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Thread: Introduction

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Posts
    4

    Default Introduction

    Hey all! I just thought I would go ahead and introduce myself here since this is the sub-forum I will be reading most often. Due to some health issues (nothing crazy, just unfortunate), my fiance and I have decided that we aren't going to wait until we are older to live where we really want to. Over the next few years we are going to be working toward the life we want on Bonaire. It's not something we are rushing into, so we are just going to take our time getting all of our ducks in a row. I'm looking forward to reading through all of the threads and meeting some of you.

    I have a few basic questions:

    1) If one were to learn a second language that is spoken on the island, which one would you recommend? After our last trip to Bonaire, I started learning Dutch through a variety of sources, but am questioning whether I should instead be learning Papiamentu. It seems like neither is really necessary for someone who already speaks English, but I've enjoyed learning the Dutch, and it would be nice to understand some of the basic signage or have some fun conversations.

    2) Through my research and driving around the island, I've found some communities that look really nice, but I don't know the specifics about each area. Are there any areas to avoid once we start looking for a house? Why did you choose the community you live in?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Sabadeco, Bonaire
    Posts
    53

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    Quote Originally Posted by PMC222 View Post
    Hey all! I just thought I would go ahead and introduce myself here since this is the sub-forum I will be reading most often. Due to some health issues (nothing crazy, just unfortunate), my fiance and I have decided that we aren't going to wait until we are older to live where we really want to. Over the next few years we are going to be working toward the life we want on Bonaire. It's not something we are rushing into, so we are just going to take our time getting all of our ducks in a row. I'm looking forward to reading through all of the threads and meeting some of you.

    I have a few basic questions:

    1) If one were to learn a second language that is spoken on the island, which one would you recommend? After our last trip to Bonaire, I started learning Dutch through a variety of sources, but am questioning whether I should instead be learning Papiamentu. It seems like neither is really necessary for someone who already speaks English, but I've enjoyed learning the Dutch, and it would be nice to understand some of the basic signage or have some fun conversations.

    2) Through my research and driving around the island, I've found some communities that look really nice, but I don't know the specifics about each area. Are there any areas to avoid once we start looking for a house? Why did you choose the community you live in?
    Hi PMC!

    Congrats on deciding to move to Bonaire! My husband Ian and I decided to knock a number of years off our retirement too and took the plunge, buying our home here in Sabadeco in 2015. We have absolutely loved living here and wish we could have done it even earlier!

    We're learning Papiementu. We felt we could only learn one more language and every Dutch person we know here speaks perfect English, so we figured, let's learn the original language of Bonaire. Most Bonaireans speak English also.

    When looking at where on the island to live, whether you are paying cash or obtaining a mortgage from a Bonaire bank will factor into your choice, because banks in Bonaire will loan only in certain areas (generally the coastal areas from Punt Vierkant in the south to Sabadeco in the north.) Further inland, you may have a problem getting a mortgage.

    The second consideration is whether you want to rent to tourists or locals, short or long term, in between when you buy the house and move here. In that case you'd also want a place that would appeal to renters.

    If you're paying cash, and don't plan to rent the property, you can buy anywhere.

    Look forward to meeting you on the island, we have quite the ex-pat group here!

    All the best,
    Kate Butler
    Real Estate Agent, RE/MAX Paradise Homes, Bonaire

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Posts
    4

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kate B View Post
    Hi PMC!

    Congrats on deciding to move to Bonaire! My husband Ian and I decided to knock a number of years off our retirement too and took the plunge, buying our home here in Sabadeco in 2015. We have absolutely loved living here and wish we could have done it even earlier!

    We're learning Papiementu. We felt we could only learn one more language and every Dutch person we know here speaks perfect English, so we figured, let's learn the original language of Bonaire. Most Bonaireans speak English also.

    When looking at where on the island to live, whether you are paying cash or obtaining a mortgage from a Bonaire bank will factor into your choice, because banks in Bonaire will loan only in certain areas (generally the coastal areas from Punt Vierkant in the south to Sabadeco in the north.) Further inland, you may have a problem getting a mortgage.

    The second consideration is whether you want to rent to tourists or locals, short or long term, in between when you buy the house and move here. In that case you'd also want a place that would appeal to renters.

    If you're paying cash, and don't plan to rent the property, you can buy anywhere.

    Look forward to meeting you on the island, we have quite the ex-pat group here!

    All the best,
    Hey Kate!

    Thanks for the response! I guess I should have included my name in my introduction I'm Patrick, and my fiance is Emily.

    Thanks for the information. I did not realize that the availability of mortgage loans could be dependent on location; that's good to know. I actually prefer the houses further inland. I imagine the salt water makes houses on the coast a little more difficult to maintain. I figure that we're going to be seeing the ocean literally every single day, so I don't really need a house with an ocean view.

    How has learning Papiamento been? I've enjoyed learning a new language, something I wish I had done in the past. Is Papiamento used in any way other than conversationally? I thought I had read somewhere that anything related to Bonairean government is in Dutch. Is that not true?

    Congrats on the house in Sabadeco! That area is amazing. The Andrea's are one of our favorite dive sites.

    Unfortunately, we won't be back on the island until next year, but we would definitely like to meet up with any one who would like to. Might as well create our Bonaire network as soon as possible!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Sabadeco, Bonaire
    Posts
    53

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    Quote Originally Posted by PMC222 View Post
    Hey Kate!

    Thanks for the response! I guess I should have included my name in my introduction I'm Patrick, and my fiance is Emily.

    Thanks for the information. I did not realize that the availability of mortgage loans could be dependent on location; that's good to know. I actually prefer the houses further inland. I imagine the salt water makes houses on the coast a little more difficult to maintain. I figure that we're going to be seeing the ocean literally every single day, so I don't really need a house with an ocean view.

    How has learning Papiamento been? I've enjoyed learning a new language, something I wish I had done in the past. Is Papiamento used in any way other than conversationally? I thought I had read somewhere that anything related to Bonairean government is in Dutch. Is that not true?

    Congrats on the house in Sabadeco! That area is amazing. The Andrea's are one of our favorite dive sites.

    Unfortunately, we won't be back on the island until next year, but we would definitely like to meet up with any one who would like to. Might as well create our Bonaire network as soon as possible!
    Hi Patrick,
    I sent you a friend request so you can email me and Ian directly when you arrive, and we can meet you. Regarding your question on what Papiamentu and Dutch are used for, yes, Dutch is the official language and all legal documents are in Dutch. Papiamentu is widely used by the local electricians, plumbers, builders and other trade professionals we've used, as well as in advertisements, on the radio, etc. However, almost everyone here also speaks Dutch and English. So, you're good all around!

    All the best,
    Kate Butler
    Real Estate Agent, RE/MAX Paradise Homes, Bonaire

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Bonaire
    Posts
    45

    Default

    Hi Patrick and Emily,

    You're very smart to plan well ahead for your transition to Bonaire. The first thing I'd say is that Kate and Ian are wonderful people. Kate has been an incredible help for me in many ways, and other people have been amazing, too. For me, getting to know the right people is far more important than any language barriers you'll encounter.

    I have trouble with languages, and for the need to understand Dutch in government forms and such, I use Google translate. I want to learn Papimento, but it's been very hard, The nice thing is, if you only know a few basic phrases, the native speakers will receive you warmly. Spanish is also very useful for dealing with mechanics, cleaners and handymen. There are workers from Venezueala and Peru, and all the Papimento speakers I know also speak Spanish.

    Welcome to the Bonaire Community!
    ~Jeyna
    owner of Aqua View Oceanfront Vacation Rental
    https://tropicofdestiny.com/

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Posts
    4

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by wishing4wind View Post
    Hi Patrick and Emily,

    You're very smart to plan well ahead for your transition to Bonaire. The first thing I'd say is that Kate and Ian are wonderful people. Kate has been an incredible help for me in many ways, and other people have been amazing, too. For me, getting to know the right people is far more important than any language barriers you'll encounter.

    I have trouble with languages, and for the need to understand Dutch in government forms and such, I use Google translate. I want to learn Papimento, but it's been very hard, The nice thing is, if you only know a few basic phrases, the native speakers will receive you warmly. Spanish is also very useful for dealing with mechanics, cleaners and handymen. There are workers from Venezueala and Peru, and all the Papimento speakers I know also speak Spanish.

    Welcome to the Bonaire Community!
    ~Jeyna
    owner of Aqua View Oceanfront Vacation Rental
    https://tropicofdestiny.com/
    Nice to meet you Jeyna!

    Thanks for the info about languages. I didn't think about which language would be most used among local service workers.

    Do you mind if I ask what neighborhood you live in and why you chose that area?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Bonaire
    Posts
    45

    Default

    I have lived in several places, for me personally, I don't have the resources to chose to live any place on the island I want to. For much of the time, I didn't have a car, so the walk score was very important. After being here for a year and exploring different areas, I can say this; I like to be off the 1st floor. I like to be up where you can feel the breeze and have a wider view. I can only stay in a place that is completely screened because of the mosquitoes, but you can add them yourself if you need to. I'd avoid Sorobon because it's so far from everything I want to get to often and quickly (supermarkets, etc.). Rincon is too remote for me. Belnem is nice, I'm there now, but I prefer to be on the North side of town (near my vacation rental). I like very much the neighborhood north of Kaya Nederlandia, I walked through the neighborhood daily to go to Industry of Avtivity (dance studio), but if I were to live there, I would want to be on the side closer to the water. on the side close to Antriol it's a bit more run down. I stayed at a place directly across from the airport and hated the walking from there to anywhere because of the busy dusty road. If you are looking for a place more away from the street noise, you'll definitely make different choices than I. Also, make sure your place is not in the direct sun all day, but I hear that places in the hills that have nice breeze and shade feel a lot more comfortable than the small places closer to town that lack the vegetation and don't have great ventilation. I hope that's helpful for you!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Posts
    4

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by wishing4wind View Post
    I have lived in several places, for me personally, I don't have the resources to chose to live any place on the island I want to. For much of the time, I didn't have a car, so the walk score was very important. After being here for a year and exploring different areas, I can say this; I like to be off the 1st floor. I like to be up where you can feel the breeze and have a wider view. I can only stay in a place that is completely screened because of the mosquitoes, but you can add them yourself if you need to. I'd avoid Sorobon because it's so far from everything I want to get to often and quickly (supermarkets, etc.). Rincon is too remote for me. Belnem is nice, I'm there now, but I prefer to be on the North side of town (near my vacation rental). I like very much the neighborhood north of Kaya Nederlandia, I walked through the neighborhood daily to go to Industry of Avtivity (dance studio), but if I were to live there, I would want to be on the side closer to the water. on the side close to Antriol it's a bit more run down. I stayed at a place directly across from the airport and hated the walking from there to anywhere because of the busy dusty road. If you are looking for a place more away from the street noise, you'll definitely make different choices than I. Also, make sure your place is not in the direct sun all day, but I hear that places in the hills that have nice breeze and shade feel a lot more comfortable than the small places closer to town that lack the vegetation and don't have great ventilation. I hope that's helpful for you!
    Thanks so much! That's all really good information. I also don't have the resources to live anywhere I would like on the island. Part of the reason places further inland appeal to me is that we could get more for the price we're able to spend. I'm going to save this for the next time we are on island so that I have an idea what others have found they like. My fiance runs hot, so finding a place that allows the breeze to really flow through is a must. Thanks again Jeyna! This gives me a lot to think about for the next year

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