relocation nest egg
For everyone who has relocated recently or is now settled into life on the Islands, if you could do it all again with a specific amount as a nest egg, how much would you put aside? Please consider shipping a jeep, not shipping any containers and a cushion for looking for work/apartment. We will be going to St. John and have been putting together the following list of financial needs and hope to be prepared by July. (House is up for sale already)
car payments/insurance (otherwise no debt)
1st last and security as well as three months additional rent up to 1200.00
utilities for three months (ac, internet and cable not necessary to us)
cell phone plan (currently have cingular)
food for three months
misc for three months
rental fix ups and necessities (we are not handy but can paint, do not hope to rent a place in need of repairs!)
rental car upon arrival
hotel stay upon arrival
misc upon arrival including simple meals
personal item shipment via usps
airfare to STT as well as taxi/ferry fees to St John
misc on top of upon arrival and three months
looking into current health insurance plans
Also what are the local fruits and vegetables that are the least expensive. I saw fresh broccolii for 6$lb and strawberrries for 9$ carton. definitely willing to change types of fruits and vegetables to be more insync with the island.
I came down with a decent job and several thousand dollars plus plenty of credit. That allowed me to stay at Villa Fairview for a couple of months, rent a car monthly ($500/month) and find a place. If you don't have a job when you come down I would double that or more. It can take a couple months to find a job, depending on what you do. Staying in a hotel can be quite expensive, I would recommend you find temporary housing while you look for permanent. Check out Villa Fairview. During the off-season a couple of hotels rent monthly like Pirate's Cove and The Best Western by the airport.
Airfare from where and what time of year, although that I think you could find out with more accuracy my looking at travel websites. How big of a place do you need for $1200 a month on stj? Groceries are quite a bit more on stj of coarse I only go there one week a year but coming from stx I'm always shocked at the groceries there. Can only assume locals make a once or twice a month trip to stt to cut down cost. Hotel stay will depend on time of year but you can get good deals off season in town especially if you are willing to go without a/c. Misc and food will depend on how many people.
So I guess what I've said in too long a way is how many people, what time of year and how big of a rental do you want? Of coarse some of the very issues you have just asked have been posted in a very recent thread.
With a little searching across the posts on this board, you can likely find a value for every item you listed. If I could do it again, just to be safe, I think $100K would be sufficient since it is St John. More if you plan on buying. I may be a little off, but a good search here will narrow it down. Now, if you live in a tent at the beach, it could be considerably less. Curious, are you cashing in your existing nest egg... your house... to make this move? Have you made a PMV? You will definitely change types of fruits and vegetables, and that is a good thing... especially if you like mangos.
I have searched through this sites and all messages to get an idea. The list I put out was really just to actually see if there was anything I had forgotten. We have been on two trips to STJ in the past 10 months and have talked to tons of locals about work and apartments for both my husband and myself. I am a fitness trainer in Mass. It seems that the posted apartments at a place called connections on STJ go between 695 and 1200 depending on location of course. We are hoping to have about 25,000$ to do the move and my husband will still be using 6 weeks of vacation. He has to immediately transfer to the Army Guard on STT. (He is in Iraq now) By the way I love mangos! I actually ate one last night while a blizzard of sleet and ice was swirling around me!
On your list you note that you have car payments; very few stateside lenders will allow a vehicle with a lien to be shipped from the states to the USVI.
wow thanks for the note about the car. i will check into it and see what i have to do!
We shipped a Ford Explorer to and from the islands with a lien on it from Ford Credit. It was hair pulling frustrating, but somehow it happened. You have to get a permission letter from your lien holder. They will not ship without it. Just contact your lien holder and find what you have to do to get that letter. The people who ship your vehicle do not know how you obtain that letter nor will they know exactly what taxes or fees you pay on island for your vehicle. So you need three sources of info to get your vehicle shipped. (I guess I could have just said that first) Shipping charges and on island fees and taxes can be found on this board. Every lien holder is different so that you most likely will not find info on this board unless it is Ford and then I might be able to help.
STJ is more expensive to live on than STT. You may want to consider living on STT until you find what you want on STJ.
I will look into it some more. I also thought about taking out a personal loan by that time to pay off the car if all else fails. Unfortunately we have a fairly high interest rate anyway. We have never been to STT to see what it is like other than the trip from the airport to the ferry. Though we did meet a couple of people who work for the Daily News on a warm up run for the 8 tuff miles a few weeks ago. We would really like to give STJ a solid try but STT can be a good back up. What fruits and veggies do you find good?
I have kept my eye on the gym since May 06 and have talked to people who train there and the real estate company it is listed by. I would definitely like to be living on the island for awhile to make sure it is right for us before I purchase a business, but it would be great fun. I own a private training studio in Mass. I hope to work as a trainer on the island, either for the gym or privately. Or maybe something else..............
Fruits and veggies vary wildly as what is good. They are going to be alot more expensive. The produce is very often in poor condition in the stores. Something like a mango or avocado will cost you $2.50 each. Bell peppers are usually $4.50lb and this is in stx, I imagine stj will be more. Here we do have some road side vegetable stands where you can pick up some fruits and vegetables a little cheaper. To get good tomatoes you need to be like halawest and grow your own, they are almost always overripe.
sp provided I do most grocery shopping on STT and try to visit some local stands, what do people usually eat to get the "five a day". We bought red peppers on STJ for 1.99lb but broccolli was to way to expensive. Is frozen the way to go?
Frozen and can items are cheaper. I buy alot more canned items when it gets closer to hurricane season and then eat them down after.