By Mike Drak
Whenever someone tells me they are thinking of selling their home and moving somewhere like Mexico because of the lower cost of living I get nervous.
I usually end up asking them a couple of questions to make sure they have thought things through.
The first question I ask is where they got the idea from and the usual response is from a retirement planning article they had read in the newspaper or online.
I then ask if they have ever been to Mexico and the usual response is yes for vacation a couple of times in the winter.
I then ask if they have ever spent time in Mexico during the summer and the answer is usually no and therein lies the problem.
Before you make a major life change – like selling everything and moving to a place like Mexico to benefit from a lower cost of living – you need to think things through and test it out.
While living in Mexico might dramatically improve your retirement cash flow, living there in the heat of summer and not being able to speak the language isn’t easy for some people.
Before making a major life change you want to make sure your lifestyle design works and that there are no unexpected surprises.
I could tell you countless horror stories of retirees packing up their entire lives and moving on a whim only to discover it was a bad move for them, costing them money along with a lot of stress.
Importance of Relationships
Another important detail that many people forget to consider when planning a move to someplace like Mexico is the importance of their existing relationships with friends, family, and the community they live in.
When you move somewhere far away, you lose your support network of friends and family.
The community that we inhabit and the people we surround ourselves with have a profound effect on both our health and happiness. There is something magical about having people to talk to, people that care about you, and will be there for you in time of need.
Studies have shown that strong relationships make for a good life. People who are more connected to family, friends and community have fewer health problems, live longer, and experience less depression and cognitive decline later in life.
Post Pandemic Loneliness
The pandemic gave us a taste of what spending a lot of time alone feels like. We all need social connection and even though we could Zoom not being able to meet in person with family and friends put many people on the fast path to loneliness and depression.
In summary, maintaining close, positive relationships reduces stress in our lives and significantly impacts our overall well-being.
If you are not good at making new friends quickly maybe moving to a place like Mexico isn’t a good move for you.
About the author
Mike Drak is an author, public speaker and recognized authority on retirement. After having spent 38 years in the financial services industry, Mike retired and personally faced what he called “retirement shock”. During this time, Mike found himself on a journey of self-discovery and authored three best-selling books on retirement; Victory Lap Retirement, Retirement Heaven or Hell: Which Will You Choose? and Longevity Lifestyle By Design. Mike is a Senior Contributor at Booming Encore and dedicates his time to helping other retirees design a fulfilling, meaningful retirement lifestyle for themselves.
Download your FREE copy of Longevity Lifestyle by Design, a practical how-to guide for anyone facing or contemplating retirement.