At first, this excited me. Maybe it’s because Cuenca, Ecuador has been rated the Number 1 retirement spot by International Living. Or maybe it’s because the thought of a 3200 square foot, 4-bedroom, 5-bath+ maids quarters for $178,000 is magnifico. Not that I’d want a spread that large, but if something that size is that cheap, then what would I pay for a much smaller slice of heaven?
Not a whole lot, according to the many sites I’ve visited. For example, below is a one-bedroom, one-bathroom apartment in a modern building that sold for $30,000. There are countless examples of beautiful properties in Equador costing a fraction of what a similar property would sell for in Canada.
So what’s life like in Cuenca, Ecuador? According to many expats who retired there, it’s a breeze. Health care is good and inexpensive. Food is fresh and affordable. The American dollar is the official currency. The locals are down-to-earth, friendly and helpful.
The downside: as far as I can tell, Ecuador doesn’t have a retirement incentives program, like Belize, Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, and Mexico. I like the idea of retiring somewhere and getting money off goods and services just for living there. I wonder if Ecuador will be following suit.