If, like me, you are a single woman in your 60s, you may be thinking about the best places to retire.
Perhaps you are looking for a country with a lower cost of living so that you can make your retirement income stretch farther. Or, maybe you want to find a place that provides opportunities to pursue the passions that you left on the back-burner during other stages of your life. Maybe you have always been fascinated by a particular language or culture.
Regardless of your specific requirements, finding the perfect place to retire is a long process.
Fortunately, there are more resources than ever to help you find the perfect place to live. One of my personal favorites is the website Live and Invest Overseas, which offers advice on pretty much every aspect of moving to a new country.
Since this issue is on the minds of many of the women in our community, I decided to interview the founder of Live and Invest Overseas, Kathleen Peddicord. I hope that you find her advice useful as you decide where you want to spend the best decades of your life.
Please watch the interview. Then, join the conversation at the end of this article.
As a single older woman, I know firsthand how divorce can leave you feeling vulnerable. I also understand how difficult it is when your children leave the house. One the one hand, you are excited for your kids. This is their moment, after all. At the same time, it’s natural to feel a bit lost after they leave and many of us wonder “what’s next?”
Moving to a new country won’t solve all of your issues, but, for many women, it offers the opportunity to start fresh. This is exactly how I felt when I moved to Switzerland. The very “newness” of everything around me gave me a new perspective on live and helped me to come to terms with my past.
During our conversation, Kathleen reminds us that there are many amazing places in the world that are perfect for single older women. Based on her 30+ years’ experience in this area, she offers some specific advice for women who are considering moving to Asia, Europe or Latin America.
Kathleen begins by talking about an issue that is of upmost importance to us older women – safety. While some people might disagree with her, Kathleen argues that most countries in the developing world are not going to be a good fit for older single women. Other factors that she recommends you consider before making a big move include location, climate, healthcare and culture.
Most importantly, Kathleen recommends spending a significant amount of time in your chosen country before moving their permanently.
Living on a remote beach in Indonesia sounds fantastic (and it may well be for some women), but, the realities of everyday life may be much different than you expect. So, take the time to “try before you buy.”
Here are a few of Kathleen’s specific tips by region.
Contrary to popular belief, Kathleen says that destinations like Paris and Barcelona don’t have to be expensive. The trick is to live as a local and not as a tourist. Another destination, which she goes into some detail about on her website is Abruzzo, Italy. Apparently, the real estate is much cheaper in this city than in other Italian destinations.
As she mentioned on her website, “Property in Abruzzo, for example, can be up to 80% cheaper than Tuscany, and up to 50% cheaper than Umbria.” Ottimo!
Kathleen is a big fan of city life for older women since urban areas offer the infrastructure, resources and security that many of us are looking for. However, for women who are looking for more rural options, she offers several suggestions in Italy and France.
If you have your eye on Asia, Kathleen says that Chiang Mai, Thailand is a great option for single older women. Thailand has a healthcare system that is inexpensive and surprisingly high-quality. In addition, it has been a retirement destination for long enough to have developed significant expat communities. This means that you are likely to have plenty of support when you arrive in your new home.
Finally, Chiang Mai is a stone’s throw away from the beautiful beaches in Phuket and Koh Lanta. Watch the interview for Kathleen’s full list of recommendations.
In Latin America, Kathleen suggests her own home town of Panama City. It is well developed, women-friendly and easy to get to. In addition, the cost of living is significantly lower than in the United States.
Other options that Kathleen mentions in Latin America include Puerto Vallarta and Alamos, Mexico. She points out that both of these cities have excellent infrastructure and well-established expat communities.
I hope that you enjoy my conversation with Kathleen. Now, I’d love to hear what you think!
Are you thinking about retiring abroad? What are your main criteria for your new home? What questions do you have for Kathleen? Please join the conversation.
Tags Retirement Planning