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Thoughts on retirement in another country

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11 mins ago, Highlander1 said:

I know union electricians do ok as far as pay and benefits are concerned, but your post indicated we aren't talking about wage earners kind of scratch but rather the kind of $$ rich folks have (millions). I'd bet a hundred dollars to a donut  (and I don't gamble) that if we took 1000 career union electricians that retired on pensions, 401's and whatever else they could muster that they are living comfortably but by no means are wealthy.

 

I have friends that work in the trades, they often exaggerate their earnings, if you add the benefit packages to many professions, we are all making $100 an hour. Thus the reason for only one week vacation a year, your taking the $$ you contributed for vacation instead of taking the time off, some would consider that being greedy. Same as hourly wages, lets just say for arguments sake a union electrician, plumber, carpenter whatever make $50 an hour, they will all tell you they make near $100 an hour, true if you add their benefits in, much the same in the private sector.  

 

So, my point is, there are very few wealthy working union electricians, plumbers or carpenters but most are fairly compensated and are considered wage earners, somewhere in the $100K a year range. Unless your a politician or extremely savvy in investing, most will be able to afford retirement but  will never be rich. Now, there are owners of companies that may be wealthy , but almost all of them never put on a tool belt.  

Who/what are you considering rich?

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2 hours ago, levari said:

Who/what are you considering rich?

Lets say well into 7 figures, that separates the worker bees from the queens, probably more than most wage earners can accumulate. .

Edited by Highlander1

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Ok I decided! I'm taking Giant Bassholes advice, I'm staying in the Good'ol US of A and I'll just buy some foreign Chocha online!! Win win! There's gotta be a member here who is currently living in another country who's an Ex-pat, anybody?? They would be the one who can give the best advice. 

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On 7/8/2021 at 3:54 PM, nightfighter said:

Thought Ditch would have chimed in from Finland by now......

I haven't because unless you're married to a citizen, you can't retire here. Spain, Portugal, and Italy are the feasible ones in Europe, at least among countries you'd want to live in. France can be too, if you can navigate the bureaucracy and paperwork. 

Were any of your ancestors back to great grandparents born in Ireland? If so, and if it can be documented, you may have Irish dual citizenship. As an EU country, having an Irish passport opens up a lot more EU countries.

South of the border, Uruguay is one of those under the radar countries for retirement now. Cuenca in Ecuador has a large American ex-pat community, but Uruguay's government is more stable.

Remember that the IRS taxes US citizens who live abroad, unless you live in a country with a tax treaty with the US. Even then, if your foreign tax is lower that your US tax, you pay Uncle the difference. And some  banks may refuse you an account because they don't want to deal with the FACTA paperwork. Yup, Uncle wants your foreign banking information too.

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On 7/8/2021 at 4:57 PM, Good2Go said:

If I were moving anywhere to get out of the US I'd check out Australia. Neat country. Anywhere you go also need to add to MMs list above

 

-transportation system, availability and price of gasoline

-potable water availability

-septic/sewer systems. Open gutter sewers are not a good sign. 

-disease prevalence and necessary vaccinations (esp rabies, malaria, cholera, typhoid, polio)

-power availability and reliability

-internet connectivity

-gun laws and ability to carry and defend yourself and property

-local laws and legal system of police and justice, esp related to how "foreigners" are treated

-corruption

-local customs so as not to offend anyone, and know whose palm to grease

-treatment of women if you're taking your wife/honey

-Year round climate. In tropical areas you may have a monsoon season where it rains for several months straight. Everything will grow mold. Don't take your stamp collection. 

 

I've traveled a lot in the third world in my jobs, and find many people who haven't expect everyone else in other countries to be and think like us. They're not, and they don't. As an American most of the natives will consider that you are rich. Relatively speaking, you are, and so a potential target for theft, robbery, kidnapping. Never flash your cash. Keep a few bucks apart from your main stash to buy stuff.  Locate near other ex-pats so you can band together for protection if there's a coup, hurricane, or instability. I'd also plan ahead for an escape route so you can get out if you need to. Including medical evacuation. And plan for where you will go once you become really old and decrepit. Lots to think about. I'd probably plan to rent for a year to see how it goes, then make final plans. Good luck! 

Australia has some of the most restrictive immigration laws of any country. Good luck with retiring there.

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5 hours ago, Highlander1 said:

I know union electricians do ok as far as pay and benefits are concerned, but your post indicated we aren't talking about wage earners kind of scratch but rather the kind of $$ rich folks have (millions). I'd bet a hundred dollars to a donut  (and I don't gamble) that if we took 1000 career union electricians that retired on pensions, 401's and whatever else they could muster that they are living comfortably but by no means are wealthy.

 

I have friends that work in the trades, they often exaggerate their earnings, if you add the benefit packages to many professions, we are all making $100 an hour. Thus the reason for only one week vacation a year, your taking the $$ you contributed for vacation instead of taking the time off, some would consider that being greedy. Same as hourly wages, lets just say for arguments sake a union electrician, plumber, carpenter whatever make $50 an hour, they will all tell you they make near $100 an hour, true if you add their benefits in, much the same in the private sector.  

 

So, my point is, there are very few wealthy working union electricians, plumbers or carpenters but most are fairly compensated and are considered wage earners, somewhere in the $100K a year range. Unless your a politician or extremely savvy in investing, most will be able to afford retirement but  will never be rich. Now, there are owners of companies that may be wealthy , but almost all of them never put on a tool belt.  

I'll add to what you said in no order, I am not rich at all. If I was I wouldn't be working 7 - 10's this week. Our benefit package is over 100 an hour. Your welcome to all guys getting prevailing wage on "rate" jobs. You can thank unions for that.

My reason for 1 week a year off greed? Not even close. We get NO paid holidays and No paid days off in out contract.  I am running jobs and it is such a pain in the arse to take time off, going back is the worst! Oh and I said no paid days off in our contract....guys who run jobs get taken care of.

I don't know what you mean by there's not a lot of wealthy union workers...what's wealthy? 

I'm not.

The regular workers make over 100k a year,

And everyone my age has over a million in annuities. 

There's a lot of variables.  The biggest is hours worked.

You work a lot of hours by showing up every day and making money for the contractor. 

There's a lot more on this but that's enough for now. I didn't even want to get into this much....

 

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I think there was another thread on this a while back.  Search for it.

 

My 2 cents: 

 

Do not go blindly into this as a full time move, no matter what country or place you are looking at.  You should start going there now initially for vacations and then for longer stays of up to 3-4 months.  If you can't afford to do that, IMO, you are probably not in financial shape to retire.  The reason is that most places are not what they seem to the "tourist" crowd and you will get a false sense of what it is like.  Learn the local customs and languages and also make some connections that you can trust.  This is hard to do, because in many places, the first people who will approach you trying to become your new bestie are the crooks and the sleazeballs.

 

Also, if you are not in the type of financial shape to do the above, you will need to earn more, save more, invest more.  Plan for at least one major expense every 2-3 years.  Maybe even one life altering event or illness every 5-10 years, beyond the age of 75.  What is your life expectancy, and what diseases are in your family? Plan to get those, and make it through without spending all your savings, until you do finally croak with your last $1,000 as a tip to that cute nurse.  Write down a reasonable assessment of what you think your heath and vitality (hence activities) are going to be in each new decade.  Do you really think you will be blasting out 100+yard casts at 75?  Will you instead be sitting around drooling in a wheelchair?  Plan to spend more at first, then less, and then a whole lot more.  Model your likely trajectory on paper.  Consider inflation, and also climate change and potential  massive lifestyle disruption.  Someone else mentioned political stability as a criterion.  That's a big one, IMO.  I had a friend lose his entire estate to a corrupt state and corporate takeover.  Even the local police were in on it.

 

Don't take the advice above to seek a financial advisor lightly.  But it is not specific enough.  What you want is a fiduciary. Google it.  This is an advisor who has pledged to look primarily after your financial goals, not their own.  The best ones charge you a flat fee per consultation.  They may make suggestions as to investments and allocations, but don't take a percentage of your profits.  Make sure to come prepared with a detailed list of everything you have invested and where, as well as what your specific savings and retirement goals are.  Take notes at the first meeting.  Implement the advice and make a series of appointments to make sure that you stay on track toward your goals.  The fees can seem steep.  $200-400 per hour or more.  Totally freekin' worth it, IMO.  Essential in fact because most of us will need around twice (+) what we think we will.  Take your best shot at an estimate and double it.

 

For most people, when they do all the above, they soon realize that it may make more sense to spend time in a place that is safe and secure, and then travel to other locations and rent the experiences....including longer term rentals (can be a deal especially in the off season). 

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1 hour ago, Ditch Jigger said:

Australia has some of the most restrictive immigration laws of any country. Good luck with retiring there.

Frankly, haven't researched it recently altho when I did R & R there in 71, understood you could not immigrate to Australia unless you had a skill or profession, or enough money that you would not become a burden on society. Wow, what novel ideas! 

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1 hour ago, R.R. Bridge Fisher said:

I'll add to what you said in no order, I am not rich at all. If I was I wouldn't be working 7 - 10's this week. Our benefit package is over 100 an hour. Your welcome to all guys getting prevailing wage on "rate" jobs. You can thank unions for that.

My reason for 1 week a year off greed? Not even close. We get NO paid holidays and No paid days off in out contract.  I am running jobs and it is such a pain in the arse to take time off, going back is the worst! Oh and I said no paid days off in our contract....guys who run jobs get taken care of.

I don't know what you mean by there's not a lot of wealthy union workers...what's wealthy? 

I'm not.

The regular workers make over 100k a year,

And everyone my age has over a million in annuities. 

There's a lot of variables.  The biggest is hours worked.

You work a lot of hours by showing up every day and making money for the contractor. 

There's a lot more on this but that's enough for now. I didn't even want to get into this much....

 

Boy are we similar. I’m 58 and been doing electrical work for 36 years. I’ve got little over 3 more to go and I’m out. Thankfully I’m a superintendent so my work load isn’t real heavy but I’m a working with tools on super. 

 

The amount of time I spend on my feet has my legs ache every night. It’s worse once I’ve spent day in and out on a ladder for a couple weeks. Add concrete as everything you walk on and it adds up. I replace my work boots every 6 months. 

 

 

Looking to selling worms at a basspro if I choose to work any more. I’m  Already talking about the amount of travel to fish. 

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1 hour ago, R.R. Bridge Fisher said:

I'll add to what you said in no order, I am not rich at all. If I was I wouldn't be working 7 - 10's this week. Our benefit package is over 100 an hour. Your welcome to all guys getting prevailing wage on "rate" jobs. You can thank unions for that.

My reason for 1 week a year off greed? Not even close. We get NO paid holidays and No paid days off in out contract.  I am running jobs and it is such a pain in the arse to take time off, going back is the worst! Oh and I said no paid days off in our contract....guys who run jobs get taken care of.

I don't know what you mean by there's not a lot of wealthy union workers...what's wealthy? 

I'm not.

The regular workers make over 100k a year,

And everyone my age has over a million in annuities. 

There's a lot of variables.  The biggest is hours worked.

You work a lot of hours by showing up every day and making money for the contractor. 

There's a lot more on this but that's enough for now. I didn't even want to get into this much....

 

My wife’s nieces husband works for Unitil in Leominster Massachusetts. Has 8 yrs left to work and will retire at 58. Part of the old contracts, paid holidays, sick days personal days 5 weeks of paid vacation plus has a pension plan and 401k. Does underground work and ground stuff, nothing on the lines. 

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On 7/8/2021 at 5:35 PM, R.R. Bridge Fisher said:

So he's getting penalties and needs to spend or move his money. He's already done all the traveling and cars and home improvements. 

He set up trusts for the 6 grandchildren. He's in a good spot..

Me, I'm doing good at 56.

I'll be paying my house off in the next couple weeks.  That is my last bill other than household expenses. 

I'll be retired in less than 2 years. 

Oh I am jumping for joy just cannot wait for this job I'm running to be over. Lots of stress....

What are your plans for health insurance if you retire at 58?

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10 hours ago, Highlander1 said:

I know union electricians do ok as far as pay and benefits are concerned, but your post indicated we aren't talking about wage earners kind of scratch but rather the kind of $$ rich folks have (millions). I'd bet a hundred dollars to a donut  (and I don't gamble) that if we took 1000 career union electricians that retired on pensions, 401's and whatever else they could muster that they are living comfortably but by no means are wealthy.

 

I have friends that work in the trades, they often exaggerate their earnings, if you add the benefit packages to many professions, we are all making $100 an hour. Thus the reason for only one week vacation a year, your taking the $$ you contributed for vacation instead of taking the time off, some would consider that being greedy. Same as hourly wages, lets just say for arguments sake a union electrician, plumber, carpenter whatever make $50 an hour, they will all tell you they make near $100 an hour, true if you add their benefits in, much the same in the private sector.  

 

So, my point is, there are very few wealthy working union electricians, plumbers or carpenters but most are fairly compensated and are considered wage earners, somewhere in the $100K a year range. Unless your a politician or extremely savvy in investing, most will be able to afford retirement but  will never be rich. Now, there are owners of companies that may be wealthy , but almost all of them never put on a tool belt.  

Why do trades people base their pay on including the benefits package? I’ve always wondered why. 

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6 hours ago, z-man said:

Why do trades people base their pay on including the benefits package? I’ve always wondered why. 

When we negotiate our contract that is a huge part of it....

It's is all separated the contractors need a base to know how to bid jobs according. 

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Posted (edited) · Report post

Just as an aside, an Italian expat was lynched by a mob in Honduras yesterday.

 

Apparently, he objected to a local homeless guy damaging his garden/plantings, got physical, and either seriously injured or killked the individual, and faced mob justice as a result.

 

Not defending the use of violence against the trespasser, but it's probably important to note that 1) the expat felt the need to resort to self-help to get the homeless guy out of his garden, and 2) the police didn't interfere when the mob took similar actions against him.  The lack of government involvement is notable.

 

When you think of moving offshore, particularly outside of western Europe or Canada, security becomes a real issue.

 

Edited by CWitek

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