Complete Guide to Ecuador Travel & Relocation (GringosAbroad)

New Episode of House Hunters International: Haines Family in Cuenca Ecuador

haines-family-casting-video-cuenca-ecuador

Our episode aired February 15th. Check out: Behind the Scenes: House Hunters in Cuenca Ecuador

This week we finished filming a House Hunters International episode in Cuenca. This part was our house-hunting component which was shot Sunday through Tuesday. Our back-story (the why of our move) was shot while we were in Miami last month.

The shoot is a reenactment of our actual move and we hope will give viewers an idea both of the type of real estate available in Cuenca and what Cuenca is really like.

Here is our little casting video that we produced for our casting producer. We were contacted three times by two different casting producers – the first two times it didn’t work out for a couple of different reasons – but this time it did.

Our episode is part of a new angle for the show. They are expanding to cover home/apartment rentals – not just home purchases. Its really going to broaden the audience for the show.

It was a great experience – albeit a bit weird to be miked-up and visiting our favorite places in the city. Now after 4 days of filming, I’m curious how they will cut it down to just 24 minutes. Can’t wait…

It will be a couple of months before it airs and when we know the dates, we’ll share it here.

Haines Family Casting Video for House Hunters International

What do you think of the show? Do you even watch it? If you have been a contributor on the show, would love to hear from you!

An article by

Bryan is a journalist, photographer, expat and dad. He writes for Gringos Abroad (Ecuador travel & living) and Blogger Abroad (run an online business abroad). He also enjoys living in Southern Ecuador (South America) with his wife and daughter. Connect with Bryan on LinkedIn. Work with Bryan & Dena

More about: Cuenca Ecuador, Ecuador Real Estate, Everything Expat, Living in Ecuador

{ 90 comments… add one }

  • Joanne Jouris April 15, 2014, 9:49 pm

    Bryan and Dena, We watched your HHI episode over a year ago and have watched a couple more for Ecuador since and have read several books and will be moving to Cuenca either early July or August of this year. SO excited to get there. Selling everything and making the move. Both retired and looking forward to the next chapter in our lives. Would love to keep in touch with as we have many questions. Thank you for your wonderful website and blogs, they are much appreciated.

    Reply
    • Bryan Haines April 16, 2014, 6:13 am

      Congratulations on your decision to move!

      All the best on your plans.

      Reply
  • Lindsey January 29, 2014, 5:20 pm

    Just watched your house hunters episode on Amazon Prime. Thought we’d check you out. Never thought about traveling to Ecuador, but you made it seem easy :) best wishes for a simpler life!

    Reply
  • mike broll June 25, 2013, 8:25 pm

    had a question about things like medical . im on oxygen 24/7 do you have that opion there ? And how are the hospitals ? And how about prescriptions we all take are they mostly available there ?

    Reply
    • Bryan Haines June 27, 2013, 6:55 am

      The hospitals are good here. From what I understand, most of the prescriptions are available but you should confirm specifics. There are some medications that have either equivalent or alternate brands.

      Reply
  • John Bencken November 24, 2012, 12:27 pm

    Hi, my name is John, I’m interested in volunteering in Ecuador for three to six months at a time and have been advised the best way to do this is under the “umbrella”of a church group, I would like to hear from Expats who have experience volunteering.I am single and planning on visiting Ecuador(Cuenca) in early part of 2013.

    Reply
  • shirley & jim October 10, 2012, 4:39 pm

    Hi there Haine family! We live in Mississauga Ontario, Canada. Just the two of us and two wonderful chihuahuas we adore!!(smile)
    We wanted to let you know that tonight, Wednesday October 10th 2012 @ 8:00 pm Eastern Time, the show you were on, Househunters International is set to air!! Looking forward to seeing it!! We too are looking at Ecuador as a possible place to move. Can we ask you a couple of questions?
    In your opinion, did any members of your family have any altitude sickness issues or know alot of expats that live there that either had issues or still have now?
    Also is it possible to rent a place with a nice yard?(as mentioned, we have dogs :) Also are there good veterinarians in the city with good equipment that speak English(that you know of) ? Thanks again!!!

    Reply
    • Bryan Haines October 10, 2012, 5:11 pm

      Hi Jim and Shirley, thanks for the heads up on the show. I don’t know that it has aired in Canada before today. Friends and (some) family haven’t seen it yet.

      None of us had altitude sickness, but we noticed the altitude a little at first. I tried to play a game of basketball with some friends and after less than 5 minutes I was gasping for air. Nothing serious but very noticeable.

      Houses with small yards are fairly common. To find rentals will take a bit of footwork but it isn’t too hard. Almost all of the yards are small, some don’t even have grass – they are all tiled. The vet we use is very good, he cares for our dog like it was his own. I think he is more excited to see our dog than I am… I’m not sure about English speaking ones, but they must exist. We bought a dog here right after we moved. Just a few weeks after she swiped a chicken bone and it got stuck in her throat. We couldn’t say anything in Spanish but with a few charades and a gasping puppy he understood just what we needed and took care of her. It is surprising how little Spanish you need to get by – especially in a pinch.

      All the best on your plans.

      Reply
  • Malcolm Barber October 2, 2012, 11:21 am

    We are British from Kent in the UK but we have lived for 3 years in North Cyprus. But we are just exploring about a move to Ecuador. We have just come back from 2 weeks in Panama but now we want to try here and your blog etc is very helpful.
    Just watched a house hunters video and we would have chosen the beach house. As Brits…..not into condo`s

    Reply
  • Jay Niel September 23, 2012, 8:29 am

    Stop drinking tap water……… have you smelled/tasted it lately? Yum…….. smells like the local swimming pool!

    Reply
  • Lannie Loeks August 5, 2012, 2:13 am

    It’s refreshing to hear about a family with a child moving to Ecuador. We are very interested and our youngest is 16…Our middle is 27 and a fly fishing guide who just spent the fishing season working at a lodge in Chile. Since almost everything one reads is about retirees I’m happy to hear about your experiences and especially your daughter’s. Can you comment on schools? And perhaps University? What about fly fishing? My kids are fairly conversant in Spanish…We are so~so. Really looking forward to your reply and any resource info would be terrific. Kind Regards, Lannie

    Reply
  • Dennis July 11, 2012, 10:07 am

    I’m in upstate, NY (3 hours from Montreal). VERY interested in Ecuador. The key will be good internet connection … AND to find some freelance/ sub work (wife & I have owned our Advertising Agency for 23 years, full service, all phases). Any points toward available opportunities there, very welcomed & appreciated.(they gotta market to the Gringos too, eh.)
    We are not looking at “cities”, but quiet costal areas for a less stressed life in Ecuador.
    One very important element for input: How’s the WINE ? (white Bordeaux, Pinot Grigio …)

    Reply
    • Bryan Haines July 11, 2012, 11:14 am

      Hi Dennis, we have a solid connection here in Cuenca. But living in small town Ecuador will limit your fast internet options. We are doing some freelance work.

      I can’t help on the wine – I don’t know the difference between good and great wine (unless we are taking about the color :) ).

      Reply
      • Dennis July 27, 2012, 8:55 am

        I have more research work to do, as I get closer, may I contact you via facebook message ?

        Thanks for sharing

        Reply
  • Carl Timothy April 9, 2012, 2:13 pm

    Hi Guys…

    Our Episode of House Hunters Int. just aired last Friday. We are the real estate agency that hosted the show. We sent in tapes of various clients and they chose the 2 business partners from San Diego who were featured.

    We really had an amazing time filming, the whole experience was so enjoyable. The crew and everyone we dealt with along the way were professional and easy going. They have indicated that they plan to come back and file with us again. We look forward to it…

    I have been blogging about my experience on our blog (on our website http://www.timothyrealestategroup.com) The marketing world has changed so much in recent years and this contact was the culmination of our learning curve using social media and blogging. I love where this is all going and how much it opens borders for all of us.

    Catch our episode… Puerto Vallarta with Taniel Chesmian. Im gonig to watch yours ….

    Nice talking to you…
    Carl.

    Reply
    • Bryan Haines April 15, 2012, 8:30 am

      Thanks Carl, please send me a link when your site is online. Our TV access is limited down here…

      Thanks!

      Bryan

      Reply
  • Brian March 30, 2012, 12:36 pm

    Hey there! We lived in Cuenca in the summer of ’10 (June,July,August) with the intent of staying but had to go back. We’re considering the move again – lots of advantages and disadvantages to consider. One big minus since we came is airfare cost! Myself, my wife, and at that time, our 4 year old, flew r/t from Dallas to Quito for about $1,800. Now the same flight for the same time of year is $3,200! Bryan see if you can get a word in with Correa and ask him to subsidize airfare for Gringos! ;-) Oh, and that is one more reason why you may not see the onslaught of Americans and Canadians trekking to Ecuador. There’s a mental barrier that a lot of people have about crossing the Equator, and the airfare, at least right now, is about 30% higher than from Costa Rica or Panama.

    Oh, hey, btw, your show can now be seen online! Just watched it. It was great. We enjoyed seeing y’all and a lot of good shots of Cuenca, including, we noticed, y’all going into Carolinas. http://www.hgtv.com/video/a-relaxed-life-in-cuenca-video/index.html

    Bryan how tall are you? I’m 6’5″ and felt like a giant among the Ecuadorians. Our daughter has blonde hair as well so between my height and her hair we were a spectacle to be seen.

    Reply
    • Bryan Haines March 30, 2012, 1:50 pm

      Hey Brian – agreed about the airfare. Traveling back to Canada was an expensive adventure.

      Thanks for sharing the link. I see the page, but looks like the video is blocked for Ecuador. Maybe it’ll be opened up in a few months…

      I am just 6’3″ so I don’t stand out nearly as much as you. :) Some days we feel like a traveling circus sideshow. In our sector, our neighbors are getting used to how bizarre we look but I don’t know if it’ll ever get old in the center. But we really don’t mind. My daughter gets a kick out of when people walk by us (especially young girls) and burst out laughing as soon as they are past us. Kind of makes our day.

      Thanks for the comment – and all the best on your plans.

      Bryan

      Reply
      • Diane March 30, 2012, 5:21 pm

        Bryan,
        The only way you can see the show in Ecuador is if you download a program that will hide your URL. I use Hot Spot Shield when I want to watch something that doesn’t stream in EC. You have to put up with some advertisements but I just close them quickly and when I’m finished watching I close the program.
        Diane (the other HHI in Cuenca person)

        Reply
        • Bryan Haines March 30, 2012, 5:44 pm

          Thanks Diane – I’ll check it out. The company sent us a DVD but it doesn’t work…

          Reply
        • Brian July 26, 2012, 11:34 am

          Ugg…don’t use Hot Spot Shield if you can avoid it. It’s full of pop-ups, bugs, etc. Try buying a copy of Hide My IP. You can get a 14 day free trial here: http://www.hide-my-ip.com/?id=6402 We’ve used it for years (even in the States).

          Reply
  • Lisa Musil January 26, 2012, 8:54 pm

    Our family plans to make the move to Ecuador in June–my dad and husband are spending April exploring and looking for a rental for us. We need a HUGE place, as we have 11 children (ages 5 to 16). I hope to meet up with your family!

    Reply
  • JoJo January 2, 2012, 10:48 am

    Very interesting reading all the comments! I plan on watching the HGTV episode for sure. My favorite blog of Bryan’s to date is about his experience getting a driver’s license in Ecuador. Over the last few years, there have already been 5 House Hunter’s International shows, so far, about Ecuador – 1 in Cuenca. I have noticed that in the past few years, HHI has started featuring more shows about renting in various cities abroad rather than buying, so Bryan and Dena’s upcoming show will add to the mix. I think it is natural for expats already in their dream location to become nervous when technology brings their little piece of paradise to the forefront. But Cuenca in particular is not a little village being overrun by expats – the current population is about 470,000 – not a small town by any standards! Even if 10,000 “gringos” moved there, it would still be a drop in the bucket. I think people should, when planning on moving abroad, stay focused on what attracted them to their chosen location in the first place, and not get swept up in creating living conditions and lifestyles that are comparable to what you “had at home”. We have visited a few locations over the past 3 years that are on our ‘short list’, and from our experience have found that meeting and dealing with locals rather than expat ‘facilitators’ (I use that word because there really are no such things as licensed, regulated realtors anywhere we have visited) has been a better experience for us. We have not bought yet, and don’t plan on it for at least a few years after we have rented in our chosen location. I can tell you this though – some of the rentals I have inquired about that are on the higher end have all been owned by non-citizens (investors???). I think the ‘gringo effect’ comes into place when gringos themselves initiate the increases, rather than follow the pricing that drew THEM to those places in the first place.

    Reply
  • Bob Farina December 18, 2011, 5:53 pm

    When does your episode air on tv?Looking forward to
    watching it.

    Reply
  • Garry Ladouceur December 11, 2011, 7:47 pm

    I s am enjoying reading your material. I have not finished yet but the style is bright and informative.

    My wife and I moved to Mexico about 2 years ago. I am a Canadian but also a swiss citizen, my wife is swiss. We are/were both lawyers. (please do not hold this against us. we have gone for retraining and replaced our hearts since retirement). I am 57 she is 50 and still has some work to do in Switzerland so she is away a bit until she can negotiate her retirement.

    I also spent quite a bit of time in Atlantic Canada and in fact obtained my first degree from Mount Allison in New Brunswick. I then studied in Toronto and Ottawa. I then moved with the job to Switzerland and stayed. I think that is where I caught the travel bug.

    Mexico is beginning to get too exciting for us. I dare not mention the details. There are sometimes repercussions but I will let you figure that out. We have decided to move but we love latin america and we actually hate to leave mexico. Someone mentioned Ecuador. So I said, Ecuador? I thought I could place it, must be on the equator I though and indeed it was. I always mixed up Ecuador with Peru or New Guinea or that other place in Africa. Never crossed my mind whether as a tourist destination or a real place except i think for the Galapagos.

    I will be moving I think early in the year and have been writing to people to find an apartment for a couple of months and then use that to explore and pick a place. I think that living in mexico has helped me out here since i now speak a bit of spanish and know what a mercado is and a supermercado. I know not to drink the water and I like high altitudes since I live in Morelia where the air is cooler all of the time.

    I do hope you will remember us and keep us in mind if you bump across a decent house to rent in the 700 to 1000 usd range.

    good luck and excellent posts.

    garry.

    Reply
  • Gary and Logan December 6, 2011, 9:16 pm

    Ya:Anyone that thinks (not that anyone here is) they can predict what will happen where tomorrow should be on our “dear???”U.S.President’s Czar panel.Can you imagine what U.S.property taxes will be when we finish paying for the machine if ever we can keep up.
    Anything can happen anywhere and we can just try to protect ourselves and community against extreme change and inflation.It’s happening here in the P.I slowly but gathering steam.
    Don’t at all want to sound negative.It’s just a sign of the times and any credible
    information is great but the day of rose colored glasses is not in style.
    I haven’t read anything on this Blog that candy coats nor says it is a land of no problems.
    I appreciate the information and find it all useful —except Bryan I wish you would tell me how (the process)you got your residency 5 years.HaHa
    Please keep it up
    Gary and Logan

    Reply
  • Doc Sheldon December 6, 2011, 6:24 pm

    Some good points are being made in the comments. I’ve been living in Mexico off and on for over 20 years – the last 13 continuously. I built our home nearly 8 years ago, for a total cost of $140K, land included. I could have done it for under $100K, but we opted for the comforts that our age demand.

    At the time, a comparable home in San Diego was running around $950K. Then the US real estate market tanked, and those same homes were selling for $350-$400K. Ours, originally appraised at cost, climbed to $185K during that same time.

    California, with its roughly 50% Latino population, saw many of its residents move back south when they lost their jobs and/or homes. Some of them sold cheap, to get what they could, while they could.

    A few years later, now… my home just appraised at $137K. Thank God we paid cash for it, so we at least have that to fall back on… provided anyone wants to buy.

    Part of the economic hit here in Baja Caifornia is due to the US economy’s instability. And part of it is due to the general instability of a country consumed by 60,000 dead in four years from the drug wars. But before the dollar showed signs of collapsing or the drug-lords started holding their battles in the streets, we had already seen the symptoms of the Gringo Effect here. $150/month apartments climbed to $400 in a little over a year. Private school costs for our youngest daughter went from about $100 per month to over $400. Electricity and gas, already pricier that in the US, literally goes up weekly.

    The beachfront area we chose for our retirement happens to be one of the better areas in our neck of the woods, with mostly professional people living here. But as the costs went up, the teachers and managers were replaced by business owners and politicians – they could afford it; the previous residents no longer could.

    Eventually, for several reasons, the occupancy rate of rentals climbed fro 5-6% until it recently hit over 70%. Even those willing to drop their rates are unable to find tenants.

    With more variables in the mix here, It’s difficult to say which factors contributed the most to our problems. But I still remember that when it was merely low cost of buy/build/rent, without a failing economy or the chance of catching a stray bullet, our cost of living was climbing at a frightening rate.

    What Ron says is true. I saw it in Asia, I saw it in Europe, I even saw it in Texas during the oil boom… low costs brings greater influx, which in turn, brings higher costs. There’s just no way around it.

    Bryan, I’m happy for you and your family and I wish you the best of luck in Cuencas. But I think you need to keep an eye peeled for the handwriting on the wall, and be thinking where you may go next. David’s description of what happens is accurate and has been demonstrated many times.

    Reply
  • Elaine November 23, 2011, 1:44 pm

    Yikes!!! What a bunch of negative people!!!
    Back to the original question…I watch House Hunters International all the time. I even know several of the agents who sold in Salinas & Manta, Ecuador, and Paris. One of my work responsibilities is to negotiate network cable advertising for my clients, and I buy time in House Hunters International along with other HGTV programming, including the original House Hunters. My HGTV salesperson was quite surprised when we talked about this program because I knew so many of the people involved, including the realtor who sold me my condo in Manta which should be finished shortly. I look forward to watching your particular program to find out more about Cuenca.

    Reply
    • Lisa January 1, 2012, 6:48 pm

      I like HGTV. My husband and I check in on it almost every week. There are 3 we particularly like, but really enjoy International House Hunters for the insight to other countries and the various economy. Looking forward to Brian and Dena’s debut.

      Reply
  • Fran Yates November 22, 2011, 10:04 am

    We are excitedly awaiting news of the televising on HGTV on Cuenca, but I wish I knew how to contact HGTV as they only show old replay episodes of people buying homes, we would like new episodes. Its about time HGTV showcases Ecuador…

    Fran

    Reply
    • Elaine November 23, 2011, 1:45 pm

      You can program your TIVO to record only the new programs. That might help.

      Reply
  • Gary and Logan November 17, 2011, 6:45 pm

    Sorry Bryan-not Brian–I’ve always been better at selling newspapers that reading (writing) them.Sometimes I misspell my own name.

    Reply
  • Gary and Logan November 17, 2011, 6:25 pm

    I hope My family and I don’t impose a threat by finding an interest in Ecuador and reading the post.My family and I may be selling newspapers on the street corner.L.O.L.
    I think many dream to go there to find the “lost dream”that the U.S.used to offer and it’s great to share a dream with others–humanitarian I think is the word.
    Living where I do some(many) immigrate here and are “miss-fits” and probably wouldn’t be welcome anywhere,You’ll always have that I think.They’re usually ignored by the folks just trying to be happy and give back (not take away) from the community.
    I think what Brian is doing is great and I find the posts informative and from talking to many expats “here”in the P.I.think Ecuador is too tame and boring. They’re mostly into nightlife and girl’s–cheap booze and questionable habits.That’s an acceptable source of income for the locals here and they carter to it. From what I read Ecuador is a breath of fresh air and hopefully a place where children can grow up with good values and adults live a quality of life hard to find in other places.
    I appreciate sharing that dream.
    Just my opinion.

    Reply
  • Diane November 17, 2011, 3:19 pm

    I read posts from expats who aren’t happy with the House Hunters show because they they don’t want others to move to Cuenca and drive up prices. It seems hypocritical because they once moved to Cuenca and probably drove up prices. The expats already there probably didn’t want them either.

    Reply
    • Bryan Haines November 17, 2011, 4:43 pm

      Thanks Diane – appreciate your comments. For a while, we were wondering if we were the only people who thought this sounded a little backward. Happy to know we aren’t alone…

      Reply
    • Ron May 14, 2012, 1:45 pm

      I use to watch HH international, but they use to always show homes that where VERY VERY expensive. I live in Costa Rica for the past 3 years, and it is expensive here but I hardly ever see homes that expensive that HHI showed on its Costa Rica episoides. Ron

      Reply
  • Steven Welch November 17, 2011, 9:18 am

    Here’s a link to the episode of House Hunters International about Cuenca.

    http://www.hgtv.com/hgtv/video/player/0,1000149,HGTV_32796_3130_45146-61461,00.html

    Have enjoyed your blog for many months. Thanks for doing it!! Keep up the great work.

    Reply
  • Diane November 15, 2011, 4:40 pm

    My husband and I did the first House Hunter’s Episode in Ecuador and it was also in Cuenca. Little did we know at the time that so many expats lived there or were moving there. We had been planning our move back to his home town of Cuenca for the past 34 years and are so happy to now to be living our dream. We too had a great time working with the crew to film the show, it was a wonderful experience. We’ll be looking forward to seeing your show!

    Reply
    • Bryan Haines November 16, 2011, 7:44 am

      Hi Diane – very nice. Thanks for posting your comment. How long ago was your episode? Are you still in Cuenca? I would love to find the episode link and share it on our site.

      While your husband isn’t technically an expat, I would love if you both would share your return to Cuenca story! http://gringosabroad.com/ecuador/share-your-story/share-your-expat-story-expat-profiles/ I think our readers would enjoy reading your experience. What do you think?

      Bryan

      Reply
    • Roni November 16, 2011, 11:25 am

      Hi Diane, I had forgotten about your episode until this post. I had enjoyed it. I don’t remember though,we’re you buying a vacation home or moving to Cuenca permanantly? Are you still there?
      I remember how much it meant to your husband to be back in his homeland. My husband and I are still looking at Cuenca as a retirement spot,but we have 2 more years of working.

      Reply
      • Diane November 17, 2011, 10:47 pm

        No Roni, it is not a vacation home. We live in our home in Cuenca 6 months out of the year and the other 6 months we spend in our home in the States. This was our plan and so far have been living that plan, it works great for us. Someday we may change that and spend more time in Cuenca but for now we go back and forth.

        Reply
  • Diane - Expat Tax November 14, 2011, 1:56 pm

    I love this show!

    Reply
  • Gary and Logan November 13, 2011, 7:24 pm

    I think there’s an old Greek saying (translated) “only the looser’s complain about the rules”.It’s always good however to know the rules before you play the game.Some places there are no rules or the rules only apply to the newest player.What’s scary is look where Greece is today and they say the U.S.is headed in the same direction .
    I certainly hope not cause if I could”afford” to live in the U.S.I probably would.
    Bryan seems to be explaining what the rules are and what works for his family to which I appreciate along with all the other input-posts.

    Reply
  • Gary and Logan November 13, 2011, 6:48 pm

    Some posts sound kinda like here and what we call”Spanish tradition”practiced here.We refer to it as “long nose”pricing and it is 2 or 3 times higher.
    If a foreigner”Gringo” rents there is he obligated to pay the past renters unpaid 6 month water,electric,phone bill to have utilities restored ?
    Gary and Logan

    Reply
    • Bryan Haines November 14, 2011, 3:24 pm

      Hi Gary and Logan – almost always the high price will reduce, when you know what it actually should be. I haven’t heard of the back rent/water/power being pushed on to new renters, but I suppose it does happen. We have always been give the latest months bill to show it is up to date, and we take over from there. It would be rare (in my opinion) if this happened. I wouldn’t hurt to confirm it before signing a lease – they can easily show the relevant bill to show its current. And if it isn’t, you can hold back the corresponding amount from future rent.

      Reply
      • Gary and Logan November 14, 2011, 6:40 pm

        Hello Bryan:I made a typo error saying “there” meaning” here” in the P.I..when referring to paying past due utilities by former tenants.I’ve no idea that that may be a practice in Ec.but would find it hard to believe just like I did find here in the P.I..Usually this happens on transfer of property but sometimes when you rent you are expected to be responsible for “reconnecting” utilities and are expected to pay others past due bills to have restoration.one doesn’t know until that point.
        My apologies

        Reply
        • Bryan Haines November 16, 2011, 7:35 am

          Hi Gary – no worries, either way, no big deal. It might happen here too – we have limited experience.

          All the best on your plans!

          Reply
    • Jim Cohoon November 14, 2011, 3:29 pm

      Wouldn’t common sense dictate that a Gringo would walk away from such a ridiculous suggestion as to pay someone else’s overdue/unpaid rent and utilities?

      Reply
      • garry ladouceur December 12, 2011, 1:34 pm

        I agree fully with you. I suspect however that sometimes the desire to acquire something can override common sense, if not dignity. I have been there and done that much to my everlasting shame.

        Reply
  • MaryAnn November 13, 2011, 11:02 am

    I love HGTV House Hunters International! They have broadcast a couple shows on Ecuador, one was a couple who were natives coming back. Two shows about couples buying vacation getaways in Cotacachi and Salinas. They were all good but these couples had deeper pockets than I have. I would have to rent so I am really looking forward to your show. Ecuador is on my short list of retirement spots, but I am having a tough time having to give up my car and my new flat screen TV. I know this sounds silly but being very American, my car is like part of me. I saved for 6 months for my big screen TV so having to sell it hurts even though I believe/hope that I will be too busy exploring Ecuador to have much time for TV…

    Reply
  • Dorothy Holabird November 13, 2011, 10:13 am

    I’m excited for your family to be on House Hunters. I’ve been a great fan of the show for a long time.

    I’m coming to Cuenca next month with papers in hand, and the hopes of settling there. While cost of living is one of the factors for me, I have travelled to Ecuador many times and love the country.

    I look forward to meeting both Ecuadorians and Expats, but definitely want to immerse myself in the culture.

    Thanks for presenting so many informative articles.
    Dorothy

    Reply
  • Gary and Logan November 13, 2011, 4:35 am

    Bryan:Thank you.I viewed your web and it is great.I am living in the Philippines and even though the rent is cheaper food costs,electricity,and other necessities are much higher here. pollution and corruption-crime is horrible.
    I am from the U.S.and will be moving there soon and all this info helps. I will be coming with my 7 year old Daughter and my Lady who has a 7 year old girl and am on S.S.so i am on a limited budget like most but Cuenca looks like heaven especially compared to here.I will have to ask others for good advice and appreciate the post and read loyally.
    Thanks Man
    Gary and Logan-Guia and Anna

    Reply
    • Bryan Haines November 13, 2011, 9:47 am

      Thanks for your feedback Gary. Glad to hear that our site has been helpful. Would you be interested to share your expat story? We have yet to cover the Philippines. I think it would make a great addition – and we could publish a new one once you get settled in Ecuador.

      Reply
      • Gary and Logan December 1, 2011, 6:36 pm

        Hello Bryan:It would be my pleasure to help post information on the Philippine’s and I will continue corresponding with friends-expats-I have met here that I am sure will keep me updated.Looking forward to it.
        Gary and Logan

        Reply
    • RG November 30, 2011, 11:32 pm

      Gary and Logan, I was born in the P.I. and since migrating here in the US in 1990, I never came back despite the fact that I still have a house there in BF Homes Paranaque, Metro Manila and other properties in Cavite. Your description about PI is true that’s why I never came back.

      I am now retired with SS pension and currently living here in Florida (from Virginia) with the hope that this house would be our final retirement home. I was mistaken. When we traveled in Salinas last July, I liked the place so much (especially the weather – no hurricane and the temperature is perfect for me) that I bought a condo (still under construction) along the malecon.

      Cuenca is a very beautiful city but my love for the beach prevailed. Once the condo is done, I’m definitely selling my house here in Florida and good bye USA.

      Reply
      • Gary and Logan December 1, 2011, 7:59 am

        Good for you.I love a success story and glad to see you found your paradise.I lived in Jacksonville Fl.area for a while and it was O.K.but not for me.Hope we can meet up soon and talk about good times.Thank you for your confirming my hopes of Ecuador.You tend not to trust after living HERE in the P.I. for an extended time.Have fun and enjoy.

        Reply
  • Jim Cohoon November 12, 2011, 10:12 pm

    Well, I got a little sidetracked by some of the comments about your casting video. I thoroughly enjoyed the video and am looking forward to seeing the actual episode. I think you did a great job of presenting “your” Cuenca. Cuenca is a great city to enjoy an amazing culture. I think there is something for everyone here. And finding inexpensive rentals will likely always be here if you want to live as an Ecuadorian which I think is the only way.

    Reply
  • John C. A. Manley November 12, 2011, 7:17 pm

    We appreciated seeing your video (you both look so much younger on video than your photos). Post more if you can (or start selling DVDS).

    Reply
    • Bryan Haines November 12, 2011, 10:23 pm

      Wow – thanks John. Can’t go wrong with younger… We plan to begin creating more videos, although I’m not too sure on the DVD’s. Thanks!

      Reply
  • Judy Passos November 12, 2011, 5:49 pm

    This is awesome news!! I love the show and I hope to retire in Ecuador in the not to distant future. I look forward to the episode Bryan and family.

    Judy

    Reply
    • Bryan Haines November 12, 2011, 10:24 pm

      Thanks Judy, hope the show doesn’t disappoint. We really have no control about it – its up to production now.

      Reply
  • David Ralston November 12, 2011, 5:05 pm

    tresa
    Si tu vive en un departmento conjunto de “muchos” gringos claro es un compuesto gringo. De que hable de a vivir con la comunidad?Usted vive con la comunidad? En que sentido hable ? Que significar este? Yo nunca he vivido arededor otros paisanos y siempre he estado un parte de la comunidad mejor. Yo hablo cada lengua de los paises de donde vivia. Hay 5. La cosa es que el dinero de social security es capsulado y se no cambiarse. Si los precios sube no hay mas dinero por la gente jubilado. No es una pregunta de a ser un parte de la comunidad.

    Reply
  • Mary and John November 12, 2011, 4:10 pm

    So very cool Brian…can’t wait to see the show, wonder if it will come out before Dec 11? That’s when we make our move to Ecuador, after we settle in we’ll try and connect. Thanks again for a great website, the info you provide has been extremely helpful and your daughter.. Drew is such a sweetie

    Reply
  • David Ralston November 12, 2011, 1:22 pm

    I’ve been an expat since 1985. Germany, Poland, England, Sweden, Thailand, The Philippines, Mexico, Spain, Colombia.

    Anderson is correct. I am looking for a new retirement haven because I got priced out of my last home. I lived in Thailand and had a condo on the beach that I rented for $750 a month for 5 years. After the advent of the Internet and forums, the expat population of my community boomed. In 6 months we got more people than in the previous 10 years. My rent went from $750 to $1500 after one lease contract. The same condo is now rented for $3500 a month 2 years later. No one listened when I mentioned keeping our town on the down-low then and now all the original expats are completely 100% priced out of the market and have moved onto the Philippines. The price they paid for that was adjusting to a level of danger that is not seen in Thailand. I left there after many house breakins and robberies.

    Same thing happened with San Jose and all the expat communities in Mexico. Hope it doesn’t happen to Ecuador but alas viewing the get rich quick real estate jockies that gravitate to each new expat haven and the pervasiveness of Internet marketing I’m afraid that it will happen in Cuenca within a few years.

    Penny Wise Pound Foolish

    Reply
    • Bryan Haines November 12, 2011, 1:49 pm

      I agree with you, that some areas have suffered from having too many expats. But its good to remember that these places are cities – they aren’t that easy to hide. And there are hundreds of places being promoted worldwide. Its not like Cuenca (or Sweden, Thailand, The Philippines or Mexico) are unique as “the” place to move to. There is simply so much information about so many places, to think that one program or one site is going to tip the balance is naive.

      If someone wants to maintain their low (or standard) cost of living – get out of the city. Move to a small town that isn’t being promoted and enjoy life as a local. Its interesting that it is often the same people who complain about the increasing prices who also socialize exclusively with other foreigners and live in Gringo Compounds. Part of the solution? I don’t really think so.

      Reply
      • David Ralston November 12, 2011, 2:12 pm

        The problem is that places like Cuenca are promoted as places for retirees on fixed incomes to retire to. They move down to places like Cuenca on their Social Security, learn basic Spanish and live fine. After the real estate marketers and the con-men find their way to the new expat town the prices explode and those retirees can no longer afford to live there.

        Koh Samui was exactly like Salinas. No way you can retiree there on social security now. Subic Bay, Phillipines was the same and the locals got priced out of decent housing and the got upset about it. Now almost no expats live there because of the backlash.

        Sure we can all move to some small Puebla and live. I lived in a Thai village for a year. You have to live like them or you stick out. That’s not how people want to retire. They want to be near infrastructure and their fellow countrymen. Just looking at prices on all the forums, gringos are asking upwards of 600$ a month for their apartments and the influx of gringos hasn’t even hit yet. Wait 5 years and it will cost more than Florida. Thailand does.

        You are young and adventurous. You can live with the locals. People don’t want to do that after working 30-40 years. That’s why they moved with their social security checks to Costa Rica and Panama. They aren’t moving there now.

        I understand that you think it is all out there for everyone to see and that is just the way it goes but trust me on this. You’ll see. The gringo trail isn’t a new thing but the crazy price acceleration is. It’s because of the Internet and shows like the one you took part in.

        It’s real simple math. 10,000 more Gringos come down to rent a $150 a month apartment because of HTV. The retirement communities in the USA watch EVERY episode of these. They can’t find one for $150 so they pay $500 because it’s still cheap. Then all the apartments for gringos are $500+. Why ? Because that is what the market will bear. So Cuencanos can’t find a place to rent in a good neighborhood because every single decent place has been picked through by gringos. Retirees can’t afford to live there on Social Security. What happens after that?

        There is a reason that the expats post that they don’t want more gringos coming down. They know what will happen to prices. Cuenca is being especially marketed to gringos. No other retirement haven is being marketed like Cuenca.

        Bucaramanga Colombia is basically the same as Cuenca and people aren’t moving there. Why ? Marketing.

        Reply
        • Jim Cohoon November 12, 2011, 9:51 pm

          “There is a reason that the expats post that they don’t want more gringos coming down.”

          Just curious why anyone should care if Cuenca expats don’t want more gringos coming down. If I’m stuck in a northern Canadian winter and decide Cuenca is for me, that’s none of anyone’s business except the Ecuadorian immigration people. Hope I don’t sound confrontational, I just don’t think it’s right that people whom I don’t know have an opinion on whether I should live in Cuenca or not.

          Reply
          • David Ralston November 12, 2011, 11:38 pm

            Hey Jim,

            I should have couched my response. I have no problem with gringos moving to Cuenca or any other place. It is just that, I and many others have seen something happen in the majority of American retirement areas that doesn’t happen in say Scandinavian, German and British retirement communities. They seem to have a sense of economic solidarity they Americans don’t.

            Americans drive prices up and quickly. A wiliness to overpay, not learning the language and an ever growing parasite class of expats that move to the next retirement spot and become rental agents, facilitators and realtors contribute to this.

            An Ecuadorian tenured high school teacher makes up to about $700 a month and rents for probably $150 a month for their home.
            An American moves in next door and pays $500 for the house next door. 230% more. It causes inflation. Then there is the price for services as well. Your handyman can’t come over because the gringo is paying him in one month what he used to make in 6 months. It is short sighted.

            Look at any of the expat real estate sites popping up. One bedrooms for $6-800. I can pretty well guarantee that Ecuadorians aren’t renting one bedrooms for $6-800 a month. It causes bad blood because of gentrification. I’ve seen it happen twice personally and 3 more times peripherally.

            Look at the Ecuadorian expat lawyers doing visas. $2400, $2800. My lawyer cost me $700 total for two visas but he only speaks Spanish.That’s about what all normal Ecuadorian lawyers charge.
            I didn’t just happen to get some crazy great deal.

            If Americans were moving down here, speaking Spanish and paying what Ecuadorians are paying and not driving prices up it wouldn’t matter. It affects other expats on fixed incomes and our Ecuadorian neighbors.

            I’ve heard it time and time again. “What do you care what I pay, it’s my money”. Well ok but there are repercussions to not living like the locals. That’s not my opinion, that is fact. Look at Costa Rica, Panama, Mexico, The Philippines, St. Croix, St Thomas and Thailand. Retirees get priced out, locals get really pissed off and the real estate charlatans move on to the next retirement haven.

            “I got mine” is why alot of people leave the US. That is something that should be left there.
            I know I am speaking to myself here but truly, every great American expat community has been broken up by raising prices fueled by American exceptionalism.

            Next year baby boomers turn 67. Full Social Security starts getting paid. They are coming. They are coming in the thousands as soon as those checks start coming. They are the largest group of retirees humanity has ever known. Lets hope that this time we can all have some sense.

          • Ron November 13, 2011, 10:32 am

            Heh David, You got a Blog?Because I would follow it.You’re a well informed man.

          • David Ralston November 13, 2011, 2:43 pm

            No blog Ron. I’ve just been on the internet seeing this since it really started happening in 1999. Totally devastated my town in Thailand. It was a pretty beach town so the monied expats pushed all the fixed income guys out.

            We all moved to the Philippines. It wasn’t a pretty beach town so when the swarm came on fixed incomes the money didn’t follow. There was a backlash from the locals and the animosity started. I left and probably 50% of the others left because it became unsafe.
            Interesting times we live in. World population just hit 7 billion.

        • Garry Ladouceur December 11, 2011, 8:43 pm

          Colombia. And not getting killed might have some influence on choice. I am moving to equador from Mexico. I wonder why. Marketing you think?

          Reply
          • David Ralston July 25, 2012, 7:32 pm

            You think Bucaramanga, Colombia is dangerous ?
            Ok… Think what you want but it is every bit as safe as Cuenca, better infrastructure and %50 less money.

      • tresa kon November 12, 2011, 2:50 pm

        Its interesting that it is often the same people who complain about the increasing prices who also socialize exclusively with other foreigners and live in Gringo Compounds. AMEN!

        Although I do live in a building with lots of gringos (we bought 3 years ago before the onslaught), we don’t spend lots of time with them. It is such a great city and country to learn about the culture and get to know the people.

        Reply
        • Bryan Haines November 12, 2011, 3:01 pm

          Agreed Tresa – there is so much more to Latin America than North Americans. Moving abroad for low prices is not really a recipe for success – moving to enjoy and (eventually) become part of the local culture should be the ultimate goal.

          Glad to hear that you are integrating. We have some Gringo friends (of course) but we spend the majority of our time with Spanish speaking Ecuadorians. We work exclusively with Ecuadorians as well.

          Reply
      • Garry Ladouceur December 11, 2011, 8:30 pm

        As a statement, increasing the number of expats will cause inflation in real estate has been demonstrated in many studies. At the same time, this immigration acts as a foreign investment and improves the development of the areas affected. There is at once a give and take. This issue will become more acute now as baby boomers arrive at retirement with a good set of resources.

        Panama and Mexico are often viewed as examples where this phenomenon can be seen. Prices have gone up in expat areas and locals get pushed to the peripheries. This I dont think will happen in Equador.

        Panama and Mexico are different because these countries have strong and unique links to the USA. Some Good. Some not so good. It is more natural for an American to go to Panama which once belonged to the USA and Mexico because Mexico has always been a neighbour that is well known and where many Mexicans in fact now live in the USA and as such export the culture. This is not the case with Equador.

        Thus, Equador has to compete in a much larger market than say San Miguel de Allende. An American can just as easily retire to Argentina, Chile, Thailand, Malaysia with their special immigration helping policies, Indonesia and even in many countries in Europe where prices are low. The key factors in all of this of course remain price, i.e. cost of living, but just as importantly, climate, health care, culture and security. Some of these factors are harder to sell than others, i.e. health care. It is not simply health care in Equador, but why move to Equador when I know that I can get really good Health care in Mexico and at the same time be closer to the kids.

        Yes, there will be inflation if there is a greater movement of Americans or canadians or europeans to Equador. The advertising will drive this as will the price. But price is ultimately a national issue and to have prices rise in a significant way will require that prices rise in all of Equador which has 12 million people or so. I dont think that this will happen too soon. I congratulate Bryan and his family for what they are doing. I think that immigration will help Equador and help develop infrastructure, establish more international sensibilities in both the visitor and the visited and yes, help a few locals make some money and find some work. There is a limit to exploitation and there is little wrong with paying a fair share.

        Reply
    • Ron November 13, 2011, 10:14 am

      Thank you David. You hit the nail right on the head. My husband and I were all set to retire to Merida,Mexico after several trips of checking out rentals and real estate for sale. We are on a retirement budget and decided it was totally doable. We had 1 1/2 years before we could make it a reality and then House Hunters International did 2 episodes of expats buying real estate there and within 6 months of airing we were priced out of Merida. Then we happened upon Cuenca and were actually even more pleased because of the milder climate(reminded us of Ajijic,Mexico’s weather,which also got priced out of this world by expat real estate jockying,but that’s another story) Now we get Brian’s blog and we see it happening all over again. Brian,I don’t know if you realize the can of worms you are opening. Your afforable paradise will be turned on it’s ear very shortly (6 months to a year) of airing of your episode. You and your family had better start looking for your next paradise.But please let me know where it is,so I don’t go theer. No offense. But at our age,our life time savings have got to last,because our higher earning years are behind us.

      Reply
      • Garry Ladouceur December 11, 2011, 8:36 pm

        With the mass murders in Vera Cruz and the coastal areas, i think that housing costs will drop in Merida. I have checked the prices of homes in Merida off and on and I have not noted any significant increases. I am not sure where you get your numbers. There are many services out there that predict prices. I would check up on some of these to get an idea of the stability of costs. There is inflation in Mexico and the dollar is not worth as much any more. These two factors could account for your problems. I dont think a tv program really makes much of a difference.

        Reply
  • Anderson Davies November 12, 2011, 10:26 am

    You know your going to drive the price of real estate up, just like what happened to Costa Rica and Belize. I had a few more years before I could have made that a reality.
    Oh well I guess I will have to look somewhere else. Where you live sounded right up my alley.

    Reply
    • Bryan Haines November 12, 2011, 1:24 pm

      Really?!? You’re going to not move to a city because of a 30 minute cable TV program that hasn’t even come out yet? You realize that this isn’t the first time Ecuador has been covered, right? All the best finding a place that the media hasn’t covered. :)

      You know, you can find a nice place for $200 in Cuenca and you can find an equally nice place for $600 (plus condo fees) – well maybe a little nicer… Prices depend primarily on this: What is the gringo willing to pay? If someone who was paying $1000 in the States for an apartment, finds a great place in Cuenca for $500 – why not snap it up? But maybe this apartment is actually only worth $250 or $300? Will you still pay it? How will you find out what it is really worth? There are landlords in Cuenca (right now, before the show comes out) that price their places very high, only wanting to rent to Gringos. Who is responsible for the high prices? People like us, who write about living abroad? Or the individuals who are willingly paying any price?

      One of the apartments we’ve rented (we’ve been in a few) cost just $180. It was a 3 bedroom / 2 bathroom, brand-new place with an amazing view. It was about 15 minutes from the center. It wasn’t advertised – we walked around a neighborhood that we liked and asked around about some empty places. This is how we found our current apartment as well. If you use a realtor or an English classifieds listing, you’ll probably be paying too much – and add to the increasing costs.

      So don’t give up on Cuenca. If you find an apartment like a local, you’ll pay a local (or close to) price.

      Reply
      • Ron November 13, 2011, 10:23 am

        No offense Brian,but you are wrong. Has this other media coverage been main stream like HGTV? Or are you talking about internet You-Tube stuff. If i hadn’t seen it happen to Merida myself,I wouldn’t have believed it. And by the way,it’s not just that housing prices go up but ALL costs go up. It’s called “the gringo effect”. Google it. And not only that expat real estate people drive up the prices,but locals jump on the band wagons. They have televisions. They becomem aware of what is happening to real estate around them and of course want a piece of the action–who wouldn’t. Then what happens is not only can’t expats retiring to an area find affordable housing and cost of living,but LOCALS will complain of high cost of rentals. And you will wistfully be saying “remember when we had that $180 rental,LOL”.

        Reply
        • David Ralston November 13, 2011, 2:33 pm

          Nail on head Ron

          Check out those prices and then look at the pictures of the restaurant. Gringo prices from gringo expats.
          Ham and Cheese Sandwich $4.50. Mocachino $4.50. Lemon Pie $3.00. Total for your 3 coarse sandwich meal. $12.00. It’s a typical ground floor restaurant. Nothing special about it at all. Nothing.

          Cheap right ? Not when a 5 course lunch normally costs $2.50 in Ecuador. That’s including your coffee and desert and much more than a sandwich.

          Ron people don’t believe it until they see it happen with their own eyes.. Wait till Winter of 2013 when the babyboomers have 6 months of full social security in the bank. That restaurant will be packed and new price standards will be set for people dealing with gringos.
          The Ecuadorians will follow suit and after awhile the backlash will happen.

          Add the whole, “Look honey here’s the website of that nice couple from TV. They say you can rent for $180 a month”, hits. Multiple that by 10,000? 20,000? 30,000 ?

          World War Two ended in September of 1945, GI’s came home and started having babies. In late summer of 1946 the baby boom happened. Full retirement from SSI is at 67 years old. Summer 1946+67= Summer 2013. They are going to be coming from 2013-2023 in droves. The gringo effect has NEVER before happened to the extent that it will in the next 10 years.
          Add to that that Cuenca specifically is the most heavily marketed retirement area.. Well, the writing is on the wall.

          What happened in Mexico is but a small precursor to what is coming. The last thing a place like Cuenca needs is a show telling people to come rent, it’s cheap.
          How utterly short sited.

          If you can get here before 2013 and PURCHASE a home you should be ok. If not, well Cuenca rhymes with Panama, Costa Rica and Mexico no ?

          Reply
          • Bryan Haines November 13, 2011, 3:04 pm

            Hi David, while I agree with much of what you said, I think you need to be careful passing judgement on a program that you haven’t seen. Just because we have paid $180 for a great place doesn’t mean that’s what the show covers. We were involved in a loose reenactment. Lets wait until you see the program before you pass judgement.

            Your estimates for 10-30,000 gringos arriving after seeing a tv show are based on what? Sure, advertising works. Everyone knows that. But the idea that one show will cause tens of thousands of people to give up their American dream for a challenging (culture/language) life in South America is quite difficult to entertain. To clarify, the show is not a marketing piece for Cuenca. No one in Cuenca paid for this. It is a semi-reality show of a Canadian family (us) who moved abroad.

            This is such an overreaction. Along with a number of other commenters, you are burying Cuenca before the test results have come back. Lets take a breath and think about this. Large media outlets have been promoting Cuenca for years. Best estimates puts Cuenca’s Gringo population at approx 3000. Many have been here 5, 10 or even 15 years. After years of promotion.

            Your comments about the Moca Cafe are true – by Cuenca standards it is not cheap. But who says this is driven by the gringo invasion? Every city, in every country, has cheap and high end options. Cuenca is no different. Its called a free market. BTW, I know the owner and they aren’t gringos as you suggest. She is an Ecuadorian. And these prices don’t demonstrate a typical price increases – they are simply a high end option. And despite what many commenters think, there are many wealthy Ecuadorians, especially in Cuenca who could easily afford this.

          • David Ralston November 13, 2011, 3:56 pm

            Trish is Ecuadorian ?

            That’s her announcing her purchasing of Cafe Mocha and posting the new webpage in which I posted the menu. Doesn’t look high end to me. Looks normal.

            Also I wasn’t passing judgement on episode of HGTV. I said that your blog states this. You even replied in this thread to Anderson that $180 is feasible.

            As for 10-30000 moving to Cuenca. Thats not based on your one television appearance. That’s based on the largest amount of retirees retiring next year EVER, actively looking for retirement havens.The baby boomers + what Ron says about the power of HGTV. It will happen.

            Wait till they all want to volunteer to teach English. That had all my English teacher mates in Thailand moving on to Cambodia where they all are now.

            I’m not burying Cuenca. I saying that going on an International TV shows extolling the virtues of cheap rent and living to people that normally would not know about it changes things. Your normal 65 year old isn’t using the Interent, they are using word of mouth and TV and until HGTV fear of the unknown keep the masses at bay.

          • Bryan Haines November 13, 2011, 5:08 pm

            No, I don’t suppose the current owner is. Just spoke with the previous owner and she told me she sold it about 6 months ago – my mistake. The previous owner is Ecuadorian. In regards to the rest of your comment, I think we’ve been over it all ready, so I’m going to let it set.

            Thanks for commenting!

        • Diane November 17, 2011, 3:33 pm

          It’s not just HGTV. Blame it on International Living. Blame it on the expats who live in a great place and tell their friends, who tell their friends, etc. Shouldn’t we all have the right to be informed and make decisions about where we want to live, without those already there complaining? They heard about it somehow but don’t want others to hear about it. I’m sure there were people complaining about THEM before they moved there. Some expats are being hypocrites. They wanted to move there for the low prices, weather, etc. but they don’t want anyone else to do what they did.

          Reply
        • Diane November 17, 2011, 3:40 pm

          Shall we censor TV or magazines (International Living) or other forms of media to protect expats living in a foreign city for the same reason others want to move there? This is the information age and we all have a right to be informed. If you moved somewhere for the low cost of living, why do others not have the right to do the same. If it drove up prices, I’m sure the poor locals aren’t complaining about having more income. It’s just the people who think they should have a monopoly on the advantages of living somewhere. I’m sure the first expats drove up the prices when they originally started coming to an unknown place as well.

          Reply
        • Garry Ladouceur December 11, 2011, 9:29 pm

          “They” are just ordinary people who are influenced by the market. It is not a bandwagon or a tv program. It is just common sense that affects all regardless of origin. I think.

          Now, i find your take on things a bit nonsensical if you will pardon the word Ron. No offence intended. But real estate is different see. What tends to happen if there is a greater demand is that more houses are built. Prices might be driven up in the other houses, but that was back then when there were a fewer houses. Now, there are more houses and more new houses that cost more to build. Some drive up the prices of these other preexisting houses, some do not because they are not the same product. I bet most gringos buy new stock. Houses that were built for them. Prices are affected by many things and a house is a house. Value is what people are willing to pay. Perhaps a different sort of person moves in after a bit. Someone richer say. If there is enough of these, more houses will be built for them. This might drive up the average price of houses but the cheaper house is still cheap. what might change in value is the land perhaps for that is scarce but generally demand will foster growth in the housing numbers and reduce the throng lining up for cheaper but lower quality houses.

          Garry.

          Reply
      • Garry Ladouceur December 11, 2011, 8:54 pm

        I think price is a factor of what a person is willing to pay. If someone like me wants to get a house worth a 1000 dollars per month then this is my price and that is how much that particular house is worth. Regardless of where I live. I feel good paying what I can afford. It helps me, it helps the people I am buying from. If another person has another perspective on price, i.e, I value travel more than accomodation and will fight tooth and nail to make the vendor bleed, then by all means. It is a market after all and generally it is true that the best product tends to go to the highest bidder. I am sure that with 1000 dollars, one could get a bigger house, with a bigger parking lot and perhaps a backyard and built with stone instead of bricks and so on…. Let the folks pay what they can and will. Not what will hurt the community. What is the community anyway. Is this the first rule that the expat community imposes. Dont buy a big house. Dont walk your dog on sundays. dont. dont. I left the dont behind in switzerland.

        Reply

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