lifestyle choices, as follows...

Granada. The Spanish first landed in Nicaragua in 1522. Two years later the Spanish Conquistador Francisco Fernandez de Cordoba founded Granada. The city, which considers herself the oldest in the Americas, was intended, by the Spanish, to be a statement of elegance and a reflection of the original Granada in Spain.

New World Granada has suffered a long cycle of destruction at the mercy of buccaneers and earthquakes, but she continues to dust herself off. The Sandinista revolution largely spared the city further indignities, and today she shines. The once-cobbled streets have been largely paved over, but Granada's colonial splendors remain and in fact look better today than they have in a long time. The city's renaissance is thanks to private and public funding. Spain has restored some of the major thoroughfares with palms and paving. The rest of the rehabilitation is being carried out by wealthy Nicaraguans and retiring expatriates from around the world.


Comparing Off-Grid Communities At Carmelita In Cayo, Belize,...

Mexico Versus Belize—How To Choose The Off-Grid Retirement Community That’s Right For You

April 4, 2014, Panama City, Panama: Carmelita in Cayo, Belize, and Los Arboles in Tulum, Mexico, are two top off-grid retirement choices.

Dear Live and Invest Overseas Reader,

The idea of living off-the-grid is building momentum among retirees, including retirees looking to go overseas. The appeal is twofold. First, it’s a chance to go green and get back to basics. Both of these ideas resonate with people around retirement age.

Second, it’s a way to take control of your situation. Off-the-grid means independence from "the system." Again, this idea is more appealing all the time, especially among would-be retirees.

As a result, more developers are putting together projects to accommodate these kinds of buyers.

All off-grid projects share some similarities (such as no utility lines), but each is also unique in many ways, meaning each attracts a different kind of buyer...and, over time, develops into a different kind of community. This is good for the consumer. It means you have choices.


Panama Pacifico Is A Top Retirement, Lifestyle, And ...

The Best Lifestyle Option In Panama?

April 3, 2014, Panama Pacifico, Panama: Panama Pacifico is a top option for the retiree, expat, or entrepreneur who wants to take advantage of Panama City without having to struggle with day-to-day life in Panama City.

Dear Live and Invest Overseas Reader,

The undertaking has been described as "one of the most ambitious urban development projects in Latin America." That could be an understatement. The vision for Panama Pacifico is massive.

Over the course of four decades, London & Regional Panama, the project's master developer, will create a mixed-use complex of residences, industrial facilities, and business centers built to state-of-the-art design standards and supported by well-planned infrastructure and all the services and facilities of a full-fledged community...all set amidst the forests of Panama's Pacific coast. The total investment in the project when all is said and done is projected to be US$4 billion, that to create a fully master-planned city (on 3,500 acres) to complement Panama City back across the Bridge of the Americas.

"Live. Work. Play" is the tag line; however, Panama Pacifico began with work—that is, commercial construction. The developer believed that the success of the project overall depended on establishing a commercial and industrial base that would act as a driver for residential and community growth.

One of the first to take advantage of this new commercial space was Dell. In 2003, the group established a regional call center in the then-fledgling Panama Pacifico. The center has now grown into one of Dell's largest hubs outside the United States, employing more than 2,500 personnel and handling 360,000 contacts per day from across the United States.


The Pros And Cons Of Gated Communities.

Why We Hate Gated Communities...Or Do We?

April 2, 2014, Granada, Nicaragua: Nine questions to ask yourself before deciding on living in a gated community.

Dear Live and Invest Overseas Reader,

"No gringo communities for me... I'm going to be part of the local culture."

"I'm not the gated community type of person..."

Every year, I speak with hundreds of potential expats at events, and I get thousands of emails from people considering moving abroad. Most say that they would never consider living in a gated community overseas...especially an expat-oriented one.

Their arguments are good ones...and almost always the same. Because when we consider moving abroad, much of the appeal has nothing to do with practical issues...the allure of overseas living has more to do with adventure, excitement, and a rich cultural experience.

And the best way to get that experience is to be part of the local culture...not part of a North American enclave.

So the vast majority of potential expats—probably over 90%—say the same thing: they would not consider a planned community favored by North Americans.

But then a strange thing happens. Of the people who actually buy overseas, the vast majority—in this case perhaps 85%—actually end up buying in some sort of planned community in either a gated community or condo project. And there are good reasons for this, too.


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Kathleen Peddicord

Kathleen Peddicord is the founder of the Live and Invest Overseas publishing group. With more than 25 years experience covering this beat, Kathleen reports daily on current opportunities for living, retiring, and investing overseas in her free e-letter.

Her book, How To Retire Overseas—Everything You Need To Know To Live Well Abroad For Less, was recently released by Penguin Books.

Read more here.


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