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Written By: Gary on August 29, 2008 No Comment

One of the things I’m doing this trip is attending a seminar by the Association of Residents of Costa Rica (ARCR). They offer this the last Thursday/Friday of every month (but December) for only $65. I’ve had this on my to do list for a while but it just hasn’t worked out previously, it is specifically why I chose now for this trip and not a few weeks later.

It’s pretty much what I hoped for so far a bunch of short little presentations (about nine a day). Of course everyone who does a presentation passes out their contact info, but it really is more of a presentation on the topic, not specifically selling their business (although they’re hoping). The one topic I hoped for, but didn’t really expect, was about working in Costa Rica. We have about 25 people in our group, mostly from US and Canada; mostly retirees or soon to be about five of us weren’t near the retirement range but want to relocate.

FYI: Really good snacks for break: OJ, coffee, some kind of pastry and little crustless sandwiches.

I talked to one of the people, Ray, a few times beforehand via e-mail and telephone before coming and he was very helpful.

I’d definitely recommend this seminar if you are thinking of relocating or retiring to Costa Rica.

I also used these folks for getting my driver’s license.

Written By: Gary on January 17, 2008 One Comment

So I went to the Social Security Office with my Mom today. There are just so many (too many) scenerios with all of it! It’s interesting how they talk about it, they think of everything as the number of checks you get, not so much as the money you get (months, not dollars). If you work more after you retire, they hold back checks, not dollars. It’s odd, but I guess every job has it’s own language.

My Mother did make a decision today. As a bonus, it’s the same one I would have told her to do if she had asked me to make the decision so that worked out well. Without getting into too much of my mother’s details:

  • The decision we made today probably had equal dollar amount pros and cons between the two choices we liked best.
  • I think money-wise our choice will work out to be a little better or about the same dollar amount as the other.
  • If we made the wrong decision, I still think it was the one with the least amount of risk.
  • If it turns out to be less it’s probably just a little bit (and if we were way way wrong in the worst way, it’s still not a catastrophic dollar mistake).
  • One of the other reasons I liked this choice was that this decision pretty much causes no other decisions to have to be made in the future. A few steps need to be taken in the future (at times to be determined), but pretty much we’re committed to the steps in order now.
  • She’ll lose sleep tonight thinking if she made the right decision; I’m the opposite, it won’t keep me up since the decision is made (less choices = less stress).

    It’s an interesting thing to keep in mind that you can start collecting SS but keep working. I think once you start to collect SS, if you makes more than $13k a year they start to give you less money. For every $2 you makes over that amount, they give you a dollar less. So pretty much once you hit that dollar amount, your salary is cut in half (sort of taxed at 50%). I’d try harder talk he into working working to earn that much per year since you don’t get as much value but then she’d lose her health benefits and that’s got some value these days.

    None of the above is to be considered retirement advice; I do not work in the financial sector nor do I portray someone who does. :)

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