7 Questions You Need To Answer Before Retiring Overseas

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Seven Critical Questions To Answer Before Retiring Overseas

When we convene in Las Vegas, Nevada, Aug. 28–31, for this year’s Retire Overseas Conference, we’ll be joined by our top experts, colleagues, and advisors, as well as dozens of expats from around the world. With their collective help, we will address the seven critical questions associated with conceiving, planning, and executing a move to another country through a series of seven panel-led workshops.

Specifically:

Workshop #1: How Much Money Do You Need To Retire Overseas?

We’ll help you figure an answer to this all-important question, depending on where you’re thinking of moving and how you want to live when you get there. Our panel of experts will reveal everything you need to know to make your personal financial plan for retirement overseas. We’ll address issues such as:

  • Managing day-to-day spending in a foreign country…
  • Going local or living a more imported lifestyle…
  • Coping with changing exchange rates…

  • The best time for you to start taking Social Security as an overseas retiree…
  • How to manage your credit cards while living abroad…
  • Whether to sell or to keep your U.S. property…
  • Understanding the pluses and the minuses of retiring to a country that uses the U.S. dollar versus a country with its own currency…

The good news is that many learn that what they really need is far less than what they feared they needed… and far, far less than what they’d need to afford a comparable standard of living in the United States.

Workshop #2: What About The Nuts And Bolts Of Banks, Brokers, Utilities, Language, And Finding A Good Plumber?

In this workshop, we’ll walk you step-by-step through the particulars of establishing yourself overseas, highlighting many details you otherwise wouldn’t run into until you got there.

The panel for this workshop will be made up of current expats from different countries. These folks are doing what you’re thinking about doing… meaning they’ve already made (and learned from) all the mistakes we sincerely want to help you to avoid. In that spirit, this workshop is designed to help you experience the minimum amount of hassle and the maximum fun as you deal with all the nitty-gritty of getting set up in your new home… things like:

  • When and if you’ll need a new driver’s license…
  • The ins and outs of opening a bank account in another country…
  • How to pay your bills… both locally and back home…
  • Organizing your household for shipping… how to decide what stays and what goes…
  • Learning the local language… or getting by in English…
  • Staying in touch—inexpensively—with friends and family back home…
  • Getting utilities connected and choosing Internet service…
  • How to find reliable craftsmen…
  • Bringing your pets… details of the paperwork you’ll need…
  • Tips for a smooth move if you’re bringing your household goods…

Workshop #3: How Can You Stay Legally In
Your New Country?


In considering where in the world you’d like to retire (whether full-time or part-time), one critical issue can be an obstacle… and it’s easy to overlook. I’m talking about residency.

In these days of tightening immigration control and rising visa costs, not everywhere may suit your particular requirements. And let’s not forget countries where you need to show a minimum monthly income, make an investment, or have a certain amount deposited in a local bank to be approved for legal residency.

On the other hand, some countries are rolling out the welcome mat for expat retirees today, offering special incentives, perks, advantages, and benefits for the pensioner crowd.

In this workshop, you’ll learn the good, the bad, and the this-is-how-it-really-works of establishing a physical presence overseas, including:

  • The three most retiree-friendly countries in the world. In these places you can look forward to generous discounts—often as much as 50%—on goods and services, from restaurant dinners to dental work and from airline tickets to closing costs on a home…
  • The fast track to permanent residency in the world’s six top retirement havens…
  • How residency affects your tax burden and how you can control and minimize this through careful planning…
  • The benefits of using an attorney to guide you through the application process… when you must use one… and when you definitely should save yourself the expense…
  • Easy immigration—places where you can easily (and legally) stay long-term on a tourist visa…
  • The no-complications approach—how you can avoid jumping through residency hoops altogether…
  • The legal implications of establishing residency in a foreign country (for example, how local inheritance laws could affect your estate)…
  • The many benefits of second citizenship and how to obtain it legally…

Workshop #4: How Will A Move Overseas Affect
Your Tax Burden?

We don’t recommend trying to organize your life around your tax obligations. On the other hand, depending on your circumstances, moving overseas could make it possible for you to live tax-free… even to run a business tax-free, too, if that’s part of your plan.

In this workshop, led by resident global tax guru Lief Simon and other international tax experts and attorneys, you’ll learn:

  • How to earn up to US$202,600 per year tax-free…
  • Two foreign assets the IRS doesn’t want to know about and that you can legally hold overseas without triggering a reporting requirement to the IRS…
  • The top four jurisdictions for low-tax or no-tax living…
  • Getting good representation—the key to paying no more tax than you should…
  • Where you’ll enjoy the lowest property taxes… and where you won’t pay any property tax whatsoever…
  • Where and how it’s possible to operate a business tax-free…
  • Where and how to enjoy exemption from import duties on household goods and belongings you decide to bring with you to your new home…

Workshop #5: Should You Rent Or Buy A Home?

This is one of the biggest questions you face when planning a move overseas, one that’s inspired many a heated debate, even among our Live and Invest Overseas team. Some of us have differing points of view on this.

Generally, I say rent first and maybe rent long-term. However, sometimes, depending on your situation, buying a home of your own and even buying right away can make sense. When we meet in Las Vegas in August, our panel of property experts will talk this important question through for you, considering all the options and many different points of view.

However, regardless whether you decide to rent or to buy, you need to arm yourself with a clear and comprehensive understanding of how to navigate overseas property markets. Our property workshop will show you everything you need to know about real estate overseas, regardless whether you plan to buy or to rent, including:

  • The benefits of renting long-term…
  • What to look for when choosing a rental, whether for short- or long-term use…
  • How to review a rental contract in a foreign country…
  • Where to start your search for a rental property and how and why to take your search local…
  • What you need to know about buying property overseas, including the pitfalls and how to deal with them…
  • 12 critical questions you should ask before buying real estate in a foreign country…
  • How to protect yourself as a buyer in a foreign market…
  • How to evaluate a selling price in any given market…
  • How to structure foreign property ownership…
  • How to address the tax implications of owing real estate in a foreign country…
  • What the IRS needs to know about your property holdings overseas (maybe nothing)…

Workshop #6: What Health Care And Health Insurance Options Can You Expect?

One thing you can’t take with you from the United States when you retire overseas is your Medicare coverage… and, in many cases, your U.S. health insurance won’t travel with you either.

The good news is that you have options—very good and very affordable options—for medical coverage abroad. And, as many of the expats you’ll meet at our Retire Overseas Conference will testify, it’s possible to receive quality care—sometimes better than the level of health care you’re used to at home—in many of the retirement havens we’ll discuss.

Our health care workshop has a double agenda: First, to help you understand what you can expect of medical care in a foreign country; second, to present your options for health insurance living overseas. From this workshop, you’ll learn:

  • Which of the top 21 retirement havens stand out in terms of top-quality health care…
  • Where, among these top havens, you’ll find health care to be the most affordable…
  • The differences between public and private health-care systems… and when to use the (possibly free) public systems abroad…
  • Your top options for medical insurance abroad and the pluses and minuses in each case…
  • The points to consider in choosing a policy that suits your specific needs…
  • Why you should never buy insurance online… at least not until you’ve confirmed the answer to this all-important question…
  • What your overseas health policy should cover… and what it likely won’t…
  • How much deductible makes sense given where you’ll be living and your personal health circumstances…
  • Cost details for sample insurance plans in a number of overseas retirement havens…
  • What to do if you’re beyond the age for enrolling in a new insurance policy…
  • How to evaluate an insurance policy in a foreign country…
  • The best international health and travel insurance policies on the market today…

Workshop #7: What If You Can’t Afford To Give Up Your Career Just Yet?

In many overseas locations, it’s tough to find employment; however, it can be straightforward and lucrative to start your own business. It could be big or small… a local business or a new portable career.

A move overseas is a chance to break from the old and start doing the things you love—perhaps while making them earn some income to supplement your retirement nest egg.

In this workshop, you’ll learn about your best options for funding your retirement wherever in the world you decide you’d like to reinvent it.

You could, for example, start an Internet business… and you could do this from anywhere in the world. You could even start it now, from home, so it’s up and running (and generating cash flow) when you’re ready to make your move.

I’m not talking about any get-rich-quick schemes. Running a business of any kind anywhere in the world is not all fun and games… as we know from long experience. To date, my husband and I have started and operated businesses in nine countries. The bonus is that it’s all on your own terms. It’s up to you how many hours you work, where you work from, how big you want your business to grow, and how much time you take off.

If you need to support yourself financially while overseas… or would like to have an extra income… then this session will be very important for you. You’ll find out:

  • How to generate business ideas—and how to identify a profitable market…
  • How to select your products. In the import-export business, for example, certain products have restrictions depending on where you send them to or from…
  • How to get started. You have a great idea… but you don’t know where to begin. Follow this six-step Internet business start-up plan to get up and running anywhere in the world…
  • Making money on the web—seven strategies for drawing qualified prospects to your website…
  • Countries among our top 21 retirement havens that make sense for running a business… and those that don’t…
  • Where to find supporting staff. Depending on the size of your business, it may be helpful to have some in-country assistance. You’ll learn which countries have reliable, English-speaking labor pools and minimal red tape in the hiring-and-firing process… and which don’t…
  • Legal, labor, and taxation issues you need to be aware of running your Internet business…
  • Recommended software tools and online resources to help get you started in your new career…

I said we’ve organized this year’s Retire Overseas Conference around seven workshops. In fact, we’ve recently added a bonus session to the proceedings:

Workshop #8: What To Expect When You’re “Expating.”

This one is meant both to educate and to entertain. The panel for this session, expats of different ages and from different walks of life, each with a different story to tell, will share their experiences and anecdotes with you on all aspects of expat life… including certain slightly off-color things that don’t fit under any of the formal workshop headings. This is What It’s Like To Retire Overseas, Uncut And Uncensored.

Bottom line, here’s our agenda:

Over these three-and-a-half days in Las Vegas, we’ll show you everything you need to know to make your live or retire overseas dreams come true.

We’ll get you where you want to be. I promise.

Kathleen Peddicord

P.S. I’m no longer able to make it to every event on our calendar. However, I look forward to this annual Retire Overseas Conference each year and wouldn’t miss it. I’ll be hosting the event and moderating every workshop session. I can’t wait to meet you there.

 

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About Author

Kathleen Peddicord

Kathleen Peddicord is the founder of the Live and Invest Overseas publishing group. With 30 years of experience covering this beat, Kathleen reports daily on current opportunities for living, retiring and investing overseas in her daily e-letter. Her newest book, "How To Buy Real Estate Overseas," published by Wiley & Sons, is the culmination of decades of personal experience living and investing around the world.