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zapatero

Keeping a Toe In The Door -- Pros & Cons

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On several occasions I have found it useful to have maintained a home country address -- the USA in my case, via bank, credit cards and a P.O. Box.  I have accomplished this through a mail forwarding service.  Recently my MFS died.  Literally.  I am now faced with what appears to be a pretty arduous task of decommissioning the former and finding and engaging new one.

 

My question is this:  What are the opinions of all you well-experienced TVisa expats on the value/utility of maintaining a home country address, and is it worth the trouble and expense?

 

Thank you very much for your insights,

~~z

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I have been looking at this for a while and this market looks like it is about to become mainstream.

 

This service is a UK based service. They accept mail for as little as 0.60 a letter and scan it too for £0.90. The scanning alone is valuable for record keep8ng purposes but the point of scanning is it allows you to read the mail online. Pretty clever.

 

Must be a US version.

https://www.ukpostbox.com/pricing

 

 

 

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A close friend of mine (Thailand based) keeps a house in the UK, but then he has connections, family there etc etc. Personally I have absolutely no ties to my home country, not even a bank account, and I have no contact with any family there. It might as well not exist. However I can understand why many would want to maintain some kind of address or something. Seems a bit of a hassle though. Years ago when I finally left the UK forever, I had Her Majesty's Tax Office send me a cheque for the tax they owed me to my Thai address. No need for a UK address.

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I have contracted in the USA the last 15 years.  While not an expat, I almost always worked or was away from home as I worked in 17 states!  I found that it was extremely useful and even important to get and keep a permanent address somewhere.  I had a mail forwarding thing for a year or two, but they kind of folded and stopped doing what I needed.  So I found a cheap place to rent a room.  I pay monthly rent, but that allowed me to keep my cell phone bill at that address, get my driver license there, etc.  So now when I am on the road working away from home I qualify for Tax Free Per Diem. 

 

  Of course over the years, it also made getting mail reliable as I never changed my address. AAA card, credit cards, even driver license renewal, car registration, health insurance stuff, Federal Tax and State Income Tax, you name it.  Luckily I can keep this same address it looks like for many more years even as I spend time in Thailand. 

 

   Frankly, I am quite serious about opening a little business to help expats.  Charge some nominal fee to receive other people's mail, package them up via DHL, Fed Express or whatever and send on when asked for.    seems easy to do.  Nothing illegal as I am not certifying anything, just simply performing a service.  Now if the person wants a more permanent sort of deal, maybe make up a lease, charge some nominal rent, and that kind of gives them residency?  Just thinking out loud

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I found that it was extremely useful and even important to get and keep a permanent address somewhere

 

 

I think you've kind of missed the point. Expats already have permanent addresses in their host countries. 

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4 minutes ago, NilSS said:

 

 

 

I think you've kind of missed the point. Expats already have permanent addresses in their host countries. 

Nah you have missed the point.  You are simply a guest. Burning the bridge is a bad idea.

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Well I've been a 'guest' for 20 odd years, my entire family is here and I'm going through the citizenship process, so what's your definition of permanent? What would I do with an address in the UK, have my DTAC bill sent there? I've had the same number for 10 years, I'm not sure what's not permanent about my arrangements.

 

There's a difference between burning bridges, and letting go. I imagine some ecpats find it hard to let go, so they keep an address of some sort in the place they still consider to be home. 

 

Regarding your business model, the market is already awash with virtual offices and mail forwarding services, you write as though this is some brilliant new idea. 

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40 minutes ago, NilSS said:

Well I've been a 'guest' for 20 odd years, my entire family is here and I'm going through the citizenship process, so what's your definition of permanent? What would I do with an address in the UK, have my DTAC bill sent there? I've had the same number for 10 years, I'm not sure what's not permanent about my arrangements.

 

There's a difference between burning bridges, and letting go. I imagine some ecpats find it hard to let go, so they keep an address of some sort in the place they still consider to be home. 

 

Regarding your business model, the market is already awash with virtual offices and mail forwarding services, you write as though this is some brilliant new idea. 

It's not my business model it was a service which I found that seems to offer a lot more besides a virtual address. If you had read there offerings you can see there menu is more advanced than a VO.

 

My suggestion was in line with the OP's request but if you cast your mind back as far as 20 years ago I'm pretty sure you will recall such a question you posed to yourself. It's a normal train of thought for many expats I expect.

 

Best of luck with the citizenship process. That does sound permanent.

 

 

 

 

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I’d be looking at Mailboxes Etc which offers such services in many countries. However I’m surprised at how little mail I receive these days as my bank offers electronic bank statements, electronic funds transfers etc., and the government maintains contact for everything through its online My Gov portal


Sent from my iPad using Thaivisa Connect

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Well, my 2 cents on this is that it's always a good idea to maintain home country connections, at least at some level.

At the end of the day, you're not Thai, you are but a guest in the Kingdom, and who knows what the next regime du jour may cook up in the way of immigration rules, and suddenly you can't afford to stay, or they just decide they're done with us. Immigration detention lockup is a bitch I'm told!

Banking and financial services. Well thats been an increasingly thorny issue for a while. With the ratcheting up of money laundering enforcement it's becoming harder and harder to fool banks about where you actually are. I'd maintained a mail forwarding address in the US , yet still the bank's software detected it, and I needed to provide a physical address.

Which leaves us with the thorniest of all. You could write a book with stories of guys who sell up everything, become estranged from their families to come to Thailand. Then after x amount of time, everything goes south with the gf/wife and they need to hightail it outta Dodge with their tail between their legs.

So bottom line for me at least; don't burn bridges with the folks back home, maintain at the very least a virtual address, and if at all possible keep some physical property to ensure you have a bolt hole if things turn bad

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14 hours ago, Rc2702 said:

That does sound permanent.

 

 

 

 

It's probably inaccurate to call myself an expat these days. I'm more migrant.

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I agree with the expats who say don't burn bridges and keep an address in your home country.In the case of Canada if you don't have a Canadian mailing address all and any pensions are reduced.Even military pensions are taxed at a higher rate.

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On 8/11/2018 at 7:42 AM, Rc2702 said:

Nah you have missed the point.  You are simply a guest. Burning the bridge is a bad idea.

How do you burn a bridge? The country that issued your passport will always welcome you back. If you were poor when you left it you will be poor going back ..nothing changed. Those with funds though can easily slip back into there previous lifestyle.

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It really depends on what need for it you might have... I use a friend's home as my permanent address. It is needed for investment accounts. Since near everything is online these days, I get very little mail. 

 

If you have a friend or accountant or lawyer, maybe they will let you use their physical address for mail. 

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It really depends on what need for it you might have... I use a friend's home as my permanent address. It is needed for investment accounts. Since near everything is online these days, I get very little mail. 

 

If you have a friend or accountant or lawyer, maybe they will let you use their physical address for mail. 

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