Sid’s Secret Weapon: How to Economy-Proof Your Retirement and More!

April 1, 2009

Sid’s  Secret Weapon: How to Economy-Proof Your Retirement and More!

Most people don’t realize there’s a simple way to live the luxurious life that most people only dream of… in spite of what’s happened to the U.S. economy.

I know how to brief you on the most effective strategies to cut your taxes.. Slash your monthly health care costs, and dramatically increase your quality of life while reducing your daily expenses by 40 % or more.

When you come for a visit we’ll explore together the costs of medicine, doctor visits, dentist visits, food costs utility costs, insurance costs, car care expenses, utility costs and all the other costs associated with living a rich full life here at Lake Chapala Ajijic in our little slice of paradise.

You will soon have a very realistic picture of how much you could expect to pay to live here at a level that most retirees only dream about (even with servants, eating out as often as you like, going to the theater, concerts, the movies, dancing and in general living the sweet life on your terms, at your speed, with as little or as much social stimulation as you can handle..

And, you certainly will not be the first to do so, (as there are all kinds of  North American clubs, groups, charities and activities, already here, but you can still beat the big rush that’s coming. Now is the best time to come in years, as the peso dollar exchange rate buys more now than it has in the last 6 years.

So, what are you waiting for, give me a call, send me an e mail, plan a trip now or soon because almost everyone who comes here finds just the right place for them here at Lake Chapala – Ajjic Mexico.

Mission CHula Vista 033

I’ve helped hundreds of couples make their own determination and Im ready, willing, and able to help you do the same. No hype and ZERO pressure. Just think of me as the ”
Lake Chapala Information Guy” Sort of a walking talking Google search engine that can even think of questions you would want answered if only you knew enough to ask them.

So, if affordability, great all year long sunny weather, and easy access to the USA and Canada  top your priority list, you owe it to your self  to make plans today to find out more. Call me or e mail me as soon as you can, because I don’t want you to miss out.

I often work 10 to 12 hours a day (if you can call doing what I love to do work) and my popularity as being the “Answer Man” for all things Lake Chapala grows with each passing year so please schedule time with me ASAP and as far ahead of time as possible so you will have the best information to help you make the best decision possible.

All for now, Siempre tu amigo (Always Your Friend), Sid

P.S. One more thing: “I promise to tell you like it is.  I tell the negative stuff too (what little there is of it) because if you will likely not be happy here it’s better to find out up front for everyone’s best interest.”

PPS: You’ll have a chance to see as many (or as few) properties as you want, chat with local expats, and “kick the tires” on some of the world’s most affordable (and beautiful) overseas opportunities. the world has to offer.  Some are in the mountains, others along beautiful Lake Chapala. Some have lake views and some mountain views and of course some have both.

But all of them come with smiling locals, a cost-of-living way below that of North America and the best weather this side of Africa.

Here’s an example of a large beautiful home in West Ajijic

  • Jerry Goodwin

    Hi Sid, I just discovered your blog so there is little time to let you know that my wife Debbie and I will be coming to Ajijic on the 11th and we will be staying at the Casa del Sol. We will be very interested in checking out the area as a possible retirement spot in 2 years or so. Maybe we will get a chance to talk. Jerry

  • Sid Grosvenor

    Hi Jerry, Wonderful. Give me a call on my cell phone and we can get acquainted. From a land line in the Lake Chapala Area you must first call the cell access code (045) and then the cell number (note all cell numbers that are signed up in our area have Guadalajara prefixes of 331 or 333.

    Here’s my local cell when calling from a land line here. (045) 331 152 1314.

    Note: Tel Mex charges a small fee to connect to a cell number but at least it’s not like it used to be when to call a cell number from Lake Chapala land lines you were charged for a long distance call to Guadalajara.

    If you have internet access you can also drop me an e mail to and we can set up a time to talk.

    All for now, Siempre tu amigo, Sid

  • Efrain Innis

    You have been in the area for more than thirty years.

    If you had a child tomorrow, where would you send it to school?

    Your budget is a mere 5500 after taxes.

  • Sid Grosvenor

    Hi Efrain,

    Thanks for your comment. I’ve not been retired nearly long enough to be in the area 30 years, but I hope to be in the area eventually for much longer than 30 years.

    My first trip to the area was about 15 or 16 years ago. I’ve lived in the area now for 7 years.

    Now. let me tell you what I would do. I would investigate the local schools here. I’ve heard very good things about Layola and about Roosevelt.

    I’ve visted both briefly with clients in the past but would certainly go and have a chat with the administration at each school, look over the school grounds and class rooms and ask for references from other parents.

    Some couples home school their school age kids here. There’s an informal group of English speaking parents here with school age kids that help each other and socialize together as well.

    I don’t have the contact information at my fingertips but with a little digging I suspect I could find it.

    Not sure about the costs, but one thing for sure. The costs would be less here than for the same quality of education in the USA.

    A big plus for kids here is just growing up where old fashioned family values are nurtured. Add to this the international environment and the chance to be bi lingual sooner rather than later which I believe is a big plus in giving the kids here preparation for the future.

    I think of English and Spanish as two of the very best languages to know since both Spain and England were once global empires and both languages are therefore spoken all over the world.

    I hope this helps. All for now, Siempre tu amigo, Sid

  • Marilyn McDivitt

    Hi, Sid, Thanks for all the informative stuff. I went to the Mexican Consulate yesterday to find out about teaching in Mexico….I have all this experience and certification at the high school level and years of university teaching (Doctorate from Penn State).

    Because I taught 28 years overseas in different countries (last one, five years at Chinese universities), I am now retiring with Very Little Money. I still love to teach, though. I have info where to write for both public schools and universities from the Consulate.

    What do YOU think my chances are of obtaining a couple of classes at either a good public school or at a university in the big city?

    I would honestly have a little trouble surviving, even retired, without a little income on the side…but it’s equally a desire to continue teaching (ESL; Western Civilization; Chinese History). I am Spanish-speaking, having studied at the University of Mexico a long time ago.

    I would really appreciate your opinion. I do have a house here, but I am reluctant to try to sell it in this market, or maybe….in any market.


  • Sid Grosvenor

    HI MM. I also love to teach, but I’m also very entrepreneurial so try to find a way to satisfy my urge to teach and still keep the wolf away from the door, but I commend you for following your heart.

    I taught ESL and Business ESL in Guadalajara for one year. I determined to see if I could live on my teacher earnings. I was able to do so but it wasn’t easy. The young men in the street washing cars that hustled could earn as much as I was earning. I worked about 7 hours a day (loved every minute of it as it was very fulfilling).

    I taught early mornings and early evenings to accommodate my students schedules and 4 hours on Saturday from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m.

    I had to live in a cold water flat above a bank in the barrio. I survived and prospered self actualization wise.

    I have a bi lingual Mexican national friend ( My wife’s cousin) who teaches ENglish in the public highschools in Guadalajara for about $3 an hour. Seven years ago I earned $5 an hour teaching at a private language school and $7 an hour when I was able to teach business English to executive types in the evening.

    Expenses will be higher for you in Guadalajara as well. I have no idea what the Universities pay but dobt if it’s more than the private language schools.

    I would consider the following: Come to live at the Lake Chapala area and tutor both Mexicans wanting to speak better English and English speakers wanting to speak better Spanish. If you can produce good results in the retirement community your fame will spread quickly and you can raise your rates accordingly.

    A few years back I joined a not so cheap class to improve my Spanish and i was worth every nickle. Much better than classes at the Language schools in Guadalajara which were less expensive.

    You may be able to find other niches here where you could use your bi lingual ability. We can discuss some of these ideas privately.

    I hope this helps. All for now. Siempre tu amigo, Sid

  • arturo de Leon

    I started reading your blog because we are developing an interest in chapala, either part or full time retirement. we have some friends that are relocating to ajijic for a year with the anticipation of remaining. My wife and I will be retiring middle of next year and plan to visit with our friends for one week and test the feel of the paradise you and they so describe. i do have some medical issues that i will need to address, i have an implanted difibrillator/pacemaker, so of course some periodic routine readings must be done. right now my reading are done through the Merlin@home device with an annual clinical check. question do you by any chance know of someone with similar medical issues and if so, how are they having their difibrillator monitored? Also, I am under a pocket full of prescriptions mainly for blood pressure, which I get through TRICARE, Military retirees prescription drug plan. and does the high altitude have any effect on their breathing, meaning people with heart problem such as cardiomyaphathy, which is my problem. hoping the Answer Man can ease my mind so that i can start working on our plans.


    Arturo de Leon

  • Sid Grosvenor

    Hi Arturo, Thanks for your comment. I’m not sure about the difibrillator/pacemaker monitoring you asked about. Hopefully someone will see your post and respond.

    The local Red Cross Emergency clinic I’m told has a difibrillator and I suspect that they may be able to read yours or knows who can.

    I would also suggest that you go to the Chapala Web Board and ask the same question. Given our large retirement population I would think that surely there are others in the same situation as you. And, certainly in nearby Guadalajara (45 minute drive) you could find a doctor to trake the readings you need taken from time to time. They have state of the art medical centers and hospitals there.

    My blood pressure medicine here costs half of what it would cost in Texas. Some meds are higher bere but most are lower and there may be generic brands here not available in the USA.

    There’s a very large American Legion post here which can no doubt help you out on your TRICARE prescription plan.

    You might want to give them a call at 011 52 376 765 2259 between 9 a.m.and 3 p.m. M – F. or Saturday 9 a.m. until 2 p.m.

    The altitude here is 5,000 ft. above sea level and most people do fine at this level. Some take a few days, or even a few weeks to adjust. The Lake Chapala Society in Ajijic has retired doctors and nurses that volunteer to give blood pressure checks regularly and I suspect they also will give some basic medical advise as well.

    We have pretty much everything that you would find in retirement areas in the USA as far as services, medical facilities etc., except the high prices and bad weather.

    Start working on those plans. All for now. Siempre tu amigo, Sid

  • Susan Klopfer

    Suddenly I’m hearing of some bad crime taking place at Lake Chapala — people being beaten and robbed. Not so sure if I want to retire here, afterall. What do you say?

  • Sid Grosvenor

    Hi Susan, I’ve heard the same story. Don;t yet know the real facts, I do know this. Such an incident is extremely rare here.

    A big meeting on crime issues is scheduled for February 17th in San Juan Cosala and its reported that very high officials in the JAlisco State Government, our local police chiefs and at least ine state legislator will be attending.

    So, the government here is very attentive of any up tick in area crime.

    The local citizens Mexican and Foreign are rightly concerned.

    It’s so shocking, in large part, because it’s so extremely rare. Look for an upcoming article I’m woring on to compare the crime in Meico with that in the USA. I think you’ll be shocked at just how low crime in Mexico really is and just hpw safe our area in particular is.

    Any crime is too much crime. That being said from my perspective as a former Police Officer in Dallas of 35 years I feel much safer here than I felt in Dallas… and that’s not to know Dallas at all as it has a great dedicated police chief and force and compares well with other major US cities.

    I feel certain that the recent episode is an isolated incident. Sid

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