If money wasn't an issue, where would you retire? why?

I have been thinking of retiring for the last couple of years but don't have the courage to really do it. Is the money too sweet? or am I scared to leave everything behind? I'm not really sure...

Since the beginning of 2021, I have been looking for places to retire but can't really decide. Most of my friends have retired in the Caribbean, Mexico, Italy, Spain, Monaco, France, Switzerland, and Montenegro. But, I feel like none of these places are really special. Sure, they are the most beautiful places I've been to, but, they don't feel that special anymore.

Probably, my main choice will be Iceland, but open to recommendations.

I'm planning to buy land in the 60-90 minutes north of ReykjavΓ­k, and design a futuristic house with glass walls. The biggest reason I'm choosing Iceland is that because it's very isolated and calm. I don't want to live in a city, or even a country with noise pollution and noisy people.

Iceland

The land would be in an isolated area like this;
LandHouseAnd the house would be similar to this, just little bigger and with an outside hydropool.

Would you like to retire in Iceland?

Comments (97)

10mo
islandboy649242, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I live in London and I'm only 21 but hoping to break into the industry soon. My choice of retirement location would either be Monaco, Turks and Caicos (where I'm from) or in the English/ Scottish countryside

10mo
Arroz con Pollo, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Iceland too cold. Since money isn't an issue, I'm going with a huge beach house on several acres so that I have no neighbors and nobody on my beach.

Not sure which country. Private island is a no for me because too isolated and it's a pain dealing with basic utilities and necessities. Something like necker island would be dope.

Older I get, more I value privacy. I have no interest in flexing my middle class wealth.

A quiet beach where I can play music as loud as I want or have absolute silence except for the waves crashing down. Area needs to be safe and secure (3rd world beaches can get sketchy even during the day, and at night it's a no-go without security).

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10mo
IncomingIBDreject, what's your opinion? Comment below:

You wouldn't have the privacy though you're looking for at least on a broader scale. One home would be necessary.Β 

Array

9mo
WolfofWSO, what's your opinion? Comment below:

You and I would get along.Β  I'm a middle class commoner and really value my privacy.Β  No need to flaunt my fake status (on WSO or elsewhere online).

Array

9mo
Isaiah_53_5 πŸ’ŽπŸ™ŒπŸ’ŽπŸ™ŒπŸ’Ž, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Never Happened

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

10mo
Teller in Branch - Personal Loans, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Not much to eat besides lamb, whale and shark in Iceland? Joke aside it's so cold. Are you planning to split time between Iceland and parts of Europe/North America? I could see it being as part of an overall retirement plan to spend a few months there every hear. Just incredible scenery.

VP
  • 2
10mo
freud_d, what's your opinion? Comment below:

As I get older, I try to eat healthier so Iceland is a perfect choice for that. I agree, Iceland doesn't have fatty and sugary foods that make your mouth water just by the smell of it, but I would say they have some pretty good healthy stuff. Most of the Icelandic cuisine consists of seafood, lamb, and some really weird things. Though, some of the tastiest fish and lamb I have ever eaten was in Iceland.

Yes, that's also one of the reasons I want Iceland to be my main location. It's 6 hours from NYC and 5 hours from the farthest places in Europe. I would probably spend most of my time resting while watching the Northern Lights and on road trips in Europe. Though I feel like I may get too bored and travel most of the time, so it's a little bit complicated for now...

Yes, I think there is not a single country with better scenery than Iceland. It's very unique.

10mo
Pierogi Equities, what's your opinion? Comment below:

freud_d

but I would say they have some pretty good healthy stuff.

Aren't a lot of Icelandic people closely related to each other, to the point that it could result in some possible defects? I feel like I read that somewhere.

Quant (ˈkwÀnt) n: An expert, someone who knows more and more about less and less until they know everything about nothing.

10mo
Ferris Bueller, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Lamb they have there is so good. Love how they are totally free range and just let their sheep loose and do whatever for a few months, then the whole village will go and corral them back.

Biggest thing noticed about why their food is good comes down to the water, it really makes a difference there.Β 

Most Helpful
10mo
GoingToBeAnMD, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I'm a little older than most here so I already have my retirement community picked out and hope to be out there in the next 10 years or so. I decided just based on what I want my days to looks like as well as the practical side of needing good healthcare nearby. So I'm choosing to spend the rest of my life playing golf in the mornings and drinking wine while grilling in the afternoon and repeating that until the day I die. I have picked my retirement community accordingly and it's in a city that contains lots of golf courses in case I get tired of playing the two that will be right outside my front door. I won't retire with all the money in the world but more than enough to do this at 55 and never have to work again.Β Β 

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  • 8
10mo
GoingToBeAnMD, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I'm going to keep that private since a lot of my colleagues know about my plans and it would identify me too much.Β Β 

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10mo
GoingToBeAnMD, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I think it's a very achievable dream. Sure, I won't be buying a home in Pebble Beach, but there's lots of golf communities/cities where you can do this as long a you have a decent-to-above-average nest egg.Β 

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6mo
Isaiah_53_5 πŸ’ŽπŸ™ŒπŸ’ŽπŸ™ŒπŸ’Ž, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Newport Beach is where you need to be.

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

6mo
Isaiah_53_5 πŸ’ŽπŸ™ŒπŸ’ŽπŸ™ŒπŸ’Ž, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Newport Beach is where you need to be.

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

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10mo
Anonymous Monkey, what's your opinion? Comment below:

What golf community are you eyeing up?

10mo
yourgranny101, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Mars. I do not think my mind would ever let me retire completely, so I would at least want to retire in a place where my contributions would be worthwhile as long as I am not too old.

10mo
gsssa 2050, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Some mix of Southern Germany (Baden-Wurtenburg near Freiburg or Bavarian alps), Northern Israel and South Australia but practically it will likely entail 1/2 of those with somewhere on East coast, probably VA or outer suburbs of NYC.

10mo
gsssa 2050, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Sure, I have family in Australia and the US who I visit often so having houses there makes it far easier. I guess beyond that South Australia is one of the most naturally beautiful areas on Earth imo and has a strong level of cultural vibrancy. Israel is probably the most unusual option (given I'm not Jewish) but it is ironically one of the safest countries in the Mediterranean and is also very naturally appealing, especially in the North, as well as historically interesting and living in 'a piece of history' has been an interesting idea to me for a while. The South German part is mainly for skiing options and the winter, mostly less than 1hr to high quality slopes and living there feels easy in regards to healthΒ  care and transport relative to the US.Β 

I guess another caveat would be that I already own a house (was only 400kUS when I bought, possibly worth 6-700k now) in Adelaide in South Australia which I've never lived in, just rented, and although I'm not Analyst 1 anymore I'm not very senior either. I also plan on buying a house/apartment in either Germany or Israel in the next 3-5 years more as short term real estate exposure than holiday home.

10mo
Pierogi Equities, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Maine, place is beautifully amazing and just self-isolated enough.

Quant (ˈkwÀnt) n: An expert, someone who knows more and more about less and less until they know everything about nothing.

  • 2
10mo
Sequoia, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I'd probably Leo to travel between two locations. Love Chicago as it's my hometown & would ideally like to the be there from April - Sept & probably somewhere warmer in the from Oct - Mar. Maybe Australia, considering buying a place there at some pointΒ 

10mo
Leonidas, what's your opinion? Comment below:

In the same boat as you, and am contemplating retirement in the next few years.

But I would like to live in the capital city of a country with free healthcare, so am deciding between London, Dublin, Stockholm and Oslo.

Once I have made my final decision on where to retire, my most likely route would be to get a job in that city, wait until I'm a citizen, then retire.

Calling Ron Paul an isolationist is like calling your neighbor a hermit because he doesn't come over to your property and break your windows.
  • 1
10mo
CompBanker, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I recently faced this question having just retired. Knowing myself, I will grow restless if I retire to any single location for an extended period of time. I'm also quite young and my needs in my 30s (now) are different than my future needs in my 60s+. With that in mind, I don't think it is possible to pick a single location. My plan is therefore to spend the winter months in a warm climate where I can see family, play outdoor sports, and relax in the sun. Each year I plan to pick a new (international) city to spend the summer months. To me, this will enable me to check all the boxes and maintain flexibility to adapt to my own evolving needs/desires. I'm just getting started though, so we will see how it goes…

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  • 4
10mo
AndyLouis, what's your opinion? Comment below:

that's awesome, glad to hear. let me know if you're ever down in south america

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10mo
CompBanker, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Had to google FATFIRE. I'm in a better position than FATFIRE seems to recommend. My objective is to be able to continue my lifestyle solely on 2-3% annual dividends while growing the principal rather than depleting it. Should be relatively easy… but life is unpredictable, so we will see….

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10mo
thebrofessor, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Would love if you expanded on this in your own thread!

i don't have fuck you money yet and it's too early to seriously think about retirement apart from saving for it, but if money wasn't an issue and I didn't have a job to go to, I'd split between 3 locations: a beach house near where I am now, Central America (likely Costa Rica), and Western Europe (idk where, but should have a better idea after this year)

optionality is the key

10mo
CompBanker, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I'm not opposed to starting my own thread. Done a number of Ask me Anything threads over the years, I suppose one final one wouldn't hurt. What kind of questions do you think people would want to ask in such a thread?Β 

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10mo
Devils Advocate, what's your opinion? Comment below:

You still single? Kids on the horizon? Im in my 30s as well and plan to retire in the next 5 years…haven't really factored in whether I want to start a family but that has more to do with the loss of flexibility than money

10mo
CompBanker, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Still single. No kids in the plan. That would meaningfully change the equation for me … don't think I could handle the loss of flexibility that comes with having kids.

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10mo
Pizzaman Sachs, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I love California so I'd like to be in SF or one of the small beach towns near it. And I would like to have a vacation house or penthouse in Poland (city tbd).

10mo
Pierogi Equities, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Curious why Poland, don't see that many other people interested in it. I love it personally as I have family there. Wroclaw would be really nice I would imagine since it has a good combination of being developed and relaxed at the same time.

Quant (ˈkwÀnt) n: An expert, someone who knows more and more about less and less until they know everything about nothing.

10mo
Pizzaman Sachs, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Similar to you I have family friends there and my family is from there. I've only been to Warsaw, Krakow & the Zakopane area but I loved all of it (Wroclaw is on my list for the future).

  • 1
10mo
jarstar1, what's your opinion? Comment below:

If I could have multiple homes, 1st: NYC - brownstone on the UES or similar, the arts offerings in NYC are so hard to beat (LA is a close second but I prefer being able to walk places), 2nd: beach house on the Cape or Long Island, 3rd: ranch or ski chalet in CO/UT/WY.

If I had to choose one, I'd probably chose NYC. I can always rent the others for vacations, but I'd need to be around people and culture or I'd go out of my mind.Β 

10mo
Angus Macgyver, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I would choose NYC too. If money was no object. Unfortunately I'm probably not going to be the next Bezos or the next Kravis or probably not even the next Paul Taubman.

But if you had a billion dollars, why wouldn't you want to retire in NYC (or other large city)? Access to all of the entertainment you could want, and you never have to step into the street, you can just hitch a ride anywhere you want in your helicopter.

Although if you're one of those people who needs a backyard or something, you could do it the other way and retire somewhere upstate and just helicopter your way to the city every time you have a craving for good sushi.

10mo
IncomingIBDreject, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I think the main argument would be as you get older, you're not in the best shape as you were and so while endless entertainment and parties sound fun, it may too physically taxing for someone at that age.Β  I've definitely seen my parents get physically weaker from where they were a few decades ago. That's why people settle for things a bit more toned down like a beach house or golf community.Β 

Array

10mo
CompBanker, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I second JoeCamel here …. Marbella is a pretty sweet place. I went last year and loved it.

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  • 1
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10mo
Anonymous Monkey, what's your opinion? Comment below:

-

10mo
Sio, what's your opinion? Comment below:

The main one that comes to my mind is the Golden Triangle in Portugal. Know of somebody currently in the process of building villas there, think they were looking at just under €2m/per for entry-level ones. Apparently famous rich people live there, suggesting it could be a minimized version of Calabasas/Monaco.Β 

10mo
Devils Advocate, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Really want to be done with finance by 40. I've been doing banking since I was an analyst with no pauses. Don't think I'll ever fully retire but want to be in a position to "fuck off" and focus on passion projects (no idea what those are yet)
Β 

Ideally, I want to maintain a primary residence in New York and then probably a home in South Florida so I have flexibility during seasonal changes. I could also see myself doing whole ski seasons in Colorado.

10mo
C.R.E. Shervin, what's your opinion? Comment below:

If money is no issue, they just retire in one place?

I would keep my home in NYC, with a condo/house in France(maybe 2, one Paris, and one around Nice). Would keep a house in Charleston, and probably a house in New Orleans Garden District.Β  One more home in either Cartegena, St. Barths, or Sint Maarten.Β  St. Barths is more beautiful, but the other two have better culture/food.

10mo
its-accrual-world, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Went to Norway two years ago and that country absolutely blew my mind. Everywhere I went was extremely clean, proper, beautiful, etc. The locals are very warm and friendly too. There's an insane amount of natural beauty concentrated in this one relatively small country, and you could definitely spend a lifetime exploring all it has to offer. The highlight of my trip was going to Stavanger and hiking Pulpit Rock, which had incredible sweeping views of Lysefjord.

It'll obviously be a bit tough to learn the language and get accustomed to the new culture, but it's a global enough place where English is pretty widespread so that's a good starting-off point.Β 

10mo
anon6414, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Big fan of Norway as well. From a practical perspective, I did some casual research on buying a house there and it's one of the more lax countries in terms of foreigners buying property (if you can navigate the language barrier). Plus I found lots of great homes in the 500k-1.2m range, so even if money is an issue I'm strongly considering it as an option down the line.Β 

10mo
BondEquityEarningsyieldRatio, what's your opinion? Comment below:

From a Scandinavian POV:

Most people saying they'd live in Scandinavia when they retire, have no idea how bad Scandinavian winters get. I've lived in Scandinavia throughout most of my life and what I've realized is that the winter is horrible: There are only a few hours of sunlight everyday (cases of seasonal depression are high), and being outside without proper clothing is close to torture. However, this makes for cozy christmas days in front of the fireplace and great skiing.Β 

The winters will provide you with seasonal depression, so I'd suggest having somewhere hot where you could live during parts of the year. I'd want an apartment in urban Oslo and a cabin somewhere mountainous (Hemsedal/Geilo) that I could visit throughout the year, and go skiing/hiking. Additionally, I'd like a house somewhere tropical where the temperatures never drop below 20 degrees C (68 F), ideally in SE Asia, South Pacific or Central Americas. This would be a place where I could go on excursions when the winter is at it's worst (late January/February/March). A must have amenity of this place would be pristine scuba diving, white coral sand beaches, great cuisine and a friendly culture.Β 

In Norway they have a saying: "Borte bra, men hjemme best", which translates directly to "Away: good, at home: best" :).Β I feel a strong belonging to Scandinavia, so I'd never want to travel away more than a few months a year.

10mo
ke18sb, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Wait, how old are you OP? You listed 8 places where you have friends that are already retired. That's not only a high retired friend count, but even more so that its so spread out as moving somewhere in retirement is less likely the norm. Can't figure out if this is real of bs.Β 

Anyway, that house looks amazing, but its probably cold af and in the middle of no where so potentially pretty boring, other than just visiting from time to time.Β 

10mo
Yankee Doodle, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Somewhere I can build a self-sustaining homestead of likeminded families seeking independence from bullshit and wanting to live in a society of their own creation. Thinking the backwoods of Maine, West Virginia, Montana, or Alaska.

Alternatively, somewhere along the Great Lakes if I choose to be a normie.

"Work ethic, work ethic" - Vince Vaughn

  • 1
9mo
WolfofWSO, what's your opinion? Comment below:

No particular order.

Area 51

Somewhere in South Dakota or Montana where I'd have a fleet of ATV's used for exploring.

Some beach, some where.

Get some fancy RV and just go exploring.

Be one of those frequent cruisers and spend 6 months of the year on a cruise ship.

Array

9mo
Isaiah_53_5 πŸ’ŽπŸ™ŒπŸ’ŽπŸ™ŒπŸ’Ž, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Never Happened

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

9mo
canterlot, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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6mo
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