Sometimes the grass actually is greener on the other side of the fence. Some people are on the lookout for those greener pastures and think they may find it outside of the US. There are a lot of different cultures that are interesting and offer some things that maybe some people are not getting from their home country.
Although there are ways to get loans as an expat, it is much better to make sure that you have enough money saved to make the move so it actually works out. From the shipping costs to annual travel insurance plans, there are quite a few expenses to consider.
How much does it cost? In this article, we will go over some of the costs so you know how much you should have saved before making the move.
There is something to be said for packing light and buying what you need for life in your new country once you’re there. However, replacing all of your stuff is quite a big expense. Not to mention that some of your belongings probably have some sentimental value.
In this case, it makes sense to hire a container and ship your stuff overseas. It does take a while so you will need to get some quotes as soon as you decide to move.
In most cases, a container shipped to someplace like Europe is going to cost a minimum of around $3,000 just for the shipping. Keep in mind that it doesn’t really matter how much stuff you have as you pay for the container. If you can fit all of your belongings into it then you will still pay the same price as if it is only half full. Try to make sure that you only need one container, however.
That figure is only for the container, however. There are other fees attached like insurance and customs charges. There may even be storage fees to pay the port once the container arrives and it waits to be inspected by the customs agents.
Make sure you understand how much space that you have at your new home as most houses outside the US are smaller than what you may be used to. It would be a shame to ship a lot of things at a high cost only to have to get rid of the things that don’t fit.
Securing the visa
To be able to come and stay in another country you will need a visa. Even countries that don’t require Americans to have a visa to enter will require one to be able to live there. Although visas themselves are not very expensive, the process to get one can be quite pricey.
If you don’t have dual citizenship with the country you are moving to then you will probably be paying a lawyer to secure the visa for you. You should expect to pay over $1,000 for a lawyer for a fairly straightforward process. If your situation is complicated then this number will rise quite a bit.
There will also be some medical certifications that need to be done so add in the cost of a doctor’s visit plus blood work and the certification needed. Also add in the travel to the right doctors as many will give you a list of authorized doctor’s that might not be close to your home. The same goes for filing the visa at the consulate which may not be nearby.
In many cases you will need to show that you have savings in the bank to get the visa. Expect to need over $10,000 in savings to get a visa. This highly depends on the country in question and what the visa is for. You may need to have more than that.
When you arrive you will have to rent out a house for some time. This will probably involve hiring a real estate agent. In many cases the cost is shared by the renter and landlord so expect to pay up to a month of the rent to the realtor.
In addition you will also need to pay the first month of rent, plus the last month and security deposit. This means that you should have at least four months of rent ready to go for the cost of moving in.
If you haven’t shipped your belongings and furniture then you will need to add in thousands of dollars in expenses to furnish the place with the basics. Over time you will have to spend more to add the things to fill the place out. You may also find yourself in need of the appropriate clothing that is suited for the country’s climate that you may not already have.