Retire Early in Lake Chapala
Updated: Jan 24, 2020
Are you tired of the rat race? Are you fed up with your boss? Paying high taxes? Working for the man?
Have you considered retiring to Ajijic and putting your feet up? It's possible. I have done it, my partner has done it, and more and more people everyday are retiring early in Lake Chapala.
Both myself and my partner came down to Ajijic at the age of 48. Both of us left our jobs in Canada and began living our best life ever in Ajijic.
I'll first tell you my story of how I came to living and working in Lake Chapala and then I'll let my partner recount his.
I lived in London, Ontario and ran a Pilates studio. I hated the long, cold winters turning into hot, humid, mosquito infested summers. There was so little time that I could spend outdoors that I felt suffocated. I ran to tropical destinations during the winter months every chance I could get but cried when boarding the plane back to the ice and snow of southern Ontario. Then one day I heard from a friend about this fabulous place in Mexico that had the second best climate in the world and after doing research on the internet, discovered a Focus on Mexico tour group featuring introductions to Ajijic and the Lake Chapala area. I signed up immediately for the next trip and knew from the the first day I arrived that this was the place for me. After my return to Canada, I put my home on the market and it sold within one day. I moved to Ajijic with a van load of belongings and began by working online teaching Pilates to former clients in Canada and then once I obtained a work permit, I started teaching Pilates again at a local yoga studio. Talk about a great way to make money!
Soon after I discovered the world of real estate and took the program to obtain my Realtors License. I love helping others in making the move and seeing how happy they are in their new lives!
When I first started to contemplate moving to Lake Chapala, I posted on a local discussion group web board, “Is there anyone under 50 living in Ajijic? I received an amazing amount of replies (upwards of 30) saying they were in their 40's and even 30's and living happily in Ajijic. This gave me the motivation to come down and try it out for 5 months. I was looking for an inexpensive lifestyle with lots of activities and I found that Lake Chapala. The fact that it was sunny every day of the year made me even happier since I had lived in Vancouver all my life and knew little more than rain and cloudy skies. I lived the bum's life for the first year but realized the need for something more and after obtaining a work permit, began a personal training business. Now I am fully booked and totally active in helping the aging population of Ajijic live healthier and better lives.
More and more younger people are making the move every year. With the transition to working remotely by computer, Skype and other electronic innovations of our time, the possibilities of living in Mexico and still getting an income are becoming easier and easier.
How many young people are there? Well, that's a great question. Looking at Facebook, I found two Facebook Pages dedicated to young people, "Young Folks in Chapala" with 171 members and "Lake Chapala Gen-Xpats" with 292 members. So, wow, looks like lots of younger people have already made the move and I see more and more on the streets every day.
As a long established expat community, I am also now seeing many daughters and sons coming down and visiting for summer and Christmas vacations and loving the area just as much as mom and dad.
You, too, can make the move to Ajijic. The cost of living is roughly a 1/3 to a half of the cost of living north of the border depending on whether or not you rent (and for how much) or buy. Read my blog on cost of living get an idea of how much it costs to live in Lake Chapala.
What's stopping you from making the move? Take a leap and 'start living your best life ever'