Sunday, March 29, 2015

Pouring a concrete roof- Ecuadorian style

Recently I did a series on building a rental home in Ecuador. The series had many good comments and good reactions. So many of you requested this video that was made during construction of the rental unit. Here it is folks. I hope you enjoy.

Pouring a concrete roof. 

Ecuadorian style!

Monday, October 13, 2014

Report on the Puerto Cayo area in Ecuador

Life has gripped me on the coast of Ecuador. Lately it is seemingly more and more difficult to spread the concept of time around. After moving to Ecuador just over 2 years ago now, I am finding it not so easy to relax and take a more "manana" attitude. The very reason for moving to the coast in the first place.

The two main priorities we had was:

  1. Not be so stressed and work less
  2. Escape the cold Canadian winters
Only #2 has been achieved thus far. I am finding that we are still chasing the mighty "green back"as we try and take a glimpse of the spectacular coastline driving to the city. It has become what was awe inspiring and inspirational to what is now everyday scenery.

Flags waving at Mirador San Jose, Ecuador
Don't get me wrong, Ecuador is still a great place to be and to invest. But for those who are thinking about coming here without a large pension or nest egg, should follow my heed and try very hard not to fall into the trap of work and no play. It is far to easy to assume that you can live so much cheaper here and your dollar will last forever. It will not and in fact things are climbing up and up, particularly real estate. Puerto Cayo - Manta area is boiling and I have not seen any reduction since the first time we came here in 2010. The real estate market is "booming" which inspired me to create another company. Ecuador Beach Property was launched early this year and we have actually stopped taking listings because we have a labor shortage of qualified agents. We don't want to get overwhelmed because our clients are important to us, and we want to do the best job possible to market properties efficiently.

Taking a drive around Puerto Cayo, Mirador San Jose, and Manta is clearly evident to me that the landscape keeps changing with new residential, condo and large mega gated communities projects in the works. I will be doing a future article with some pictures of Puerto Cayo. The little fishing village intrigues me enough to want to dedicate an article focusing on the heartbeat of the community and not so much the large scale gated suburbs popping up on the outside reaches of the town.

Watch for this article right here... Subscribe to my RSS feed and don't miss this one folks

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Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Thinking about Retiring in Ecuador? Puerto Cayo perhaps?

Read this great article courtesy of
Mirador San Jose

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Final thoughts on the rental home construction

After nearly 7 months of construction and disruptions what are my final thoughts? Would I do it again? What would I change? So many questions could circle around in one's head. Basically when it comes to building a home in Ecuador, one word stands out in my mind. That word is 'patience!'

In Ecuador, if you plan on retiring in ecuador while building a home or even just a vacation property, you need to understand that things are not always going to be quick, on budget or on time. It is one of those cultural things you simply can not push to harshly to change. If the "whip" is too long then you simply will have your workers protesting in disgust and not show up for work! So it is a fine dance of patience and gentle nudging on your part. Often a cash bonus works well if you want the project to be accelerated more quickly. However, if you decide to use this tactic you better be extra vigilant on inspecting the work quality.

So with that said, would I do it again?

I can say with 100% certainty that I would. It was a great learning experience and at times tried my patience and tolerance level to the maximum. However, the end result was a North American quality unit that most everyone loves the moment they set foot inside. Most people can't believe how cozy and modern it is.

What would I change?

The only thing that I would really change is allowing yourself for extra time and a little more of a buffer for being over budget. Materials and labor costs have gone up slightly. So allow yourself a little extra for that. Ecuadorians are notorious for not wanting to give you a dollar amount as well. It appears that it is not something that is done well. Make sure that you are well informed about what is and what is not included in the budget. Make your business to know exactly what is included in the budget total. Often then not things are missed in the budget. This can add up to a unexpected surprise. Usually it is in the area of the final furnishings that are overlooked. Things such as mirrors and fixtures. These things are never included. Stay on top of things, and don't assume nothing.

Building the rental home was a great experience and much different then the first home that was built as my residence. That project was built by email and pictures while we were still in Canada. I was able to see it during the half way mark of construction personally. Otherwise, it was done "electronically" if you will.
Surprisingly enough it actually turned out very well all considering. That was a hair raising experience I would not wish to repeat. LOL!

So you might ask now, so is your rental home available to rent now? Of course, absolutely. I am in the process of designing a website for it. Casa Spondylus, will be bookable online and will be affordable by the day, week, or month. Stay tuned when I announce the completion of the website. For now, you may contact me if you wish to rent our rental home. 

Here is a look at Casa Spondylus completed!

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