The following post is from Melissa Batai
There’s no doubt that in some areas of the United States, your salary likely won’t come close to offsetting how much the cost of living is. Many people decide to move to other parts of the country with a lower cost of living, but some people take it a step further and move out of the country to save money.
Moving out of the country definitely isn’t for everyone, especially if you want easy access to family and friends. However, for some people, it’s the perfect way to stretch their dollars and live a comfortable life on much less than they could if they stayed in the States.
If you’re considering leaving the country, you’ll want to consider the pros and cons:
Benefits of Living in Another Country
Money Stretches Further
I know one mom who is a widow and struggling to survive financially. She works online so she doesn’t have to put her kids in day care, and she plans to move abroad within the next year. If she is able to keep her online job paying her in U.S. dollars while she lives abroad, she’ll immediately increase her standard of living. Of course, she has to pick a country with a lower cost of living and one that is safe for her and her children.
Many people report finding nice three-bedroom apartments for $600 USD or less living abroad, while in the States they would have to pay $1,200 or more for the same size place, depending on location.
Experience a New Culture
Living in a new country can give you appreciation for the American culture, but you’re likely to find many things you love about your new culture, too. Plus, you’ll become fluent in another language, if you aren’t already.
More Opportunities to Travel
Since you’re saving money in your new country, you’ll have more money and opportunity to travel. One woman I knew moved to Poland and stayed there several years. While she was there, she traveled extensively throughout Europe. She would not have been able to do that had she stayed in the U.S.
Drawbacks of Living In Another Country
Transportation to the States
Depending on which country you choose, getting back to the States in case of an emergency may be difficult. Traveling back to the States can be more expensive and complicated than traveling within the States.
Even if you live abroad, you still need to fill out taxes for the United States. Doing this can be costly and complicated. You’ll need to find an accountant who is well-versed in these types of tax filings so you don’t end up owing taxes later.
You May Lose Your Sense of “Home”
I had a friend who lived for years in China. When she was in China, she enjoyed her time, but there were always things about the United States that she missed. When she returned to the United States, she found that there were things about China that she missed. After she had been in China for so many years, she found that she never truly felt at home in China or the United States.
If you’re up for an adventure and you take the time to carefully research your options, you may find that living abroad is the perfect way to improve your standard of living and stretch your money.
My Question for You
Would you consider moving abroad to save money? Have you ever lived abroad before? If you were to live abroad, which country would you choose?