living expenses in the DR

paulcocoloco

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Oct 12, 2010
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we are planning to move to the DR, (cabarete) for a couple of years just to unwind.
we have 3 kids. 7,9,12. any idea on the living expenses, school,etc.
is $ 40,000 per year enough?


paul
 

CFA123

Silver
May 29, 2004
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Paul,
the simple answer... yes, $40k is enough.
you won't live like royalty but should do fine.
note, too many trips back home, depending where you're from, for a group of 5 can eat quickly into the 40k!

keep security in mind when selecting where you'll live. the right choice will make the diff between having time to unwind or becoming unwound!
 

cobraboy

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Jul 24, 2004
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You'll live better than where you came from on US$40,000...

Ditto CFA123 on security...

Good luck!
 

Afgan

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Mar 29, 2009
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we are planning to move to the DR, (cabarete) for a couple of years just to unwind.
we have 3 kids. 7,9,12. any idea on the living expenses, school,etc.
is $ 40,000 per year enough?


paul

Having three kids and a wife you will need a house in a very secured, safe and well guarded gated community - it will cost at least $2000US/month upward.

Remaining $1500/month will be enough for food for five people, a basic medical insurance. And practically that`s it.

You cannot afford private schools, and public ones here are joke. You cannot afford to travel to US. You cannot afford a major illness that will not be covered by your basic insurance. Such thing as eating out for you does not exist (one basic dinner for your family in a basic restaurant in Sosua will cost you $100US and way up).

Do not forget transportation. For a family of five you need a big SUV new enough that does not break in the most unappropriate times. In this country it will cost $15G and up for a five-six year old one. Of your badget hopefully you can buy monthly gasoline, but each repair will be a major disaster.

$3500 a month is moderatelly enough for a couple with one kid under the school age who can live in a small appartment and drive a compact used car.

To "unwind" having $250 per person per month for all nutrition and other living expenses sounds very unlikely.

Sorry for the gloomy outcry Paul! But it is a simple arithmetic.
 
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DMV123

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Mar 31, 2010
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I disagree with the previous poster. I know many families living comfortably in various locations, without being inside a gated community with all this expense and security.

It is very possible to live a quiet humble reserved lifestyle here and never have any issues. You need a good place, with good electricity, access to education, secure environment and some common sense.

You do not need to pay 2,000 US per month.

$40,000 a year is VERY doable.
 

Afgan

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Mar 29, 2009
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without being inside a gated community with all this expense and security.

It is very possible to live a quiet humble reserved lifestyle here and never have any issues. You do not need to pay 2,000 US per month.


If life, safety and security of the loved ones is not a big deal - you are maybe right. Those who gamble on security trying to save and live cheap without protection - may be OK for some time.

But in my opinion trading safety of life and wellbeing of the family for an opportunity to go to beach once in a while - is not mature and adviseable.

This country now, especially North Coast is not a place to take risk living without an all-time armed professional protection. Especially having young kids and a woman.
Price of such an "unwinding" can easily be too high.
 

hammerdown

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Apr 29, 2005
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Afgan, where do you live, and how much real life experience do you have on the North Coast?
 

heliace

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Mar 27, 2004
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$2000 per month/upward...are you crazy?Or, just a property owner trying to rip off a newbie?
Please be careful of people trying to take advantage of you. Do not compare prices to back home. New people often make the mistake thinking "oh, thats about the same price as back home, sounds good" WRONG!!!Other than technical items,ie: televisions, vehicles etc., things are cheaper here.
You can easily spend 2000/ month if you want a luxury villa and get ripped off,but, a nice house can be had for much less with a little investigating.
 

mountainannie

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Dec 11, 2003
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elizabetheames.blogspot.com
I agree that it is the housing and the school which will make the difference..

You are not going to be living RICH -- but just comfortably...

but the trick is finding the schools

and where you want to be...

if i were you

i would go to Las Terrenas with the little ones as there are some good small schools which are not too pricey and lots of foreigners with little kids

you can check out bea locations to see if they have any year long rentals --- which should come in around $1-2k, I would think

you cannot find much there for less than US $500 a month

others can perhaps speak to other locations

just that is where i went for my

year of the unwinding
 
Mar 1, 2009
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40,000USD is mucho dinero, 1,480,000RDS, I asked my friend at the bank if that was a lot and he nodded yes.
Afgan is partially correct, but that is if the OP wants to go all out. A nice,clean and safe place in DR from what I am hearing is La Vega.
If you want your money to go far. Live like a Dominican, and when I say that, I don't mean to live in a barrio (I heard the snickers already). I don't know who you are but eating a good, healthy Dominican diet, platano, aguacate, yuca, huevos, carne de pollo, name, yautia, papa, pan de agua, chocolate caliente, mucho jugo y mucha agua. These are super cheap and will decrease costs exponentially. The school situation? I don't know, I don't have any kids myself, but my cousin has three kids and they are all starting to go to college now and he seems like he's doing ok. My other cousins kids are also in private school and it's expensive for him but it doesn't seem to be breaking them either.
40,000 is good if you go partially native, so like AZB says take it easy....
Don't fritter your money away on too much eating out and you should see lotsa money saved in the bank. Then you can enjoy going to the natural parks which are not that expensive and many cases free.
 

sweetdbt

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Sep 17, 2004
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It seems we have some mathematically impaired people on this thread. $40,000/year works out to $3,333/mth (over 123,000RD. Last time I checked, that's quite a bit more than $2000, and it's more than enough to live well with your family.
 
Jan 5, 2006
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You can definitely do it. However, you can make your money go a lot further by living away from a tourist area like Cabarete. You will have much better and reasonably priced options for housing, schooling, shopping, medical care, and enterntainment, and still be within a 45 minute drive to the beach.
 

Amu

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Oct 4, 2010
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It's quite funny to me how can some people think that with that kind of money(1,480,000 per year) u cannot afford to have a pretty good lifestyle, when my dad makes probably just little bit more than that and his two kids (me and my sister) both go to la PUCMM and this semester(wich is not a semester, just 3 months) cost him about 93,000 pesos.....have never eaten in my house on weekends(and not in cheap restaurants), he also pays for my bb's bills and my sister's, my swimming classes, my sister's english and painting classes, im going to start french classes, etc etc....all kinds of trips (erase europe, hahaha), i go out almost every weekend with my friends to the clubs, movies, restaurants with his money...and im not including ur regular stuff, like rent(wich is not cheap), electricity-water-cable-internet-phone-car insurance-life insurance bills, etc etc etc.

It looks like im triying to brag about my life, not at all, im triying to make a point, and the point is that you'll be just fine with that amount of money.....trust me.......obviously, there's something you need to take into consideration, you'll be living in Cabarete and i live in Santiago wich is certainly going to make things a bit more expensive because it's a tourist area...
 

Afgan

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Mar 29, 2009
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$2000 per month/upward...are you crazy?Or, just a property owner trying to rip off a newbie?
Please be careful of people trying to take advantage of you. Do not compare prices to back home. New people often make the mistake thinking "oh, thats about the same price as back home, sounds good" WRONG!!!Other than technical items,ie: televisions, vehicles etc., things are cheaper here.
You can easily spend 2000/ month if you want a luxury villa and get ripped off,but, a nice house can be had for much less with a little investigating.

In the Sosua-Cabarete area the cheapest development with more or less acceptable security that has houses is Perla Marina. And houses there rent for $2000 and up.

For $800/month one can rent a casa only in places like La Mulata.

$40 000 /year = $3300/month

$3300-$2000= $1300

$1300 : 5 people = $260/month

And these $260/month must pay for a private school (here it is $600-$700 per month per each student), healthcare, food, transportation, electricity, TV, Internet, gasolin, auto insurance, hair cut, tooth paste, soap, toilet paper... Well, well... Good luck!

He asks about Cabarete. So I am answering about this area where I live first hand...

Houses cheaper than $1500-$1700 can be rented only without any security. To be on one`s own luck. Waiting for a surprise each and every night.

Me personally, I`d never gamble like this. For a cheap rent there is always a good ( or not so good) reason.
 

sweetdbt

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Sep 17, 2004
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I think by now anyone who has spent much time on these forums knows to disregard financial advice from the poster formerly known as KA47 and Batich. (his current incarnation being Afgan.)
 
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Afgan

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Mar 29, 2009
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40,000USD is mucho dinero, 1,480,000RDS, I asked my friend at the bank if that was a lot and he nodded yes.
Afgan is partially correct, but that is if the OP wants to go all out. A nice,clean and safe place in DR from what I am hearing is La Vega.
If you want your money to go far. Live like a Dominican, and when I say that, I don't mean to live in a barrio (I heard the snickers already). I don't know who you are but eating a good, healthy Dominican diet, platano, aguacate, yuca, huevos, carne de pollo, name, yautia, papa, pan de agua, chocolate caliente, mucho jugo y mucha agua. These are super cheap and will decrease costs exponentially. The school situation? I don't know, I don't have any kids myself, but my cousin has three kids and they are all starting to go to college now and he seems like he's doing ok. My other cousins kids are also in private school and it's expensive for him but it doesn't seem to be breaking them either.
40,000 is good if you go partially native, so like AZB says take it easy....
Don't fritter your money away on too much eating out and you should see lotsa money saved in the bank. Then you can enjoy going to the natural parks which are not that expensive and many cases free.


You are right. But he wants to be on the beach. To swim in the ocean every day. Not to watch day after day vegatables growing in the boring countryside and play domino with Dominicans whose language he does not speak. Not to drive 100 miles to a nearest clean and safe beach.

For older retired persons this country option can be acceptable. For a young family in late 30`s - early 40`s - seems out of the question.