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Slow season??

Post by CanuckBob on Sun Jul 09, 2017 9:21 am

Has anyone else noticed that we don't really get a "slow season" anymore? It seems to me that it is nearly as busy here in July as it is in January.

Being in the accommodation business here I'm certainly not complaining, just making an observation.

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Re: Slow season??

Post by sm1mex on Sun Jul 09, 2017 9:56 am

Yes, the traffic is backed up for blocks, especially near the red light at WalMart. I guess the sunbirds are here as it is so hot now in the S.W, states.

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Re: Slow season??

Post by Gamina on Sun Jul 09, 2017 10:12 am

Also all the new people moving in are creating congestion.
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Re: Slow season??

Post by CanuckBob on Sun Jul 09, 2017 10:18 am

I think it may be a combination of increased sunbirds, fulltime residents and Mexican tourists. The LCS seems to be quite active even throughout the summer months now where as previously it would slow down quite a bit June through August.

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Re: Slow season??

Post by coffeeguy on Sun Jul 09, 2017 10:18 am

Yes and not just the traffic. A couple of local real estate folks have told me that at least for the past year+ demand for rentals has been as strong in "low" season as in high. One agent who's been here for decades says that many properties that used to be rentals have been snapped up by buyers who couldn't resist the opportunity during those frequent spikes of over 20 pesos to the dollar. She blames most of tight market on an ongoing exodus of folks from the U.S. though. Good news for realtors and landlords but really tough on the locals who still need to rent for 2000-4000 pesos a month.

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Re: Slow season??

Post by gringal on Sun Jul 09, 2017 10:48 am

All this is about demographics in the U.S.  The low numbers of the depression era kids have been replaced by the huge batch of Boomers reaching or already at retirement age.

If you read the financial pages, you find articles about how much money people "need" to retire "comfortably".  It's hilarious, in its own unreal way.  800 grand? Oh, right. Then you read the ones about how much money most people actually have at retirement age.  Way, way less.

Then, you see the numbers of "baby boomers" who are being gently or otherwise shoved out of the job market. Since a goodly number of the above have common sense, guess what?  Off they go, to places with a lower COL, which includes Mexico. Since many had no idea this was going to be their fate, many head for expat havens where the language barrier can be slowly instead of instantly overcome.  This is us.

What else are they going to do?  Head for a trailer park in lower Appalachia?  Some will.  Some claim that the good life can exist on peanuts in some U.S. states.  Some poster on TOB claimed that he and his wife lived well, including dining out, on $1800 a month, In Texas. Some of those lower cost  states have a climate from hell much of the year. Just what you want in your old age, si?

I think the main exodus will happen in places like coastal California, where a very, very good job will only support a modest lifestyle and property values are just unreal.

So......might as well put out the welcome mat: they're coming.  Our beloved breather of a "slow season" may be nothing but a memory.
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Re: Slow season??

Post by CanuckBob on Sun Jul 09, 2017 10:53 am

I can't see anyone getting reasonable accommodations for $2000 - $4000 pesos anywhere around here. I have been in a place that a friend was renting in Ajijic for $3000 pesos per month and I didn't consider it "reasonable" for any long term living. It was pretty "rustic"........

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Re: Slow season??

Post by Trailrunner on Sun Jul 09, 2017 10:57 am

Yep. We no longer have a down season. ugggg 

Had to stop reading all the FB pages for newbies, expats, newby expats, and wannabe expats because it looks like THEY'RE ALL COMING HERE! Where there are no rentals for them, not enough highway and parking spaces for them all, and not enough sewage treatment for all their poop.

I did get forwarded to a comment from a friend on one of those sites this morning and read a few posts but quit when a woman wanted to know if she was going to be able to find her favorite brand of false eyelashes! AAARRRRRGGHHH

Can't wait to see what happens in Oct when the snowbirds arrive. . .
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Re: Slow season??

Post by Trailrunner on Sun Jul 09, 2017 11:01 am

CanuckBob wrote:I can't see anyone getting reasonable accommodations for $2000 - $4000 pesos anywhere around here. I have been in a place that a friend was renting in Ajijic for $3000 pesos per month and I didn't consider it "reasonable" for any long term living. It was pretty "rustic"........

You are talking about Ajijic, right???

Come to my house.
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Re: Slow season??

Post by coffeeguy on Sun Jul 09, 2017 11:20 am

Vis-a-vis rentals there are obviously two very different markets here: gringo-owned and/or gringo-oriented and local. The latter is accessed primarily by word-of-mouth, supplemented by walking around looking for "Se Renta" signs and looking at impromptu bulletin boards (e.g. two along Morelos in Chapala, similar ones here and there in other villages). Obviously these peso-priced places are likely to be mostly or completely unfurnished: maybe a stove and/or fridge if you're lucky. That said I've seen some lovely, spacious houses in Las Redes and even Chapala centro for 4000-5000 pesos that (if one cared to invest in furniture) would easily be the equal of far more expensive turnkey properties.

Gringal I think you're right-on about the demographics but I don't get the impression that many newbies here have really thought things through. Rather there seems to be a whole lot of lemming-like fleeing due to (dare we name it?) The Trump Effect. Let's face it, between the imminent dismantling of ACA/Obamacare and the U.S. having turned into its very own Banana Republic(an) many who never imagined themselves becoming expats find themselves squinting at the sun (or drowning in the rain?) at the Ajijic plaza.

I can say from experience that there are a lot of places in the U.S. where a couple can live on well under $2000 a month that aren't in lower Appalachia. OTOH a trailer park may indeed be involved, as buying an inexpensive mobile home in a place such as Tucson AZ, Silver City or Las Cruces NM or other such places often results in housing costs that are more than competitive with renting here at Lakeside (and much cheaper than owning down here). Food is still cheaper at Lakeside of course, ditto utilities as long as one steers clear of DAC-triggering toys. Routine medical care here is obviously far more affordable and accessible but as you yourself have pointed out on other occasions there's no Medicare safety net and how one is going to deal with a major SHTF incident is one of those things newbies often don't think through.

Bottom line IMHO, especially with rents and property prices being what they are (plus a clear strong upward trend in not just those costs but in prices for gas and food) is that there are lots of places in the U.S. where one can live on what one spends here. The sustainable reasons to make the move are attractive costs and weather as side dishes to the main courses of the richness of Mexican culture and a vibrant expat community that has a whole lot more "there there" than one finds in typical N.O.B. retirement burgs.

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Re: Slow season??

Post by coffeeguy on Sun Jul 09, 2017 11:23 am

Trailrunner wrote:Yep. We no longer have a down season. ugggg 

Had to stop reading all the FB pages for newbies, expats, newby expats, and wannabe expats because it looks like THEY'RE ALL COMING HERE! Where there are no rentals for them, not enough highway and parking spaces for them all, and not enough sewage treatment for all their poop.

I did get forwarded to a comment from a friend on one of those sites this morning and read a few posts but quit when a woman wanted to know if she was going to be able to find her favorite brand of false eyelashes! AAARRRRRGGHHH

Can't wait to see what happens in Oct when the snowbirds arrive. . .

Yep! And then there's the thread on TOB started by the newbie down here checking things out for 2 weeks who's complaining that based on shopping for groceries at Super Lake and eating at Yves and Tango things are nowhere near as dirt cheap as International Living and other reliable sources had told her.

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Re: Slow season??

Post by CanuckBob on Sun Jul 09, 2017 11:24 am

Trailrunner wrote:
CanuckBob wrote:I can't see anyone getting reasonable accommodations for $2000 - $4000 pesos anywhere around here. I have been in a place that a friend was renting in Ajijic for $3000 pesos per month and I didn't consider it "reasonable" for any long term living. It was pretty "rustic"........

You are talking about Ajijic, right???

Come to my house.

Yes, sorry I was referring to Ajijic.

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Re: Slow season??

Post by CanuckBob on Sun Jul 09, 2017 11:28 am

coffeeguy wrote:Vis-a-vis rentals there are obviously two very different markets here: gringo-owned and/or gringo-oriented and local. The latter is accessed primarily by word-of-mouth, supplemented by walking around looking for "Se Renta" signs and looking at impromptu bulletin boards (e.g. two along Morelos in Chapala, similar ones here and there in other villages). Obviously these peso-priced places are likely to be mostly or completely unfurnished: maybe a stove and/or fridge if you're lucky. That said I've seen some lovely, spacious houses in Las Redes and even Chapala centro for 4000-5000 pesos that (if one cared to invest in furniture) would easily be the equal of far more expensive turnkey properties.

Gringal I think you're right-on about the demographics but I don't get the impression that many newbies here have really thought things through. Rather there seems to be a whole lot of lemming-like fleeing due to (dare we name it?) The Trump Effect. Let's face it, between the imminent dismantling of ACA/Obamacare and the U.S. having turned into its very own Banana Republic(an) many who never imagined themselves becoming expats find themselves squinting at the sun (or drowning in the rain?) at the Ajijic plaza.

I can say from experience that there are a lot of places in the U.S. where a couple can live on well under $2000 a month that aren't in lower Appalachia. OTOH a trailer park may indeed be involved, as buying an inexpensive mobile home in a place such as Tucson AZ, Silver City or Las Cruces NM or other such places often results in housing costs that are more than competitive with renting here at Lakeside (and much cheaper than owning down here). Food is still cheaper at Lakeside of course, ditto utilities as long as one steers clear of DAC-triggering toys. Routine medical care here is obviously far more affordable and accessible but as you yourself have pointed out on other occasions there's no Medicare safety net and how one is going to deal with a major SHTF incident is one of those things newbies often don't think through.

Bottom line IMHO, especially with rents and property prices being what they are (plus a clear strong upward trend in not just those costs but in prices for gas and food) is that there are lots of places in the U.S. where one can live on what one spends here. The sustainable reasons to make the move are attractive costs and weather as side dishes to the main courses of the richness of Mexican culture and a vibrant expat community that has a whole lot more "there there" than one finds in typical N.O.B. retirement burgs.

There are equally cheap places to be found in Canada too. None where I would want to live though. Even in Vancouver you can find cheap places if living in an unmaintained hovel with bare wires and cracked plaster is your thing.

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Re: Slow season??

Post by gringal on Sun Jul 09, 2017 11:48 am

Coffee guy: "Routine medical care here is obviously far more affordable and accessible but as you yourself have pointed out on other occasions there's no Medicare safety net and... "

There is no U.S. Medicare available for expats in Mexico; true. If they want treatment under it, they must return to the U.S. to have it. However, the Mexican government has provided a universal medical/hospitalization plan available to all....even expats, which is very affordable if not free: Seguro Popular. Very basic, but there for those who need it.

Based on some of the questions people ask on these webboards, especially on the other ones, it's obvious they have done little or NO research before coming here. Before we moved here over a dozen years ago, we spent months finding out all we could from whatever sources were available and had a few surprises anyway.

As for inexpensive rentals: $3000 pesos currently translates to $166 U.S. dollars. As time goes on, no matter where they seek a place to live (and I don't mean Ajijic, which we all know is pricier) the squeeze is going to become very painful.
Since there are no social welfare programs for poor expats in Mexico, it may be time for those living marginally to reconsider whether their future would be better here or back in the U.S. Those cheap rentals here will almost inevitably disappear in time. That's assuming that the U.S. govt. doesn't destroy all the safety nets for the poor and just leaves them out on the streets to go hungry.

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Re: Slow season??

Post by CanuckBob on Sun Jul 09, 2017 11:57 am

And if they are from the US they better hope nothing happens to significantly devalue the USD. I wouldn't come here if I was elderly, lived on a shoestring budget and didn't have medical coverage. That just seems crazy to me. Inflation in Mexico far outpaces that of the US and Canada right now. I think that is going to be the trend for quite a while.

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Re: Slow season??

Post by gringal on Sun Jul 09, 2017 12:15 pm

CanuckBob wrote:And if they are from the US they better hope nothing happens to significantly devalue the USD. I wouldn't come here if I was elderly, lived on a shoestring budget and didn't have medical coverage. That just seems crazy to me. Inflation in Mexico far outpaces that of the US and Canada right now. I think that is going to be the trend for quite a while.

You are no doubt right about inflation and its effects. Like you, I wouldn't even have considered moving to Mexico on a shoestring budget with no contingency plans or emergency cushion. In addition, I wouldn't want to be without the means to head NOB or elsewhere under certain dire circumstances.
The history of the world shows us that what seems like a safe haven can change very rapidly.  However, I'm optimistic so far about Mexico's future.  At least until I read the "Mexico News Daily".  Rolling Eyes

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Re: Slow season??

Post by Trailrunner on Sun Jul 09, 2017 12:26 pm

There is a US demographic that is particularly vulnerable to living out their retirement/old age in poverty through no real fault of their own, that is single/divorced/widowed women who have spent most of their lives raising babies and not working outside of the house much. If they can't get additional social security from the ex husband, their social security will be minimal.

I've met several of these "elderly" (I believe that term starts at 60 or 65 years of age) women when living in Joco and also a few living on the south shore (Tuxcueca, Tizapan, San Cris, Puerto Corona, San Pedro). They live in very nice Mexican homes for 3000 pesos and much less, eat out often, have lots of friends in the same boat who help each other out and socialize frequently together, subscribe to SP for free medical care, and are VERY happy living on their US "shoestring" in Mexico.

Remember, when we say that all the 3000 pesos a month rents are going away that is simply not true. If it were, where would all the Mexicans rent? It is true for Ajijic, not true for the rest of Mexico and Ajijic, Lake Chapala, SMA, etc are barely Mexico anymore these days.

PS: In my immediate neighborhood, I know of 3 rentals. One is 1500 pesos and is the top floor of a duplex and probably rough inside but safe, has a view, and very adequate per the couple who just moved out, a nice 2 story house for about 6000 pesos, and another top floor of a new duplex that is 4000 pesos. Just sayin'. . .do not look at the rest of Mexico through Ajijic eyes.
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Re: Slow season??

Post by gringal on Sun Jul 09, 2017 1:11 pm

I don't think that people who happen to have settled in Ajijic have "Ajijic eyes", and I don't understand the peculiar bias against them, as though they have no idea about the real world in Mexico.
Most of the people I know don't live in Ajijic and among those who do, they'd wonder where that "Ajijic eyes" notion came from.  It's just plain ridiculous.

If someone knows people who are living on limited means but have inexpensive rentals and are able to dine out and happily socialize, that's nice.  Let's hope that they can continue to live well.

However, the subject is not about them:  it's about the influx of many new people in Mexico; about expats who move here with lack of knowledge of what they're getting into and those who have no personal safety nets if inflation gets ahead of them.
It's also about how costs are going up, including the low cost rentals.

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Re: Slow season??

Post by Carry Bean on Sun Jul 09, 2017 1:15 pm

I quit most of the ex-pat newbie groups on Facebook after I got into it with a recent transplant who was still bitching several days later about a little bean seller girl who touched her toast at Cafe Negro and another newbie told her she should have slapped her and another idiot told her she should have called the police.

I suggested that if I had ever seen her slap a child here she would be swallowing her teeth. I got jumped on by the rest of the pack of know-nothings & just quit rather than listen to the nincompoops. Most of these clowns are never going to last more than a month here - at least I hope that's the case. I've never seen dumber questions and nastier attitudes than with this current crop.

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Re: Slow season??

Post by CanuckBob on Sun Jul 09, 2017 1:19 pm

Swallowing her teeth......jaja jaja. I love you carrybean. You're my kind of gal.

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Re: Slow season??

Post by Trailrunner on Sun Jul 09, 2017 1:25 pm

jajajaja Me too, I love you too, Carry Bean! jajajajaja

Agree, this crop of newbies take the cake. However, I've seen it over and over again, if you're an idiot Mexico can kick yo' ass and you won't nevah see it coming.

Too bad she didn't GIVE that little hungry bean seller niña the toast. That would have been the right thing to do. Failed opportunity. Newbies. . .
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Re: Slow season??

Post by Carry Bean on Sun Jul 09, 2017 1:28 pm

I hope you're right, Trailrunner and I suspect you are. I just hope Mexico does it quickly.

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Re: Slow season??

Post by coffeeguy on Sun Jul 09, 2017 1:30 pm

gringal wrote:I don't think that people who happen to have settled in Ajijic have "Ajijic eyes", and I don't understand the peculiar bias against them, as though they have no idea about the real world in Mexico.
Most of the people I know don't live in Ajijic and among those who do, they'd wonder where that "Ajijic eyes" notion came from.  It's just plain ridiculous.
.

In Trailrunner's defense, I believe she was referring to CanuckBob's comment about Mexican rents which (as he admitted) did/do reflect an Ajijic orientation.

Obviously there are plenty of expats who live in Ajijic who understand the broader cost picture, but that said there certainly does seem to be an Ajijic myopia that affects some - especially newcomers. Some of the very best evidence of this is found in the three or more local rental groups on Facebook asking astronomical rents for places as though this were La Jolla rather than Mexico. If Facebook had a truth-in-labeling program the lot of them would have to change their names to what they actually are: "GHOG" - Gringos Hosing Other Gringos. Very Happy

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Re: Slow season??

Post by gringal on Sun Jul 09, 2017 1:45 pm

If people are sucker enough to overpay rent without doing the work of finding better deals....they're getting what they deserve. If they are using Facebook as their major source of getting info: likewise.

And, if there are fellow Ajijic residents.......I doubt I'll ever know them.
I live here because the real estate agent showed us a prime location with an unlivable house on it at a good price. Pity anyone who falls for that. Duh.




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Re: Slow season??

Post by CanuckBob on Sun Jul 09, 2017 2:08 pm

It's inflation (workers pay also rises) and/or falling USD that will increase the rents (as currently calculated against USD) IMO. It is already happening. Mexican minimum wage is going up every year.

I haven't seen a $3000 peso a month place that I would live in yet. I'll have to check your place out TR.

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