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job opportunity but worried about cost of living  

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1lost
(@1lost)
New Member

So I have a job offer but the pay is only a little over 33k is it possible to survive in St. Thomas on this?

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Posted : March 16, 2011 12:42 am
Linda J
(@Linda_J)
Expert

Survive, yes. Live well or comfortably, including eating out, trips off island, and a nice home? probably not.

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Posted : March 16, 2011 3:03 am
Neil
 Neil
(@Neil)
Trusted Member

Does it include medical?
Do you want to be able to travel to the mainland?
Do you have kids?

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Posted : March 16, 2011 10:48 am
Afriend
(@afriend)
Advanced Member

It depends on where you live now, how much you are currently earning and the lifestyle you wish to maintain.

Assuming you live in the US near a major metropolitan area and are earning a similar amount than you'll find you'll have to lower your standard of living to make it with only $33,000/yr.

The Catch-22 of living in the Caribbean is wages are low and living expenses high.

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Posted : March 16, 2011 11:09 am
Ms Information
(@Ms_Information)
Advanced Member

So I have a job offer but the pay is only a little over 33k is it possible to survive in St. Thomas on this?

YES...I know many people who get by on $2750 a month. You will need to live like a 'student'. By that I mean you share housing and transportation costs with others and forget about big purchases. Many people find that easier here than in the states.

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Posted : March 16, 2011 1:17 pm
Ericw
(@Ericw)
Advanced Member

YES...I know many people who get by on $2750 a month.

That is pre-tax. cut a good 20-30% off that for take home pay thats around $2k a month.... tight but doable if you have no debt, student loans, car note, insurance payments....etc. Remember to save for that rainy day 🙂

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Posted : March 16, 2011 2:02 pm
Hiya!
(@Hiya!)
Trusted Member

If the job does not include insurance I would definitely say no. Health care here is not the greatest but not being able to afford it is a horrible feeling. You will need a place to live close to work and shopping, so you rental budget may be higher but you will be able to do without a car. If you are mechanically handy then buying an island beater is not a bad idea at all, but any you buy in the 2k to 5k always end up needing major work sooner rather then later. You can't come with debt on that budget and as other have said you will have to be on a tight budget.

You just have to decide if a beach is worth the cost of living like that.

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Posted : March 16, 2011 2:13 pm
cateyez
(@cateyez)
Active Member

Hi Worried,

I am in the same boat...job offer, but a little concerned about the cost of living...when are you moving...maybe we can talk..do you have family ect..I am a healthcare professional and I want the experience w/o the headache of financial worries..maybe we can brainstorm.

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Posted : March 16, 2011 8:05 pm
jay
 jay
(@jay)
Advanced Member

Yes you can.

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Posted : March 16, 2011 10:23 pm
guice
(@guice)
Advanced Member

I'll be curious in your move times, too. I'm actually heading down there this weekend to scope out the area before I give my official 'Yes/no' about taking a position down there.

This seems like a perfect opportunity to work together, depending on where on the island. My place of work just happens to be just a few blocks from the hospital on STT.
(To be exact: same building complex as the Mango Tango Art Gallery on Google Maps)

I'd love to talk more; maybe we can work together to help lower the costs for all of us.

<-- Programmer, will be doing PHP coding and all stuff stuff. I'm a single guy, mid 30s, (potentially) moving from a house (I own in Dallas) to USVI STT. I'm working on minimizing as much junk as I can. ha. And need to keep my costs low, as I won't be selling my place in Dallas (timing in general *very* bad if I do).

*Edit (yet again): Just one fyi: I do have a german shepherd (16mnths old), and will be seeing about the ability to bring him, too. Bonus, good guard dog. 😀
But, super hyper nice dog around friends.

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Posted : March 16, 2011 10:39 pm
ms411
(@ms411)
Expert

Somebody just told me today that Delta has climate controlled pet carriage. She's taking her dog back to the States and Delta was the only airline that allowed larger animals. She said she's paying $200 and that includes a pet escort. Believe it or not, her rescue dog can't take the tropical climate, so one of the reasons she's moving back is to save the dog. I got a real education today on moving pets.

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Posted : March 16, 2011 10:57 pm
stcmike
(@stcmike)
Advanced Member

if you get a roomate - you can do it, without a roomate or health insurance it will be tough

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Posted : March 16, 2011 11:39 pm
guice
(@guice)
Advanced Member

Somebody just told me today that Delta has climate controlled pet carriage. She's taking her dog back to the States and Delta was the only airline that allowed larger animals. She said she's paying $200 and that includes a pet escort. Believe it or not, her rescue dog can't take the tropical climate, so one of the reasons she's moving back is to save the dog. I got a real education today on moving pets.

I was more referring to finding a place that'll accept a large breed dog (just had him weighed today: 119lb! lol). But, this is indeed good info. Do you know what kind of breed it was? Her reasons for her leaving interests me. $200 isn't too bad at all. I'll have to read up a bit more about GSD in tropics now (thanks for the heads up).

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Posted : March 17, 2011 12:10 am
1lost
(@1lost)
New Member

I would be taking a big pay cut 28%. I was down there for the first time a few months ago and interviewed with my perspective employer then. I am debt free minus a few k on my vehicle which I would sell. I would also be trying to sell my condo back here in the Midwest. I understand the sacrifice of living in "paradise" but I am still deciding how much I am willing to do so. I would maybe keep my motorcycle and ship it down? The company in STT is offering health care 80/20 plan still waiting on a few details. No kids, serious girlfriend. Are there more options for living than what I can find online? Finding studios and 1 bed anywhere from 800-1300/mo. Decision time is possibly due tomorrow. Will be talking to potential employer then. Any and all help appreciated.

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Posted : March 17, 2011 10:58 pm
1lost
(@1lost)
New Member

I would want to live on the east/ northeast side. I'm in my mid/late 30's. I don't have any pets, but I don't have an issue with them.

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Posted : March 17, 2011 11:19 pm
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