The 8 Best Places To Retire In Puerto Rico | Upgraded Home (2022)

The 8 Best Places To Retire In Puerto Rico | Upgraded Home (1)

As people get increasingly tired of the American cost of life, moving outside of the mainland is starting to become increasingly attractive. At the same time, people don’t want to have to give up their citizenship. As a result, more people than ever before are moving to Puerto Rico to retire. It’s one of the newest retirement hotspots due to its amazing tax rates and warm, sunny beaches. But, where should you retire?

Puerto Rico boasts a slew of amazing places to retire. However, these below are frequently rated as the best places for retirees to live:

  1. San Juan
  2. Dorado
  3. Ponce
  4. Bucana Barrio
  5. Monacillo Barrio
  6. Mayaguez
  7. Culebra & Vieques
  8. Cayey

If you love the idea of enjoying low tax rates, excellent price points, and the ability to bask in sunny beaches, then Puerto Rico might be the best place to “offshore” your retirement. Let’s talk about the top cities in this area.

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Where Are The Best Places To Retire In Puerto Rico?

Puerto Rico offers oh, so much for the new retiree. It has an amazing array of attractions, a low cost of living, as well as world-class beaches. The best part is, you don’t need a visa to live there. It’s a United States territory. But, which are the best places to live?

1. San Juan

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San Juan has a lot of good to offer retirees. This is the largest city in Puerto Rico, not to mention the capital. For newcomers, this means that you get ample amenities and a strong infrastructure that’s geared towards being tourist-friendly. This makes it an easy transition for people who are used to the United States mainland.

(Video) 8 Best reasons to retire to Puerto Rico! Living in Puerto Rico!

In San Juan, you can get by without fully knowing Spanish. This cannot be said in other parts of the country. With that said, people love San Juan is a gorgeous place that’s fairly hurricane-proof. (This is one of the less-hit cities during Hurricane Maria.) Around 300,000 people call this place home. Fans of urban settings with amazing food will love this place.

2. Dorado

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San Juan’s pointedly urban setting can be a bit much for people, especially if you are a fan of rural areas. One of the nicer places for people in search of a rural place will find this petite coastal town to be a good choice. It’s got plenty of beautiful homes as well as tons of sun n’ sand to soak up.

The good news about life in Dorado is that you will be able to get to the city whenever you want. It’s just 25 miles away and the traffic is never too bad. The bad news is that you might have a hard time with the language barrier, depending on who you talk to.

3. Ponce

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Ponce is one of the most tourist-friendly coastal cities in Puerto Rico, and it’s easy to see why. The city has tons of amazing views as well as close beachside access. The cost of living is low, the food is fantastic, and there is always some kind of festivity happening. Did we mention that the locals are super friendly, too? They are. It’s great.

The reason why Ponce is so popular among retirees is manifold. Most retirees find the festivals to be nice, but the big draw here is that Ponce has some of the best healthcare in the country. As a result, you can rest easy knowing that doctors will always be here to help you.

4. Bucana Barrio

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Bucana Barrio is one of the many suburbs of Ponce, so to a point, it’s kind of a given that we added this to our list. But, it’s so remarkably popular with expats and retirees that we just have to mention it. Bucana Barrio is impeccable when it comes to both the sights and sounds. Unlike the main city of Ponce, it’s not a city area. It’s a nice suburb instead.

The cool thing about Bucana Barrio is that you don’t have to worry about crime or lacking stuff for your grandkids to do. It’s both extra affordable and family-friendly. There is also a huge influx of Americans there, so you might also feel just a little more at home while lounging in the tropics.

5. Monacillo Barrio

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This gorgeous little barrio is a great place to be, regardless of your age. With a population of around 9,000, it’s a town that has a slightly more urban edge than many other tiny towns in the region. Monacillo Barrio is a suburb of San Juan, and happens to have an even split between retirees and young professionals. So, it’s far from a typical “retirement” location.

Most people prefer this area because it has a particularly strong expat influence, which means that grabbing classic American fare won’t be hard here. The cost of living here is also more affordable than San Juan proper, and getting into the heart of the city is a cinch. It’s a win-win, especially when you factor in low crime rates.

6. Mayaguez

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This is one of the largest municipalities in all of Puerto Rico, and it’s amazing for people who want to soak in the culture. There are museums, gardens, and tons of attractions here. (Oh, and great restaurants, but that’s par for the course in Puerto Rico.) The area is extremely expat-friendly and tourist-friendly, which means that you can ease yourself into Puerto Rican life without too much of a culture shock.

(Video) Cities Perfect for Retirement in Puerto Rico

People tend to love this area because it’s a cosmopolitan region that has plenty of walkable streets. Going for a stroll here is great, and while celebrations are a way of life here, you can also find your own quiet nook if you so choose. It’s an area that also has ample doctors, which is a major perk in old age.

The affordable housing is one of the pros of living in Puerto Rico.

7. Culebra & Vieques

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As someone who’s a hermit, I totally understand the need to seclude yourself. If you love the idea of communing with nature and living alone, you will love these two islands—with Culebra being the easier one to retire in. These small islands are right off the coast of the mainland, and have small levels of accommodations to offer.

Rural and tropical to the point that it might be intimidating for some, both islands are still popular tourist attractions. So, you’ll still find plenty of people from America passing through. One reason why you will really, truly love this area are the beached. More specifically, you’ll love Vieques’s beaches. They are the most bioluminescent in the world.

8. Cayey

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We have gone so deep into the world of beaches and cities that Puerto Rico offers that we forgot about the mountains. That’s where the municipality of Cayey comes into place. The area has a beautiful town spread that has both urban and suburban vibes. Low crime rates, a low cost of living, and gorgeous views await.

Retirees who want to keep active via hiking will be particularly happy living in Cayey. The mountain views here are amazing, as are the nature trails. In some parts of the mountains, you can see fields upon fields of flowers blooming there. It’s surreal, and one of the most breathtaking things you’ll see. We all go “YAY!” for Cayey.

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(Video) 15 Best reasons NOT to retire to Puerto Rico! Don't live in Puerto Rico!

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Related Questions

Does Puerto Rico tax retirement income?

Puerto Rico is becoming increasingly popular among retirees because they do not tax retirement income at all. Moreover, the country’s tax structure makes for an amazing escape away from high tax rates that plague many other parts of America. If you were worried about being taxed out of retirement, we can assure you that you won’t have that happen in Puerto Rico.

Even if the taxes were there, the big perk everyone loves about this area is that the cost of living is low, low, low. So, you can also expect your dollar to stretch more here.

How much money do you need to live comfortably in Puerto Rico?

The spectacularly low cost of living makes this place a dream for people who don’t have much to their name and want to retire nonetheless. You can easily live comfortably with an income of $2,000 a month in this territory-country. If you have extra cash, your retirement lifestyle will be nothing short of luxurious. Talk about getting a lot of bang for your buck.

Do you need a passport to go to Puerto Rico?

Despite the fact that Puerto Rico acts as its own country in a lot of ways (and is casually even called a country), the truth is that it’s not a country. It’s a United States territory that’s jockeying for statehood as of late. This means that all United States citizens can visit Puerto Rico without having to go through the hurdles of getting a visa or updating their passport.

With that said, it’s important to remember that you will be required to get TrueID by 2023 in order to be able to travel by air in America.

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Is Puerto Rico a good place for an American to retire? ›

Bottom Line. It's easy to see why so many Americans choose to make the move and retire in Puerto Rico. The cheap cost of living combined with beautiful landscapes and a tropical climate are a dream come true for many. You'll also have easy access to affordable healthcare and generous tax incentives.

How much money do you need to retire in Puerto Rico? ›

It is possible to live comfortably in Puerto Rico for around $2,000 a month. However, there are still many ways that you can keep it affordable if that is what you are looking for as it is generally cheaper for grocery, healthcare, education and daily expenses.

What part of Puerto Rico is the safest to live? ›

Palmas del Mar is the ultimate safest place to live in Puerto Rico. It's a small town located in the southeast municipality of Humacao with a population of just about 2,192.

Which part of Puerto Rico is safest from hurricanes? ›

For the small size of Puerto Rico, hurricanes affect the entire island, regardless of the hurricane category. If a hurricane passes far to the north or the south, the outer rainbands might affect only one part of the island, and depending on the route, the west coast might be the safest.

What are the downsides of living in Puerto Rico? ›

Cons of Living in Puerto Rico
  • Poor Economy. Unfortunately, Puerto Rico has a somewhat poor economy. ...
  • Cars are More Expensive. Cars are much more expensive in Puerto Rico than on the mainland. ...
  • Private Schools are Necessary. ...
  • Cultural Differences. ...
  • Difficulty Shopping Online. ...
  • Dangerous Hurricane Season. ...
  • Poor Public Transportation.

How much does the average house cost in Puerto Rico? ›

The median cost for an average house ranges from US $175,000 to US $319,000. Some areas have seen price stabilization or increases of as much as 25%, including the highly competitive Dorado market. Other popular cities include San Juan, Rincón, Aguada and Ponce.

Is Social Security income taxed in Puerto Rico? ›

Specifically, residents of Puerto Rico pay customs taxes, Federal commodity taxes, and all payroll taxes (also known as FICA taxes, which include (a) Social Security, (b) Medicare, and Unemployment taxes).

Do you pay property tax in Puerto Rico? ›

Puerto Rico levies property taxes based on a flat rate of 1.03 percent for real estate. There is a further tax rate of 1 percent for the personal property contained within the real estate, falling under the furniture tax law of Puerto Rico, and an additional rate of 3 percent for the land containing the real estate.

What is the best place to live in Puerto Rico? ›

According to PR Business Link, the best place to live in Puerto Rico is San Juan, and many experts agree. San Juan is the largest city on the island, and it offers a typical urban lifestyle. There are plenty of shops, restaurants, attractions, and amenities for residents to enjoy.

Should I buy a house in Puerto Rico? ›

The reason why is simple and fantastic: Puerto Rico is a commonwealth of the United States! That means any American citizen can purchase property or a home on the island no problem. Also, when traveling back-and-forth there's no need to go through customs which can save you a lot of time and energy.

How much is a gallon of milk in Puerto Rico? ›

Dairy products

A gallon of milk in Puerto Rico costs about $2.99, while the average US price is $2.39.

What is the nicest area of Puerto Rico? ›

The best areas to stay in Puerto Rico include Old San Juan for sightseeing, Rio Grande for adventure lovers, Rincon and Cabo Rojo to surf and find the best sunsets, Vieques to see the bioluminescent bay, and Culebra to relax on the beach.

Is Puerto Rico safer than Mexico? ›

Is Puerto Rico safer than Mexico? Statistically, Puerto Rico is fairly safer than Mexico. While both countries have dangerous areas that should be avoided at all costs, Puerto Rico is tourist-friendly overall. There are gang-related crimes happening in both countries, but they usually don't affect visitors.

What part of Puerto Rico has the lowest crime rate? ›

Cayey (Central Puerto Rico in Caguas)

Cayey, Caguas, Puerto Rico has one of the best safety ratings, with it declared as safer than about 71% of other U.S. cities.

What is the coldest month in Puerto Rico? ›

The coldest month is January with an average low of 70 °F (21 °C) and an average high of 83 °F (28 °C). Puerto Rico enjoys warm, sunny and humid days most of the year. There is no winter, spring or fall, only summertime. The winds move from the east to west across the island year-round.

Where do the rich live in Puerto Rico? ›

Puerto Rico municipalities ranked by per capita income
RankMunicipalityPer capita income (2017)
2San Juan$18,160
74 more rows

What is the hottest month in Puerto Rico? ›

Average Temperature in Puerto Rico

The hottest month of the year in Puerto Rico is January, with an average high of 88°F and low of 70°F. The cool season lasts for 2.8 months, from May 16 to August 10, with an average daily high temperature below 73°F.

What is the best area to live in Puerto Rico? ›

1. San Juan. According to PR Business Link, the best place to live in Puerto Rico is San Juan, and many experts agree. San Juan is the largest city on the island, and it offers a typical urban lifestyle.

Where do most expats live in Puerto Rico? ›

Most expats settle in Puerto Rico's capital, San Juan, or in the south in Ponce, its second-largest city. Carros Públicos (public cars) allow you to travel all over the island and reach even remote areas.

What's the cheapest place to live in Puerto Rico? ›

Affordability. Rio Mar, Puerto Rico, is one of the more affordable locations on our list because it boasts less nightlife and partying than other cities. This lowers the cost of living and allows it to be affordable to those looking for a quiet island lifestyle on a budget.

Why are houses so cheap in Puerto Rico? ›

Very much so. Right now Puerto Rico is in a debt crisis which has caused real estate prices to fall. In some cases, they are 25% to 30% lower than they have been in over a decade! One thing to keep in mind, however, is that with a risky economy comes the chance home prices could drop even lower.


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