Expat Forum For People Moving Overseas And Living Abroad banner

Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 4 of 4 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am getting to the point in life where I need to begin to start thinking about retirement. I have always enjoyed France and it's people and, as an American of French ancestry (surname and all) I have a particular fascination with the country and its culture. I am trying to learn to speak French well enough that I don't sound like a complete barbarian when I am there so I am already in the process of ticking that very important box.

What I am trying to find out is what would be considered an adequate income for living in France in real-world 2012 dollars (or Euros). I realize up front that that is a completely subjective area of inquiry. Suffice to say that I plan to live fairly modestly but obviously not in poverty. I have no plans to live in or around Paris. A beautiful city to be sure. But I'm just not that into urban living any more. Cost of living is a more important factor so I'll be looking for a less expensive département to reside in.

Between SS and a small pension I expect to be receiving about 22000 to 23000 € per year. My research indicates that should provide for a modest yet adequate lifestyle. Or am I being completely delusional? Any feedback?

Finally, what are the lowest cost of living départements in France (that aren't complete hellholes, that is). I've been to France a few times but there are many areas that I am not the familiar with. And I honestly wasn't really contemplating retiring there since I thought it was not possible from a permanent resident standpoint.

TIA. Any info is welcome.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
50,078 Posts
The consulates seem to have stopped posting a "minimum" figure for income for a retirement visa, but figure that it is always something more than the French minimum wage at any given time. Currently the SMIC is about 1400€ a month (about $22,000 a year) and after the elections in May, it's likely to rise a bit more, depending on which party is in power. Remember, too, that you'll need to have a private expat health insurance - check the AARO website for their rates sheet to get a rough idea of what an adequate policy should cost. AARO?s Health Care Program for Expatriate America

Non-hellhole cheap departements definitely depend on what sort of lifestyle you're looking for. Rural is definitely cheaper than city - but the isolation factor is something to be considered, particularly for retirees. You want to look into access to doctors and medical facilities (hospitals, specialists, etc.), shopping and recreational facilities (including local "third age" clubs, which can be a real lifesaver in terms of making friends and finding services). Public transport isn't available in many areas outside of the cities, so factor in your dependency on a car (and don't forget that gas prices are FAR higher here than in the US). Without family nearby, you need to have a Plan B should you be unable to drive for any reason.

And give some consideration to currency fluctuation. It always seems to happen when you least expect it, but how big a fluctuation (in the "wrong" direction) could you weather? Also, what is your fallback position should matters go sour for any reason. Could you consider moving back to the States, and if so, where to?

Not trying to diss your plans at all - just figuring that, if you're prepared for any downturn, it probably won't happen.
Cheers,
Bev
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
348 Posts
Between SS and a small pension I expect to be receiving about 22000 to 23000 € per year. My research indicates that should provide for a modest yet adequate lifestyle. Or am I being completely delusional? Any feedback?

TIA. Any info is welcome.
2000€ / month for one person? If you have no expenditures except your day-to-day living, this is much more than modest in France. There are French couples and families who live on this much, and now that's living modestly.
 
1 - 4 of 4 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top