Retire To The Abruzzo, Italy

“Kathleen, I’ve just read the August issue of your Overseas Retirement Letter on the Abruzzo, Italy, and I can state that every word that Roseanne Keats has written is true.

“I would add a few things more: Italy is literally full of places like Loreto Aprutino, north to south. Many of them are well known and have become tourist traps, like in Tuscany, as Roseanne says. But, fortunately, hundreds and hundreds of other places remain, that are beautiful and intact, like Loreto Aprutino.

“I know and visit many of these kinds of places myself, on vacation. The catch about living there is that there is no work, no employment. To live in Loreto Aprutino, apart from owning an house, you should have at least 1.000 euro income per month (to pay for a little car, gas, food, water, electricity, phone, and maybe tax). Retirees with such an income can fully enjoy Loreto Aprutino and similar places.

“And it’s true, you can get a property for less than 30.000 euro (usually in need of restoration).

“Since the 1970s, young people in Italy started migrating from places like Loreto Aprutino to find jobs in bigger towns. They only get back to their places of origin on vacation (typically in August).

“This phenomenon is beginning to reverse, thanks to improved local train transportation and the fact that apartments in big town are expensive. Many young couples are moving out from the cities and buying homes in the country, provided a railway station is nearby. Then they commute back and forth every day.

“For this reason, the country is slowly re-populating, but there is still a lot of space and opportunities for retirees from all over the world.

“My compliments to Roseanne Keats for her report, which is an exact and true portrait of the places she has described.”

— Alvise V., Italy


“Kathleen, My wife and I are getting divorced after 40 years. My part of the house will come to around US$100,000. I need to reinvest that within a year.

“What I’d like to do is find a place in Roatan or Belize to reinvest the money now and then retire there in a year-and-a-half. I figure my monthly income at that time will be US$2,500 a month. Can you give me advice and steer me in the right direction?”

— Roy S., United States

I don’t think I understand the requirement to reinvest your share of the proceeds from the sale of your home within a year. I don’t know any reason for the sense of urgency.

That aside, I think you’d have your work cut out for you trying to find a place on Roatan for US$100,000, though you should be able to find something decent for maybe US$175,000 to US$200,000. Unfortunately, you aren’t going to be able to get a mortgage in Honduras.

You could get a mortgage in Belize, on the other hand, and the smallest units at the Grand Bayman community on Ambergris Caye (the development project of a friend of ours) are right around US$100,000. That could be a good place to start your search.

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