Home / All / Retirement Country Scoring System
scoring

Retirement Country Scoring System

How to create a scoring system to rank retirement countries

Scoring 5
A Perfect 5!

We’ve been collecting tons of data on the countries we’re considering.  It occurred to me that perhaps we need to come up with a way to organize that data and classify it in an objective way to help us select our retirement country.  Don’t get me wrong, there is definitely a “heart factor” that is involved here – a sort of a gut feeling that we will use to break any ties or close calls but we need a way to systematically look at the data and score it up front. After some thought, we decided to use a weighted system and just to make it fun, we’ll use suns as a visual aid for scoring.

In this post, you will see:

  • How to create your own retirement country scoring system
  • How to apply the scoring system
  • How we’ve rated our options thus far

Here is how to create a scoring system:

  1. Write out a list of what’s important to you in your new country (I will call these categories).
  2. Assign weight or importance to each one of the above.  Use percentages and keep in mind it all needs to add up to 100%.
  3. Create a table that shows the categories, their weight, each country, and country weighted score –  like the sample below.
  4. Fill in a score 1- 5 for each one of the categories.
  5. Multiply the above scores by corresponding weight and enter in to Country Scores column.
  6. Add up all the scores for the country in the bottom row and viola you have a weighted score.

Here is how to apply the scoring system:

  • Construct a table as shown below – I would recommend Excel to do this. List all of your important factors/categories going down first column and then add a column for your importance/weight scores.  Finally add two columns for each country – one for the overall scores (1-5) and one for [score x weight] or the weighted score.
  • Score all your factors for every country on a scale from 1-5 (1 being worst and 5 being best) as shown in table below.  So, if you love the climate in Costa Rica give it a 5 and so on. Write your scores into the table.
  • Multiply each score by its weight (importance) and write into the adjacent Country Scores column.
  • Once you have all the scores filled in, add up the weighted scores in the bottom row.

If this is still tough to understand check one this link on how to Calculate Weighted Average Score

 Here is a sample table with dummy scores:

Category

Weight/importance

Costa Rica
(1 -5)

CR Scores

Mexico
( 1-5)

Mex Scores

Panama

Pan
Scores

Stable government

25%

5

1.25

4

1

5

1.25

Low cost of living

25%

2

0.5

4

1

3

0.75

Perfect warm climate

20%

4

0.8

4

0.8

4

0.8

Proximity to family

20%

4

0.8

5

1

3

0.6

Medical/Health care

10%

4

0.4

3

0.3

3

0.3

Total Score:

3.75

4.1

 

3.7

Interpreting the sample table above, you can see that Mexico scored 4.1 out of 5. If these were real numbers, we’d give it our top consideration as a final retirement destination.

Where we rate our findings thus far:

So, first we wrote our list of important considerations, also see post on How to Select a Country to Retire Abroad.  We had eight (8) important factors.  These may be different for you, of course.  So, all eight combined make 100% or 12.5% each if they were of the exact same importance (or weight).  Although every one of these categories is important to us, we decided that Stable Government and Low Cost of Living were more important than Friendliness Toward Expats.  This is mainly because we want to retire early and that means money may be a little tight and because we do not want to live anywhere where we could be in any type of danger.  Don’t get me wrong, we still want people to be nice to us but not as much as we want to save money.

We then went on to assign the importance (in %) to all of categories on our list taking care to make sure that the total was 100%.  Here is what our table looks like so far:

Category

Weight/importance

Costa Rica
(1 -5)

CR Score

Mexico

Mex Score

Stable government

20%

Low cost of living

20%

2Scoring sun

0.4

4Scoring sun 4

 0.8
Perfect warm climate

15%

4.5Scoring Sun 4.5

0.675

4Scoring sun 4

 0.6
Proximity to family

10%

Medical/Health care

15%

4Scoring sun 4

0.6

Modern amenities

10%

5Scoring Sun 5

0.5

Friendliness toward expats

5%

Religion and culture

5%

Total Score:  100%

As time goes on, we will add columns for each country we evaluate.  Once everything is filled in, we then will add up total scores and narrow down which country is best for us to consider.  Of course, this in no way will replace our actual visits – and we are definitely planning on extended stays in some of the countries when we get further in the process – so that’s when the “heart thing” will come in.

That’s it in a nutshell.

 Stay tuned for more suns!

 

Joanna-

You may also like our other posts on Costa Rica and Mexico or the Process of moving abroad.

 

About Joanna

is a Polish American living in Arizona with her husband Tim. She is a founding partner of JTR Tech and she is proud to be a professional geek. She had dreamt of living abroad for many years. So, she and Tim created AbroadDreams.com to document the process of making their dream of moving abroad come true. They spent 2 years in Puerto Rico and several months in Spain and Poland. Now they are exploring the American Southwest.

Check Also

Las Vegas Anniversary

Our Anniversary In Las Vegas – The City That Never Sleeps

Five years ago, I made the best decision of my life – I married my …