Cost of Living at Lake Chapala Mexico

April 21, 2008

The following is an e mail received from a client of Sid (The Lake Chapala information Guy) regarding his personal experience relating to the cost of living at Lake Chapala Mexico


“El Sid,

Now that we have been here 7 plus months and the initial expenses are behind us, I did a financial analysis on the cost of living here vs south eastern PA.

Of course everyone’s experience will be different depending on where they came from and their life style not only there but here… everything is relative.

Feel free to share these numbers with your clients and you know I am very conservative when it comes to numbers – I was very surprised with the results.

We have reduced our annual cost of living by a whopping 58 %, the lions share of that (Almost 60 %) is taxes and insurance but IF we exclude those two items.

We still reduced our cost of living by 22 % !!! I did not consider food, our monthly expenditure is about the same but we are eating better here and eating out much more than we did in the States.

Again, this depends on where you shop and how many American products you buy – but we are eating well. I did not consider health care due to the fact this is a personal matter, but based on elective dental work we have had done here and a few customary doctors visits – it appears that health care costs are up to 75 % less than they are in the states… which includes prescription drugs.

Again; life is a relative experience, this is our experience.

In regards to inflation, no one knows but the rate of inflation seems to the same ( USA vs MEX) however the exchange rate appears to moderate the impact here.

On a personal note, you know I am a committed golfer. In PA I played about 25 paid rounds per year at a public course @ a total cost of $1200 USD. Here I belong to the Chapala Country Club and will play about 150 rounds per year @ a total cost of $2400 USD (Excluding initial membership) and that includes owning my own golf cart.

I spend almost as much money on Bloody Marys !!! I have been golfing for 40 years and have played all over the USA and some in the Caribbean – I would personally rate this course a 7 on a scale from 1 – 10 (10 being incredible), and they are improving things all the time.

Again this was our experience coming from an area of the USA where the cost of living is near the middle of the economic spectrum – IF you come from California the numbers will be even more favorable – IF you are coming from Alabama they will be less favorable… but regardless of where you come from in the USA the numbers will be favorable.

As far as the cost of real estate goes; it is a market – prices go up, prices go down… all over the world. With all the construction we had done we spent $265,000 on our new home – conservatively it would have cost us $400,000 in PA in our opinion. We are thrilled with our house here !!



  • sarah McCoy

    Hey Ernie, your experience so far at Lake Chapala sounds like you’re pretty darn happy you went. I’m so happy for you. Your article was informative and I thank you for it.

  • Sid Grosvenor

    Hi Sarah, Ernie is very much the happy camper here. Thanks for your nice words. Sid

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