Retire to Kuching in Borneo Malaysia
Cat lovers will be charmed by the city of Kuching, whose name means "cat." There is a cat museum and cat statues located throughout the community. Architecture is varied, ranging from English Colonial to Chinese and ultra-modern. The official language is English.
According to a Yahoo! Finance article entitled "The Most Interesting Retirement Spot You've Never Heard Of," a couple can live in Kuching for about $800 a month plus the cost of housing. There are generous incentives for permanent residency for anyone with an income of at least $3,200 a month, which makes it possible for American ex-patriots to set up residency there and live very comfortably on their Social Security benefits or other income sources. These incentives include a program called My Second Home (or MM2H) which makes it easier and more affordable to buy a home there, and allows immigrants to import a car, work part-time, and even start a business. If you are not quite ready for Social Security, you'll be pleased to know there are no age restrictions on this Malaysian program for foreigners who want to live there long-term. The program also protects your foreign income from Malaysian taxes.
One of the biggest fears that many American retirees have about retiring to another country is the quality of medical care. In the case of Borneo, there is little reason to be concerned. Kuching is a popular destination for medical tourism because the hospitals and other medical facilities are modern and well-equipped, as well as very affordable. The doctors and medical staff speak fluent English. Malaysia does not have a medical school, so their physicians have been educated in Europe, the United States, Canada, New Zealand or Australia.
Safety in foreign countries is also a frequent concern for retirees. However, Malayia is considered the 19th safest country in the world. Compare that to the United States, which is ranked 82nd. Violent crime is quite rare. You can comfortably enjoy living there, it is affordable, and you do not have to be rich or learn another language.
If you are interested, you may want to visit the country and explore your options for yourself. At the very least, you will have a wonderful, exotic vacation.
If you are looking for other possible places to retire, use the tabs or pull down menu at the top of this article to find links to hundreds of other articles, including on where to retire overseas.
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Photo of Malaysian temple courtesy of www.morguefile.com