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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Since the plan to retire in either Phil. or Thailand has turned into a probable rather than a possible for me it got me to thinking about the logistics.

There are so many things that will have to be done ,i'm thinking......

1. Sell or give away furniture and many household items

2. Rearrange or cancel various rolling financial items like bank accounts ,insurance policies automatic payments etc

3. What to do with your precious sentimental items?

4. Where will my mail go?

5 Sell my car

6 Sell stock from my business

That's what immediately comes to mind but i've probably forgotten things.
When you get past 40 you've accumulated so much stuff and with the cost of storage it isn't worth keeping it

It would be great to hear how all that worked out for you?

Thanks

Mark
 

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Mark,

This should be a fun thread and you're sure to get lots of replies and suggestions from all us "arm-chair" experts in the Philippines. Naturally the best of the two countries for retirement.. Smile.

Jet Lag
 
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It depends on your situation. If you have somewhere to put the stuff when you arrive here then bring the sentimental items.

Also think about bringing utensils or tools that you might not find here.

Other stuff like furniture you are probably better off selling it or giving it away.
 

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I had a 3 bedroom house full of junk (my kids had just moved out). I got it down to 11 balikbayan boxes.

We had hundreds of DVDs and I let the kids pick all they wanted. I made iso copies of them to bring with me. I already had all my CDs ripped as MP3s so I sold all my CDs at the used book store. External hard drives are your friend :)

One of the hardest parts for me was my books. I have never gotten rid of a book. I had about 8 bookshelves full and picked my favorite 25... tough call... I sold all my books too. I have thousands downloaded as txt files so I have more than I can ever read.

There are lots of mail forwarding companies. I chose Traveling Mailbox, because they had a Dallas address I could use. Most of the companies offer similar services. All my mail gets scanned in and I get emailed when it is ready to view. I can view or download a pdf of all my mail. They will store it for 60 days, at which time I will have to either have them ship it to me or shred it. Most gets shredded. Over the years I have had 2 driver's license, 3 ATM cards, and numerous credit cards forwarded to me (regular mail). I have never had a problem receiving any of it.

The kids did not want the photo albums so my ex took a couple and I brought the rest with me. I am doing a long term project of scanning all of them into the computer (and making multiple backups).

I let my kids take any furniture they wanted and the buyer of my house said to leave anything they did not want.

I gave my car to my daughter... should have sold it. ha ha

Check with your local health department for recommended travel immunizations. Get copies of all your shot & medical records.

Tell your credit card companies you will be on an extended vacation.

Update your will. Maybe name a power of attorney in the old country (maybe...)

Get copies of birth certificate, divorce papers, military discharge... anything you can think of. It will be easier to get before you leave. Make pdf copies of all your retirement and insurance info, leave a copy with the executor of your will.

Find a bank that can deal with international travel. I was in a local credit union and switched to USAA (a US bank for veterans, they are very cool about being overseas). I keep most of my money in the US because I think it will be safer over there. I use my US bank and Paypal for any recurring payments (Netflix etc).

Get a local phone number. My bank and credit cards seem to like me having a Texas phone number. There are numerous online services and apps. I use Magic Jack, I don't what is available in your area. I just called my brother the other day... my Magic Jack to his.... I am in the PIs and he was in Germany. It was a local Texas to Texas phone call - very cool.

If you think your stocks are doing well, I would not be in a hurry to sell them.
 

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A lot also depends on if you want to burn all of your bridges. Having the house on rental gives an income and a bolt hole, if a big house downsize.
 

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We downsized from a huge 4 bed/4 bath/2 car garage house to what fits in the back of the Prius and it was so freeing. We feel the cobwebs have been cleared away and we no longer have the responsibility of owning and taking care of 'stuff'.

As for banking and so on, I got a Schwab checking account and use the debit card to pull money whenever I need it - no international fees or terrible exchange rates. Any ATM fees charged anywhere in the world are refunded at the end of each statement period, no limits, no questions. I also have a Barclaycard Visa credit card and they also do not charge any international fees, are accepted almost everywhere (even here in Mexico) and do not profit on exchange rates.

I also set up all existing accounts to have electronic statement/billing so that there should be no physical mail communications - anything that might still slip through as a physical mail item goes to my Travelling Mailbox account and I download a PDF as necessary.

Creating a Google Voice account means that we have a USA phone number that accepts and sends the text of the voice message to our email account. This is very useful for those 2 factor authentication type messages and anyone who needs to leave a message if we are not online to use the usual skype or facebook type free phone services.

<Snip>

Good luck :)
 

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I left Queensland in 1996, and lived in 4 countries since.
First transfer was 400kg.
Every move since has been less than the previous one.
 

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Downsizing Rocks

Hi Mark,

My husband and I did this about 5 years ago: Sold 2 porsches, a 4K sq.ft house in California, most of the furniture and packed what remained in a 10x10 (foot) storage locker while we took off to Europe with our Airstream.

It was a lot of work, but so so so worth it! Once you downsize, it feels so freeing and we have never regretted it. When we got back, I gave away most of the clothes I had stored...couldn't believe what we thought was "mandatory"; but you have to start somewhere.

Sadly, my husband passed away but I continue the down-sized life in a 500sq ft apartment in Seattle (soon returning to France and Spain, although without the Airstream this time!)

Good luck!
Kit
 

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Hi Kit and welcome to the forum. Surprised to see a post on the Philippines page but good information for sure.
It's amazing how much "junk" we save over the years and it gets to be like an anchor around our necks. No wonder United Van Lines and others stay in business!

I did much the same thing when leaving the States years ago to move here to the Philippine Islands.
I sold what I could, packed the allowable check thru baggage plus one box and simply walked away and left everything else. Ended up being easier to do than I thought it would be.

Sorry to hear about your husband and at the same time glad to hear you have not given up the dream.


Stay Strong,

Jet Lag
 

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My wife and I (warned her) accumulated way too much furniture and curious, I was so happy to get rid of it and most of it was donated to a place called the Boys Ranch to help young men in trouble.

Someone mentioned rent out the house, not a good plan from many of my expat friends who were left with unsavory renters and realtors that weren't much help either, that's a huge burden to worry a about and that money would be better off in a bank or reinvested into condos here if business is what you want at least you have much more control if your investments are in the same country.

For sure make sure to open a bank in the Philippines here before closing your banks and one that will be able to accept your pension.
 

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Along with the rest who have answered, we basically got rid of everything(Yard sale, moving sale, & goodwill) but our clothes & a few personal items. Wound up sending myself 4 Balickbayan boxes which arrived shortly after we did. It's really amazing how much "stuff" one accumulates over the years that you don't need at all. Life is much simpler here and I have found I certainly did not need all the "stuff" that I had. The older I get, the more I realize that what is important is not"stuff", can't take it with you anyway.

Fred
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks to all of those that replied


Tukaram:
Wouldn't you use your credit card [Visa card] when you're traveling internationally?

RPattyn:
Yes,it is a freeing process and a learning process getting rid of stuff you've hung onto for years.
Thanks for the banking info'

MCA:
I would have thought that keeping real estate investments in your home country would be a better idea?
 

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Thanks to all of those that replied


Tukaram:
Wouldn't you use your credit card [Visa card] when you're traveling internationally?....
Yes I do. That is why I told my bank that I am on an extended vacation. I use my ATM and credit cards quite regularly over here. But I keep a US address and phone number as my home of record. (mail forwarder and MagicJack)
 

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Thanks to all of those that replied


Tukaram:
Wouldn't you use your credit card [Visa card] when you're traveling internationally?

RPattyn:
Yes,it is a freeing process and a learning process getting rid of stuff you've hung onto for years.
Thanks for the banking info'

MCA:
I would have thought that keeping real estate investments in your home country would be a better idea?
Added note here. If you plan to use a credit card or ATM card while out of your home country, before living on your trip you need to notify your bank or credit card company "in writing" that you will be out the country and where you will be. Otherwise many banks and or credit card companies will cancel your card the first time you try to use it here. They assume it has been stolen and is to protect you. Having that happen can ruin a trip and at worst put your life in danger.


Asian Spirit
 

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Added note here. If you plan to use a credit card or ATM card while out of your home country, before living on your trip you need to notify your bank or credit card company "in writing" that you will be out the country and where you will be. Otherwise many banks and or credit card companies will cancel your card the first time you try to use it here. They assume it has been stolen and is to protect you. Having that happen can ruin a trip and at worst put your life in danger,


Asian Spirit

I use Bank of America and they have an online feature that allows me to update my card status as being out of the country every 90 days.

Chuck
 

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Added note here. If you plan to use a credit card or ATM card while out of your home country, before living on your trip you need to notify your bank or credit card company "in writing" that you will be out the country and where you will be. Otherwise many banks and or credit card companies will cancel your card the first time you try to use it here. They assume it has been stolen and is to protect you. Having that happen can ruin a trip and at worst put your life in danger,


Asian Spirit

I use Bank of America and they have an online feature that allows me to update my card status as being out of the country every 90 days.

Chuck
 

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I had a 3 bedroom house full of junk (my kids had just moved out). I got it down to 11 balikbayan boxes.

We had hundreds of DVDs and I let the kids pick all they wanted. I made iso copies of them to bring with me. I already had all my CDs ripped as MP3s so I sold all my CDs at the used book store. External hard drives are your friend :)

One of the hardest parts for me was my books. I have never gotten rid of a book. I had about 8 bookshelves full and picked my favorite 25... tough call... I sold all my books too. I have thousands downloaded as txt files so I have more than I can ever read.

There are lots of mail forwarding companies. I chose Traveling Mailbox, because they had a Dallas address I could use. Most of the companies offer similar services. All my mail gets scanned in and I get emailed when it is ready to view. I can view or download a pdf of all my mail. They will store it for 60 days, at which time I will have to either have them ship it to me or shred it. Most gets shredded. Over the years I have had 2 driver's license, 3 ATM cards, and numerous credit cards forwarded to me (regular mail). I have never had a problem receiving any of it.

The kids did not want the photo albums so my ex took a couple and I brought the rest with me. I am doing a long term project of scanning all of them into the computer (and making multiple backups).

I let my kids take any furniture they wanted and the buyer of my house said to leave anything they did not want.

I gave my car to my daughter... should have sold it. ha ha

Check with your local health department for recommended travel immunizations. Get copies of all your shot & medical records.

Tell your credit card companies you will be on an extended vacation.

Update your will. Maybe name a power of attorney in the old country (maybe...)

Get copies of birth certificate, divorce papers, military discharge... anything you can think of. It will be easier to get before you leave. Make pdf copies of all your retirement and insurance info, leave a copy with the executor of your will.

Find a bank that can deal with international travel. I was in a local credit union and switched to USAA (a US bank for veterans, they are very cool about being overseas). I keep most of my money in the US because I think it will be safer over there. I use my US bank and Paypal for any recurring payments (Netflix etc).

Get a local phone number. My bank and credit cards seem to like me having a Texas phone number. There are numerous online services and apps. I use Magic Jack, I don't what is available in your area. I just called my brother the other day... my Magic Jack to his.... I am in the PIs and he was in Germany. It was a local Texas to Texas phone call - very cool.

If you think your stocks are doing well, I would not be in a hurry to sell them.
Good advice here from Tim. My advice reduce as much as you can, furniture and large items, have a garage sale.
You can buy a car here, but be careful. Keep your shares, if you have or can get an Apps Box (I have a Minix) you can watch the share market in Oz and still trade. I use Open Market very cheap to trade. All online, but before you come if you intend to do that, open a Cash Management a/c with them. Only downside there is $100 fee to withdraw money.
But break it down to minimum, sending boxes here is not cheap, also taxes but the magic word there is 'used'.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I am thinking that general snailmail will have to be well thought out as well ,well ahead of time ,maybe make a record of everyone who mails you and return to sender if possible and email for everything else as appropriate or use a friend as a forwarding address as typically you won't have a permanent address in Thailand
 
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