Dividend Expat

What is a Dividend Expat?

Dividend expat is a term used to describe an expat who lives off passive dividend income earned from his stock, mutual fund, or ETF investment portfolio.

The term was coined by MrFreeat33 who retired early in SE Asia and lives off of his monthly dividend checks across his vast stock portfolio.

How The Dividend Expat Lifestyle Works

Many large companies trade on publicly traded stock exchanges such as NYSE or NASDAQ and pay quarterly dividends to their shareholders.

These quarterly dividend checks add up if you continue to pump money into your portfolio, live below your means, and continue to monitor your investments closely.

Once the passive income from your portfolio gets large enough, you can retire early overseas in a country with a much lower cost of living. Hench the term “Dividend expat”.


Advantages and Disadvantages of the Dividend Expat Lifestyle


  • Retire early from the rat race and spend more time with family and friends.
  • Focus your energy on projects you enjoy without worrying about earning enough money to cover bills.
  • Earn passive income from your investments and live anywhere you want in the world.
  • Travel more and live off your dividend income even if you don’t have a stable job.
  • Generate income from your portfolio without needing to sell stocks to raise cash.


  • Dividend cuts could reduce your passive income.
  • Dividend stocks tend to grow slower than growth stocks so your overall portfolio growth will be slower.
  • A stock market crash could lower your total portfolio value and hurt income in the short term.

Sample Portfolio for a Dividend Expat

You can build a dividend portfolio by purchasing stocks, ETFs, or mutual funds from any online broker.

Read More: 3 Reasons Why You May Want to Become a Dividend Expat