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What is the main reason you retired to Lakeside?

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To experience a slower and simpler way of life, less dependent on a vehicle. Ajijic very much resembled the small town that I was born in and which we moved away from when I was 13. But that was in 2001 and Ajijic is nothing like it was then.

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Location. Lake, Guadalajara, proximity to airport. Not sure if where we live qualifies as lakeside but it only takes us 15 minutes to get there.

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Prior to retirement, lots of articles about best places to retire ( Internationally, not US) and San Miguel Allende and Ajijic kept making top 10 lists. So we visited SMA in 2002 and while we liked it, it didn't really do much for us. We paid over $200 for a nice room in a B&B and good restaurants were priced like they were in Seattle. Fast forward to 2005 when we visited here. Bingo. Our short list of needs was met: moderate weather, close to both an international airport and a large metropolitan city (and Costco, Home Depot, etc), easy drive to the beach and easy drive to the US via Laredo. 

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11 minutes ago, HookEmHorns said:

WOW ! I was in SMA in 2002 also, stayed in a nice place ($28/night), had a great complete breakfast in their restaurant for ($3.00) and found prices to be very inexpensive. We must have been in 2 different SMAs. I could walk to the Jardin from my Hotel(5 blocks). Stayed 14 days. Loved it. Was offered a decent apartment for $300/month in Central area. A very nice single lady offered me a room in her 2 story, 4/4 house for free. I was dumb, didn't accept it. !

Things were a lot less expensive everywhere in 2002.  By the time I arrived in San Miguel in 2004, no such deals existed.  Today's San Miguel is pricier yet.  Nice place to visit; not as affordable to live there as here in the Lakeside area.

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San Miguel de Allende was too cold in the winter. San Pancho was too hot in the summer. Ajijic is juuuusssst right.

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I was just fortunate and somehow smart enough to "let life lead me" to this beautiful life here.  I badly needed to get out of the rat race NOB.  Even though I was really following someone else's lead, I have never regretted moving here.  I love the culture, the beauty, the weather, the Mexican people, and the way of life.  It's like "forever day camp", with as little or as much to do as you wish.  I love how easy it is to meet people and connect with people.

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Proximity to international airport, weather, cost of living.  Didn't realize till later that this area also came with great neighbours and lots of activities.

 

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Weather, friendliness of community, reasonable cost of living--especially when looking into the future for in-home care, easy access to services, slower way of life,  vicinity of international airport.

Just a few months ago we were ready to sign the papers to buy a gorgeous home in Centro SMA. But we made a side trip to Ajijic along the way....and had second thoughts about SMA, which in comparison seemed too big, too reserved, and lacked a decent support system. Also, it was more difficult to get around SMA as it is quite sprawling now.  So we ended up buying in Ajijic. 

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The warmest people in Mexico, but the weather and restaurants put here over-the-top.

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51 minutes ago, AngusMactavish said:

The warmest people in Mexico, but the weather and restaurants put here over-the-top.

'Tis true. The reasons one picks a place are often not the reasons that one stays.

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Even with the weekend tourists and the ever-increasing traffic, life is just so much more laid back, and easier to deal with. My blood pressure is always lower than it was up north.

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Love living amongst Mexican people. We have vacationed at Mexican beach resorts for several years. Those trips were vacations that just happen to be in Mexico and not at all a comparison to living in Jalisco.

 We have met so many kind, wise and generous people during our five years here. Looking beyond the despair and poverty we wanted to retire here. Keeping open minded and reminding ourselves of the well known quote "when in Rome......" the choice became easier.

 The colour, even before primavera time, the sounds, even the "annoying" shrill of cicadas joining the choir of the feathery birds. The odour, even of the very reused fat of whatever food is fried. Those people stand behind the huge greasy caldrons proudly smilie and offer you to taste what is being prepared. Those same people at the parks and boardwalks prove that joy and relaxation are where we stand.

 The blueberries (my favourite fruit/berry) are a mere bonus. 

 

 

 

 

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The US elections of 2000 (hanging chad in Florida) and 2004 (11 states voting on the Defense of Marriage to get conservatives to the polls) were the straw that broke the camel's back. I decided when I retired in 10 years I would leave the US and it would be to a warm climate. Visited Puerto Vallarta, and Costa Rica. Nope. Came here. Knew within 24 hours this was the place. It was a gut feeling. Continued searching, comparing. San Miguel de Allende, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands. Nothing beat Ajijic. Retired in 2014, came here soon thereafter and have had no regrets. The specific reason I came here, though, was a simple gut feeling.Ajijic spoke to me. 

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Weather, cost of living, international airport less than 30 minutes away and to have an adventure!

 

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Also: proximity to good hospitals and specialists in Guadalajara, reasonably good internet connections.

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Multiple reasons for my retirement here in the Lakeside area but since the OP is asking for a single "main reason" I would have to choose the local people - their warmth, kindness, helpfulness, smiling faces, etc

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My wife and I were looking for an international site that would allow us to retire more comfortably on our income than we were experiencing NOB.  Prioritizing our desires to safety, friendliness, weather and cost of living, our choices resulted in Cuenca, Ecuador and Lakeside Chapala.  We visited Ajijic first and have no plans to leave.

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I've heard it said many times that people come to Lakeside for the weather and stay because of the people. In my experience that premise has proven to be true.

 

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Two main reasons:  Climate and walkable life style.  We were already retired before coming here.  This is probably not the last place we will end up because of medical reasons.  Our last location was New Mexico and it has its attractions as well.

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There were a variety of reasons we finally moved here, but the primary goal was to find a location that was affordable enough for us to escape the rat race for an early retirement. We watched too many family and friends work themselves to death and be unable to enjoy their senior years, and we didn't want to end up that way ourselves. One of the challenges to early retirement was that taking Social Security at 62 would provide less income than if we waited. Also, since I'm 7 years younger than my husband, we would need to live on his reduced Social Security and our retirement savings for several years before my Social Security would kick in. We previously lived in an area of the US with low cost of living anyway (Kansas City), so finding someplace cheaper that would stretch our retirement dollars required looking outside the US borders. 5 years of research and discussion with other retirees had us considering several locations such as Belize, Costa Rica, Panama, Ecuador, and other places in Mexico. The Lake Chapala area eventually won out because it provided a balance of cost savings along with good weather, wonderful people, excellent health care, ease of access to visit family and friends back in the US, an existing base of support for expats, proximity to a large metropolitan area with familiar American stores and restaurants, stable government, good infrastructure, and a large country full of diversity and beauty that we can explore. We've been here since August 2012 and still consider our move a fabulous decision!

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