moving to Ecuador

We've decided to move to Ecuador,:  Hello my name is Charlie and Wife Alla.  I am retiring soon
and planning to move to somewhere in Ecuador but have not decide just where.  I spent some time
traveling and have a basic feel for the country and like what I see.  We are looking for information
regarding starting the process of getting a visa but not sure what kind we need.  We have been told
the easiest is an investment visa.  We read about opening a bank account and investing in property or
a CD.  We're not ready to buy as we still have much to see and learn about this beautiful land.  So far
the people we've met both Expat's and locals were very kind, friendly and helpful.  We have a dog
and trying to figure out the best way to get her there with the least amount of stress to her.  Can
anyone suggest a good attorney that can help us with immigrating and all the process involved.
Should we get a visa here in the US or wait until we arrive in Ecuador?  We have read a lot of confusing and conflicting information.  We are open to all suggestions .
Thank you in advance.

Charlie and Alla

I'm not sure, but I think I read that the investment amount was being increased (quite a bit, iirc).  If one or both of you have college degrees (think BS/BA minimum), I'd go the professional visa route.  It may be an extra step, but it's nice to not have your visa dependent on a cd or property.  Plus if you ever wanted to change banks (for better interest rates or to mitigate risk) or to sell your property it is often quite a headache (as you need to redo your visa - and dealing with the government bureaucracy here is actually less fun than in the US).

Just my personal observations and experiences though... Your mileage may vary.

Hello, A trustworthy lawyer is paramount. I can recommend one in Manta and Cuenca. I can also provide you with an interesting development for your consideration North of Manta. Let me know if I can be of assistance. Take care.

LasOlas1 :

I can also provide you with an interesting development for your consideration North of Manta. Let me know if I can be of assistance.

If your name indicates the "interesting development", there are threads on here all about Las Olas.  Check them out.

You can check out a Residential VISA, which I have, which Sara Chaca who is, what I found to be, and excellent attorney in Cuenca.  The process was what I would consider medium complicated, but she handled everything and has been an excellent resource for me since moving here.

You got the best advice already ... get a reliable lawyer ... and they are rare. I can give you recommendations for Quito, Guayaquil or Salinas/Southern coast. Think in terms of what your true lifestyle is ... not what you imagine it might be. Folks don't change as much as they imagine, just by moving overseas. Then isolate locales based on that lifestyle. Ecuador used to be exceptional value, not so much anymore. If cost is anywhere on your horizon of considerations, you might want to consider a country or two outside of Ecuador.

Will be moving to Salinas in the next few months . Have heard good things about Sara Chaca in Cuenca, but am concerned about logistics dealing with her firm. Any recommendations in Salinas?
Thanks

We used Ms Chaca and it was NOT a smooth process. Would not recommend.

You are the first to not recommend her that I have read, will consider this. But am hoping for a contact in Salinas.

You’re always promoting Colombia, bad choice. Also you sound like a business shark 🦈

First I heard.  It does take some participation on the part of client (maybe you expected something different) but the process was completed while I was still in the US and required only one visit to Cuenca to get the VISA applied to my passport.
And I have used and /or consulted with Sara on other things since and she has been extremely helpful and her fees were very reasonable.
I found her on recommendation from another expat and I am always comfortable recommending her.

Stop insulting sharks.

parrotsrest :

Will be moving to Salinas in the next few months . Have heard good things about Sara Chaca in Cuenca, but am concerned about logistics dealing with her firm. Any recommendations in Salinas?
Thanks

You will hear all about the do it yourself crowd. For every one good story, I hear two bad ones. The temptation is obvious ... cost savings. Hard to argue with that sirens call.

My suggestion is fight the impulse and just go to a true quality legal professional that truly knows the ins and outs of the process. It will be worth the few extra bucks. The bilingual person below can help:

Guillermo Camacho
Vivanco y Vivanco
gcamacho[at]vivancoyvivanco.com

Bigbrad2008 :

Stop insulting sharks.

Not insulting, just trying to avoid them!

I was trying to make a joke, by implying he is worse than a shark

Brad, I am a little lost. Are you saying Mr. Camacho has a bad history with you or others you know.
Thanks

Thanks. I will check out the web site and call.

I know Brad, you’re talking to the joke master

Bigbrad2008 :

I was trying to make a joke, by implying he is worse than a shark

I know that Brad, you’re talking to the joke master 😜

To the OP:

Vivanco y Vivanco are one of the premier law firms in Ecuador. They have offices across Latin America and in Miami. Mr. Camacho, Esq. has received his legal education from one of the finest law schools in Ecuador, as well as receiving educational training and experience in the USA. My recommendation is perform your due diligence. Determine his professionalism and that of his law firm independently. If possible, sit down and have an appointment with him before hiring. Interview him as you should any professional services provider, so you can be certain of their skill set and market knowledge in their field. I hope you follow that advice ... but it is on you. Alternatively, you can listen to the faceless clown car of "wanna be" experts, on the Internet, who offer little true knowledge or credible options. I will be here if you have any questions, which I will gladly answer privately or publicly at your discretion.

Land Shark LOL, have a great day

Smh. If you have a point ... state it ... openly. If not, why go misdirecting folks that just need help? Exactly the opposite of what a forum like this should be. I will stack up the credentials of Mr. Camacho and Vivanco y Vivanco against anyone you could recommend. Go ahead ... who is your recommendation for the OP, Brad? Will V&V be the cheapest choice? Oh ... hell no ... but they will get it done ... get it right ... make it truly legal ... and defend their client in the unimaginable event that future changes in law or some other unforeseen event causes any friction with the process. Remember the sage words of one Warren Buffett ... "Price is what you pay. Value is what you get."

I won't give a recommendation as I am not qualified to do so. But are you? Many here have doubts.

Hey folks my wife and I will soon move to salinas, as a first destination, and we intend to rent a furnished apartment.  Do furnished apartments typically  come with bedding and towels? It has been 40 years since I rented, and I do not remember  from when we looked at a few during our last visit.

Parrotsrest
You can use dish towels unless you’re very large 😜🙂😉😬🤡

parrotsrest :

Do furnished apartments typically  come with bedding and towels? It has been 40 years since I rented, and I do not remember  from when we looked at a few during our last visit.

As a rule, in South America, the answer is yes to bed sheets/pillowcases and towels.

However, the last "furnished" apartment I rented (in Peru) did not have a towel, until I noticed this and requested a bath towel, which was promptly supplied.

All other furnished apartments I have rented in South America have supplied bedding and towels.

If in doubt, check ahead or upon arrival.

cccmedia

parrotsrest :

Do furnished apartments typically  come with bedding and towels?

Ours didn't come with any bedding or bath towels, but the previous renters were nice enough to leave an old set of sheets and towels for us so we had a place to sleep the first night. We already had a blanket. The kitchen had a couple towels.

Bigbrad2008 :

I won't give a recommendation as I am not qualified to do so. But are you? Many here have doubts.

Really? Many? Then why is it always the same 2-3 uninformed? Curious, no? Yeah, very well qualified. A full 35+ years of well versed and qualified. If you are not -- and that was your characterization, not mine -- by all means choose to remain silent at will. Don't get in the way of those looking for real, professional and unbiased information.

parrotsrest :

Hey folks my wife and I will soon move to salinas, as a first destination, and we intend to rent a furnished apartment.  Do furnished apartments typically  come with bedding and towels? It has been 40 years since I rented, and I do not remember  from when we looked at a few during our last visit.

If the property is well run and professionally managed ... bed linens, towels and all the customary items will be available. Specifically referring to Salinas, here, because it is set up as a vacation rental market, primarily, and thus most people don't travel about with a set of dishes, silverware, etc. Outside of Salinas, the trend is much more varied. If in Salinas and these items are not provided, you are dealing with a low grade property, owner, real estate agency or management company. Call it like I see it.

We’re in the middle of that process ourselves we also bought a property in Salinas and we are also using Sarah and so far she’s been great to work with and has answered all of our questions even above and beyond the immigration portion so far I highly recommend her and as mentioned in every post above I highly recommend hiring a lawyer whether you’re doing it yourself or not you at least want to get the process started while you’re still in the United States to gather all the proper paperwork that you need while you’re still here because I imagine getting it while you’re in Ecuador could be next  to impossible or at the very least a lot more time-consuming and a lot more money.   A good lawyer should cost you about $2000 getting all the paperwork stamped and ready to go usually cost about $800 give or take shipping your stuff over can cost $9000 for a 20 foot container shipped overseas  Buying a property in Ecuador was simple a lot less expensive than in Texas including the closing costs but just like any real estate transaction there is some paperwork that you have to go through and make sure you get a reputable realtor I can also recommend one there if anyone is interested.   Buying a property in Ecuador was simple a lot less expensive than in Texas including the closing costs but just like any real estate transaction there is some paperwork that you have to go through and make sure you get a reputable realtor I can also recommend one there if anyone is interested

Ricardo, really liked your point about an attorney. Hope the public will listen to a fellow property buyer, with more attention than they listen to a real estate industry professional. A good lawyer will run you between $800 - $2,500. Yep, quite a span, but it is reality. Even at the upper end, better to lose $2,500 than to lose $120,000+, as I have seen folks do in Ecuador, because they had no attorney representation ... listened to the "do it yourself" crowd ... the local smoke and sunshine newsletter ... or a real estate industry denizen that eschews integrity. In fact, one such unsuspecting party is undergoing this headache and drama right now. Slick websites cost $50 ... and to create a "fancy" video, maybe $100. It is easy to look slick ... but you can't buy integrity. Hope your Salinas purchase works out for you, Ricardo. And ... yes ... always use an attorney and one that specializes in real estate transactions. It is not how much you spend, it is how much it doesn't end up costing you in the end.

I am using Sara Chaca to handle my temporary visa and eventual purchase of property.  She came very highly recommended.  I met with her a few months ago in Cuenca and she said that she will travel to Vilcabamba (a trip of 4-1/2 hours) so the trip to Salinas is only a little more so I would think that would not be a problem.   Ask her, if it's too far then perhaps she will give you a referral to someone else.  She's very user-friendly and will not charge you for a few questions...
Good luck,
Diana

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