Expat on the Philippines

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How to live on the Philippines
Expat on the Philippines
About Philippines

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Expat on the Philippines

  1. 1. ==== ====Check this out for all you need to live at the Philippineshttp://snurl.com/21ocjs0==== ====Cost of living in Cebu Philippines and Camotes Islands Cebu, Philippines. Many expats living inthe Philippines are sharpening their pencils and watching their spending habits much more closelyas the dollar continues to drop against the peso. Currently the exchange rate is approximately$1.00 to P40.00. Thats a BIG difference from just three years ago when the dollar fetched P56.00.To make matters even worse the dollar is expected to drop to P38.00 and some circles are sayingit may go as low as P30.00 within the year. The expats currently living in the Philippines arefeeling the lower exchange rate from their monthly retirement pensions and tightening their belts.Expats that have been considering retiring to the Philippines may well be looking else where for aretirement location. To make a bad situation worse the Cebu Hotels are talking about a 10%increase for their rooms. Surely other services will follow the increase and soon the dollar mayshrink to an even further all time low in the Philippines.In 2004 a dollar bought P56.00, so when I exchanges $1,000.00 at a Philippine bank or MoneyChanger I got P56,000.00. Today $1,000.00 buys just P40,000.00 a P16,000.00 decrease of$286.00 or 29% less. Now add a conservative estimated Philippine inflation rate to the 29%decrease and you are looking at a total loss of about 40% in just three years. WOW! Thats a bighit and a really big hit for a retired guy with a pension of just $1,000.00 There goes the Filipinomyth that all foreigners are rich. Instead of living like a king in the Philippines with a pension of$1,000.00 foreigners may find themselves to be a lowly prince and maybe even a pauper with amere pension of $1,000.00.Now the questions for those expats living in the Philippines and for those considering the move tothe Phillippines is simple, is it worth it? Should I find a cheaper country to retire and spend mypension? Before an expat answers the question we need to consider the big picture and thatmeans what does it cost to live in the Philippines today?Many things we buy in the Philippines are cheaper than in the US, Canada, Europe and Australia.However, many things also cost the same and sometimes more. Building a house in Cebu is still ahuge bargain. Buying a condo is also a bargain. A new house in Cebu can be had for $40,000.00and a nice Condo for about $60,000.00. My little one bedroom house in the VERY rural CamotesIslands cost just about $8,000.00 to build and furnish and that includes the land. At the currentexchange rate and inflation the same house, land and furniture would cost about $11,320.00 Yes,That is a big jump, but still very cheap by western standards. My Monthly Budget changes all thetime, but here is what I have been spending for just the basics:$200.00 Food$50.00 Electric
  2. 2. $20.00 Internet connection$20.00 Satellite TV$15.00 Cell Phone$5.00 LPG gas for cooking$60.00House maintenance$20,00 Motorcycle maintenance and gas$100.00 Monthly Cebu City trip Entertainment, Movies, restaurants$490.00 TOTAL MONTHLY COSTThe following estimated budget is for two people living in Cebu City.$200.00 House rent In Cebu City.This would be a nice house. It doesnt cost much for rent.$150.00 Food$50.00 Electric$20.00 Internet connection$20.00 Cable TV$25.00 Phone$5.00 LPG gas for cooking$30.00 Maid Live-In $40.00 maximum$50.00 Transportation, Taxi, Jeepney$200.00 Entertainment, Movies, restaurants, golf and beaches$750.00 TOTAL MONTHLY COSTPlease note the Cebu City budget does not include a car allowance. It is much cheaper and easierto use Jeepneys and Taxi Cabs.Both of these budgets still get you in under $1,000.00 a month. By far my rural budget is thecheapest. However, The keyword is RURAL! Not everyone wants to live in the Rural Islands. I loveit in Camotes Islands, but there aint much in Camotes for those that like the night life, shopping
  3. 3. and restaurants. The Cebu City budget may well be a bit conservative. However, it is a goodstarting point. You may need to adjust for your lifestyle.REMEMBER!! I did not include visa cost and medical insurance. On average a Tourist visa willcost about $1.00 per day and medical insurance can be outrageous depending on the carrier.You also need to have enough money for emergencies: trips home, Accidents, theft, and medicalemergencies. I recommend you have at least $5,000.00 at any given time to draw from and$10,000.00 is even better. If you dont have an extra $5,000.00 for emergencies dont go. Theworst thing that can happen to an expat is to be in an emergency situation in a foreign country withno money and no way home.At the end of the day it appears the Philippines is still a good retirement option. Not as good as itonce was, but still a strong option for a place to retire on a modest pension. However, I suspectmany expats will want to save their money and consider the rural areas of the Philippines to retire.The rural areas can be very enjoyable for those in good health. However, if you need regularmedical care you may find the rural areas lacking in medical facilities. Also, if you want all the frillsof a city then the rural areas will be a true disappointment. I think the Philippines may well see adecrease in western Foreigners retiring to the country. Another significant issue is the thousandsof OFWs Oversea Filipino workers. OFWs are all over the world and they contribute a LARGEportion of the Philippine economy. The OFWs send money home to their families every month.With the decreased dollar to peso rate I suspect the OFWs will need to tighten their belts just asmuch as the expats.To answer the two questions. Is it worth considering the Philippines as a retirement option orshould one consider another country? My answer is both Yes and No. If you have a pension of$1,000.00 yes, but with caution. If your pension is less than $1,000.00 you need to REALLY thinkit through and maybe consider another country. Still, the Philippines is a pretty good option and acheap place to live if you can stick to a realistic budget and have at least $5,000.00 foremergencies.Patrick McGrain is the owner of [http://www.philippine-islands-living.com] Patrick has lived in inCamotes Islands, Cebu, Philippines for four years with his Filipina wife Judith.Article Source:http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Patrick_Mcgrain==== ====
  4. 4. Check this out for all you need to live at the Philippineshttp://snurl.com/21ocjs0==== ====

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