retirement

Cheap rental homes overseas for retirees

Rent homes abroad: Phuket, Thailand
Rent homes abroad: Phuket, Thailand © think4photop/Shutterstock.com

For years, Phuket has become the standard for tropical paradises. With a lush green jungle a short trip away and a pristine white beach nearby, the city has seen big demand from westerners in search of an exotic vacation. Retirees looking to recapture that vacation bliss will find that Phuket's rental market offers more long-term options.

To stay in Thailand, you'll need a retirement visa, called "O-A permits" by the government, says Rachel Pachica, a consultant at Siam Legal International, a legal service network. These are available to retirees older than 50. To qualify, you need to provide documentation of a monthly pension income of 65,000 Thai baht or more (about $2,100 USD), or you need to keep 800,000 Thai baht (about $25,800) in a Thai bank account for at least two months before applying for the retirement visa.

After securing a visa, retirees can find high-quality apartments throughout Phuket for as low as $350 per month. While there are many real estate agents who can help retirees, they usually charge one month's rent as a fee, and deposits usually are equivalent to another two or sometimes three months' rent. The cost of electricity, cable and Internet is cheaper than in the United States.

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