Leaving The US

deleting OP without deleting the thread


Seems like a pretty awful time to plan something that involves multiple people, location, bureaucracy and travel. Lock yourself home and deal with everything you can online. I don’t see why Fall is too late tbh. You’re still in California.

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As you said, the first thing is the immigration process. It can be hell sometimes (I’m practically stranded in the US right now, for example. Even without covid). Find some reddit/Facebook group that specializes in that.

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Doing it yourself is a nightmare. Given your circumstances, splurge for the immigration lawyer.

I know that I’ve made the move out of America. However, I didn’t have a family to move with me and a house to sell. Having relatives currently living in Canada to help you out along with already having citizenship is a huge step in the right direction.

I can’t think of what else to add other than wishing you the best of luck in Canada.


seems like a huge pita

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My experience with Immigration lawyers has not been stellar, but lol sample size and such. Not that you shouldn’t use them, you def should, but it’s super important that you’ll be well informed yourself.

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I’ve gone the other way. Canada to US right after Trump inauguration pretty much. We hardly brought anything with us. We’re not going for immigration though, so that’s an extra pain for you. Good luck!

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This is the least of your worries. The money will just sit in the accounts growing or shrinking depending on what you’ve got it invested in. If you need to access it so you can spend it, you can just wire it or write yourself a check or whatever. It’s not a problem.

Repatriating all the money into Canada at once may or may not be complicated, I have no idea. But I’m pretty confident there is no urgency on this. I’m not even certain that there is a reason that you ever have to do it.

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Yeah I have some cash in index funds and I don’t really bother dealing with it much.

I have access to my American bank account via Czech ATMs. I just don’t use that card since the charges are a bit ridiculous. Transferring between bank accounts you control is pretty easy though.

If there’s anything I can do to help, let me know. I don’t see anything in there about a skoolie though, so I can’t imagine what it’d be. Dunno…maybe if you throw your stuff in storage I can bring it up if we’re ever through pandemicking.


oh for sure i can store some stuff for you if you need and it’s closer than Mexico or wherever microbet lives.


RE: Immigration attorneys, I’m wondering if it makes sense to consult a couple of them to make sure you can drill into a “consensus” opinion. I had a good one when I brought my wife over from Germany but I have heard of negative experiences so I would treat this like a medical doctor second opinion.

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Is solar even worth it in BC?

He did say “alternative energy” - could be wind or micro-hydro. “worth it” depends on a lot - and being off-grid makes a big difference. And the price of the equipment matters a lot and I have 13 old panels and I’m not sure how many micro-inverters in my backyard and garage available gratis to the right cult.

(limited time offer - panels are up on offerup and some have been sold - but I have a pretty good chance of being able to get my hands on old cult-ready stuff for free or close to it whenever)

I was just assuming solar. I didn’t know you offered wind and hyrdo as well.

When it comes to solar, how much of the “worth it” is weather dependent? There have to be some places where there isn’t enough sun to make it “worth it” under any realistic scenario (and I assume BC would be such a place). Is that not the case?

I don’t offer wind or hydro, but I could help with it and the electrical part is the same.

The cost of competing electricity is at least as big a factor as weather. BC may or may not have expensive power, but if you’re off-grid you certainly have expensive power and even with bad weather solar-wind is going to beat a diesel generator if you have to bring in diesel.

Looking it up there appears to be some solar in Eastern BC, where I’m sure the weather is sunnier than near the coast. As far as just latitude goes, there is less sun up there, but there’s still a fair amount and there’s a lot of solar in Ontario.

Anything East of the Cascades gets a ton more sun than cities West of the Cascades.

We put ourselves on a couple immigration job registries within an hour of Trump’s 2016 win. Haven’t made the jump yet in hopes that things turn around, but it’s hard to imagine another four(+?) years of Trump that doesn’t involve us leaving at some point. We’ll essentially be leaving our dream house and dream jobs if we follow-through, but neither of us are interested in sticking around for whatever the U.S. deteriorates into. We’re extremely lucky in that we could likely live out reasonably-comfortable lives here, but at some point it feels like a moral obligation to move our tax dollars somewhere not run by monsters.

Our top potential destinations are (in no particular order) New Zealand, Costa Rica, Canada (BC, ideally), Portugal, Nordic Europe. The idea of a 10+ acre off-grid property filled with family and friends is particularly appealing - especially as the current admin lays bare the ails of mindless consumerism and individualism. We unfortunately don’t have any familial citizenship routes that I’m aware of, but we do have highly in-demand jobs that could be maintained remotely if necessary.

One potentially helpful resource is reddit.com/r/iwantout - a subreddit dedicated to asking questions like “here’s my situation. How do I move to x country?” The community can sometimes be a little snarky (e.g., “don’t you realize you’d have to learn Spanish to live in Spain?!?!!?”), but there is lots of genuine expertise and friendly advise as well.

We’re down for the unstuck commune if such a thing arises.


Three thoughts, eh?

  1. Do you still want to go if Biden wins and Dems take the Senate? If not, you may want to plan more for optionality in November.

  2. What is the likelihood that we descend all the way into fascism and California does not secede? I’d feel way safer in California than here in PA.

  3. Even if things get really bad, you would probably be able to drive to Canada in early 2021 seeing as you’re Canadian citizens and driving through very liberal states. Maybe the most important thing is getting your wife Canadian papers. We might start locking up immigrants and non-citizen permanent residents here, but I can’t imagine that we’d start locking up Canadian citizens leaving for Canada.

All that said, my guess is you won’t regret it much even if you pull the trigger and things shake out ok here. Your worst case is that you gave up good weather for good healthcare and nicer people.

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“Great weather”.