Four years ago, Prince and Nadine Rich were exhausted from trying to keep up with the rat race. “In the States we noticed our quality of life was going down,” says Prince. “There were all of these things that were out of our control. I felt there was more to life than working 40 or 60 hours a week, just to kind of keep up.”
The couple began searching overseas for a new home with a lower cost of living, welcoming locals, and a laidback stress-free environment. In Costa Rica’s lush Central Valley, they found their ideal location—the idyllic farming town of Grecia, about a 30-minute drive from the capital of San Jose.
“I wanted to experience a different culture,” says Nadine Rich. “For me and for our children. We wanted to show them a lifestyle that wasn’t as materialistic as the States.”
The family was welcomed immediately by the community, both by locals and Grecia’s sizeable expat population. The neighbors often bring them gifts of bananas and bags of tomatoes. One day their daughter had an accident with some poison Ivey and had to miss school. That evening one of her classmates came by with a basket filled with gifts letting her know she was missed.
Since moving to Grecia, the couple have found Costa Rica‘s low cost of living to be a major stress buster. “In the States we were paying $1,400 a month for a not-so-great, three-bedroom apartment,” says Prince. “Now we have a really nice house, it’s the newest house on the street, and our rent is $650. In the States our utilities were really high; $160 to $200 in electricity a month. Now it is just $25 to $50 a month.”
Both Prince and Nadine own their own business which—thanks to Costa Rica’s reliable and high-quality internet—operate smoothly from their home in Grecia. After deciding to make the move overseas, Prince and Nadine restructured their businesses so they could operate it remotely from anywhere. Nadine owns a pet spa in Virginia, and Prince owns and operates an IT company, and a separate ecommerce company that sells phone systems.
The businesses run smoothly and the couple has more time than they ever did in the U.S. The family wakes around 5 a.m. (because Grecia is close to the equator the sun rises and sets early) and after breakfast the kids are sent off to school. Nadine and Prince will spend the mornings working on their businesses and at lunchtime the couple take some time to be together. They often going for a walk and take in the picturesque mountain views, go for a run, or Prince will take a quick nap on their patio.
Once the kids arrive home from school, work time is over for the couple and family time begins. One of their favorite things to do is to take the family into downtown Grecia and eat a local traditional Costa Rican restaurant, Soda la Tica, in the town’s Central Mercado. “The food is great and the wait staff is excellent,” says Prince. “The entire family can eat for under $30.”
Prince and Nadine’s experience in Costa Rica has been rewarding. The family has more time together and their jobs are no longer as demanding on their time. But, for Nadine the best part is living surround by nature and the breathtaking scenery. “It’s just absolutely beautiful here,” says Nadine. “Just living in the moment, you feel alive.”
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