Live, Retire, & Invest In Medellin

“Kathleen, what a hoot, the reader writing to compare Tucson to Medellin! I grew up in Tucson and have family in Tucson. I also now own an apartment in Medellin, which was purchased as an investment and which I will probably use six months out of the year once I retire. A good portion of the other six months (winter months, I must say) will be spent in Tucson.

“The two are not comparable. Tucson is a spread-out city with no industry to speak of (Air Force base, Hughes facility, university, and health care being the four biggest employers)…versus Medellin, which is becoming a major economic factor with numerous Fortune 500 companies establishing themselves. It is also an important location for mining.

“Moreover, I am familiar with real estate prices in both places, and the two are clearly not comparable. I purchased a beautiful 1,500+-square-foot apartment in the El Tesoro neighborhood of Barrio El Poblado for US$200,000. In Tucson this would be comparable to living in Skyline Country Club, Ventana, or a similar area, and there is no way you can touch a place in these neighborhoods for less than US$400,000.

“Finally, the weather. Is this guy kidding? Has he actually been outside between mid-May and mid-September? Yes, nice weather from October to April, but the summers! I worked doing landscaping when I was in high school, college, and graduate school, and I promise you, maybe it is a dry heat, but, at 105 degrees, it is miserable. You simply do not want to be outside between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. Although, granted, even in summer the evenings are nice, as temperatures usually drop 30 degrees or so.

“Compare this to Medellin, which is 72 to 80 degrees year-round.

“I love Tucson and will split my time between the two, but that is primarily a result of Colombian tax rules and my desire not to become a full-time resident of that country and subject to their onerous tax system.”

–Henry M., United States

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