Caribbean & Central America

The lush, tropical destinations in the Caribbean and Central America draw thousands of visitors each year. Some of those visitors fall in love with these picture postcard gorgeous countries and decide to live there full-time or at least part of the year when the weather in their home country becomes unbearable.

Most people believe that a Caribbean retirement is only for the very wealthy. That’s simply not true if you know where to look. The places you’ll read about here are beautiful locations, offering a high standard of living, and a cost of living that’s a fraction of what you would spend in a similar location in the States or Canada.

If your overseas living, retirement, or snowbird dream includes powdery white sand beaches, swaying palm trees, and watching the sunset over a turquoise sea, you have plenty of options to consider among the welcoming countries that make up the Caribbean and Central American nations.

Panama, Belize, the Dominican Republic, Colombia, and even Mexico (which is technically located in North America) are some of our favorite countries in this part of the world that should be on your radar.

You can choose from:

  • culturally rich historic towns such as Cartagena, Colombia and Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
  • bustling waterfront cities like Panama City, Panama
  • laid-back beach towns like San Pedro, Belize,
  • cute little Latin American or Spanish-influenced communities,
  • unspoiled beaches in the Azuero Peninsula, Panama or Las Terranes, Dominican Republic
  • and tourist towns like Cancun and Tulum, Mexico

Just picture yourself enjoying perfect weather every day, taking daily strolls along the beach, feasting on fresh seafood and tropical fruits, and whiling away the hours reading a great book in a hammock. No more shoveling snow, driving in bad conditions, waiting for a short growing season to plant a garden, or hibernating while you wait for the weather to change. In the Caribbean and Central America, you can have the perfect tropical dream life.

Key West Escapism Without The Price Tag

Red Frog Beach On Bocas Del Toro Panama

Plus: “I Need Advice For My Next Property Purchase”

“If there is a heaven for me, I’m sure there is a beach attached.” –Jimmy Buffett

Dear Overseas Property Alert Reader,

Jimmy Buffett found his island escape when he relocated to sunny, sand-fringed Key West, FL, from Nashville, TN, in the early 70s.

He’d been trying to make it in Nashville’s music scene, but with his unique style that wasn’t quite country and wasn’t quite rock, he didn’t have much success.

Everything changed after a busking expedition to Key West in 1971.

Tropical weather… sandy beaches with swaying palms and aquamarine Caribbean waters… a friendly, alternative community… a laid-back way of life…

He liked what he saw so much that he decided to move there a year later, which completely changed his life.

Key West was the launchpad for Jimmy Buffett’s career.

The island atmosphere and its quirky people were the inspiration for his “tropical rock” music style that became so popular that, by the time of his death on Sept. 1, 2023, he was one of the wealthiest musicians of all time.

But the appeal of Key West—that “island escapism” feeling that his music captured so well—isn’t limited to the Straits of Florida…

Even Jimmy himself acknowledged this: “There’s many, many Key Wests out there that have been created over the years…”

Here at Overseas Property Alert, we believe the biggest potential for both fun and profit lies beyond the borders of the United States.

To that end, we’ve identified three places overseas where you can enjoy a Jimmy Buffett-inspired Key West lifestyle for a fraction of its US$1,076,312 average home value.

1. Ambergris Caye, Belize

“The good news from Belize is… no news from Belize.”

So said “60 Minutes” correspondent Morley Safer during his 1988 broadcast on this unassuming little Caribbean nation of 400,000 people.

Thirty-five years later, the sentiment still holds true. Aside from a handful of infrastructure upgrades to accommodate its tourism industry, not much has changed in sleepy Belize, and that’s the way people like it.

It remains the perfect place to escape the world’s troubles, and for Americans, that peace of mind can be accessed in as little as two hours of flying from Miami.

Perhaps the friendliest part of this English-speaking country is Ambergris Caye, a 26-mile-long, 1-mile-wide island just off the Belize mainland.

About 15,000 people live here full-time, including about 3,000 expats who get from A to B on golf buggies and motorboats.

Its capital is San Pedro, a quirky, comfortable beachside town with open-air bars and restaurants, art galleries, wine shops, bakeries…

Ambergris Caye appeals to the retiree who wants the Caribbean and who appreciates that this classically Caribbean spot is also affordable.

It also offers a lot for the investor, with a mature tourism market, in a destination that’s best-in-class, in a country that’s world-renowned for its diverse tourism potential.

Ambergris Caye Property Pick

Ambergris Caye Property Pick

Just a five-minute walk from a white-sand Caribbean beach, there’s an opportunity to buy into an exclusive community from a developer that Lief Simon has worked with for over a decade.

It’s not your typical beach property investment… The developer has partnered with Best Western, one of the world’s biggest hotel chains, to deliver high standards, spending power, and experience.

The community boasts on-site amenities like the largest pool on the island (complete with a swim-up bar), a fitness center, tennis courts, and a restaurant.

It’s near restaurants and bars, and it’s right in the middle of a thriving tourist hot spot. You’ll have diving, fishing, snorkeling, and swimming, as well as restaurants, shopping, and supermarkets, all nearby.

In short, it has everything needed to keep you or your rental clients happy and returning again and again. It offers strong ROI potential of 6% to 10%.

Studio apartments at this development start at just US$148,000… a bargain considering what the equivalent would cost in Florida or California.

Get in touch about this opportunity here now.

2. Bocas Del Toro, Panama

Bocas del Toro is a province of northwestern Panama that consists of a stretch of mainland plus nine islands that float in the Caribbean.

It stands out from the rest of Panama for its Caribbean-Calypso vibe. The locals are descendants of Afro-Antillean people brought over from Jamaica, Martinique, and other islands during the construction of the Panama-Colón railroad, the Panama Canal, and other projects.

The local language is Bocas del Toro Creole or English with a distinctive Jamaican lilt. This is one place in Panama where you can get by exclusively on English.

A big, diverse group of expats have settled here, especially on the main island, Isla Colón.

They love Bocas for the laid-back Caribbean lifestyle, the camaraderie of expats and Panamanian locals, the delicious fresh seafood, and the daily choice between total relaxation or boating, water sports, and fishing.

Some expats are retired, some are remote workers, and some own small businesses, such as restaurants, mini-supers (corner stores), nightclubs, and hostels.

Most of those businesses are situated in pastel-hued Victorian-style buildings along the main street of Bocas Town, the provincial capital. Reggae music seeps from their open doors and windows as water taxis glide up to the town dock.

A carefree destination with stunning scenery, it’s hard to resist Bocas’ appeal.

Bocas Del Toro Property Pick

Bocas Del Toro Property Pick

This two-bedroom, two-bathroom house features spectacular Caribbean views from its hilltop vantage point on Isla Bastimentos.

It’s a split-level, with open-air living on the lower level and enclosed spaces with air conditioning on the upper level, where the bedrooms are.

The house is in Old Bank, the main town on Bastimentos, just a 10-minute boat ride to Bocas Town and a 20-minute walk along jungle trails to Wizard Beach.

Most importantly, the property is titled, which can be an issue in this area of Panama. The asking price is US$165,000.

3. Las Terrenas, Dominican Republic

If you dream of golden sand and clear, blue waters, small town vibes, and friendly locals, then this Caribbean escape might just be your Shangri-La.

Located on the Dominican Republic’s Samaná Peninsula, laid-back Las Terrenas has been sought out by European expats for decades.

The French were among the first to arrive here in the 70s and 80s, and their influence remains strong. There are authentic boulangeries where you can buy croissants and cafés au lait. Pétanque on the beach at sunset is a daily ritual.

Nowadays, Las Terrenas is on North Americans’ radar for retirement, and it’s easy to understand why…

Life here is all about outdoor fun. Surf, kite surf, snorkel, dive, kayak, paddle board, hike to hidden waterfalls, or take an ATV ride (the most common mode of transport).

You can relax on soft-sand beaches with sparkling waters or walk, run, or bike along the town’s boardwalk.

The cost of living is another draw. Overall, you could live with your basic necessities in Las Terrenas for about US$1,300 per month. Splurging a little more could raise that to a monthly budget of US$2,000 for a couple.

Las Terrenas Property Pick

Ocean Edge DR

This two-bed, two-bath bungalow is in a gated community that includes access to a shared swimming pool, parking, manicured gardens, and 24-hour security.

It’s near Las Terrenas’ town center and just a five-minute walk to one of its best beaches, Playa Popy.

It’s being sold furnished, with ample living space spread out across two floors and air conditioning in the main bedroom.

This is a turn-key opportunity, ideal for generating rental income or for personal use by someone who wants to move in right away. The asking price is US$210,000.

Bonus Pick: Los Islotes, Panama

On Panama’s Pacific coast, there’s a private residential community under development that offers the ultimate escape from the onslaught of modern life. It captures the heart and soul of Jimmy Buffett’s music like no other place I’ve seen…

The community consists of 425 acres of rolling hills and virgin shore, including two beaches, along the Azuero Peninsula’s little-known but pristine west coast.

It will feature amenities like a gatehouse, a beach club, a swimming pool, an equestrian center, tennis courts that will double as basketball courts, a fitness center, parks, hiking trails, riding trails, and more.

Los Islotes will be the preeminent private residential community not only on this coast but in all Panama. It’s a place that values beauty, history, and tradition, as well as privacy, security, freedom, independence, and elbow room.

To take a position in Panama’s path of coastal progress while also joining a unique community that recognizes how special and valuable this spot really is, go here now.

Sophia Titley signature
Sophia Titley
Editor, Overseas Property Alert

How To Put More In Your Pocket Every Month

Beautiful caribbean sight with turquoise water in Caye Caulker, Belize. best property prices

Dear Overseas Property Alert Reader,

Increasing numbers of retirees are leaving their home states in search of more affordable housing. Florida, North Carolina, and Michigan are the top places they’re moving to.

But how affordable is property in these states? And what about their costs of living in general? Once housing is covered, how much do retirees have left for other expenses (not to mention themselves)?

As a reader of Overseas Property Alert, you already know that we’re advocates of straying from home in search of profit, adventure, and lifestyle upgrades. But for us, Florida, North Carolina, and Michigan aren’t far enough.

The best property prices and lowest costs of living are found beyond the borders of the United States.

Maybe you like Florida, North Carolina, and Michigan for their lifestyle appeal…

But you don’t have to compromise on this when you move to a new country. There are places overseas that have similar offerings for a fraction of the price.

More savings means more money in your pocket at the end of the month for discretionary spending—in other words, more funds to treat yourself with and have some well-earned fun during retirement.

Let’s compare the top three states that older Americans are moving to in search of affordable housing with comparable overseas counterparts. I’ll look at the average home value as well as the living wage (the amount needed to cover basic expenses) in each case.

  1. Florida Vs. Belize

Unsurprisingly, Florida is the top spot retirees are moving to. They’re drawn by the dream of a beach retirement plus warm weather and a low cost of living, including lower taxes.

If you’re willing to venture a bit farther south, you can access all of Florida’s appeal at a much lower cost. Just two hours from Miami by plane is Belize, an English-speaking Central American country with a long Caribbean coastline.

It has white-sand beaches, palm trees, and warm weather year-round… a tropical retirement dream come true. Plus, it’s a tax haven. Even as a resident, it does not impose tax on income earned outside of the country.

Home prices vary across Belize and by type of property (whether it’s an American-style home in a private residential development or a Belize-style home in a humble village).

Some of the best value is in Corozal District, the northern part of the Belize mainland, close to the border with Mexico. Here, homes cost between US$100,000 and US$200,000 on average.

Compare that to the Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville area, a top choice in Florida, where the typical home value is US$314,000.

The cost of living is lower in Corozal, too… In Florida, the living wage is US$5,480 per month. In Corozal, we estimate that a couple needs about US$2,000 per month for a comfortable lifestyle.

If you bring Florida’s budget to Corozal, you’ll have an extra US$3,480 in your pocket every month, which you can allocate to nice dinners out, boat or fishing trips, or travel.

  1. North Carolina Vs. Spain

Retirees love North Carolina for its culture. It has university towns with thriving food scenes and professional sports teams. It also has a wide, sandy seashore, mountain views, and national parks.

Its retiree numbers are increasing just like Florida’s… but despite being sought out for affordability, there’s a gap between the living wage (US$5,030 per month) and what the average person earns (US$3,700 per month) in North Carolina.

In Asheville, average home values are US$451,400. Compare that to Murcia, a little university city of just under half a million in Spain, about halfway between Valencia and Málaga and about 30 minutes inland from the coast. Here, the average home costs about US$100,000 to US$150,000.

Murcia has a strong expat community, attracting people from all over the world who are drawn by the affordability, warm weather, and Spanish cultural ambiance. About US$1,500 is a reasonable monthly budget here.

That leaves you with an extra US$3,530 per month if you bring Asheville’s living wage here, which you can put towards enjoying your retirement. You can play golf at one of Murcia’s 17 courses, for instance, and never worry about the green fees.

  1. Michigan Vs. Montenegro

Michigan’s inbound retirees are drawn by the low cost of living, first and foremost.

It’s ranked one of the most affordable states in the country, and it’s one of few states where the average housing cost (US$820 per month) is actually in line with the living wage (US$4,700 per month).

Retirees also like Michigan for its lake lifestyle, natural beauty, and low-key appeal. Resort towns like Petoskey and Grand Rapids are likely choices because they’re quiet and provide access to Lake Michigan.

On the other side of the world in Montenegro, a tiny country in the eastern Mediterranean, you can find much of the same for a much lower cost. It even has a massive lake, Lake Skadar—the biggest in Southern Europe.

Montenegro is just being discovered by expats, and property values remain incredible bargains—especially inland. You can find homes for US$50,000 to US$100,000.

Compare that to Petoskey, where the average home value is US$400,820.

A budget of about US$2,000 per month is enough for a comfortable lifestyle in Montenegro. Compared to Michigan’s living wage, you’ll have an extra US$2,700 in your pocket per month to spend as you please.

Another benefit of buying property in Montenegro is that it qualifies you for residency. The country is on the cusp of entering the EU, which means that Montenegro residency could become even more valuable in just a few years.

How Much Can You Save Overseas?

  Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville, FL Corozal, Belize Discount
Average Home Value US$314,000 US$150,000 52%
Monthly Budget US$5,480 US$2,000 64%
  Asheville, NC Murcia, Spain  
Average Home Value US$451,400 US$125,000 72%
Monthly Budget US$5,030 US$1,500 70%
  Petoskey, MI Montenegro  
Average Home Value US$400,820 US$75,000 81%
Monthly Budget US$4,700 US$2,000 57%


Sophia Titley signature

Sophia Titley

Editor, Overseas Property Alert

P.S. On Sept. 20–22, Lief Simon is hosting the most important event on our calendar, the 2023 Offshore Wealth Summit. This event is all about helping you create a plan for financial safety and prosperity with the guidance of experts.

Go here now to reserve your place at the 2023 Offshore Wealth Summit.

The Best Areas To Invest In Panama

Panama City In The Spotlight: 3 Top Areas For Property Investment

The 2023 Global Property Summit kicks off tomorrow, June 14.

This is our biggest property-focused event of the year, where we present attendees with a menu of fully vetted investment deals from around the world.

If you haven’t signed up for it yet, it’s not too late to join us. Virtual passes are available here, affording you access everything the event offers from the comfort of your home.

Those that are attending GPS in person tomorrow will convene in the meeting rooms of Hotel Las Americas Golden Tower in Panama City, Panama.

The location of this year’s GPS is no coincidence…

Where better to have conversations about diversifying into global real estate markets where you can make money than in boomtown Panama?

Why Panama?

 Panama has been on Live And Invest Overseas’ radar for more than 20 years, and its investment fundamentals continue to stack up:

  • The U.S. dollar is the currency, meaning no exchange-rate risk
  • Panama is Latin America’s banking hub, with more than 50 general and international banks in Panama City alone
  • It has seen strong, sustained GDP growth of as much as 11% per year over the past 10 years (and even during the Great Recession in the years prior)
  • The Panama Canal is critical to the world economy, which ensures that this will always be a stable and valuable area
  • The government is pro-business and foreigner-friendly, meaning outsized incentives for foreign retirees and investors
  • The country has a solid legal system and strong personal property rights

Its property market, particularly in Panama City, is ripe with opportunity.

The expanding influx of foreign labor and executives is providing double-digit monthly rental returns, while the ever-moving path of progress is creating the potential for dramatic appreciation in key areas.
Values have increased compared to this time last year, as has the average number of transactions per building, which is up by 30%. The opportunities on offer are extraordinary.

But if you know anything about Panama City, you know that it’s a niche market. It’s divided into administrative units called corregimientos, which are further broken down into boroughs.

Each area has unique characteristics and requires special consideration when it comes to investment strategies. You want to make sure that your portfolio objectives align with the characteristics of the area you choose to invest in because outcomes can vary.

Some areas offer more potential and upside than others…

The 3 Top Areas For Investment

Twenty years ago, you could have bought almost anything in Panama and felt confident that you’d earn a good return. That’s no longer the case. Today, you need to target your investment search.

Where, specifically, in Panama City should you be shopping?

I asked Mónica Linares, Editor of Global Property Advisor and Panama City native, for her opinion. She named San Francisco, Costa del Este, and Bella Vista as the top choices right now.

San Francisco

San Francisco is to Panama City what Manhattan is to New York. It’s the commercial, financial, and residential hub of the city. Some of the most exclusive and expensive neighborhoods in the city are found here, like Punta Pacífica and Punta Paitilla.

It’s home to the skylines that characterize Panama City as well as some of the city’s most famous buildings, like the JW Marriott Panama (previously Trump International), Atlapa Convention Center, Multiplaza mall, and Hotel Las Americas (the site of tomorrow’s Global Property Summit).

This is a trendy area with a wide assortment of shops, cafés, restaurants, and nightlife venues. It’s also home to Parque Omar, the Central Park of Panama City, as well as Calle 50, the city’s most important financial and commercial thoroughfare. Panama’s two best private hospitals—Hospital Punta Pacífica and Hospital Paitilla—are in San Francisco.

This is one of the city’s oldest corregimientos. It’s been developing and modernizing since the 70s, and it’s where Panama’s real estate boom is concentrated. It’s a rapidly developing area with a mix of homes and high-rise apartments.

San Francisco is a mostly upper-middle- to upper-class area. I see the best play here as an apartment that’s rented on a medium- or long-term basis to this market.

 San Francisco Property Pick

Lief has uncovered an exciting new pre-construction project in the heart of San Francisco. Aside from its location, it deserves your attention for the outstanding payment plan the developer offers.

Lief is currently writing up his full report and doors open this weekend… but you can get your name on the access list here to ensure you don’t miss out.

 Costa Del Este

 Costa del Este is unlike anything else in Panama City…

It’s a 740-acre master-planned suburb that stands out for being the city’s best planned community. In contrast to San Francisco, everything in Costa del Este is new and shiny.

It’s a neighborhood within the corregimiento of Juan Díaz, and it’s found just off the main highway that takes you into Panama City from the international airport.

It’s among Panama City’s most sought-after business and residential addresses, and it offers strong investment potential. A number of national and international companies are based here, which has attracted expats from all over the world—especially those with families.

Spacious, walkable, clean, safe, and turn-key, Costa del Este is both a classic suburb and a truly cosmopolitan neighborhood. It’s also home to Panama City’s newest John Hopkins-affiliated hospital, as well as being just minutes away from a Jack Nicklaus-designed golf course.

Prices in Costa del Este are some of the highest in the city, but demand remains strong.

What’s the best play here? Targeting the executives and employees of multinational corporations, again with medium- to long-term rentals. Buying pre-construction either to sell or to rent at completion can also be an effective and profitable strategy.

 Costa Del Este Property Pick

The most established, experienced, and respected developer in Panama is launching a new pre-construction project in Costa del Este.

It offers one- and two-bedroom units of between 100 and 131 square meters, priced between US$228,000 and US$448,000. A price point of US$300,000 would make you eligible for Panama’s Qualified Investor Permanent Residency (its Golden Visa).

There’s opportunity for solid potential ROI, as this group’s already completed project (right across the street) enjoys over 93% occupancy, mostly from executives from multinational corporations. There’s also big appreciation potential.

A payment plan (with 30% required over a three-year period) is available, and completion is estimated for the end of 2026. Go here for more information on this project.

 Bella Vista

Bella Vista is a corregimiento made up of some of Panama City’s most important neighborhoods, including Obarrio, Marbella, El Cangrejo, Avenida Balboa, El Carmen, and La Cresta.

It’s been undergoing a major overhaul that involves widening sidewalks, putting power and communication cables underground, improving parks, and more, all designed to craft a young, metropolitan lifestyle.

Living here puts you in the heart of the city, with easy access to everything. Calle 50, a major Panama City thoroughfare, runs through it. Also close is Calle Uruguay and its vast selection of bars, restaurants, and clubs.

One of the city’s most popular expat neighborhoods, El Cangrejo, is here. It’s close to public transportation, schools, universities, clinics, pharmacies, grocery stores, restaurants and bars, and plenty of green areas.

It’s central, so you can easily reach other areas of the city, and best of all, it’s walkable—one of the few neighborhoods in Panama City that qualifies as such.

I see the best play in Bella Vista as a medium- or long-term rental apartment in El Cangrejo that targets young professionals, millennials, and digital nomads who are attracted by its fun and funky atmosphere.


Sophia Titley signature

Sophia Titley

Editor, Overseas Property Alert

How To Buy Property In Belize: A Guide For Future Expats

Aerial drone view of Tobacco Caye small Caribbean island with palm trees and bungalows in the Belize Barrier Reef

How To Buy Property Overseas: Our Belize Guide

Belize is a small country, but it has an amazing range of property options on offer… stunning Caribbean islands, beaches on the mainland in Corozal, Toledo, and Stann Creek districts, nature-rich riverfront homes, and farms, jungles, and cooler mountain properties, too.

Aside from figuring out where in this country you want to buy property, you should also understand the buying procedures in Belizeand the potential pitfalls.

Today I am introducing you to the property purchase process in Belize.

Private Developments Vs. Local Living

Some people want the familiarity, convenience, and community of a residential subdivision like Carmelita Gardens in the Cayo district. Others find the idea of living in a planned community claustrophobic.

I’m of mixed opinion. To have rules forced upon me at home when I’m not breaking any law goes against my feeling that my home is my castle. However, there are few zoning laws in Belize. Who’s to say that my neighbor won’t open a nightclub or mechanics garage in their yard tomorrow?

Buying property in a planned expat community nearly always costs more than buying in the local community, and it usually has annual HOA fees attached. It also provides …

Santos: Brazil’s Bustling Island City With Gardens Galore

Aerial view of Santos city, county seat of Baixada Santista, on the coast of Sao Paulo state, Brazil

A Tale of Two Cities, Part 1: Santos

Likely you’ve never heard of Santos. Almost certainly you’ve never heard of her sister city across the estuary, Guarujá. But every Brazilian has.

These cities lie about one hour southeast of the city of São Paulo. Each is situated on a large coastal island, and though each boasts lovely beaches, they are quite different in most other respects. For now, we’ll get to know Santos.

One Of The Best Cities In Brazil—But Don’t Take My Word For It

Santos is a bustling city of about 420,000. It is, in fact, generally conceded to be the busiest port in all of South America, servicing both container and cruise ships.

But Santos isn’t the grimy blue-collar town you might imagine. Around 2010, with the discovery of oil and gas reserves offshore, there was a sudden inrush of white-collar jobs. Also, many of the locals are well-paid professionals who actually work in the city of São Paulo, but who make the commute daily because they prefer to live in Santos.

Santos, in fact, regularly appears on lists of the top cities in Brazil in which to live. In 2016, Santos ranked #6 among the best cities in Brazil as determined by the United Nations, considering factors such as average level of education, life expectancy, and income. Santos was rated in 2021 as the best city in all of Brazil for those 60 and over. In a country where people are given to complaining about the government and services, everyone here speaks highly and proudly of Santos, of its superior services, safety, and high quality of life.

Santos is attractive as well. Nature has blessed her. Here, as in so many cities in southeastern Brazil, morros, those tree-covered cones of granite, so quintessentially Brazilian, nestle along the coastline. Broad beaches are washed by the South Atlantic. The unbroken gardens running along the beach are considered by Guinness to be the largest in the world.

I really like the way Santos organizes its beaches—and I’ve seen plenty here, up and down Brazil’s extensive coastline. The beaches are Brazilian, and yet organized—two words not typically used in conjunction. There are bike lanes, and the calçadão (broad beach sidewalk) for pedestrians. Permanent kiosks serve up seafood and icy-cold beers.

On the weekends, locals and daytrippers throng stalls and pushcarts, which offer everything from handicrafts to churros (wickedly delicious tubes of deep-fried pastry stuffed with chocolate or caramel cream). The beaches are broad, in many stretches a full two city blocks from the calçadão to the water’s edge. You stand surrounded by clutches of beach umbrellas of every color, and the sounds of laughter, volleyball, beach soccer, and, of course, the crash of the waves. Close to the kiosks, the smell of the sea gives way to that of churrasco, Brazilian-style barbecue. Ahhhh…

Paradise? Well, if I’m picky, the sand here has clay in it. It’s grayish in spots and isn’t as sugary soft as over in Guarujá, which we’ll visit soon enough. But there are certainly worse places to hang your hat!

If you tire of the beaches, Santos boasts an aquarium and a number of museums, including ones dedicated to coffee, the navy, fishing, soccer, and one specifically to Pelé, widely regarded as the greatest soccer player of all time, who played most of his career right here. There are botanical gardens and an orchid park housing a small zoo. You can tour the historic district (Santos dates all the way back to 1546) by streetcar. And there are good restaurants everywhere, offering seafood of course, but really almost any type of cuisine you might want.

Santos has generally fine weather, too. While there are four seasons, even in winter (June to August), daily highs often reach 70°F, and lows rarely fall below 55°F. The intermittent gusts from the south are invigorating. Summers are hot, but not oppressively so, and these days most homes have air conditioning.

Aerial view of Santos city, buildings on the waterfront avenue, county seat of Baixada Santista, on the coast of Sao Paulo state, Brazil.
Adobe Stock/Cifotart

Brazil, Only Better

I find myself liking the people here as well. They take pride in their city, and despite the continuing economic crisis in Brazil, the city provides a high level of services, and it is quite evident that the city is well managed, from garbage pickups to bus service to hospitals. You have to give credit to the paulistas for this.

Brazilians universally, if sometimes begrudgingly, acknowledge São Paulo to be the most organized and industrious of all the Brazilian states, and I would have to concur. It doesn’t hurt that Santos is one of the state’s—indeed, the country’s—wealthier cities.

While Santos forges ahead through the economic downturn, there are many apartments currently on the market. Many are second homes or investment properties, and their owners want to unload them. It’s not quite the buyer’s market you’ll find over in Guarujá, but there are definitely deals available.

Getting The Lay Of The Land Around Santos

Santos is located on a large island which it shares with the city of São Vicente—which was the first permanent Portuguese settlement in what would become Brazil.

The most attractive areas lie on the south side of the island, where the beaches are strung along an arc facing the bay and the South Atlantic.

While there are many nice areas here in which to rent or buy, the most desirable bairros (city districts) in my view are Boqueirão, which is centrally located, and Ponta da Praia, to the east, where the estuary empties into the sea. Another bairro to consider is Gonzaga, which includes the central shopping district; it’s convenient to everything, if perhaps a bit noisy. I would avoid the western end of Santos, adjacent São Vicente, as there are two favelas nearby.

Although the beach is undeniably attractive, I suggest also looking at properties one to two blocks inland, for a couple of reasons. The first is that in Santos, buses run along the beach avenue, so unless you get a unit facing away from the beach, you’ll have to contend with traffic noise and also dust if you are on one of the lower floors. And marisia, the salt air, slowly corrodes appliances.

By moving just a couple of blocks away from the beach, you’ll not only avoid these problems, but find cheaper rents, and also lower prices in pharmacies, markets, and restaurants. It’s the same in beach communities everywhere.

It’s a fairly straightforward matter to rent a furnished unit here for 90 days on what is termed a por temporada (for the season) lease. Standard long-term contracts in Brazil are for 30 months, but it is common these days to add a clause which allows the renter out after 12 months with no penalties. Traditionally, property owners have asked for a fiador, or co-signer, for long-term leases, but now most will accept a deposit held in escrow. Surprisingly, many owners actually prefer to rent to foreigners.

Santos has a lot to offer, so it’s not surprising that it’s a bit pricey—by Brazilian standards. But for those with dollars, pounds, or euros, Santos offers the most elusive of beasts: a truly desirable beachside location, at very reasonable prices.

How To Get In On Huatulco, Mexico—Before The Tourism Boom

Paradise sand beach with turquoise blue water in Huatulco, Oaxaca, Mexico

Mexico has become a tourism powerhouse. It totals to over 32 million arrivals, making Mexico the ninth most-visited country in the world… and the second in North America after the Unites States.

The rise in Mexico’s international popularity is due to the efforts of FONATUR (Fondo Nacional de Fomento al Turismo), the Mexican government’s tourism investment arm. Think of it as a national fund for tourism development.

FONATUR was created in 1974 to invest in (and incentivize the development of) new infrastructure, hotels, and other tourism-related businesses in designated regions throughout country. These projects are known as Integrally Planned Resort Centers.

First, the agency identifies an intrinsically desirable area in which to create a tourism zone. Then it develops a master-planned community, which includes a residential section for permanent residents complete with schools, hospitals, and markets; a tourist area with hotels, shopping centers, and golf courses; and, in many cases, protected …

Learn How To Invest Smarter And Let Inflation Pay You

Investing Infation

Make Inflation Pay You

This is the short-term fallout of the current geo-political mess:

  1. Fuel and energy price spikes;
  2. Supply chain disruptions, microchip shortages, and tech stock devaluations;
  3. Food price inflation;
  4. Stock market volatility.

It sounds ominous, but don’t worry. There is a simple way of hedging against these risks. You can make money while you’re doing it, too.

I’m about to let you in on an opportunity that allows you free time for yourself while you’re making all these profits.

Sounds great, right?

Before I give away the secret, let’s take a deeper look at what everyone else will be dealing with over the coming …

A Real Estate Investment In Panama With Profits And Community Support

Houses in Panama

Earn A 30% Fixed Return Backed By US$1-Billion Government Fund: An Infinity-Sum Opportunity

In game theory, “zero-sum” is a concept where for someone to win, someone else must lose.

I’ve known sociopaths in business who are only satisfied with a deal if they can screw everyone else out of their share.

These greedy characters are zero-sum operators.

Sometimes I come across an opportunity that’s the opposite of a zero-sum deal.

The opposite of a zero-sum deal is an infinity-sum deal.

These are opportunities where everyone wins. The community wins. The ordinary person wins. The government wins. And you win.

And it’s truly a pleasure to do business this way.

Today, I want to alert you to a developer in Panama who is guaranteeing a 30% ROI in just two years, completely turn-key. You don’t have the hassle of having to renovate, rent, or sell anything. You collect your 30% in two years (or sooner), and you can reinvest your profits again if you like.

The project takes advantage of a US$1-billion government fund set up specifically to support this opportunity.

This deal is designed to provide desperately needed resources to ordinary folks. It builds communities and …