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International Living: 5 reasons why now is the time to retire overseas

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Raise your hand if you think world leaders have things well in hand, the economy has nowhere to go but up, and people are putting their divisions aside and working together like never before for a bright, common future.

If you put your hand up, I’m happy for you—though you’re a good measure more optimistic than I am.

And I’m pretty sure I’m not alone in feeling that things at home today are… unsteady.

Will our political and social divisions get the better of us?

Will we really get a handle on inflation?

Will the stock market ever settle down?

The future seems uncertain to me—economically, politically, socially.

You might have that feeling, too. And you might be thinking of putting an escape plan in place…a way to secure a safe haven for yourself and your family that suits your budget, your interests, your preferences, and your timeline…a way for you to get out from under the cloud of uncertainty.

I’m here to tell you, this is your moment. There has never been a better time to secure a happier, healthier, safer, more affordable life overseas.

In fact, we may not see another moment for action like this in our lifetimes.

There are five big reasons to take action now:

1. Inflation. While inflation is a concern everywhere, it’s a very relative concern from country to country. Consider this…what if your monthly utilities in your mountain-view condo in Ecuador go up a whopping 10 percent in a year? That means the cost for your gas, electricity, water, and Internet—everything, all in, for the entire month—might jump from $85 to $93.50…or an extra $102 a yea About the cost of two decent bottles of Scotch. You get the picture…despite inflation, the low cost of living abroad can still make $100,000 in savings feel more like $1 million…in the right places.

2. Its Never Been Easier to Be an Expat. The Internet has changed everything about being an expat. Now, you can easily stay in instant touch with folks back home and have instant access to online communities of expats and their wealth of advice about every safe, welcoming, low-cost expat destination on the planet. (If you work online, you can live anywhere. Earn those strong dollars and spend them in a place where they go much further. See my next point…)

3. The Strong Dollar. How long will this last? No one knows…but right now, the strength of the U.S. dollar makes the world a real estate and lifestyle shopper’s dream. Consider this. An hour and 20 minutes from Rome in an ancient spa town, a newly renovated 3-bed, 2-bath townhome is priced at €74,000. In 2011 that would have been $105,820 US—still a remarkable value. But today, with the dollar at parity with the euro for the first time in two decades, this home costs about the same in dollars as it does in euros…a $29,000 markdown over 2011 prices. And the same goes just about everywhere in the world right now. Your dollar goes far.

4. Countries Want You. Many countries have changed their visa rules to make living in them—and benefitting from their lower cost of living, excellent health care, and remarkable retiree discounts—easier than ever before. They’re actively pursuing people like you.

5. We Can Show You How. This October, over three highly focused, interactive days—our experts will show you exactly how and where to take advantage of all these factors to improve your own life, starting right now. We’ll help you pinpoint the communities best suited to you and hand you a blueprint for getting there, whether you’re interested in upgrading your retirement, investing for profit, living and traveling better—or all those things.

This article originally ran in International Living.

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