Retirement and Vacation home
Replies: 30 - Last Post: Nov 2, 2013 4:19 AM Last Post By: amobr82
Oct 11, 2013 2:16 PM
Retirement and Vacation homeHey. Found you guys today while doing some research. I'll try to keep it short. Just looking for info and opinions.
Due to medical issues, I will be retiring in the next few months. My wife is originally from MG, outside of BH. We are looking for a vacation house, with the possibility of using it as a bed and breakfast type of place for people we both know back in the states, NJ. Also plan on having both of our families stay for periods of time. We are planning to start a small seasonal food business here in NJ. We would use the Brazil house from late Nov, after Thanksgiving till early to mid March. Besides doing the B&B during that time, we'd also consider doing the food business down there in the future, possibly. Another option I was thinking about in the future was RE investments.
But for now we just want to find a nice vacation house. We are open to lots of areas in Brazil, but I think we are narrowing it down to Florianopolis and the outskirts of Rio, like the Marica area.
Being from NJ, I'd like something that resembles home, but much more nice and cheaper.
Need to be close to beach, if not ocean front.
Decent nightlife and other things to do, soccer teams.
Safe area, low crime.
Don't want to be in an overcrowded area, but also not in the middle of no where.
Some reasons I like Marica are:
Seems like a quiet area, but doesn't seem like much to do besides relax.
Can get a nice place ocean front for pretty good prices.
About 45 mins from Rio. Not looking to be in the city, but would be nice to make trips to see things, Copacabana, Ipanema, Leblon, soccer, and everything else. Also would be good for visitors.
Smaller than Rio, but not all the tourist attractions.
Not sure about ocean front houses and prices. Need to try to look them up more.
Seems to have a good night life, places to eat, things to do. Soccer teams not as good, but they have two decent ones.
Seems like a safer area to live from what I have been able to find.
Not sure which areas of Florianopolis are considered the best as far as safe and not over priced.
About us. I'm almost 30. She is a few years older. We like to go out, but not anything crazy. With my retirement, I'd be making around $5,500 usd a month. Would be keeping my place here in NJ, so that would give me around $3,500 usd or around $7,600 brl to play with.
If anyone has any info/opinions about Florianopolis, Marica, or other areas they think we should consider, it would be appreciated. Thanks
Oct 11, 2013 8:39 PM
1You should post on the forum of the expats in Brazil site:
They can help you with a reality check.
Oct 11, 2013 10:48 PM
2How much would you be looking at paying for the house?
Marica is an odd choice to consider as it is almost like a satellite city for Rio, too far out to be a fashionable Rio suburb but nor far enough to be much of a holiday destination either. Most people would go a little further out such as Saquarema or even as far along the coast as Buzios which is popular with local and foreign tourists. Of course Buzios is really expensive for what you are planning to do.
Pousadas in Brazil are a dime a dozen and not all of them make money. They are complicated to set up and require all sorts of ongoing expenditure.They really only make good money during January and Carnaval. I would consider instead of a pousada, that you should look for a house with a second small residence attached that you could rent out informally from time to time instead of having to worry with a pousada.
Florianoplis is very nice and probably quite good for what you are considering. There are lots of beaches there to choose from. I've no idea about current prices though
Oct 12, 2013 12:16 PM
3Thanks, I also posted over there.
I would like to stay around 500k brl or lower, but that depends on the type of sale. My wife was explaining instead of bank loans, people set them up with each other and make payments per month. So, if that was the case, 500k brl would be pretty easy to do. I see lots of places just want cash. If that is the case, I'd have to go lower since we need other money to get our business here going in the spring.
Marica, I kind of just stumbled on while looking at a few sites for houses on the beach. It reminded me of the barrier islands here in NJ, just not built up much. I see future potential there if I get into doing RE investment. Seeing the Jersey shore develop, I think the same could happen in Marica in the future, possibly.
I think Florianopolis might be the best option though. Just need to figure out which areas are better than the others.
Still not ruling Marica or another area out just yet. Going to keep on researching and getting opinions. Not ready to make a decision just yet. Want to make the decision within the next year. Possibly sooner if she ends up having visa issues. Have to figure things out. If that happens it would delay our business idea for awhile.
The B&B idea really isn't a business idea. More for just friends, family, her customers, and former co-workers of mine to come down, have a nice place to stay, us take them around to things, and so on. Instead of them paying for hotels, transportation, and tour groups or whatever. Lots of people we know want to go to Brazil, but stories of crime and the language turn them off. So we figured if we were going to spend lots of time there, we could take care of everything for them. We wouldn't be doing it for people we don't know. If we didn't have people coming, then we'd just do whatever. It would be like a guy I worked with who would rent out his condos or rooms in the condos in Costa Rica to people he knew.
I had more and more details, but when I posted, I had an issue. I'll get to it later on maybe. Watching this UT beat down of Oklahoma.
Oct 12, 2013 1:51 PM
4500K will get you a house in Marica but whether it is suitable for what you need I don't know. I looked at a real estate website and the properties that I personally would consider more suitable were between r$700-900. There are also some points to consider
1. If you are going to be away for a few months a year, how are you going to secure the house? . You could buy an estate big enough to have a caretaker's cottage but these are typically more than 500k. You could also buy in a gated condominium but they might have restrictions against operating as a B&B.
2. You wife is right about people selling on private finance however they might be unwilling to do so to a foreigner as they know you can up and leave.
I guess what you really need to do is an extended road trip along the coast of Brazil. Work out the most Northerly point that you would consider and then the most Southerly, get your hands on a car and travel in between.
Oct 13, 2013 6:06 AM
5That was one thing I had thought about. Who would look after it when we weren't around? I was thinking maybe a family member of hers could live there when we were gone. Not sure if she has anyone that would be able to or not. Both of her parents are retired. Security cameras, so I could check in on it. Or just hopefully have a good neighbor or two that could be trusted like at home.
I found a few nice places with 4-5 bedrooms at reasonable prices, but the sites never reply. I contacted a few for sale by owner houses, but they seem to stop replying when you ask questions. Mostly European. Seems like they just want the money without giving info. Never saw people unwilling to answer questions when trying to sell. Had that happen with a place in Marica I liked a lot and a place outside of Fortaleza that was nice, but needed some updating.
She said her father could try to get us the finance deal. I knew it would be hard, if not impossible for me to get one. I think Florianopolis is leading right now, unless I can come across a reliable site for Marica. I did find a site with stuff in Itaipuacu, but haven't gotten to look anything up about that area yet.
I have been having much better luck finding nice places in Florianopolis. Just need to figure out which areas are better and narrow things down for there.
Oct 13, 2013 2:52 PM
Oct 14, 2013 6:20 AM
7I know the basics. Like I said my wife is from MG, her family lives out there. Most of the other Brazilians we know are from MG, from BH and surrounding areas. A few from SP. We just don't know anyone from the Florianopolis or Rio area. A friend of hers has a friend that has a friend, or something like that not far from Marica. They offered to go look at a house we found, but the owners stopped replying to some emails with questions about the property. It has been listed for at least a year from what I know. Guess they aren't very motivated to sell.
The big thing is just settling on which area. We'd still look in person when it comes to buying in both areas. We have found nice places in both. The type of sale, cash or financed would make our budget go up or down. Ocean front is something we both like, but could compromise depending on the house, distance to beach, and price. For financing, I know I can't get a loan being a gringo, but her father or another family member could probably get it for us. We decided to put our business idea for here on hold, cause she will probably have to go back to Brazil for a bit to get visa straightened out. However, that is still pending, but we are thinking of doing the house first.
Edited by: GMangs
Oct 14, 2013 7:30 AM
8"I know the basics. Like I said my wife is from MG, her family lives out there. Most of the other Brazilians we know are from MG, from BH and surrounding areas. A few from SP. We just don't know anyone from the Florianopolis or Rio area. A friend of hers has a friend that has a friend, or something like that not far from Marica."
Yeah, but you have not said that YOU have spent significant time LIVING in Brazil; quite different from a vacation visit, even a prolonged one. Before you make a major investment and a major move, you should know well beyond the very basics of what it takes to get used to LIVING in Brazil without being able to run back to the States after a few weeks/months.
Oct 14, 2013 12:48 PM
9My wife grew up and lived in MG for about 26 years or so. She has been here for 10 years. She wasn't just born there and moved here as a baby/child. Adjusting to life in another place wouldn't be that difficult. She came here knowing very little, maybe a handful of people from her town/city, hardly knowing English. I'm not worried about any type of "culture shock." I know a decent amount about Brazil and have a good amount of Brazilian friends. None from around the areas I have asked about, but there will be very little shock living there for around 4 months or so during the year. The only thing to "worry" about living there is if we get ocean front, her drowning. She grew up on a farm in MG and never learned to swim, scared to death of the water. Only goes in up to her knees. The only real adjusting I see for myself is getting better speaking the language and not having my firearms. Besides that, the two of us are a pretty good team. It's not like we are going to a country neither of us have a clue about.
Oct 14, 2013 2:18 PM
10Just make sure that you try to spend a few months in Brazil before committing to a purchase or anything. Also, hire a lawyer to make sure the documentation on the property is OK. I know a guy in Bahia who bought some land and built only to have 3-4 different people rock up with deeds of sale saying that they had purchased the land before him. Fortunately for him, he was the first person to have made sure everything was completely legitimate before buying.
Oct 14, 2013 4:27 PM
11You've got good advices; don't underestimate them. Documentation: make sure that they are recent. “Certidão de Onus Real” is the basic documentation. It shows who is the legally owner and describes all the history of the property. ITBI is a tax the buyer pays to the government – 2% of the price THEY estimate for the property (always more than you pay for the property). Make sure that the property is not “foreiro” or all the “fôro” has being payed. Most of the properties close to the sea has to pay this tax. Your wife should google “Laudêmio” to understand what I'm talking about. Documentation of the owner and the property are mandatory. Forget about loan. Brazil has the biggest tax of the world. The banks of Brazil smile from ear to ear. Marica town is not exactly in front of the sea. You need to take a narrow (and very crowed during summer and holidays) street to go to “barra de Marica” and be in front of the sea. Saquarema is much better than Marica IMO. The biggest waves of the beaches of Rio de Janeiro are there. You should visit other beaches if your wife is afraid of rough sea. Maybe Araruama or Rio das Ostras or Paraty. Don't go alone to the office, don't pay in cash, always take a witness with you.
Take (a lot of) care
Oct 15, 2013 8:04 AM
12" I'm not worried about any type of "culture shock." I know a decent amount about Brazil and have a good amount of Brazilian friends."
It is precisely comments like this indicate to me that you have NO CLUE what you could be getting yourself into for the long term and are very naive. I'm not talking about "culture shock" as simply being uncomfortable for a few days/weeks in a new place with new customs.
But then you say......
"there will be very little shock living there for around 4 months or so during the year"
That is NOT "living" in Brazil, then. That is simply an extended vacation, after which you can run back to the U.S.
When you say "live", that indicates to me moving to Brazil permanently for some number of years straight (or forever), and not leaving except for perhaps a brief vacation visit to the U.S. to see family, or elsewhere on vacation. Not having to confront the burro-cracy involved in permanent residence, and the stress of infinite time in country (including making yourself comfortable for the long term/coming to terms with having essential possessions/equipment or their lack, or lack of quality if purchased locally, furnishings, food products or lack thereof, etc, and with the attitudes/treatment from Brazilians which can become very wearing, and many more issues which you express no awareness of whatsoever) is a whole different ballgame.
Again, check the forum on Gringoes.com for examples of various folks' experience with both types of situations to see what might occur and pay close attention to what has been expressed there. The littlest things can become magnified over time.
"The only thing to "worry" about living there is if we get ocean front"
You are of course aware of the laws regarding foreign ownership of that type of property. And the dangers of putting any property entirely in your wife's name.
Oct 15, 2013 8:59 AM
13Amobr, you just don't seem to get it. I never stated I would be leaving the states permanently. I said I was keeping my house here and the house in Brazil would be a vacation/retirement house during winter months here in NJ. During the offseason for the business we want to start here in NJ. While in Brazil, we would have guests and take them around, show them things, give them a place to stay. It would be an informal bed and breakfast for only people we know from home in NJ, friends, family, her customers from her current business, our new business, my former co-workers. Not strangers or anything like that. If we started up any type of business, it would be a seasonal food business, while we were in Brazil, like we would have back at home, in NJ. Just like I said in my very first post. Our business will be in NJ and my kids will be born and raised in NJ, not Brazil. You can call it running back if you want. NJ is were life is, never said otherwise.
As for the other stuff you mentioned, quality products, food, so on, government bs. It's the same thing here. You get what you pay for and where you buy. Government is the same bs, here or there. Same crap, different location and language. If Obama spoke a different language, I'd still dislike him very much. I also remember a few years ago the government would not return the child of a guy from NJ. Like I said government, same bs, different location and language.
You are aware my wife is a Brazilian citizen, like I have stated a few times. She wasn't just born to a Brazilian family in America. She was born and raised in Brazil. Her family is in Brazil. If they gave her an issue about buying a place cause I'm American, her father could do it. Being foreign, shouldn't be much of an issue given she is a Brazilian citizen, not American.
Other people's info and opinions have been good, but for some reason you seem to not understand. I'd be hanging out and living with my wife, who is Brazilian. Our guests, Brazilian and American. Neighbors and others we meet in our area we decide on. So even if we were living there longer than planned, this adjusting you are talking about is being blown out of proportion. I'm not a single guy trying to run around to bars and clubs picking up girls. Been there done that years ago in regular American bars and Brazilian/Portuguese bars up here. I'm married, I won't be doing crazy things. You seem to think differently.
Oct 15, 2013 9:19 AM
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