Live and Invest Overseas

Uruguay

Retire to Uruguay on $1,038 Per Month

 

If you are retiring to Uruguay on a budget, the ideal location will depend on whether you’re looking for a seaside or a city lifestyle.  Let’s take a look at the seashore first.

 

My pick on the coast for budget living is Atlántida.

 

A small town with a permanent population of just over 3,500, Atlántida swells to over 19,000 when the summertime visitors arrive. Its shady, tree-lined streets and large, older homes have the feel of a year-round home town, rather than that of a vacation resort. The calm, crescent-shaped cove is ringed with a sandy beach, and its seaside park is a frequent destination for both residents and visitors from Montevideo .

 

Frequent public transportation is available between Atlántida and Montevideo , including the airport. While Atlántida has enough commercial activity to provide for most staples, larger purchases will need to come from nearby Montevideo .

 

Atlántida is the heart of a section of coast known as Costa de Oro, which feels like it’s been left back in time. The more-popular international destinations of Punta del Este, La Barra, and José Ignacio have attracted the wealthy vacation crowd up the coast, leaving Atlántida with a more sedate pace of life and lower property prices.

 

It’s possible to live in Atlántida without a car. But it won’t be as convenient as being “carless” in the big city. If you can afford the extra $300 per month, do it. If not, you’ll get by with public transit.

 

If city living is more your style, I’d recommend Salto. Located about 300 miles upriver from Montevideo , Salto is like a mini version of the capital city. Just about every major store that has a branch in Montevideo has one in Salto as well. What Salto doesn’t have is Montevideo ’s crime, property prices, or tax rates. You’ll notice a markedly lower cost of living.

 

As Uruguay ’s second-largest city with just over 100,000 people, Salto is one of the few cities in Uruguay that you never have to leave. Its commercial district, entertainment scene, restaurants, and municipal services should provide everything you’d need and want without having to own a car.

 

The famous hot springs in the area draw tourists from around Uruguay , as well as from Argentina and Brazil , giving an international flare to Salto, as well as some nice restaurants and hotels. The riverfront parks are green and pleasant, a refreshing place to spend a Sunday afternoon.

 

While Salto may be “self-contained”, it’s not convenient to the international airport, which is a seven-hour bus ride away.

 

How much to retire to Uruguay ?

 

 

Allow $1,550 per month if you’re planning to rent.

 

In either Atlántida or Salto, I’d allow for a two-person budget of $1,555 per month if you are renting instead of buying. If you need household help, plan on spending an additional $250 per month for a live-in maid.  

 

 

 

 

Renter’s Budget in Atlantida or Salto, Uruguay

 

 Rent                                      $600                         
 HOA Fees  $0  
 Property Taxes  $83  
 Car Costs  $0  Salto, no. Atlantida, maybe...
 Auto Insurance  $0  
 Transportation  $60  
 Gas  $50  Used for heating and cooking
 Electricity  $100  
 Telephone  $15  
 Internet  $35  
 Cable TV  $25  
 Household Help, fulltime              $0  Allow $250 if a full-time maid is required
 Food  $350  
 Entertainment  $320  
 Homeowner's Insurance  $0  If you are in a house, I'd suggest insurance, about $67 monthly
     
 TOTAL  $1,555  

The rental used as an example is a three-bedroom house in Atlántida. Rentals in Salto are slightly less expensive. You could figure $500 a month.

 

In either of these cities, finding rentals via the internet is difficult. In Salto, there’s just not much of a rental market, and they tend to advertise in the local paper. In Atlántida, most of the internet resources are dedicated to vacation rentals rather than year-round rentals.


On the other hand, you could plan on as little as $1,038 per month if you’re planning to own your own home.


Home-owner’s Budget in Uruguay

 

 

 Rent                                      $0           Based on an average of $1,000 per year for a large home              
 HOA Fees  $0  
 Property Taxes  $83  
 Car Costs  $0  An unecessary burden in the city, but consider it in Atlantida
 Auto Insurance  $0  
 Transportation  $60  
 Gas  $50  Used for heating and cooking
 Electricity  $100  
 Telephone  $15  
 Internet  $35  
 Cable TV  $25  
 Household Help, fulltime              $0  Allow $250 if a full-time maid is required
 Food  $350  
 Entertainment  $320  
 Homeowner's Insurance  $0  If you are in a house, I'd suggest insurance, about $67 monthly
     
 TOTAL  $1,038  

If you’re buying a house instead of an apartment or condo, don’t forget homeowner’s insurance, at an additional $67 per month.

 

Neither Salto nor Atlántida have a very liquid real estate market, as both are mostly local markets rather than international.

 

A Word About Owning a Car

 

It’s not cheap to own a car in Uruguay , so those locations that let you live without one are doing your budget a big favor. Atlántida is a small town, and there’s not much you can walk to except for the basic necessities. While not absolutely necessary, a car would be a benefit here.

 

In Salto, I think most people would be comfortable without a car, as you can walk to most anything.

 

In both cases, cars can be rented nearby.

 


Here’s my breakdown of the monthly cost of owning a car in Uruguay

 Car Registration                 $92           Based on a $23,000 SUV                                                              
 Insurance  $63  Full coverage on a $23,000 SUV
 Maintenance  $40  
 Fuel  $100  Gas is $8.00 per gallon, and Diesel is $6 at today's exchange rates (20:1) 
 Car Total  $294  

 

Remember that, unlike Ecuador , which uses the U.S. dollar, prices in Uruguay are subject to change with the exchange rates. The prices quoted here are based on a rate of 20 Uruguayan pesos per U.S. dollar, which is the rate as of this writing.

 

Christian MacDonald

For Live and Invest Overseas


If you would like to contact one of our experts to learn more about Uruguay, send an email to
uruguay@liveandinvestoverseas.com.
 

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