Rent homes abroad: Melbourne, Australia
Thanks to warm beaches and one of the highest living standards in the world, Australia has long been attractive to British retirees, but its distance has kept Americans away. This is changing, as a strong economy and robust social services are encouraging more Americans to look Down Under for an alternative to the Sun Belt. "Private health insurance is cheap, and medical services are much cheaper than in the U.S.," says Colin Gallagher, an American transplant currently living in Melbourne.
The city's cosmopolitan cafes, miles of award-winning vineyards and great beaches make it a serious contender for the expat retiree looking to rent abroad.
"The weather is insanely good -- imagine something similar to Southern California," says Gallagher. "Shortly out of the city you've got Mornington Pensinula, a nice area with a lot of vineyards, golf courses, beaches and leisure activities like Sunday markets. It's a short drive to the cafes and hip art scene within Melbourne itself.
The bounty of first-world chic in Melbourne's environs comes at a cost, however, with two-bedroom apartments renting at about $1,800 per month. "Prices go down when you leave the city, with houses below $1,000 in parts of Mornington Peninsula," says Gallagher.