Latin America

Expat Files – 07.26.15

-If you come down to Latin America with only a few suitcases and bags(highly recommended), you’ll eventually need a whole lot of stuff to fill up that house or apartment. So today we have some great tips on how to find the best deals and best selection of any and all new and used stuff you might need once you …

Latin America

Expat Files – 07.24.15

-Today we have a report on my recent Latin American “Expat Wisdom” seminar that ended just a few days ago. How did go? We’ll discuss an email from a married couple to see what they made of it.

-Don’t be hasty when seeking out short-term rentals. Due diligence is necessary and that takes some time. Its a renter’s market and you must be prepared to low ball them and walk away. There are hundreds of rentals available and owners know it. So if you can pull it off, always have a local negociate without you present to avoid “gringo prices”.

-More details on achieving temporary and permanent residency. The rules are always changing and are slightly different from country to country.

-The two simplest and least expensive Latin residency programs as of July 2015

-A discussion regarding gringos and expats who decide to skip out of the USA leaving a trail of unpaid debts. Sometimes that’s actually part of the plan. True, a good percentage of expats do occasionally leave some dirty laundry behind and on purpose – out of sight out of mind. But be careful. What happens if for some reason one has to return to the states if even for a funeral or a short business trip? Will that dirty laundary come back to haunt you? Depends. What about skipping out on federal debts like taxes and school loans?

-How the Uncle Sam can block your passport and get you deported back to Cleveland

Follow the consult link on the main page at and Johnny will help you sort out your Latin American plans.

Latin America

Expat Files – 07.19.15

-The so called “Lag Time” effect is alive and well here in Latin America.
Example: now for the first time there’s an “all new” great gringo expat business idea that’s flourishing. Only thing is, I spoke about this exact opportunity on a show over 4 years ago. Yes, it took 4 years to get here and looks like whoever’s doing it is set to make a killing. Which only proves once again that Expat wannabees and gonnabees can follow some simple formulas and do much the same thing.

-Panama just enacted price controls on 28 basic food items. Any pinhead knows price controls never ever work in the long run and only tend to distort the economy. Price controls are the best way to create black and grey markets and guaranteed shortages. Alas, who ever said govt decision makers rate any higher than pinheads.

-The truth about bugs, bats, wasps, snakes and other things that creep along in the night. Its true that rainforest creatures get cold and damp too. They’re near, at hand, and forever trying to find a way to co-exist with us. Be prepared for the occasional/inevitable) encounter so ladies, now might be time to think about growing a thicker skin.


Expat Files – 07.17.15

-Venezuela’s economy and currency, the Bolivar, are so out of control that the grey-market street exchange rate for dollars is now 50 times the official bank rate. With the “official” yearly inflation rate now pegged at 68%, the real number for basic goods is more like 500%. Meanwhile Chinese “saviors” have shown up. They are stealthily buying up everything they can (for dollars of course), picking up dying businesses, land and buildings at the ultra-fire sale of a lifetime.


Expat Files – 07.12.15

-More of the latest updates on certain Latin permanent residency programs for Expats. Note that very soon residency application requirements will be getting tougher. That means you’d better get on the stick and start making plans.        -Today we have another absolutely true, but very sad story, coming from a disjointed middle-class Latin American family with some members living …


Expat Files – 07.10.15

-Gringos, gringas and new Expats beware. If you’re driving through Latin America and find the need to stop at a hotel for the night don’t get fooled when you see very inviting hotel signs saying ”Auto- Hotel”. Even if they look nice, new, safe and secure, these places are NOT the Latin equivalent of a Budgetel or a Motel 6. …


Expat Files – 07.05.15

-What’s the story on property taxes in Latin America? Maybe you’ve heard they’re ridiculously low- and they are. Note that by Latin standards, even when property taxes are considered quite high, you can bet they’d be 4 times as much up in the first world. Remember, nothing is standard down here. Things are infinitely flexible- including property valuations for tax …


Expat Files – 07.03.15

-What’s the real cost of first-world living in Latin America? Everyone wants to know exact figures and how to make a plan and formulate a proper budget. So today I’m providing a breakdown of my own personal monthly expenses “off the gringo tourist trail”.

-A word on the sometimes confusing issue of domestic water service in Latin America. Home and business owners are generally allotted what is called a “paja” of water or some fraction (or multiple) of a paja. One paja is about 8000 gallons per month, enough for a family of four gringos if properly cognizant of water conservation- whereas the same amount of water will serve a middle-class Latin family of 10 or more people. Californian’s are about to learn some difficult water lessons the Latins have been dealing with for decades.


Expat Files – 06.28.15

–Often a husband and wife, or a couple, will come down to Latin America, one of them being the obvious driving force behind their expat move while the other partner seems not nearly as geared up. Sometimes the less enthused one displays resistance and is critical and negative about the move. When that happens, what is there to be done?  …


Expat Files – 06.26.15

-Chinese autos have invaded Latin America. Though they look like the usual high end common models you’re familiar with(clones of Toyota, Honda even Range Rover) and seem very nicely appointed in auto showrooms and good enough in test drives, don’t fall for the low prices and the hype… there’s trouble ahead.   -The case for buying non-original (clone) replacement parts …