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Vol VIII Issue 192
Retired U.S. Expatriate Has Found a
New Home in Safe, Welcoming Mexican City of Tequisquiapan
Cost of Living: Well Below the National Average
~ Article by Peter Shuster, a U.S. expatriate retiree and resident of
Tequisquiapan, Queretaro, Mexico. All prices
included below are in U.S. dollars.
Tequisquiapan is located in the Mexican state of
Queretaro. Tequis, as its called by the locals, dates back to the 16th century, making it quite a colonial town. The municipality population is almost 60,000.
Tequis is only a 12 hour drive from the American border and is a very clean/beautiful Mexican town; the streets are swept daily and trash also is picked up daily. There are many beautiful hotels in town, starting at around $40
per night. Many hotels have hot thermal waters. There is an American that has an apartment building that rents apartments from
$200 to $400 per month.
The mild year long climate and cleanliness of the town allow you to walk the streets in pleasure year round. There are Bougainvilleas all over town, and they drape the walls of homes. The plaza is surrounded by lovely shops and side walk cafes, and there are many gated communities in town and around the area. One has an 18-hole hole golf course.
Home prices generally range from $80,000 to $150,000, depending on new or used and naturally depending on
location. We just built a new 2,500 sq. ft.
home and a 600 sq. ft. guest house(see pictures below). The cost was $40 per square foot. Try to
find that in the States these days.
There are Americans/German/Austrians and Canadians that live here, and there is a Wal-Mart, Costco, Sam's Club, Home Depot, Office Max, etc., all close to
Tequis. There are also 3 shows in town, as well as many fine restaurants and shops all
over. There is also a shopping mall.
This is an interactive map.
Click on the arrows in the upper left hand
corner to move the map to the East, West, North or South, and
click on the +/- signs (more than once if necessary) to zoom
in and out.
The above and the cost of living are the reasons Tequis is our town. An example of cost of living in
#1 Health insurance, or IMSS as it's called in Mexico, costs $300 a
year. That breaks down to $25
per month. The insurance covers 100% doctor visits, drugs and any hospital stays. There are no co-pays.
#2 The average electricity bill here is $20.00 per month
#3 Water is $8.00 per month
#4 Home taxes average $80.00 per year
#5 Fresh vegetables and fruit at the Tuesday market are under $40.00 per
#6 Our maid works for us 2 days a week and costs $30.00 per week.
#7 There are so many wonderful financial advantages to living in this still-undiscovered Paradise. A couple can live quite well for under
$1,200 per month.
Our New Home. Cost: $40 per Sq. Ft.
Our New Guest House
About the Author, Peter
I was born in New Orleans, Louisiana and worked
in law enforcement for 16 years. Then worked in the
technical college system, teaching for 21 years.
on a boat in Slidell, Louisiana, I was talking to another boater
that asked me, "When will you retire?"
My answer was that in 4 more years, I'd retire with 62% salary.
he asked me "What's four years of your life worth?''
I replied, "Well, if I retired now, I would have to live on 42%, not
62%." So then thinking about those 4 years working, I
did quite a bit of Internet research. I retired and sold
the boat that I was planning to travel on around the
world and took off to the best country I could find: Mexico.
Why? Mexico is driving distance from the States. No
air or ship needed to arrive here. Just my car. I receive my
retirement check direct deposit, in the United States bank,
and use the ATM in Mexico to withdraw my money as needed.
I found home prices in Mexico very reasonable in many areas.
The Mexican Government lets us buy homes with titles in
Mexico, 100% legal. There is only one exception, no title
on land 30 miles from coastal waters. No title 50 miles from
borders. That's so Mexico can protect its country, but there
is a way around that law. You can get a bank trust and the
property is in a Mexican bank's name. You pay an annual fee
to the bank. Well, that I don't like. Plus coastal property
is expensive and very hot.
Climate is very important to us.
Here in Tequis it's a wonderful temperature with low humidity
great for us and friends that visit us. We have family and
friends that come to stay with us quite often to enjoy our
My adopted dad "Papa Gene" spends 2 to 3 months a year
with us to avoid the American winter freezing weather.
Regarding health care, which is very important to us as we get
Mexico has socialized medicine. Even foreigners with an FM-3 can
get into it, and as I said earlier, the cost is about $300 a year. That covers
doctors, drugs and hospitals stays. We were lucky to have had it
a few years ago. My wife had two heart attacks and used the IMSS. The
care was wonderful and the doctors were more than great. They
really care about you! They don't just give you 3 minutes;
you all the time one would want. It was one of the best
experiences one could have had under the circumstances.
home in Mexico is as safe as buying one in the states in my 13 years of experience living in Mexico. The government doesn't take
houses away any more than in the States.
In the U.S. they will
take your home for shopping malls, overpasses, etc. (eminent
domain). They pay fair
value to you. Same in Mexico; they have to also pay you.
don't take homes for malls or commercial reasons as I have seen
happen in the States!
The people of Mexico are
you than anywhere I have been. Experience after experience with
their kindness and respectful ways are more than one could ask
for. Mexico is nothing like what people in the U.S. think.
The movies or peoples' border experiences are not the real Mexico.
The real Mexico
is the real people that live in Mexico. They share everything they
have with you and have no vested interest in doing it.
When I told
my teacher friends that I was retiring and moving to Mexico without
speaking Spanish they tried to talk me out of that move. My reply
to that was, "The highway runs both ways," and if I didn't
like it I could return. Well, it's been 13 years and I'm still
here. Many friends from the States invite us to come and stay with
them for a visit. Our answer is always NO but thanks a lot. We are
afraid we'll miss something in Mexico. There's always something to
do or see here. Plus we feel so safe with the people that we
know. We watch satellite TV and see the crazy killing
in the States day after day. If I returned I would have to pack a
gun again to feel safe there.
Americans we love, but the things
that happen no longer make me think it is the same country I was
raised in. Mexico and the people remind us so much of how it was
50 years ago in the States. People talking to people on the
streets, children playing outside even after dark. Women walking
to the plaza to hear music and returning home without worries of
being molested. We have hosted many people from the States that
wanted to see Mexico, the real Mexico. Many have moved here and
many want to move here when they retire. Seeing is believing. I
if people in the States would experience the real Mexico and the
real Mexican people.
I hope that this puts a true light on Mexico.
The chance to retire and live a better life is just miles away.
This is a fact that is hard to believe. We live better on 42%
retirement than on a full salary in the States. Who ever heard of a
teacher having a maid? God loves Mexico and the wonderful Mexican
friends we have made.
P.S. If any readers have any questions, please feel free to email me. We are
always willing to help people. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org
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