Living in Mexico

Living in Mexico

You will have to face expenses any place you choose to retire – but, if you choose a place like Mexico, you can do it with a smile on your face!

Hope you have all had an enjoyable and filling – Thanksgiving Day!  How could it be almost Christmas already??

Someone put the brakes on!

Time is just going entirely too fast!!We had almost everyone show up for Thanksgiving, and just so I didn’t have to do everything on “The” day, I made a huge homemade lasagna a few days in advance.  Dick and I also cooked a turkey with dressing, and we also did that a couple of days prior – then, on Thanksgiving day, we simply sliced the turkey up, presented the lasagna, and enjoyed… much easier!  I also made Chris’s favorite cranberry relish and everyone’s favorite – baklava! 


Condo in Mexico

So, now, tonight, it’s time to come up with a new article.  It’s always a question as to just what I’m going to write about – I really seem never to know – until I sit down at the computer and just start typing.  

Think tonight, I’ll touch on costs – after all, isn’t that possibly the top concern for all of us?  Whether we’re trying to live only on Social Security and make that stretch over all the necessities, or living on $500,000 and making that stretch over lots of debts and expectatons… we all should strive to make the most of what we have.  Dick and I hit a lot closer to the first group, but I do think making the pennies stretch is a great thing to do – after all, “waste not, want not!” 

If you are moving to Mexico and plan to buy a home there, you will be concerned with the everyday expenses, things like taxes, utilities, etc.  If you are planning on putting the profits from selling your home into an investment and renting in Mexico, you will still face utilities.   


Just enough garden to enjoy

And, either way, you will probably also want or need some paid help once in a while, so, here we go:   

For help around the house, if you want or need it, that is usually based on the hours that are worked – you can count on about $2 U.S. an hour – but many times, $4 a day is all that’s required. At times, if the help does something extra, you can add a few more pesos, and if they have been with you a long time, that has a bit of a bearing also on their wages.  

If you are a good shopper/bargainer and follow my advise of not living and acting as a big-time American – you can find quite acceptable rentals for around $200 a month.  Flash your diamond ring, or fancy watch, and the price for the same place may be $600 a month – of course, location is a variable too.    

Let’s base our figures on a home valued at $150,000 in Mexico.  A good average to count-on amount for taxes (city, state and federal) is approximately $200 U.S., per year.  This does vary around the country, and can be lower or higher, but will not vary a lot.  (currency exchange rate)

For two people, in a modest home in Mexico, you should plan on about $30 to $50 a month for electricity – year round.  Of course, this also will vary slightly, depending on where you live – whether you need or want to run the a.c. a lot or not, and other variables – but again – this is a good average.   

Propane, to heat your water, will probably run about $20 a month.    


Almost a necessity – the computer

Anyway you look at, when you face the facts, you can live better for less – you can retire in luxury – if you decide to make your new home in Mexico.   

 In my book, Retire In Luxury, I have budgets for before Mexico, and after, for Dick and me.

Addition Feb 3, 2013 – the amount you need to move to Mexico has changed – see –

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6 Responses to Living in Mexico

  1. Jerry J. Kemp

    December 12, 2010 at 3:41 am

    I am embarrassed to ask…
    But I don’t see anything on it!
    What about finding a young Mexican girl interested in marriage…
    Is that common or not common there?
    I am 59, Caucasian, average looking … divorced after a 30 year marriage!
    Not my idea!
    It sucks!
    Having a maid would be nice…
    Sure can’t afford one in America…
    But that doesn’t fix the lonliness or companionship needs!
    I know about anywhere you can pay for a girl’s attention!
    But that is not really what I want or the kind of girl I would want forever!
    It leaves a big hole in your heart!
    Any thoughts?
    I know you are not a dating service…
    and if you are married…
    Probably could care less about my broken heart!
    Just thought I would ask!
    Some cultures accept age difference!
    America does not!

  2. Lizzz

    January 21, 2011 at 9:30 am

    Hello Barbie,
    I have been a follower of your blog for about a year now so I wanted to let you know that I am planning a “look and see” trip to your area. Although I would like to be near the “gringo” enclaves and have access to their amenities I will be looking to rent just outside their wake. I am interested in Thelaquepaque (spelling?) as a possible location. What is your opinion of the area. Also, I would like to get in contact with Jerry who has commented on your site about low cost areas that might be suitable to consider.
    I would appreciate everyone’s “2 cents worth” as I am heading toward the home stretch to make my dream come true of retiring in Mexico.

    Yours truly,

  3. Barbie


    January 24, 2011 at 9:03 pm

    So, I cc’d to Jerry: Hi Jerry, hope this finds all well with you. Another retiree searching…I will send this on to Jerry – If he has time, and not on holiday, he will probably contact you. Then, you can ask questions of him.


  4. Barbie


    January 24, 2011 at 9:27 pm

    Well, my son’s wife is 20 years his junior – and they are the perfect pair.
    But – of course, you can find a nice girl in Mexico – or anyplace – apparently.
    Get out and start looking – join Clubs – volunteer you time – you’ll find someone.
    Best to you,

  5. Terry Heck

    February 24, 2012 at 8:51 am

    Hi Barbie, just signed up to your newsletter. I am trveling to Mahahual Mexico next week and will be viewing residential properties in and around Mahahual. Do you have any experience in that area, or advice what real estate agency would be good. Or any other info. I might be interested in . Thanks

  6. Barbie


    February 27, 2012 at 3:24 pm

    Hi Terry – I’m not that familiar with the area, but have this info for you: Mahahual real estate is usually a good value compared to coastal living in many other parts of the world. Mahahual has close proximity to Cancun just to the north, but environmental regulations are trying to protect Mahahual and the surrounding Costa Maya from becoming just another tourist spot. Real estate in the area is, for the most part, zoned for residential living – in an attempt to preserve its natural beauty. Prices along Mexico’s Caribbean coastline fluctuate dramatically based on location. Some properties in well-known tourist spots like Cancun and Acapulco can and do sell for more than one million dollars (although bargains can still be found), while plots in lesser known spots like Mahahual and the surrounding Costa Maya region can sell for as low as $159,000 USD, and under.

    The average monthly temperature in the area ranges from 73 degrees F to 82 degrees F; warm enough to leave the windows open all year long and let the tropical breezes help keep you comfortable. Purchasing in Mexico is explained here –

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