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 Post subject: Starting From Scratch in the USA - Any Advice?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 7:04 am 

Joined: Sun Apr 15, 2007 3:31 pm
Posts: 15
Hey guys and gals, I am new here, and looking for some advice and new ideas!

I am a Peace Corps Volunteer living in Bolivia. Myself and my girlfriend are going to be getting married in a month or two and start the immigrant visa process so that we can move back to the states for a while...

Here is our plan - live and work in the US for about 10 years and save up as much money as possible, I am hoping for at least $50k. Move back to Bolivia and buy our house and start a business.

Here is our situation - My only debt (that I am aware of...) is $23,000 of federal student loans. We own no property and have very very little savings. I am planing on having about $3,000 when we arrive in the USA and my parents are going to help us with rent for a month or two so we can get a clean start as well as give me an old truck of their (96 Ford Ranger).

I plan on working full time and maybe a small part time job for extra cash. My wife will need to learn some english before she can start working so we are looking at community college ESL classes and maybe a small part time job for extra cash as well.

So, besides "get a job" . . . do you guys have any advice or ideas to help us reach our goals?

Thanks!


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 8:06 am 
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Dono,

Where will you be moving too?
What kind of work do you plan on doing?

Depending on where you are, your wife may be able to work without knowing English. Just depends how bi-lingual the area is.

I'd start on a budget right now, and try to stick to it.

For finding a place to live, if craigslist.org has service in the city you're moving to, use it. You can get a room or a place to live. Either way, its likely cheaper.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 8:25 am 

Joined: Sun Apr 15, 2007 3:31 pm
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JerichoHill wrote:
Dono,

Where will you be moving too?
What kind of work do you plan on doing?

Depending on where you are, your wife may be able to work without knowing English. Just depends how bi-lingual the area is.

I'd start on a budget right now, and try to stick to it.

For finding a place to live, if craigslist.org has service in the city you're moving to, use it. You can get a room or a place to live. Either way, its likely cheaper.


I am almost certain that I will be moving to California, central coast to start off, and then to South bay area or Los Angeles area. I am planning on becoming a highschool teacher through the Teach For America program ([url]TeachForAmerica.org[/url]). I am fairly confident that I can get accepted to the program. Also I can get almost $10k in grants for paying off student loans after 2 years. They also offer grants and no interest loans to help with moving to a new area and getting started.

Yeah, the wifey can most likely get work without English such as cleanin services, childcare, etc. which will be great for when we are starting off. However, she is quite smart and lawyer here in Bolivia, so it would be wierd to have someone with a law degree cleaning toilets...I am sure we can find better work than that down the road.

I do plan on working with a budget, however at the moment we are still in Bolivia.

I also regularly check craigslist just to get an idea what sort of housing and jobs are available in various areas.

While speaking of housing... RENT vs BUY. It seems like rent is the most likely choice, but is there anyway to avoid throwing all of that rent away with nothing to show for it after 10 years? Houses are at least $350,000 but I was thinking about something more economical like a mobile home that after we could sell after 10 years and try to get back some of out investment.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 12:54 pm 
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If you're going to CALI, rent. No point in trying to own in the inflated bubble over there.

I would bet that there are spanish law firms wherever you're going to be. Hit the phone books and start looking for em.

Mobile Homes lose value over time, fyi

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