Nothing new in this other than Panama is getting great press and that will help sop up some empty apartments in the city.
By Laura Cohn
When Sid and Barb Williams began searching for the perfect place to retire, they never thought they'd wind up living outside the United States. But they kept hearing about the benefits of retiring to Panama.
The Central American country not only offers a warmer clime than their hometown of Cincinnati but also provides a lower cost of living, generous financial incentives for retirees, and a reliable and affordable health-care system. Plus, Panama uses the U.S. dollar, so there's no need to hassle with foreign currency.
After visiting, the Williamses were so entranced by the area's beauty and value that they decided to go for it. In 2008, just as the stock market began to head south, they did, too. For less than $250,000, the Williamses bought a three-bedroom, three-bathroom (plus maid's quarters) condo in a new nine-story building overlooking the Pacific Ocean.
Today, they are happy about their decision and their timing. "We could have retired comfortably in the U.S.," says Sid, 66. "But we live three to four times better down here."