$/month needed for a great life in BA


Mar 9, 2009
My wife and I, along with our 2 kids are planning to possibly spend a few years in BA. We are fairly successful and plan to live on dividends from US investments. We would like to rent a 3 bedroom apartment in a good neighborhood and maintain a nice living. I was wondering of how much $ per month we might need.

We would greatly appreciate your opinions.
These questions always strike me as a bit odd. It hardly matters what city, the point is the impossibility of offering any realistic or useful advice of this nature without having a lot more specific information. It's like asking, how much would it cost me to live well in New York City? What constitutes a "good" neighborhood? What is a "nice living?" How large, besides just number of bedrooms, a space do you need? Do you eat mostly in or mostly out? Do you want a maid, need a nanny? Car?

And I do hope your US investments are doing better than mine, which are tanking a mile a minute.
Also one thing to keep in mind is that in Argentina inflation can get out of control pretty quickly. You saw you want to come down for a few years. Well, I think everyone on this board would agree with me that any budget that would have been given for 3 years ago is pretty much entirely irrelevant today. In the past six months alone the dollar has gone up from 3.09:1 to 3.62:1, but inflation has been going up at around 20-25% on many goods (and more on many others!)

Here's the same advice I always give, come down, try it for 6 months, see what you think. If that's not an option (which probably isn't since you've got kids), then come down for a month.

Also you don't mention anything about your kids and what you'd want for them here -- are they in at all school yet? do you want them at a private school? are they in university? School starts very young here -- 3 years old and a lot of places take them younger. Private schools can run pretty high, and a lot of them are in the Northern Zone, which is an entirely different lifestyle than BA. You would need a car. There's a LOT more that you need to research before anyone can stat giving you numbers. Have you visited BA before? It's not the cheap paradise that the papers claim, and a lot of people end up deciding it's not for them.

I think rather than figuring out how much it costs to live, you'd be better off figuring out how you can make a 1-6 month stay happen first.
Stan, Expect to pay $2,000 to $3,000 US for a furnished 3 bedroom apartment (six month lease max). Dining out will be less than the US (except at McDonalds) and groceries will average about the same, thought the selection here is far less than the US, especially for prepared foods (Stoufer's, etc.) Medical insurance will be considerably cheaper, especially if you enroll in a group plan, and you won't need a car if you live in Recoleta or Palermo. You will have to pay private school tuition for your children, but I have no numbers for those costs.

You will also face immigration issues every 90 days unless you apply for temporary residency. For that, your investments must be "stable" and provable, though not very high (even less than you will be paying for an apartment).

There are a number of threads in the forums that should prove useful to you. Use the search engine and you will find them.

Try the following for starters:

Advice on large apartment 2000+ sq. ft.

Wannabe Expats

Avoid Becoming a Victim of Crime

Baby Boomers in BA

Expats not happy, why stay?

Life in USA vs. Argentina

A few tips for Newcomers

Syngirl mentioned the Northern Zone. I hear it is getting (even more) dangerous to live in a house there.