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  • Writer's picture Michaela & Ricardo

Is The Reality Of Lake Chapala Just Like In YouTube Videos?



I recently had Retirement Seminar clients who came down for my week long Seminar. They ended up returning to the U.S after spending only one day at Lakeside! As it turns out, this is not rare. I have always said that Lake Chapala is not for everyone. In fact, looking back through all my Seminars, approximately 25% of of the participants did not return, or stayed for only a short while before returning to the U.S for good.


This brings up the point about peoples perception and the perception that you get from watching YouTube Videos. It's simply not the same as coming down in person and having a look for yourself.


So how can you prevent having the wrong perception of Lake Chapala? Obviously, there is no substitute for boots on the ground. Make the time to come down and spend a week here! I always say you are doing yourself a disfavor by outright dismissing Lake Chapala as a retirement destination due to something you read or saw on social media. Make your own decision! And make it an informed decision. Don't just come down and spend a week walking around Ajijic. You'll get the wrong impression of Lake Chapala! Get the services of a local and tour the neighborhoods. Get to know that there is a lot more to Lake Chapala than just Ajijic.


So why did these clients of mine turn their back on Lake Chapala? As usual, there is more than one factor and I guarantee they are not going to be the same factors as for you, but these are the things that turned them off.


The first item was the amount of people, traffic and commotion. Now keep in mind that these folks are over 78 years of age and although in good physical condition, recognized that they currently have a more peaceful existence in northern California.


The second item was to do with health care. They did not realize that they would be without insurance here as obtaining private Mexican Medical Insurance was out of the question due to their age and pre-existing conditions. Their only other option would have been to sign up with SkyMed and travel back to their healthcare in the U.S.


So what's my advice? Start by doing your research. Purchase my book, 'The Ultimate Retirement Guidebook To Visiting & Retiring To Lake Chapala' from Amazon.com Kindle. This book is broken in to 3 parts. The first is aimed at the first time visitor or just for the curious who wants to know more about what is all available in Lake Chapala. The second portion of the book goes into what you need to know about making the transition to Lake Chapala. It talks about Visas, Healthcare, Employees, Bringing Your Pet, Cost Of Living, Owning A Vehicle, and Moving. Finally, you need to live somewhere, so the third section is all about renting, buying and building a home. Base upon years of doing Retirement Seminars, you'll find that all the information you need is in this book.


My next piece of advice if you are thinking about making the move to Lake Chapala, is don't wait until it's too late! If I had a peso for all the people who have said to me, “I wish I had done this a long time ago”, I would be a rich man. I generally find the average age of people moving down to be early to mid 60's. People who are over 70 generally have a more difficult time. So, if you are in your 50's, you need to come down and check it out. Consider quitting that job and embrace a different and exciting lifestyle. I came at 47 years of age and my (now) wife, Michaela, at 48. This is an opportune time make the move and the (still) low cost of living compared to north of the border makes it a smart move.


Then once you have arrived here, how can you experience all that Lake Chapala has to offer?


Get the experience of a local Realtor or tour guide and explore the areas surrounding Ajijic. A local can tell you what it is really like to live here (through their eyes). Then ask yourself, is this for me? Will I be happy here?


Get off the highway! Yes, there is a highway running through Ajijic and it is busy. By walking or driving one street off the highway you will discover that things slow down. Horses, cattle, goats and chickens are commonly walking and strutting the streets the 3 villages, Ajijic, San Antonio, and San Juan Cosala.


Talk to as many people as you can that you meet during your time here. Listen to their experiences and understand that these are THEIR experiences and (just like wading through reviews) toss out the outliers and focus on the majority of the comments made.


For further detailed information or a tour of the area, we at Retire In Lake Chapala are always at your service. Drop us an email through our website Retire In Lake Chapala and ask your questions.


Get all the information you need on moving to Lake Chapala! Whether you are a first time visitor or seriously considering relocating to Lake Chapala, this book is for you!

Buy Now on Amazon Kindle!





Don't have Kindle? Contact us for a PDF version and receive $2 off your purchase!


Michaela & Ricardo are your FULL SERVICE Real Estate Agents. With over 25 years of combined experience Lakeside, and our network of area Professionals, we help guide you to from beginning to forever in your Retirement Journey to Lake Chapala, Mexico.





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