Looking to settle in STT, Looking for advice
I am 26 yrs old, Currently work in a small family business, I am setting my position up to be done via telecommuting, I also make most of my living on the computer. Which makes it nice to work from anywhere. I currently live stateside in Ohio. I Will not be looking for a job, but rather just a nice house, to relax and work in. I don't need the busy life. I just want a nice view of the ocean, and maybe close enough to get to the beach pretty easily. I usually stay in Cowpet bay when I visit. I am curious how the internet is, I assume DSL is available, also what are the firearm laws, or are they even needed, does crime spill over into the streets. It has never been bad when I was there. I have enough saved for a reasonable down payment. I will be keeping my home in the states to visit family. I am not sure if anyone has any recommendations on where to look at for a home, is it better to try to find one in the hills with a nice pool and ocean view, or how hard is it to find a nice one close enough to the beach. Any help or anything would be appreciated. I plan on making a visit in October-November to look at some places and try to browse the island some more so I may find the area I want to be in.
Thanks So Much
We usually suggest that new arrivals rent for 6 months before buying. That gives you a chance to look around and find the area that suits you best.
I'd suggest looking at the West Caret Bay Villas. We lived there (rented) for 4 yrs and loved it!
As a fellow Ohioan, I think I can say with a fair amount of certainty that what you feel is "a reasonable down payment", will not be enough here. A home such as you're describing starts at around $500K on STX, which is cheaper than STT. That means financing similar to a jumbo loan in the states, but much more difficult to get here. The internet (and electric) experience intermittent outages quite frequently. For this reason, you need a couple of backup plans in order to be able to continue working. As usual, I agree with Linda above... rent first before buying. Search these boards, ask questions that you can't find answered, and good luck!
A reasonable down payment I have almost 190,000 dollars saved, not including my actual savings that was put aside for a down payment on a home, and ready to go, Financing is not an issue, I have spoke to my bank, and have a a pre qualified amount, as long as i don't sell my condo here to consider me a "local" customer. I plan on renting a few months if I need to, that will allow me time to live there and have time to find exactly what i want, I dont like moving and defiantly dont want to move after I move to the island.
I doubt your state-side bank will loan $5 for a VI home. You need a USVI bank and that size loan is tough to come by.
Well, I will have to check into that, They didnt seem to have a problem with it, since all my business accounts will still be stateside, Something else to check into deeper. Thanks for the info. Always appreciate any comments, I am sure I missed something here or there.
We've been in the VI (though we're technically NY residents as of 2009) since 2002. We're EDC beneficiaries and do business both stateside and in the VI. Even though the territory uses US currency, it's looked at as foreign by banks. Be prepared for many hassles and stalls along the way. Not trying to talk you out of heading down here, just want you to know it's not what you're used to! Are you looking at the EDC program?
I am sure I have not the wildest idea what I am headed into. No I dont think I am looking into the EDC Program, I will not be doing any business in the VI, I am pretty sure I will not need to get involved with it, My company is based stateside, granted there may be advantages to operate via the VI, I am not sure of that. I am going by the fact I want a little better scenery, make enough to live comfortable down there, and just enjoy the pace a little more than I do here in Ohio. I am not sure how the VI will look at my income since it is all done stateside, Something I am going to have to look into. Not sure how they will look at me operating my business the way I do, or if they will even care. since I will not be operating anything per say in the VI I will just be doing my work from my home office there. Maybe I need to consult someone that knows more than I do.
I would chat with a VI accountant. If you declare residency, you'll file with the IRS alerting them to your change of address and file income tax returns with the BIR in the usvi. Good luck. I'll sticky this post and check it periodically if you have questions...
If you perform the work in the VI, then I think you'll need to get a business license here, and I think you will need to deal with the IRB since it's VI source income. The accountant will tell you. Source income is based on where you perform the work, not where your employer or client is.
Thanks STXBob can anyone recommend an accountant that is STT based that you think would be one to get a hold of? I want to get as many ducks in a row as possible to make this a smooth transition.
Correction: I think you'll need a business license in the VI only if you're the business owner (eg: self-employed), not if you're working as an employee.
For an accountant in STT, see this recent thread, "Looking for Accountant in STT"
Double mega-dittos for my previous suggestion of Kathy Gibson.(tu)
Ebanks, for Internet you may want to consider Sprint's Mobile Broadband service or AT&T's similar service. The main reason I say that is because, depending on your location, you'll probably have connection all the time, whereas with other providers, there's sometimes a problem with outtages. I've had mine for more than 3 years, and I think it was only out for a few hours one day. The connection may not be as fast, but it's probably more reliable.
Or, you could do both, and use your mobile connection as a backup. You should probably get extended life batteries for all your devices.
We don't have 4G here, and probably won't for a few years (if ever!).
We just recently moved her and I am so glad that we have a back up generator. We actually turned one house down because it didn't have a back up generator and A/C in the whole house. Make sure you have one 🙂
When you buy a house in the low beach areas, make sure it doesn't get flooded in one of the tropical depressions, like we had at the end of June (over 8 inches of rain in 2 days). All the water runs down from the hills into the ocean, it almost looks like little water falls, some of the roads are flooded. So it is very smart to rent first and then buy, you never know what you may find. Some areas of the island have more mosquitoes then others.
The internet doesn't always work, so you would need back up if you are planning to work. We have two networks and are working on getting a satellite one as well.
Dealing with banks can be a hassle. If you are used to online banking from the major banks, prepare yourself to be disappointed. The service is not even close to what you have been used to.