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Andrew Henderson

Founder of Nomad Capitalist and the world’s most sought-after expert on global citizenship.

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Early Retirement and the Best Places to Retire 

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This article discusses the best places to retire We will also discuss how you can better understand where you want to retire and why, as well as different ways you can make the dream of living like a king into a reality.

Everyone wants to retire early with a stash of money that’s enough to sustain them for the rest of their lives, but few have a plan for it.

If you plan to retire in Singapore, the money’s probably going to run out pretty quickly. That’s why you need to be smart about it.

Early retirement, no matter how desirable, is only half the battle. To live like a king in your Golden Years, you need to retire at a place where your dollar’s going to stretch far.If you are approaching retirement and want the best life ahead with no worries, set up a call with us today. We’ll let you know how and where you can do that to live an ultimately stress-free life.

Plan How You Want to Retire Early

Plan How You Want to Retire Early
Understand why you want to retire early and then create a plan before you make the jump.

We see people all the time who jump at the chance to try something new and end up in situations that create more problems than they solve. Instead of assessing what they want to do and creating a plan to achieve it, they dive into the shiny, one-size-fits-all solutions they find on the internet.

Knowing your end goal is critical for successfully retiring the way you want.

As you read over the next sections of this article or anything else on our site or YouTube channel, you need to be asking questions that will help you know what your needs are. 

  • What are you trying to accomplish? 
  • Why are you doing this? 
  • How does each piece fit together?

Having this information and a detailed plan will keep you from making mistakes that will cut into the million you plan to live off. Set up a call with us today to get your holistic Action Plan.

Buy a Retirement Home, Don’t Rent

Buy a Retirement Home, Don’t Rent
Buying a retirement home will greatly reduce your ongoing costs in comparison to renting.

The first thing to consider when planning your retirement is peeling off a part of that million dollars to buy a house that you could own – preferably in a country with very low or no property taxes and no other dues that are going to cause you and your finances ongoing stress.

In the US, some homeowners are paying five-figure sums every year to live in modest homes in places like New York and Southern California. This is alongside high real estate prices and a very expensive cost of living. Owning property in the wrong place can drastically cut into that million(s) that you’ve put away.

If you’ve ever thought about moving from one city or state to another in an attempt to lower your property taxes, it shouldn’t be a huge leap for you to understand how valuable owning foreign real estate can be. 

If you can find property in some of the faster-growing safe-haven jurisdictions, you’ll be able to find better yields and appreciation potential along with much lower property taxes.

Renting might seem like a good way to avoid property taxes, but it won’t help you to lower your overall costs.

Intimated by the idea of purchasing property in a foreign country? Don’t be. Nomad Capitalist’s Real Estate Plan lets you buy foreign real estate like a local. Get in touch with us today to get the best deals out there.

Retiring with a Residence Permit

The next big thing to consider when figuring out where to retire is where you can get a long-term residence permit that could eventually lead to citizenship. The last thing you want is to work out a strategy where you can live in a country cheaply, only for the government to kick you out ten years from now.

When that happens, you’ll be back at square one, looking for a new place to retire. And finding one is going to eat into your ability to retire peacefully.

If you’re already planning on buying real estate in your new retirement home, there are a number of countries that offer residency and even immediate citizenship to people who invest in real estate. A $100,000 investment in Georgia or a $70,000 investment in Malaysia can help you pick up a residency that you can use to further build out your retirement strategy. 

If you’re a fan of South America, Guatemala, and Ecuador, both have residency programs that allow pensioners with a qualifying amount of monthly income to get and renew a residence permit very easily. 

These are just a few of the countries around the world that you could look into to get a second residency that will help lower your cost of living. There are even some countries with no taxes at all.

Get in touch with us today to figure out which country suits you best to establish a second residency.

Geoarbitrage, Interest, and Early Retirement

Banks in Tbilisi Georgia Offer High Interest Rates
Banks in Tbilisi, Georgia, offer high-interest rates that can make your retirement money stretch further.

Next, you’ll want to look for a place that ideally doesn’t use the US dollar or the Euro as the local currency. There are two reasons for this. 

Moving assets from an overvalued fiat currency into an undervalued fiat currency is a way to take advantage of falling currencies as a kind of arbitrage.

The second reason is that while the USD and Euro may be more stable, countries that use them tend to have much higher prices.

The main idea to focus on when you’re planning your retirement is to reduce your currency risk by holding onto a stable currency but spending in a less stable currency. 

The other thing to keep in mind is how banks can help you extend the lifetime of the million you bring into retirement.

As an example, let’s say you decide to go to Georgia, where you can move your money into a bank with a high-interest rate. 

A safe, stable investment like that can be a great way for you to collect income each year. By putting the $800,000 you didn’t spend on real estate into one of these bank accounts, you’ll be earning 10% (or more) each year in interest. Every year, you’ll have close to $80,000 that you can use to extend how long that original million lasts.

$80,000 might not seem like a king’s wage, but you’re going to get much more mileage out of it than you would by keeping your money in a US bank account with only a 2.5% interest rate.

The Best Places to Retire Early

As to where exactly you can retire smartly, there are two areas that stick out as possibilities: Eastern Europe and South America.

Asia is a contender, with countries like Thailand being decent options, but with how these countries are growing and changing, it looks like they’ll only become more expensive as time goes on. You don’t know how long retirement is going to be, so planning for a sustainable financial future is important.

Africa is also an interesting region to retire affordably. However, the country probably has a very small audience when it comes to interested retirees. 

That’s why we’re going to focus on Eastern Europe and South America.

"Where to Retire with $1 Million and Live Like a King?"

Retiring in South America

The two big countries that make for the most interesting opportunities are Colombia and Paraguay. There are other options, but these two stand out as the most affordable places where you could live a really nice lifestyle.

Colombia

Colombia has an incredibly vibrant culture and a rich variety of great food. The cities of Bogota, Medellín, Cali, and Santa Marta are all well-equipped when it comes to infrastructure. Rush hour traffic is often a terribly stressful experience, but public transport can get you just about anywhere you need to be.

These four cities also have very affordable real estate. In the past, the Wall Street Journal has named Cali and Medellín two of the top three cities in South America for their real estate cost per meter. Those prices have gone up since, but with the help of Nomad Capitalist, you’ll be able to find good costs.

Moreover, Medellín has taken great strides to improve the safety of its residents. Colombia offers a very affordable up-scale lifestyle with an array of first-world amenities and infrastructure. You can read our ultimate guide about living in Colombia to find more details about the place.

Paraguay

Paraguay has similar advantages. Although it has a reputation as one of South America’s poorest countries, Paraguay has seen some incredible growth over the last decade. Because of a stable currency (as far as South American currencies go), it’s been reported that Paraguay has the second-highest ROI for South American private sectors.

Residency is easy to obtain and hold onto, and Paraguay uses a flat rate of 10% for its taxes, which is about it as far as taxes go. No inheritance or estate tax, no net worth tax, no capital gains tax, and no stamp duty.

Retiring in Eastern Europe

Living in Europe is the stuff of dreams for many people. The entire continent is filled with stunning architecture, countless museums, and all kinds of cultural and historic sites. Traveling around Europe will get you everything from Mediterranean beaches to Alpine skiing.

The best countries to look into are in Eastern Europe. It’s not the first place people think to look, but countries like Hungary, Serbia, Georgia, Armenia, and Albania have more to offer than people assume.

Budapest, Hungary is one of the best places to retire early
Budapest, Hungary, is one of the best places to retire early.

Hungary

Budapest, Hungary, is hands down the most beautiful city in Europe. It sits at the edge of the European Union both geographically and in regard to the cost of living. Food, real estate, and taxes in the incredible city are all much lower than you’ll find anywhere else on the continent.

Serbia

Belgrade, Serbia, is probably one of the most underrated capitals in Europe. There’s a perfect balance in the city of entertainment, culture, great living conditions, and an affordable cost of living that will help you stretch that retirement budget for a very long time.

Georgia

A favorite of ours that needs to be included on this list is Tbilisi in Georgia. If you don’t have plans to visit Georgia, you need to think about changing those plans. An attitude of openness to foreigners combined with low and simple taxation makes it a great choice for retirement. Tbilisi itself has a historic core with all the amenities of a modern city, making it easy to retire like a king.

If living like a king is what you’re looking to do, all of these countries have access to very cheap luxury goods. Wine, cigars, tobacco, and excellent food are easy to come by. Eastern Europe is probably the easiest place to live if you plan on going all out.

Having a residence permit will give you decent interest in your bank account and allow you to live a European lifestyle without feeling like you’re paying for it.

Retire Like a King – Or Queen

We support the idea of finding a place where you can retire and “live like a king.” In today’s world of competition and opportunity, it only makes sense to go where you’re treated best.

Everything considered – real estate, second residency, currency, investments, lifestyle, all of it – Eastern Europe is the place to go for retirement.

It’ll be harder to get homesick. You’ll have everything you could need. Property values are affordable and won’t completely destroy your retirement fund before you’ve even left home. You’ll have a social circle, dating, food, wine, and any of the trappings of living like a king or queen.

However, to have all these things, you have to be precise and holistic in your planning. That’s where we come in.

At Nomad Capitalist, we’ve helped many investors, entrepreneurs, and retirees live their dream lives by equipping them with holistic offshore strategies. We can do the same for you. All you need to do is reach out to us, and we’ll handle the rest.

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