Five Reasons to Retire in Belize

By: Boris Mannsfeld

What's not to love about Belize? Belize has become a shining star in the international media. Magazines and newspapers are raving with publications on Belize and how truly wonderful this small tropical paradise is.

We decided to boil it down to five reasons to retire to Belize. So here you go:

1. The Most Obvious ... the Place is Beautiful

Belize is a gleaming gem of the Caribbean which until recently has been give little attention. Its sun baked white sand beaches would make great scenery for any Pirates of the Caribbean movie.

How big is Belize? Its size is approximately 8,866 square miles; the mainland is approximately 180 miles long and up to 68 miles wide. Belize also consists of more than 200 cays (islands), ranging in size from a few hundred feet to 25 miles long and four miles wide. Most of the cays are located inside the 200-mile Belize Reef.

Belize has hundreds of miles of undeveloped beaches which are perfect for fishing, diving, scuba diving, yachting and more. Belize also has ruins of the ancient Mayan civilizations with excellent tour services. There are also tropical mountain ranges which offer spectacular hiking and birding activities.

2. Living Belize is Relatively Inexpensive

Belize's government recently has enacted a retiree incentive program that permits U.S., Canadian and United Kingdom citizens to establish official residency in Belize and to live there free of most Belize taxes. Under the new program, retirees can't work in Belize, but income from outside Belize isn't taxed, and retirees can bring in household goods -- cars, boats and even an airplane -- without paying import duties.

The overall cost of living is generally lower than the United States. The average Belizean makes less than 6000 USD a year.

3. Belize is a Safe to Live

Belize is a parliamentary democracy and a member of the British Commonwealth. The country has a tradition of democracy and free elections. Belize has a constitution, which includes a bill of rights. Although no place in the world is completely safe the crime in Belize is relatively low in comparison to other Central American countries.

4. Belize is a Good Long-Term Investment

The country of Belize has no capital gains taxes and has a well-established offshore banking system similar to Cayman Islands and Switzerland. Full property insurance is available and underwritten by Lords of London.

5. Belize is Easy to Get To

Belize lies on the eastern coastline of Central America, bordered on the north by Mexico, on the west and south by Guatemala, and on the east by the Caribbean Sea. It is separated by sea from its neighbor to the southwest, Honduras.

The Belize International Airport is offering direct flights from major U.S. cities. Direct flights are available from many major cities in the United States and more are being added. Belize international airport is currently expanding the runways to accommodate direct flights from Europe. Right now major airlines including American, Continental and Taca (El Salvador) offer direct flights from major U.S. cities, including Dallas, Ft. Worth and Houston.

So you see, Belize is beautiful, safe, inexpensive and easy to get to. For those interested in a place to retire or have a second him, it is ideal. You'll fall in love with this country, as I have in my many travels there. There isn't a better time than to invest in real estate in Belize.

Retirement
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