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Need advice on how to set up a move to the Phils


goggleye

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goggleye

I am getting tired of working for a living.  I am considering retiring at the end of the school year.   I can draw Social security in Late April when I turn 62,  I already have a teacher pension from Indiana. Looks like about  $3600 a month total. With some savings invested.   I am now living in Florida - a no income tax state.  My brother and sister in law live nearby.   He is 11 years older than me and due to a head injury his mind is not always very clear

For some of you I know this is simple knowledge but for me  I am pretty ignorant about this 

How do I set up an address in Florida for the future? I'm not sure I can count on my brother to take care of details.   Or can I keep a Florida PO box or something?  Can I use an address there and have my mail sent through a service?  I guess most things work online anymore.

Money?  Have payments deposited in my US bank and draw from ATM or paypal myself to my pinay wife's account?   Not sure what's the best way  to start.   

Appreciate any input - I am in the process of thinking about how to make all this work 

Thanks in advance!

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Lordblacknail

Heres my two cents. There are lots of mail forwarding services that will get your mail, open it, scan it, then email it to you. Yes, use your US bank and an ATM card. 


The best advice I can give you is don't move to the Philippines. It is a shit hole, and getting worse. There are lots of alternatives, and I urge you to check them out. If you have $3600 per month, Europe is a strong possibility. Panama was one of our choices. Lots of guys on this forum like viet nam and cambodia. 

We have been here 8 years and I can not wait to get back to the US. But I am a veggie and its hard to find food here for me. Ymmv. But read lots of posts in here, about keeping a house in the US, what to bring, etc etc. 

Bocatte (sic) in Panama was the best alternative for us, but in the end, we decided just to move to Florida, to the Tampa area.

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softail

I will be  eagerly following this thread. Looking at perhaps moving in the spring.

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goggleye
4 minutes ago, Lordblacknail said:

Heres my two cents. There are lots of mail forwarding services that will get your mail, open it, scan it, then email it to you. Yes, use your US bank and an ATM card. 


The best advice I can give you is don't move to the Philippines. It is a shit hole, and getting worse. There are lots of alternatives, and I urge you to check them out. If you have $3600 per month, Europe is a strong possibility. Panama was one of our choices. Lots of guys on this forum like viet nam and cambodia. 

We have been here 8 years and I can not wait to get back to the US. But I am a veggie and its hard to find food here for me. Ymmv. But read lots of posts in here, about keeping a house in the US, what to bring, etc etc. 

Bocatte (sic) in Panama was the best alternative for us, but in the end, we decided just to move to Florida, to the Tampa area.

Thanks for the reply and I appreciate your honesty     If I use a mail forwarding address can I keep a Florida residency?  

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Use Google also - you will receive different here replies and some will be contradictory

http://www.expats-moving-and-relocation-guide.com/usa-expats.html/#sthash.3brpcs48.dpbs

One biggy is get an account that reimburses ATM fees if you don't want to set up local account - Schwab is the one I use set at $1,000 per day max withdrawal  - I use HSBC  = 40K P per withdrawal not 20 - multiples allowed -  pays real close to listed rates - was paying $16 fee on $400 withdrawal through Chase

Note: Schwab is not FDIC so setup it as an "external account" for direct transfers online.

 

 

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Rocketman

I've been here for 7 years from the U.S.  My sister in the U.S. gets my mail which at this point is maybe 2 pieces a month at most.  Usually, it's not needed and the mail is oftentimes a duplicate of what I get via internet.  Not a concern like I thought it would be.  I bank at Citibank both in the U.S. and here and it's easy.  I can transfer money within minutes from my U.S. account to the Philippine account and there's no charge.  Conversion from dollars to Pesos in my Philippine account is at a good rate.  The language barrier is a big reason why I like it in the Philippines and not other Asian countries.  There are frustrations here, but then there would be anywhere you move, I think.  I assume you have spent time in the Philippines?  

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If you have a Pinay wife, you would be eligible for a 13a visa.  If you choose to go that route, the process is much simpler if done while in the USA. If you do the process here, it essentially gets done twice, once for a probationary period and then to become final.  Applied for in the USA it is approved and then completed once you arrive.

Banking is a popular topic in LinC and many options to choose from.  My only regret is not having a USA based credit card before I departed.  Small regret, because I do have a Philippine credit card to use  

I use banking accounts here and have few issues.  Others will disagree but you do have time to sort that out before you move.  If you do choose to use a USA based account, be sure they are aware of your move or some transactions may become a problem if they weren’t aware the transactions will take place from overseas  

I don’t think that having a Florida address will affect your not paying taxes.  If you’ve been filing your federal taxes from Florida, you can just change your mailing address to here.  I get mail here in a nearby P.O. Box. 

You might want to set up an online access to your social security account before you leave.  There is a requirement when registering to have a USA phone number.  

 

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Dafey
40 minutes ago, lamoe said:

Schwab is the one I use set at $1,000 per day max withdrawal

Definately open a Schwab 1 account. They'll give you free checking and an account to trade stocks, (if you want...I don't use the stock portion). They will actually set you up with a $2000 a day limit if you request and the fees that you pay at ATMs are refunded at the end of the month with no International fees. You can open the account online. If you want to add your wife it's a mail in form.

My daughter allows me to use her address and cell phone # for accounts and contact. I have everything possible on paperless account so mostly it's junk mail but she scans it to see if it looks important and lets me know. We also both have Iphones so we can facetime or exchange info readily

21 minutes ago, Jawny said:

I don’t think that having a Florida address will affect your not paying taxes.

You definitely need a physical address for taxes. Some government institutions will not accept a P.O box. If they catch up with you it could be an expensive proposition later

 

1 hour ago, Lordblacknail said:

The best advice I can give you is don't move to the Philippines. It is a shit hole, and getting worse

I love it here!!! there are definitely challenges but if you're a patient man you will get used to those.

 

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US address is not required for most things (some banks will require for checks/or setting up account).  Best to have several set up before leaving in case one gets flaky.  Believe in PI you can directly deposit normal US checks into local accounts.  Using cards overseas often requires changing as they like to add 1-3% fees on top of ATM charges if not careful.  Your last address in Florida will always be your voting address but be aware Florida will not re-issue DL more than once without personal appearance so get a new DL just before you leave if not intending to return.  There is no issues filing federal tax using programs like TaxAct with a foreign address.  Be aware that if you have more than 10k USD value in total at any time during year in foreign accounts you must file a report on-line (simple but avoidable if you keep below).  Medical insurance should be a priority before you have any issues (getting later in life very hard).  So check on that closely.  Insurance available locally often will do everything to avoid paying as in most countries there is little or no protection.  You are aware the Philippines (with many plus features) does not rate high on food - and if not cooking yourself expect there would be few frozen options most places.  Would urge you to be more specific if possible as we do not know your likes, Philippine relationship, previous world travel experiences and such.  There is a Youtube poster that was a teacher living in Cebu that you might want to watch (Bud Brown).  

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32 minutes ago, Dafey said:

 

You definitely need a physical address for taxes. Some government institutions will not accept a P.O box. If they catch up with you it could be an expensive proposition later.

 

It’s been my experience that a P.O. Box is acceptable for all USA federal government mailings.  I’ve used a P.O. Box for many years, never used (nor actually have) a physical mailing address other than name and barangay. This includes my bank, health insurance, IRS, SSA and VA.  

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Dafey

Florida State tax is not Federal. There are a lot of 'campers' that want to claim addresses in No State ax states and occasionally go on hunts to prove they don't actually  live there.

It used to be a P.O box and a bank account was all that was needed. Today I would not give that advice and hamstring someone that could be financially hurt by doing so.

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RogerDuMond
10 hours ago, goggleye said:

How do I set up an address in Florida for the future?

We use a box at a UPS store. The good thing about UPS as opposed to a postal box is that it gives you an actual physical address. This allows you to receive packages because some companies will not ship to P.O. box. You can also set up a forwarding service with them.

10 hours ago, goggleye said:

Money?  Have payments deposited in my US bank and draw from ATM or paypal myself to my pinay wife's account?   Not sure what's the best way  to start.   

Check with HSBC. We have an account with HSBC there in Florida and one here with them in Cebu. I have my SS directed deposited there and can transfer what I need to the account here. If you want more information on this, PM me.

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goggleye
8 hours ago, lopburi3 said:

US address is not required for most things (some banks will require for checks/or setting up account).  Best to have several set up before leaving in case one gets flaky.  Believe in PI you can directly deposit normal US checks into local accounts.  Using cards overseas often requires changing as they like to add 1-3% fees on top of ATM charges if not careful.  Your last address in Florida will always be your voting address but be aware Florida will not re-issue DL more than once without personal appearance so get a new DL just before you leave if not intending to return.  There is no issues filing federal tax using programs like TaxAct with a foreign address.  Be aware that if you have more than 10k USD value in total at any time during year in foreign accounts you must file a report on-line (simple but avoidable if you keep below).  Medical insurance should be a priority before you have any issues (getting later in life very hard).  So check on that closely.  Insurance available locally often will do everything to avoid paying as in most countries there is little or no protection.  You are aware the Philippines (with many plus features) does not rate high on food - and if not cooking yourself expect there would be few frozen options most places.  Would urge you to be more specific if possible as we do not know your likes, Philippine relationship, previous world travel experiences and such.  There is a Youtube poster that was a teacher living in Cebu that you might want to watch (Bud Brown).  

I have watched Bud on Youtube - seems like a great guy.   I am married to a pinay.  She owns a small home in Las Pinas, on the South side of Manila.   I don't believe I would want to live there permanently - looking at Zambales north of Subic somewhere.  Like the province more but would like something a bit bigger easily accessable'

I have been a number of places overseas - liked vietnam but I think the language barrier would be tough. Spent a lot of time in the Phils, but never lived there full time. Generally I do like filipinos.   No place is perfect.  

Appreciate all the great replies

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47 minutes ago, goggleye said:

I have watched Bud on Youtube - seems like a great guy.   I am married to a pinay.  She owns a small home in Las Pinas, on the South side of Manila.   I don't believe I would want to live there permanently - looking at Zambales north of Subic somewhere.  Like the province more but would like something a bit bigger easily accessable'

I have been a number of places overseas - liked vietnam but I think the language barrier would be tough. Spent a lot of time in the Phils, but never lived there full time. Generally I do like filipinos.   No place is perfect.  

Appreciate all the great replies

OK that provides good justification for the move then.  Be aware that your destination will be in the typhoon belt (but you're from Florida so that should not be an issue).  With a local wife makes good sense to move and your SS should provide a good standard of living.  Subic would offer western food and accomodation at very reasonable rates with easy access to the Clark/Angeles area for even more options (although known for red light it also offers a lot more and is being developed as a major government center) and not that far from Manila if use of their medical facilities ever becomes necessary.  

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Lordblacknail

USAA is a good bank if you were in the military ever. They also refund atm fees. Once you get here, you want to use your US dl to get a philippine one. All you have to do is have a valid drivers lic and you don't have to take the driving test. And yes, most states won't renew more than once without a personal appearance. We had our checks deposited locally for most of the time we have been here, just recently switched it to USAA and just use the ATM for cash. You should sign up for Philhealth asap, it isn't expensive and it pays well. Most of the guys say don't buy for at least a year, I would extend that time period. It may be hard to sell something later and get your money out of it. We pay $175 a month, and it's an ok place. We have four dogs, three cats and 12 chickens, and a 7 year old, and they all find room to play in the yard.  Where you live will depend a lot of what you have to spend, just like anywhere else. Personally, I don't think it is very cheap to live here, other than rent and labor. Our electricity is $250 a month, and in Florida, it wouldn't be much over a hundred. I don't like most of the fruits and vegetables here, because they have very little taste, unless they are imported and then they cost an arm and a leg. Im just one guy, lots of guys love it here, and will never leave. Me, I have had enough. 

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