You are here:

Philippines/Retired wanting to live in Philippines


QUESTION: I am retired on a pension. I don't have a lot of savings. I want to live in the Philippines with my girlfriend. We're not married yet..I want to rent a house & live with her. I didn't realize all the Philippines laws. Is there a way I could do this without a financial burden on me.

ANSWER: James, Be more specific and I can paint a better picture of what is possible for you budget wise.
Monthly net income?
50% to 100% of your Savings? ( keeping something in the States for a "rainy day" is wise )
approximate total of your present belongings / assets / possessions if you sold them via a garage sale or using local or internet free classified ads or via etc etc??

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: My monthly net income is only 3 thousand a month. I only have about 20 thousand saved. If I sold my possession maybe another 8 thousand. I know it's not much but I don't want to work again. If stay in USA I probably would have to. I'm 58 yrs. old.

ANSWER: LUCKY YOU JAMES so you have NO WORRIES ALL! 80% of the retirees here in the Philippines are living simple but quality lifestyles on U$800 to U$1500 / month and most come here with less than U$10,000 in savings. Keep in mind that the average annual income in the Philippines is U$2000 to U$5000 / year.

Small World my wife and I are also 58 both of us turning 59 in the next 3 weeks and we've been living a semi-retired lifestyle since we were 30 years old. So we know only too well why you don't want to keep working and want to start LIVING, enjoying life to the max. So leave half your savings in the States, open 2 bank accounts, one U$ account and one peso account here in the Philippines. You will be issued a 21 day tourist visa upon arrival so go to immigration to apply for a VISA WAIVER extending your status to 59 days but when you go to pick up your passport re-apply again for 2 month extension giving you a total of 4 months. DO the same a week before expiry so you can save yourself trips to immigration ( there are satellite offices all over the Philippines ) Also it's no big deal if you're late, P1000 ( U$24+ ) / month late fee; I remained a tourist status for 15 or more years here with an average of 2-1/2 to 4 months late many times; my record stay was 1 year 5 months on a 21 day visa. But that has changed now, it's even easier because a 21 day tourist visa can be extended from 16 to 24 month, then you leave the country on a cheap flight to HK, BGK, China, Vietnam, Malaysia fly back even after only a day to start the whole process again.When you turn 62 I think the SRRV ( special resident retirement visa ) bond goes down from U$25,000 to U$10,000 which easy to save on your income. This type of visa allows you to operate a small business and reside here without leaving and it even protects foreigners from their Filipina wives ( should domestic problems occur you're safe from any immigration status threat)

Best to rent for the first few years you are here but after several years of living on less than half your monthly income you can easily save U$10,000 / year so could afford to buy a modest house for U$25000 to U$50,000 here. WELCOME ABOARD! Mabuhay from Boracay Island!

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: I'm in Philippines already. Going to get visa extension. My return flight to U.S. is on May 27, 2013. Thinking about changing return flight to late December . Then take care of everything then. Do I bring what kind of money deposit check to open up an account? How would I file U.S. taxes also. Would I have to go home for that? Thanks

You can file US taxes on-line fairly easily. Best to open up your bank accounts here with the minimum like P2000 to P10,000 for peso accounts and U$500 to U$1000 for U$accounts. I recomment Metrobank as it's the Chinese Filipino community's favored bank but we also have  ALLIED BANK Accts


All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Bill and Lorna Collings


Feel FREE to ask us about traveling, living, relocating, retiring and investing in the Philippines. Guests from 93 countries, the latest being a female PHD from Uganda, make our place in Manila an incredible meeting place for world travelers who exchange travel stories. We understand both the joys and the hardships of living and traveling in the Philippines.


I arrived in the Philippines in January 1980 to travel for 2 months; I stayed 4 months before reluctantly leaving. I met my Filipina wife, Lorna. an incredible stellar, "one in a million" individual in 1983 in Seoul and we moved to the Philippines in 1986 and opened our 3BR house to world travelers on a budget. After welcoming thousands of guests from 93 nations our place has grown to 38 bedrooms in 5 townhouse units, 4 of which are attached but will never lose its "Home away from Home" atmosphere. Almost everyday at The Townhouse Hotel there's a party-like social scene with vibrant, almost magical energetic conversations between our guests who have the pleasure to meet each other and share their life's many experiences.Often three groups with conversations in different languages are going on at the same time. So we've been exposed to every kind of person from all over the world and shared their experiences. Since arriving back in the Philippines Nov 2011 from traveling for 8 months my wife and I have been busy buying land, building houses and expanding our Boracay beach front resort, Casa Camilla for 16 months. Hopefully we'll be finished by the end of 2013 with a total of 50 apartments, 44 units for yearly stays and the six units in our house to be saved for short term stays.

Publications,, who asked me to apply with

some college 2-1/2 years - no degree - I've been traveling since I was 18, almost 30 years.

Awards and Honors
Luckily, my wife and I have been semi-retired since we were 30 years old, almost 30 years.

Past/Present Clients
3000 to 4000 world travelers and guests on a budget pass through our guest house style Townhouse Hotel / Hostel each year since 1986 so we do get a lot of feedback and share a lot of experiences with people which we can then pass on to help others with their questions and problems

©2017 All rights reserved.