Over the years I have taken a serious interest in all things related to retirement in the Baja. And, having just celebrated my 61th birthday that interest has sharpened. After all, moving abroad is one of the most intriguing ways to improve your retirement situation...or to lay the groundwork for an active, interesting, and affordable retirement if, like me, you find retirement rushing at you faster than ever.

So when I found an article on the Forbes website about planning for retirement in your 50s, 60s, and 70s, it caught my eye. Like many, I assumed that if you hadn't started your retirement planning in your 20s or 30s, you'd probably missed the boat. Luckily, this turns out not to be the case, and I was happy to realize that there are ways to improve the quality of your retirement, even if you begin planning for retirement late in the game. It also got me thinking about something I hadn't considered before, namely the one mistake I've seen people make time and time again.

When people read that it's possible for a couple to live for $1,500 or $2,000 per month... they often fail to read the entire article! They buy a ticket and get here with $2,000 in their pockets and a plan to start living the high life immediately. If they had kept reading, they'd have known that you will need some start-up cash to get established in your new seaside community for a housing purchase or lease deposit, shipping charges for moving personal goods if that's what you choose to do (we believe that most people bring far too much stuff down here), visa fees, furniture and fixtures to buy, utility, internet and satellite TV hookups… and so on.

They also realize that, just like back home, there may be unforeseen expenses that seem to pop up out of nowhere—health issues, a transportation budget for getting back home in case of family emergencies or special events, and on and on.

In the excitement of moving someplace better and more affordable, they forget that they still need to plan...to have a cushion...to make sure they have the resources to handle the normal expenses that always accompany a move across the street or across the planet. Fortunately, these are mostly one-time expenses. But that's why retirement planning and the need for that cushion...that something...doesn't end with retirement or with your move to the Baja.

I meet with and talk to many expats all the time, and I applaud those who can make the move and simply kick back and coast on what they've already managed to save and invest. But more often than not, as economies around the world change, as the boom and bust cycles come faster and faster, I find that even some of those farsighted folks are looking around for ways to get a little more "cushion" into their income stream. The good news is, there are many ways to beef up your financial situation, even if you're in the later stages of the game. There are a lot of positive steps you can take to hedge your retirement bets even in your 50s, 60s, and 70s. Every positive step makes your cushion a little bigger and your retirement a little softer. And that's the kind of cushion I'm looking forward to when I retire.

At Sahuaro Shores we’re not just available talk to you about the amenities and benefits of living at our resort (though we do, and in great detail). We can also give you some ideas about what you need to do to protect, grow, and stretch your retirement nest egg like low-cost medical insurance, the best way to shop for fresh fruits, vegetables, seafood, meats and other food staples, and tax planning and the implications of property ownership here in the Baja....and more.

We really look forward to answering your questions, so please feel free to call us!

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