Costa Rica Blog

Baby Boomers in Costa Rica

Posted by Steve Linder on Tue, Mar, 02, 2010

This article was written by Wendy Dwight Foster, a Canadian living in our developments.

I don't know about you but the fact that I am now being called a "Boomer" really came out of left field, sort of!  A boomer in Canada is defined as those of us born between 1945 and 1960.  I fall into that category!  I am told I should start looking forward to retirement, ahhh!  Have I planned for it?  Do I want to stay in Canada and get used to using an ergonomic snow shovel?  Is there enough money put away between my RRSP, CPP and OAS??  IF the answer is no, what alternatives do I have?

Most Canadians, according to Stats Canada figures from as recent as 2006 (which is really recent if you know about StatsCan) 30% of us spend approximately 30% of our monthly income on shelter alone.  All those other optional things like healthcare, food, vehicles, etc get what's left of our pay cheque.  In there somewhere, we're also told to "save for retirement".  Why, because by the time we boomers get to what's there in government savings (that we paid into all our working lives) there may not be enough or any there at all!  So now what are we going to live on?  Do we move in with our kids?

This means that we may need to consider another way of living.  Living somewhere else, where what ever dollars we have in retirement will go farther: where we don't have to give up the familiar Canadian sacred cows of democracy, universal healthcare, non-violence and treating people with respect and dignity.  Where else in the world could I have that AND be able to live very well in my retirement?

The answer is in an increasingly popular country; Costa Rica.  Now, before you click onto another page, I am serious and I am speaking from first hand experience!

My husband and I decided that we wanted to retire somewhere warm (86 the snow shovel!) somewhere affordable and to a place with good healthcare at affordable rates as we will require it as we get older, consistently warm temperatures, wonderful water to drink, clean air to breath and friendly local people.  We found all of these things and more in Costa Rica in the southern Pacific Coastal area in a little community called Ojochal.

This community is becoming a second home for lots of Canadian Boomers just like you and me.  There are many lots to choose from in our community of Ventana Del Pacifico.  The house of your dreams is yours to plan. The property taxes on a modest home, including a pool will cost you less than your monthly property taxes in most large Canadian cities, based on a house of comparable size.  Local food is organic, cheap, delicious and plentiful.  You can expect to pay about $1500 per month (U.S.) to live, assuming your house is paid for.  Now how far will your retirement savings go?

But, my kids are in Canada.....what about my grandkids???  If your kids are like ours, when was the last time you saw them?? How often do they visit you now?  Do you e-mail each other, do you Skype each other?  You can still do all of these things and flights home are cheap and plentiful. 

If you're like us, the thought of retiring where everyone else retires in Western Canada (I mean the Coast - no disrespect) was not an option.  The costs are just too high and they keep rising!!  The average house price is Canada has just risen 20%, after coming out of the worst economic time in over 100 years!

 I am tired of shovelling snow!  It's our turn.......we are going to enjoy the pura vida (the good life!).  Come and join us in a great community!

Tags: Canadian Baby Boomers, Retiring in Costa Rica, boomer in Canada