Help! I'm new. A million questions...

kathrynn

New member
Oct 23, 2004
8
0
0
I'm looking all over for up to the minute info on living in the DR. Isn't that a news flash!!?? But seriously, we're Canadian baby boomers, looking to relocate for our "golden years" and have no idea how much it costs to live there on a month to month basis. Did anyone go shopping today? How much is a quart/litre of milk? dozen eggs? loaf of bread? fresh fruit, veggies? sugar, flour, coffee? Does anyone reading this live in Casa Linda? We're looking at Sosua, Cabarete, Costembar....Should you buy or rent? How much is propane, since I assume this is what the stoves use. Why can't you drink the water from the wells? (sounds naive, but here in Alberta, if you drill a well, chances are the water is drinkable). by the way, how much is a 5 gallon jug of drinking water? I notice the houses in the real estate sections have no dishwasher. any reason? Looking forward to your response. Thanks in advance to anyone helping to educate us.
 

ricktoronto

Grande Pollo en Boca Chica
Jan 9, 2002
4,837
0
0
I'll Say It First

Do a search - the search function is very handy and most of the questions are asked and answered a dozen times. If you want sewage in your drinking water, drill a well.
 

Escott

Gold
Jan 14, 2002
7,716
6
0
www.escottinsosua.blogspot.com
Well you don't exactly get sewerage in your drinking water in the area of Casa Linda or close by. You have more uses for well water than you do with City water in Sosua for sure. Folks who have wells in Lomas Mironas that I have spoken to use the water to brush their teeth with and cook which I wouldn't do on City Water Supply. I only know this because I am building there and have spoken with neighbors.

Bottled water is real cheap for 5 gallon bottles. Don't know current price but it was under 1 US dollar last tiem I bought.
 

sweetdbt

Bronze
Sep 17, 2004
1,574
70
0
kathrynn said:
I'm looking all over for up to the minute info on living in the DR. Isn't that a news flash!!?? But seriously, we're Canadian baby boomers, looking to relocate for our "golden years" and have no idea how much it costs to live there on a month to month basis. Did anyone go shopping today? How much is a quart/litre of milk? dozen eggs? loaf of bread? fresh fruit, veggies? sugar, flour, coffee? Does anyone reading this live in Casa Linda? We're looking at Sosua, Cabarete, Costembar....Should you buy or rent? How much is propane, since I assume this is what the stoves use. Why can't you drink the water from the wells? (sounds naive, but here in Alberta, if you drill a well, chances are the water is drinkable). by the way, how much is a 5 gallon jug of drinking water? I notice the houses in the real estate sections have no dishwasher. any reason? Looking forward to your response. Thanks in advance to anyone helping to educate us.
One example, there was a thread recently on the cost of groceries for 4 people for a week. The estimates ranged from RD4000 up. You really would do well to utilize the search feature, as almost everything has been covered.
 

wayne

Member
Dec 25, 2003
248
2
18
We own a house in Casa Linda email us and we will try to answer any questions you have. If your considering a purchase Casa Linda is starting to build their 4Th phase and have some large ocean view lots available.
 

ltsnyder

Bronze
Jun 4, 2003
622
0
0
www.x3ci.com
Some general advice,

Keep a bank account in the country you live in, the finacial institutions in Canada earn more intrest and are safer. There are many ways to get your money from thier to the DR.

2) If you have spent any time in the DR then you know what it is like. If you have not, you better go there to get familiar. One of the greatest Financial questions you will have to answer is, do you need Airconditioning, and if so, for how much of the time. In summer I'm sure this will be your greatest expense.

3) Groceries are easy to calculate, and cheaper if you can eat local foods like plantains. But if your planing a retirement, please pad all expenses with a 20% safty margin because prices change and sometimes there is a surge in prices.

4) FInally remember, there is no work down there, don't get the idea that you can offset expenses with a small business. I mean a small business might work, but I have never seen any one plan a business from a forign country and have it work once arriving in the DR.

5) Try not to keep valubles in the house if you have visitors, not to say visitors steal, but word of mouth travels far.

-Lee
 

chuckuindy

Bronze
Mar 8, 2004
1,372
0
0
75
Well connected

Do not kid yourself, unless you have pre-established connections in the DR you are doomed for failure. What ever anyone tells you it will cost you more to retire in comfort in the DR than many other places you might consider.

Strongly look at the cost of energy, new tax rates, transportation and national infrastructure. Then consider the stability of the peso, the banking system, political unrest, the ability to get anything done in a timely manner.

Charlie
 

kathrynn

New member
Oct 23, 2004
8
0
0
ltsnyder said:
Keep a bank account in the country you live in, the finacial institutions in Canada earn more intrest and are safer. There are many ways to get your money from thier to the DR.

2) If you have spent any time in the DR then you know what it is like. If you have not, you better go there to get familiar. One of the greatest Financial questions you will have to answer is, do you need Airconditioning, and if so, for how much of the time. In summer I'm sure this will be your greatest expense.

3) Groceries are easy to calculate, and cheaper if you can eat local foods like plantains. But if your planing a retirement, please pad all expenses with a 20% safty margin because prices change and sometimes there is a surge in prices.

4) FInally remember, there is no work down there, don't get the idea that you can offset expenses with a small business. I mean a small business might work, but I have never seen any one plan a business from a forign country and have it work once arriving in the DR.

5) Try not to keep valubles in the house if you have visitors, not to say visitors steal, but word of mouth travels far.

-Lee

Thank you so much for your response. We have every intention of keeping a bank account in Canada, but forget about interest rates. they are non-existent. Safe? yes. However we are not wealthy. I am just trying to establish if we could even be reasonably comfortable.
We will be visiting in April for about 3 weeks. We have never been there before. We would visit a couple of more times before a decision was made. I believe that yes, we would need the bedroom air conditioned at least, and a pool.
Groceries are only easy to calculate if you know what they cost in the first place. That's why I asked about certain specific items, like milk, eggs, bread, coffee, etc. I have no idea what a plantain is....
We are not doing this to start a business, we are doing this to retire! God knows we've worked hard for enough years. now we want to enjoy life a bit.
As for valuables, we wouldn't have any there, but that is very good advice and will keep it in mind. thanks again. I appreciate all who have taken the time to answer.
 

Gregg

New member
Apr 26, 2004
176
0
0
cost of foods

we are moving to the DR in the new year. my opinion as there is so much we don't know yet:

spend your time in the grocery stores, department stores, clothing stores etc.. pretend you're living there. the cost of living debate is a tough one as people's needs are so different. i know my prices to a "T" in Canada but would still have trouble telling someone else what living here costs. 10 families, 10 very different viewpoints...

we found most basic groceries to be within 10%, plus or minus, of what we pay here. however, we do not live in Toronto where prices are higher (you start to see how the comparisons fall apart). imported items can cost alot more. good news: unlike most Caribbean islands, the DR grows and makes much of their own foods. peanut butter is outrageous in price but rum is cheap. some fruits are cheaper but not as much as you would think.

do you shop only in grocery stores for convenience? or do you use local markets, roadside stands etc? do you buy in bulk? are you big meat eaters? do you cook from scratch? do you already eat a "rice and chicken" type of diet? be honest with yourself, assume there will be no real changes in your style and get out the calculator.

the other big items: automobile and electricity (inverters, generators etc...).

my guesstimate, for our own family: some higher initial costs for moving, housing, emigration, automobile and electricity strategy. ongoing, we hope to save about 25% overall. this savings includes some lower taxes, no heating costs, no winter clothing (we have growing kids), year-round hobby farming, cheaper booze and cigarettes. some of this depends on where you choose to settle, of course.

i'll know when i have what i call my "coffee in the morning on our patio" after about 4-6 months of living in the DR:

i will finally know how much capital i have (can you say taxes in Canada?)
my major DR purchases will have been completed
my money will be invested in the DR and elsewhere with a predictable income
i'll have some handle on what our monthly expenses really are

i can then turn to my wife and say "this is what it costs US to live in the DR."
and either " i think we can really do this" or "i am definitely going to have to earn some serious money" or " geez, we can live here for about xx months before we eat up our capital" or "how about charging our friends and family to visit?" or " send out our son with a shoeshine box".
 

sweetdbt

Bronze
Sep 17, 2004
1,574
70
0
??????

ltsnyder,

"Keep a bank account in the country you live in, the finacial institutions in Canada earn more intrest and are safer. There are many ways to get your money from thier to the DR."

All of your advice makes sense except this. Not that it's a bad idea to keep some $ back home as a safety measure. Safer, perhaps; but earn more interest? If you know financial institutions in Canada that pay higher interest than in the DR, please share this information! I will drive there from here in Virginia to open an account. Last I heard the banks in Canada were paying the same pitiful rates as here in the US.