A Beautiful English-Speaking Land On The Caribbean
Belize is a safe, friendly, welcoming, unassuming little country where the English-speaking population values personal privacy, self-determination, and freedom.
In the 20 years since we first visited this country, we've joked perennially that "the good news from Belize is...no news from Belize." This is a sleepy Caribbean nation with but 330,000 people and three highways.
On the other hand, little Belize offers a whole lot of what many tourists, retirees, and investors are looking for: sandy beachfront, both along its mainland coast and encircling its offshore cays. Prices for a bit of sand on Ambergris, the most developed of Belize's islands, are through the stratosphere, and values along the mainland, especially south around Placencia and north at Corozal, are following suit.
Still, Belize, both its coast and its way of life, can be a great buy. We favor its interior Cayo region, which boasts Mayan ruins, caves, rivers, waterfalls, and rain forest.
For non-Americans, Belize offers the opportunity for tax-free living. Legal residency is easy to obtain through the country's Qualified Retired Persons (QRP) program. Foreign residents pay no tax in Belize on non-Belize income. Thus, be you British, German, Australian, or Irish, for example, you could become a QRP and reduce your overall tax burden to virtually nothing.
Belize is also a banking haven, one of the few remaining in the world, a jurisdiction where every bank must maintain a minimum of 24% liquidity at all times and where bankers respect bank secrecy. It's one of the easiest places in the world to open an offshore account. You don't have to visit the country in person, and, at our preferred Belize bank, you can open an account with as little as US$500.
For all of those reasons, Belize claims a spot every year at or near the top of our Best Retirement Havens in the World List.
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