If you’re thinking about retirement, you’re not alone. However, out of 100 Americans who start working at age 25, only 4% are expected to have saved enough for retirement at age 65.
While this number may seem surprisingly low, retiring doesn’t have to be as expensive as you may think. If you can lower your monthly income requirement, you can also greatly reduce the total capital that you need to save to retire.
One easy way to do this: retire abroad. For many Americans, Mexico is a top choice. It’s not only geographically close, it’s also very affordable. Adventure seekers love its bustling cities full of colonial architecture and rich culture, as well as the natural beauty found along its coastlines and highlands. (See also: Retire for Half the Cost in These 5 Countries)
If you’re worried you might be among the 96% of people who haven’t saved enough for retirement, moving to Mexico may be an effective way to make your nest egg go further.
Cost of Living in Mexico
The cost of living is drastically lower than in the U.S. or in Canada. According to Numbeo, the cost of living in Mexico is nearly 60% lower than the United States, with rent costing 79% less.
However, keep in mind that those are costs averaged over the entire country. Expenses are higher in bigger cities such as the capital, and in places that attract a lot of foreigners, such as Playa del Carmen.
Based on my experience living in Mexico City and traveling extensively through the country during 2015 and 2016, I have found rents to be far lower than the U.S. You can find a place for as low as $100 a month in off-the-beaten-track destinations, such as the small beach town of Mazunte. However, a great deal like this often means sacrificing on some of the comforts of home such as air conditioning and hot water.
On the upper end of the budget, if you’re willing to spend $600–$1,000, you can rent a luxury apartment, even in the more expensive and…