Asia is Ready for Retirement

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With the release of Julia Robert’s 2010 movie “Eat, Pray, Love,” some individuals were prompted to take a similar trip to India and Indonesia. In the article, “Southeast Asia Woos the World,” counties from Indonesia to Vietnam are aiming for a niche real estate market. In turn, retirement villages are popping up in the Phillippines, apartments are stacking up in Thailand and bungalows are ready for move-in in Malaysia. And all are suitable for older adults.

According to Gorvett, Thailand was the first country in Southeast Asia to start courting retirees, a natural progression for its long-established tourism industry. Junaida Lee, the deputy sectary general of the Malaysian Tourism Ministry, said they are targeting the baby boomers from the West and have established retirement programs like Malaysia My Second Home to ease foreigners into their culture. Some complexes around the area include restaurants, beaches, a gym and sauna, security staff and nurses, since “medical facilities are among the key factors in attracting retirees.” From our own clients who travel, Home Care Assistance Columbus hears what an important factor this is.

James Pitchon of CBRE Thailand said, “It must be easy to find and buy a house and must be near good medical services, a good banking system so residents can get their pensions transferred, and there must be an availability of imported food from home.”

The Malaysian model program Silver Hair has attracted more than 12,000 participants since it started in 2002. Though there are minimum income levels, participants can easily obtain a 10-year resident’s visa, work up to 20 hours a week, and have the ability to buy property. One participant estimates the cost of living there is about a third of what it is in the United States or Japan.

Where will retirement take you?


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