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The good, the bad, and the frustrating truth about life in paradise

How about we share our honest experiences here? I have been unlucky with the home burglaries and occasional hiccups...but, our purchase went swimmingly and I loved sticking it to the banks...owned free and clear. I love my adopted home away from home...hope to retire there... learning Spanish, working with locals...but my eyes are open and I will tell honestly what we have experienced so that others can gain a perspective outside the brochures. Of course there is crime everywhere...I've been lucky enough here in Michigan (last 20 years in Metro Detroit) to not have experienced anything beyond random lawn equipment being lifted...so my bad luck so far, gives me pause...rightly, I believe.

Thanks for sharing brodies2013.....All we can ask of each one is to be honest and share what is on your heart, good or bad....enlightment has never hurt anyone. Enjoy paradise, but don't stay focused on the palm trees, you might miss the other stuff in the background.

I can tell you that I retired here with many dreams of relaxation and I can honestly tell you I have never worked harder or have been busier in my life.  You must be thinking I am eager to go back to Canada.  Not at all.  There are many challenges to face in this country and I work many hours a day as a volunteer.  I work with many people and always have.  People can be difficult even under the best of circumstances, but then life is a journey and not a destination.  If we can't have a little adventure then does it really matter where you live?  I'm staying!

We have many differences of opinion on this board.  Thank goodness for that.  Imagine that we are all the same people giving the same answers, liking the same things...diversity is the spice of life.  There are no really wrong answers if the message is given with positive intent.

Let's share our experiences and let those readers decide if it pertains to them or not.  We do not have to convince anyone of anything.  We can all make up our own minds as adults.  But it is nice to hear the different stories and experiences and get good information so that we can make informed decisions based upon some overall statistics and research.

This board has some very strong benefits for newcomers and I hope we can continue to help those that need our help.  For those frustrated people leaving the board for a vacation, take one, you are entitled.  Then come back and join the party again...

Just my humble opinion...

Yes! Exactly right. Being honest does not mean you are being a pessimist or a bad ambassador. My husband and I are under no illusions that everything will be idyllic in our new part time country. We are looking for different! If we wanted the same, we wouldn't have bought a place in an entirety different community.

Bring it on. The good, the bad, the ugly, the beautiful.

I am not yet a resident, but have watched this site regularly as I approach retirement.  Over the past 10 years I have made an effort to travel to different parts of the Dominican Republic and most notable to me is how very different every area is.  Each has its positives and some have their negatives (for me).

I would find it helpful (if experiences/opinions are posted) to know where you live or own property and whether or not you live there full-time.  The problem I have when reviewing opinions of the country is differentiating between part-time residents and full-time expatriates.  Those experiences can be very different. 

I'd like to add that an absentee homeowner in any country should expect thefts.  A vacant house just about anywhere in the world is a target.  I was an absentee property owner in the US and experienced thefts quite frequently when the property was empty even with a property management company and neighbors I'd known my entire life.  On one occasion I had squatters that simply moved in.  I had property managers that were crooks and some that were excellent.  I wouldn't paint the entire country negative based on those experiences.

What I like best about the DR are the warm, welcoming people that accept and even seem to appreciate my horrible, broken attempts to speak Spanish.  I love never, ever feeling rushed in any circumstance.  What I don't like is that if I do retire there I am afraid I'll never drive in the country.  Their roads and drivers are terrifying to me.

I live in Sosua. I rent an apartment. Except for a long trip & stay in the states, (medical reasons) since 2002. Firts visited in 1996 from St Croix.  I felt an immediate kinship with the people & the land. I found it to be the closest to fulfilling my needs than anywhere else. The bumps in the road were challenges to be conquered, a test of my adaptability. The beauty of the island is overshadowed by the Dominican people. The warmth & generosity in sharing their country, homes & hospitality is a rarity in today's world.  I'm constantly amazed at their ingenuity in resolving everyday problems.  I have difficulty expressing clearly & sufficiently, how good living here is.  For that, I apologize.

We are part-time owners in Cabrera...chose Cabrera to be away from the high tourist destinations...love it.  If anyone reads my posts they will know I am not bad-mouthing...this site is a wealth of information. I have truly appreciated all of the honest discussions and problem solving that can be found here.  In a few years we plan to make the move to full time.  The second break in happened while our renters were sleeping...they woke up seeing shadows moving through the house. One scream and away they ran with all the goods.  Thank god they just stole stuff.  The police knew exactly who it was.  They are thief-gang with small children who can squeeze through otherwise impossibly small windows and open the front door.  Even the original builder who included solid iron bars on every window believed the 1 foot by 1 foot window in the bathroom wasn't a viable entry point.  It was the only window without bars.  My mother and my two children will be joining us in April.  I wouldn't bring them if I truly felt it was dangerous.  But, that doesn't mean I don't have doubts.

Bar  the bathroom, & sleel sweet dreams.  When I first moved here in 2002, I had a similar problem. While I was out a day or two after moving in, somehow a very skinny child squeezed between the balony balasters that were only 10 inches apart. Not much would fit through the space so didn't lose much, sneakers etc.  They could not open the door because it was a dead bolt that needed a key to unlock both sides.  Since then have not had any other problems. Oh , once they stole gas from my motorcycle.  Welcome to the island. If I didn't live in Sosua, I would be in Cabrera, it is a great place.

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