Greetings folks -- a self introduction

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Sea206
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Greetings folks -- a self introduction

Post by Sea206 » Tue Jul 10, 2018 12:20 am

Greetings Folks :)

I've been planning to move to Thailand for a couple of years, now that I'm over 50 and can get the Retirement Visa.

I'm currently living in my home city (Seattle) getting my affairs in order and researching where I'd like to live, and Hua Hin is in my top 4, so I'm joining this forum to learn more about your great city.

I spent 90 days in Thailand between Dec and March, and spent a week in Hua Hin around New Years.

The main aspects that draw me to Hua Hin are proximity to beaches, proximity to BKK, enough of an expat community to not feel too isolated, health care, and availability of rental houses with some yard and a private pool (I love to swim daily for exercise, sometimes more than once a day just to cool off).

I do have one new complicating factor in my life now, which is that I might bring my mom with me. She is in an assisted living facility now in Seattle, and if I move, I don't think I want to leave her behind (not much other family in Seattle). I think the tropical life of Thailand might be good for her health and mood, and I've been thinking of renting a 4 bedroom house and hiring a live in aid. She has some memory issues now, but I've noticed that the more active I can keep her, the better her mind seems to be.

I also have a Thai GF (of 2 years), who is an optician with her own shop near Rangsit. She might move with me to Hua Hin, if she thinks she can have a shop there.

Other places that we've considered are Chiang Mai, Khon Kaen (GF's hometown), and BKK (I like cities and the walkability of urban life, I stayed in Thong Lo for a month on my last trip).

Also, while my main plan is to retire, I'm a former software developer, and so I might work on a private project I'm thinking about (english teaching web page) -- just to keep my brain active. At a minimum, I might help my GF create a nice web page for her shop.

So, thanks for letting me join your forum. If you see me around, the above is my brief story.

Regards

Gregjam
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Re: Greetings folks -- a self introduction

Post by Gregjam » Tue Jul 10, 2018 11:46 am

I hope things work out for you. There are lots of opticians already in HH so that may not be a profitable option. Health care can be expensive and you will need to price up the cost of care for your mother. Good that you have been here before but as I am sure many will say, if you pick HH then rent first to get a feel for things over the long term.

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Dannie Boy
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Re: Greetings folks -- a self introduction

Post by Dannie Boy » Tue Jul 10, 2018 1:11 pm

Gregjam wrote:
Tue Jul 10, 2018 11:46 am
I hope things work out for you. There are lots of opticians already in HH so that may not be a profitable option. Health care can be expensive and you will need to price up the cost of care for your mother. Good that you have been here before but as I am sure many will say, if you pick HH then rent first to get a feel for things over the long term.
I think the rental advice is good for anywhere in Thailand not just HH. A live-in maid will not be too expensive although as Gregjam has mentioned, healthcare can be expensive - similarly, Opticians are everywhere so not a particularly good business prospect.

Many people comment that HH offers a good compromise between full city life and the urban retreat, so worth a try to see if it offers what you are looking for

Sea206
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Re: Greetings folks -- a self introduction

Post by Sea206 » Wed Jul 11, 2018 12:26 am

Thanks. I do plan to rent as long as I'm in Thailand, no interest in owning property there.

Curious what you guys mean about healthcare being more expensive... compared to what? BKK? Or Chiang Mai or Northern/Eastern rural provinces? I suspect any place with a relatively higher % of foreigners, might have some higher prices just due to simple economics (supply & demand).

As to the optician oversupply, I understand, but that is her trade, so it is what it is. It wouldn't be income we were relying on, just how she stays busy. I have noticed that there seem to be a lot of optician shops everywhere I've been. She has considered changing trades, but has been an optician for nearly 20 years so it is what she knows best currently.

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Dannie Boy
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Re: Greetings folks -- a self introduction

Post by Dannie Boy » Wed Jul 11, 2018 7:31 am

Sea206 wrote:
Wed Jul 11, 2018 12:26 am
Thanks. I do plan to rent as long as I'm in Thailand, no interest in owning property there.

Curious what you guys mean about healthcare being more expensive... compared to what? BKK? Or Chiang Mai or Northern/Eastern rural provinces? I suspect any place with a relatively higher % of foreigners, might have some higher prices just due to simple economics (supply & demand).

As to the optician oversupply, I understand, but that is her trade, so it is what it is. It wouldn't be income we were relying on, just how she stays busy. I have noticed that there seem to be a lot of optician shops everywhere I've been. She has considered changing trades, but has been an optician for nearly 20 years so it is what she knows best currently.
I believe the healthcare concerns are simply that it’s difficult or very expensive to get medical insurance for an 80 year old with existing conditions and in HH there are only a couple of fairly good hospitals - Bangkok Hospital gets mixed reviews, some praise it, others are less complimentary but the bottom line is that they are not cheap.

Regarding the optician business, if earning big bucks isn’t a priority then there shouldn’t be a problem and I’m sure there is space for a “quality” service provider to grab a reasonable slice of the market.

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migrant
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Re: Greetings folks -- a self introduction

Post by migrant » Wed Jul 11, 2018 8:19 am

I've always believed, and experienced, that, even in an overcrowded market there is always room for a well run, reasonably priced, business.
The essence of life lies with the dispensing with of formalities

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Re: Greetings folks -- a self introduction

Post by 404cameljockey » Wed Jul 11, 2018 8:36 am

Welcome and good luck with your plans.

Dannie Boy and migrant are right, build a good reputation quickly and I would think it should be more than just a time-filler for your missus.

Is your mother OK with high heat and humidity? I sit outdoors a lot but when inside I use aircon pretty much all the time. I'm used to that style of living from the Middle East and am comfortable with it (apart from the monthly power bill :D). I know Seattle isn't cold but the heat is a different style in a tropical country.

Sea206
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Re: Greetings folks -- a self introduction

Post by Sea206 » Wed Jul 11, 2018 10:34 pm

404cameljockey wrote:
Wed Jul 11, 2018 8:36 am

Is your mother OK with high heat and humidity? I sit outdoors a lot but when inside I use aircon pretty much all the time. I'm used to that style of living from the Middle East and am comfortable with it (apart from the monthly power bill :D). I know Seattle isn't cold but the heat is a different style in a tropical country.
Mom actually lived for the last 30 years in Spokane, and just moved to Seattle recently. Spokane can be quite hot in the summer, much hotter than Seattle and she had no A/C, though the heat is normally drier. Her home/facility now has A/C.

I'm hoping that by getting a house with a pool and a covered/shaded outdoor sitting area, I can have some options for everyone.

But yes even when I'm in Thailand, seems like I have the A/C on 90% of the time, except maybe in the early mornings when I first get up if it is cool enough to just let a breeze move through the house or condo.

Sea206
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Re: Greetings folks -- a self introduction

Post by Sea206 » Wed Jul 11, 2018 10:41 pm

Dannie Boy wrote:
Wed Jul 11, 2018 7:31 am


I believe the healthcare concerns are simply that it’s difficult or very expensive to get medical insurance for an 80 year old with existing conditions and in HH there are only a couple of fairly good hospitals - Bangkok Hospital gets mixed reviews, some praise it, others are less complimentary but the bottom line is that they are not cheap.
I see, thank you for explaining.

This is one of my biggest concerns. If I keep her in the US, she can get medicare & medicaid, but the general healthcare costs in the US are quite high and there might still be some out of pocket. But I think her quality of life will be low in her assisted living home, and I think quality of life is important. 98% of her socializing would be other residents or staff, not much family time.

In Thailand, she would be cutoff from medicare/medicaid and we'd have to self pay, but I think her quality of life could be much better and she'd see family daily. So it is a bit of a tradeoff.

She has some dementia/memory issues, but otherwise is quite healthy. No major issues or medications. Her family medical history is generally good. I think her biggest issues is that she is too sedentary, and I'm hoping that she would be less sedentary in a warmer place with a pool and maybe some garden.

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