Retiring Abroad: Pros and Cons!

Paul Miller |

The dream of many Americans is to leave behind the day-to-day doldrums of life in America and find a new place to call home during retirement. Maybe it has always been your dream to spend your days relaxing on a beach, or you prefer to immerse yourself in a new culture in the Old World, retiring abroad is a goal that many strive to achieve. However, like any decision in life there are pros and cons when you opt to spend your golden years in retirement living in a different country.

Cons of Retiring Abroad

Investopedia is quick to point out that one of the most significant cons in moving abroad during retirement is your loss or lack of professional connections. Retirement seems like a joyful time in which to have no working schedule, but some people get bored. Others find themselves short on funds and need to start working again.


Retirement abroad leaves most individuals with no, or at best limited, professional connections should they decide to re-enter the workforce. While you have a lifetime of professional connections built up at home, you would be starting over or lacking altogether any connections should you want or need a new job during retirement overseas. Here are some other cons to keep in mind:
• Lost personal connections: Staying active is critical to enjoying your retirement, and life-long friends are often a key to success in this area. However, moving abroad means leaving behind cherished friendships with only the hope of finding and meeting new friends.
• Lost time with family: Moving overseas might be financially possible for you (and a spouse), but that might not be possible for your family when it comes to visiting. Grandchildren and children cannot up-root their lives to move with you, and flying back and forth frequently might be financially impossible for you and/or them.
• Finding a new doctor: This is an important point that should not be overlooked. By retirement, many individuals have been with the same doctor and/or clinic for years, if not decades. Moving overseas means finding new medical professionals you can trust with your healthcare needs.


Pros of Retiring Abroad

Let's be honest, it is not all doom and gloom when considering a move overseas for retirement. Cost of living is often one of the most cited reasons in favor of retiring abroad. For all the advancements available in modern American society there is a steep price tag. Many retirees find it more financially feasible to live abroad during retirement.


Olivia S. Mitchell is Director of the Pension Research Council at the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School, and she notes that, "many people retire when they are in good health and interested in stretching their dollars and seeing the world." She points out that it is affordable enough in some locales for Americans to retire abroad and pay someone else to do laundry, cooking, cleaning, and even provide long-term care. Other pros of retiring overseas include:
• Rising healthcare costs: The cost of living is rising in the United States, and healthcare costs are on the rise with it. More appointments with your medical professionals in the US could lead to financial ruin.
• New experiences: You have put in good time working throughout your life, and now you have the free time you never had before. Retirement abroad offers the opportunity to eat new food, experience new adventures, and meet new people.

Before you consider retiring abroad, look carefully at these pros and cons to determine if this move is the right one for you (and your spouse) and call Indian River Financial Group for more assistance and peace of mind!