Posted 2.4.14 @ 7:26 by: Staff

We’ve all had that dream of heading down south for the winter - even if you’re not buying a home, many of us end up renting a condo in the “off” season and saving big. But how much do you need, and is renting a better way to go than buying? How far do those dollars stretch?

The Loonie is Mighty in Mexico

You can get a one bedroom apartment right on the shore in Mexico for around $900 a month, with a 3 month lease. The longer your lease, the less you’ll pay. Airfare will cost you $1000 for two people, and transport for those 3 months will usually run you about $500. Cleaning, shopping services, and drivers are another $200.

You’ll need travel medical insurance for those three months (never leave this to chance!), which is $1,000 for 2 people. While you’re there you may as well learn Spanish, enjoy yourself at a movie and maybe even join a fitness club - another $500. Gifts and shopping for those back home that are stuck in the snow and muck will cost $300.

That makes Mexico one of the most affordable options for every budget, coming to $4,400 for a 3 month stay.

Living Cheap in the States

You’ll need about $5,000 to live cheaply in the US - but we’re talking about Titusville or some other small town by the sea. Don’t expect a lot of excitement, but if you don’t mind driving for a few hours and staying in hotels overnight, you’ll be able to hit some of the hottest cities along the coast of the Sunshine State.

Then again, we’re talking about driving down for 20+ hours, a one bedroom apartment or studio with a tiny kitchen. You’ll have to drive your own car, traveling medical insurance ($1,000 in the US if you have no pre-existing conditions, much more if you do) and it may not be as much fun. Some make it work, but living the high life in the states is a much better option if you can afford it.

The Best of the Best

If you want to live the high life in the US, you’re going to have to buy a home all your own. We’re not going to factor in the purchase cost here, as it can range wildly depending on where and what you buy.

But if you buy a home in a retirement community, condo or co-op expect to pay around $10k a year in fees, property taxes and maintenance. You’ll also want to have flood, hurricane and home insurance, which will be another $1500. Airfare down and back for two should be $1,000 roundtrip, plus $2,000 each year for maintenance/taxes/upkeep of your cars while you’re down there. Travel medical insurance, fitness memberships and a cross border tax advisor will run you another $4,500. Gifts and trips around will be an additional $2,000 - bringing the total to $21,000 for three months (or six months, if you stay the max and own your own home down there anyway).

Of course, for those of you who enjoy all that the Canadian winters have to offer - why not buy a home in Oakville instead? Give us a call today and see what one of our luxury homes can offer you.

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