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.

7 Tips To Consider Before Building Your Dream Island Home

Tropical beach on south side of Samoa Island with coconut palm trees

Many people dream of owning a home on a tropical island. Others fantasize about finding an overseas property to build upon. A few truly adventurous folks accept the dual challenge of building an island home as their ultimate retirement experience.

Deb and Ben Unger took on this challenge when they chose the southern coast of Grenada as the perfect place to build their modular home in the southeastern Caribbean Sea. They graciously share their story, including some valuable lessons they learned along the way.

Why Grenada?

Deb relates, “I feel safe here. We wanted a mountainous island, a bit less developed, with …

Investing In Your Own Coffee Farm Overseas

Ripe red coffee cherries

Back in the year 2000, on one of my final retire-overseas exploratory trips, I looked at a small, rustic home beside a rushing river in Mexico. Giant trees grew along the riverside, shading both the house and most of the large property.

Among the trees, I found a plant that I didn’t recognize… it turned out to be a coffee plant, lush with ripe berries. I plucked a few berries from the tree and thought about how great it would be to grow my own coffee right on my property. I still have the berries today as a souvenir.

We didn’t buy that house just south of Xalapa, but I never lost sight of the dream of …

Nicaragua Beachfront Real Estate—The Key To Tap Into A Prime Post Pandemic Destination

Beautiful Sunrise at stunning beach in Nicaragua.

Secret Beach Homes From US$94,900

If you want to find the best beaches in Central America, follow the surfers.

You don’t need to be a surfer… or care about ever stepping foot on a board.

But, if you’re a lover of sand, sea, and spectacular sunsets, you may just find yourself on some of the best-kept-secret beaches of the world.

This works for investment, too…

All those surfers need somewhere to stay. And many of the top resorts we know along the Pacific coasts of Costa Rica and Nicaragua were born from this need. It’s beginning to happen in Panama, too, where small lodges, hotels, and gated communities are …

The Best Real Estate In The Dominican Republic

Las Terrenas beach, Samana peninsula, Dominican Republic.

Sophisticated Caribbean—Your Second Home In The Sun From US$70,000

If you dream of white sands, turquoise waters, and year-round sunshine… but crossed the Caribbean off your list because you thought it was beyond your budget… then it’s time to revisit your plan…

We’ve talked about affordable Caribbean options here before—like …

Exploring The Azuero Peninsula, Panama: Central America’s Best Kept Secret

Azuero Peninsula

If you’re an ocean lover, it’s hard to beat a home on the Pacific. Imagine waking each day to a view of dramatic coastline and the crash of surf… and, later, winding down, cocktail in hand, with a front-row seat for one of the world’s most spectacular sunsets.

Remember that the same great wide beaches and surf that …

The Best Investment In Real Estate In Panama City You Will Find

Skyline of Panama City, Panama at night.

What a dicey year. Just when we thought our respective countries had a grip on the pandemic, a second or third wave came at us…

Still, we can look forward to 2021 with more hope. We’ve learned some serious life lessons. And gradually we’ll find our way back to stability.

One place that we expect to bounce back strongly is Panama.

This resilient nation pulled through the 2008 crisis more or less unscathed. And, with both the canal and the copper mine to add to its coffers in the coming years, we expect the country to continue her upward climb…

To boost foreign investment further, the government recently …

Acquiring A Second Residency Through Property Investment

A woman sits on the steps of a house in Cartagena, Colombia.

On Aug. 7, 1974, Frenchman Philippe Petit made headlines when, in the space of 45 minutes, he crossed four times between the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center.

And, he didn’t just walk—the 24-year-old high-wire artist danced and lay down on the wire, too, balance pole in hand.

Whether you look on it as art or pure lunacy, the story, as it unfolds in the 2008 documentary Man on Wire, is an intriguing one that leaves us with more questions than answers.

Breaking and entering the World Trade Center—as Petit and his team had to do at night to set up for the early-morning stunt—was, of course, a criminal act.

Petit’s life-long friend Jean-Louis Blondeau—who had mastered the crossbow in order to shoot the performance wire from the north to the south Tower under cover of darkness—was treated like a common criminal and given his marching orders back to France.

But not so for the tightrope pro…

Following a brief visit to the NYPD, a psychiatric test to prove his sanity, and his commitment to a free performance for children in Central Park, Petit walked out of the cop shop a hero… and has lived in the United States ever since. (The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey even awarded him a lifetime pass to the Observation Deck of the Twin Towers.)

Can you imagine how a stunt like this would be handled by the authorities today? In fact, I can’t imagine any jurisdiction in the world that would dish you out a visa as a reward for some death-defying performance.

But I share this crazy story today to make an important point…

Having at least one backup residency and/or citizenship is something we at LIOS strongly recommend—something that may work to protect you in the future… or, at least, give you options.

Yes, you’re going to have to jump through some …

What The Future In Belize Looks Like: The Booming Real Estate Market

home in Placencia, Belize.

In recent weeks, I’ve shared updates from our top real estate markets—from Portugal to Brazil, Panama to Colombia.

Today, it’s the turn of Belize…

You don’t hear much from this little Caribbean nation in the mainstream media. So it’s over to Belize Correspondent Phil Hahn to give us the scoop on how Belize has been faring in the face of a global pandemic…

Lynn Mulvihill

Editor, Overseas Property Alert

The News From Belize Today Is… “No Worries, Mon”
By Phil Hahn in Cayo, Belize

More than ever, people are asking, “What does the future look like?”

In Belize it looks appealingly like the past. A past when the quality of life in small, tight-knit communities was treasured. A time when people didn’t live to …

The 7 Best Properties For Sale Overseas To Start Your Digital-Nomad Lifestyle Today

Working from home

If you’d been thinking about taking your job on the road and embracing the digital-nomad lifestyle sometime in the future, you may have had a taster this year—though from your own home, of course…

Maybe this unexpected twist in your work situation has helped you realize that you could go overseas sooner than you thought. And, if you haven’t been able to work from home, perhaps you’re considering a career change that would give you the flexibility to live on your own terms and experience adventures across the globe.

Before we go any further, I’d like to clear up something about this whole “work from anywhere” idea…

Can you work from anywhere in the world?

I’d say yes… as long as you have a reliable internet connection.

Can you work from anywhere in your home?

That has to be a no from me.

As a freelance writer and editor, I’ve been working from home these past 13 years—everywhere from a spare bedroom to the back garden to the kitchen table. And, let me tell you that there is nothing like having a designated office…

By all means, nip to the café to catch up on email… or step out onto the sand on your lunchbreak. These are nice perks of a flexible work situation. But, if you …

The Best Investments Opportunities In Panama After COVID

Panama City Skyline

Of all the real estate markets on our radar here at Overseas Property Alert, Panama is one that we expect to emerge from this pandemic with minimal damage… just like it did after the financial crash of 2008.

As the country prepares to open back up to international visitors, the news is positive… and there are some special opportunities emerging for foreign buyers.

I asked Liz Larroquette to share an update from the ground with you today. Liz moved from Australia to Panama 10 years ago and is a full-time resident of the country. As a real estate professional, she’s helped countless foreign buyers find their dream home or ideal property investment in Panama.

Liz has her finger on the pulse of what’s going on in the market right now and where things are headed over the coming year.

Read her full report below…

Lynn Mulvihill
Editor, Overseas Property Alert

Panama Property In A Pandemic—The Good And Bad

By Liz Larroquette

Seven months into this pandemic, and we still don’t know what the “new normal” might be. Here in Panama we’ve already seen both positive and unfortunate effects…

Panama was one of the most aggressive countries in the world in its approach to COVID-19. In March, the government shut the doors on businesses, restaurants, schools, hotels, retail, and homes. But this has worked out. Restrictions are now being lifted, and …