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JnJ2006

Exploring Options For Living In California

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Hello everyone,

 

My fiancee and I are trying to plan our living arrangements for when I finally make the move out to the US (California specifically) on a K1 Visa, and I'm looking for some ideas as to what we could consider giving our situation.

 

A little backstory, my fiancee resides with her parents, and that household is full so I will not be able to move in there. I am continually saving money, and I am basing my savings on the theoretical scenario that I don't find a job for a year, even though I know that shouldn't be the case, at the very least it will give us a safety net. Between us, we could afford about 2,200 a month in living expenses, but that doesn't leave us much wiggle room either, and I won't be much help in the application process for renting. 

 

I've looked at possibly subletting through Airbnb for a while, but it only goes for 6 months. I've looked at the possibility of buying an RV and renting space on a campground or something, but that would cost just as much as renting an apartment per month, and that's factoring out the cost of the RV. We've looked at Arizona as a potential destination, as well, as California's cost of living is really high, but it comes back to renting again, and I don't want to make her rent somewhere unsafe just because it's cheaper.

 

So I'm at a road where I'm running slim on ideas. Not sure if anyone can even offer up any new ideas or advice, but it's worth a shot.

 

Also, as a side note, I know it's not related to this forum, but I've read a lot about the CR1 Visa being an option for engaged couples if they just get married, but aside from researching it myself, does anyone have any experience with trying to provide evidence required for the CR1 even though you don't have a joint ANYTHING yet with your partner? How does that work, exactly?

 

Anyways, thanks for any and all responses in advance.

 

-JnJ

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Posted (edited)

Where abouts in California?

A lot of areas you can not survive on $2,200 a month.

My rent alone is $3,200 for a 2 bedroom townhome in Orange County. Monthly expenses around $10k total.

 

CR1 would probably be a better option so you can work straight away

Edited by CJKylie

ROC Timeline

Service Center: California

90 Day Window Opened.....08/03/17

I-751 Packet Sent................08/04/17

NOA Dated...........................08/07/17

NOA Received......................08/09/17

Check Cashed......................08/09/17

Biometrics Letter Rcvd........08/26/17

Biometrics Appointment......09/07/17

Approval................................08/05/19

 

Naturalization Timeline

Field Office: Santa Ana, CA

90 Day Window Opened.......08/03/18

N-400 Filed (Online)..............08/03/18

Receipt Notice.......................08/03/18

Biometrics Letter Rcvd..........08/20/18

Biometrics Appointment.......09/07/18

Interview Letter Dated...........07/01/19

Interview Letter Rcvd............07/08/19

Interview................................08/05/19

Approval................................08/05/19

Oath.......................................08/22/19

 

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Posted (edited)
8 minutes ago, CJKylie said:

Where abouts in California?

A lot of areas you can not survive on $2,200 a month.

My rent alone is $3,200 for a 2 bedroom townhome in Orange County.

 

CR1 would probably be a better option so you can work straight away

SoCal. We were looking in the Temecula area and there were some spots around 1300-1500 a month just in rent, so 2200 would probably be pushing it. We'd only need a 1 bedroom. 

 

That's why were considering Arizona, specifically Phoenix. Just not sure how we go about getting out there from starting in California, especially with having to get married, file the AOS, EAD, etc. The company I work for in Canada won't transfer me, but they do operate in Phoenix, so I could eventually just re-apply with all of my work experience with them and hopefully start off that way.

 

I brought up the CR1, but she wants to see if we can figure anything out around the K1 first. Also, I'm not exactly certain how to go about providing the evidence required for the CR1. We don't have anything shared between us financially or anything right now.

Edited by JnJ2006

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28 minutes ago, JnJ2006 said:

Hello everyone,

 

My fiancee and I are trying to plan our living arrangements for when I finally make the move out to the US (California specifically) on a K1 Visa, and I'm looking for some ideas as to what we could consider giving our situation.

 

A little backstory, my fiancee resides with her parents, and that household is full so I will not be able to move in there. I am continually saving money, and I am basing my savings on the theoretical scenario that I don't find a job for a year, even though I know that shouldn't be the case, at the very least it will give us a safety net. Between us, we could afford about 2,200 a month in living expenses, but that doesn't leave us much wiggle room either, and I won't be much help in the application process for renting. 

 

I've looked at possibly subletting through Airbnb for a while, but it only goes for 6 months. I've looked at the possibility of buying an RV and renting space on a campground or something, but that would cost just as much as renting an apartment per month, and that's factoring out the cost of the RV. We've looked at Arizona as a potential destination, as well, as California's cost of living is really high, but it comes back to renting again, and I don't want to make her rent somewhere unsafe just because it's cheaper.

 

So I'm at a road where I'm running slim on ideas. Not sure if anyone can even offer up any new ideas or advice, but it's worth a shot.

 

Also, as a side note, I know it's not related to this forum, but I've read a lot about the CR1 Visa being an option for engaged couples if they just get married, but aside from researching it myself, does anyone have any experience with trying to provide evidence required for the CR1 even though you don't have a joint ANYTHING yet with your partner? How does that work, exactly?

 

Anyways, thanks for any and all responses in advance.

 

-JnJ

There’s always Texas😁

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Posted (edited)

If you have such a limited budget, SoCal is not a good choice, as it is not just about the costs of rent. EVERYTHING is more expensive. For example, average gas difference between California and Arizona is a dollar or more per gallon. Depending on where you both find jobs, the commutes will be LONG -going back and forth from Temecula at peak hours is INSANE-.

 

Maybe your best choice is getting married, filing for the spousal visa and moving to Phoenix. You'd be able to work as soon as you move, unlike with the fiance visa.

 

As for evidence, you won't need that much, as the USCIS/ embassy officers understand you're in a long distance marriage.

Edited by Allaboutwaiting

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Agree CR1 + Phoenix sounds more plausible 


ROC Timeline

Service Center: California

90 Day Window Opened.....08/03/17

I-751 Packet Sent................08/04/17

NOA Dated...........................08/07/17

NOA Received......................08/09/17

Check Cashed......................08/09/17

Biometrics Letter Rcvd........08/26/17

Biometrics Appointment......09/07/17

Approval................................08/05/19

 

Naturalization Timeline

Field Office: Santa Ana, CA

90 Day Window Opened.......08/03/18

N-400 Filed (Online)..............08/03/18

Receipt Notice.......................08/03/18

Biometrics Letter Rcvd..........08/20/18

Biometrics Appointment.......09/07/18

Interview Letter Dated...........07/01/19

Interview Letter Rcvd............07/08/19

Interview................................08/05/19

Approval................................08/05/19

Oath.......................................08/22/19

 

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8 minutes ago, Yani08 said:

There’s always Texas😁

She has a horse. We'd probably fit right in lol

 

11 minutes ago, Allaboutwaiting said:

If you have such a limited budget, SoCal is not a good choice, as it is not just about the costs of rent. EVERYTHING is more expensive. For example, average gas difference between California and Arizona is a dollar or more per gallon. Depending on where you both find jobs, the commutes will be LONG -going back and forth from Temecula at peak hours is INSANE-.

 

Maybe your best choice is getting married, filing for the spousal visa and moving to Phoenix. You'd be able to work as soon as you move, unlike with the fiance visa.

 

As for evidence, you won't need that much, as they understand you're in a long distance marriage.

We both like the idea of going to Arizona instead. Just not sure how we could manage to rent a place with solely her credentials. I guess she could get a co-sign or potentially use my savings balance as something? I wonder if anyone on here has some insight to the Phoenix area so we can better understand the good and bad areas to live.

 

I'll research the CR1 more, because I know it would be a lot easier in the grand scheme of things even though it takes a bit longer. Is the denial rate higher or lower than the K1, by chance? Not that I have any reason to be denied, but my fiancee, she's a bit of a worrier even when I reassure her about things. I would think there's less fraudulent cases with the CR1 than the K1, leading to a lower denial chance or scrutiny.

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3 minutes ago, JnJ2006 said:

Just not sure how we could manage to rent a place with solely her credentials. I guess she could get a co-sign or potentially use my savings balance as something? I wonder if anyone on here has some insight to the Phoenix area so we can better understand the good and bad areas to live.

Do the CR-1.

 

Search "apartment locators" in Phoenix.  Talk to some.  They'll have the insiders' knowledge to help you feel secure.

If "apartment locators" yields no hits, call a real estate company.  They can refer you or even help directly.


06-04-2007 = TSC stamps postal return-receipt for I-129f.

06-11-2007 = NOA1 date (unknown to me).

07-20-2007 = Phoned Immigration Officer; got WAC#; where's NOA1?

09-25-2007 = Touch (first-ever).

09-28-2007 = NOA1, 23 days after their 45-day promise to send it (grrrr).

10-20 & 11-14-2007 = Phoned ImmOffs; "still pending."

12-11-2007 = 180 days; file is "between workstations, may be early Jan."; touches 12/11 & 12/12.

12-18-2007 = Call; file is with Division 9 ofcr. (bckgrnd check); e-prompt to shake it; touch.

12-19-2007 = NOA2 by e-mail & web, dated 12-18-07 (187 days; 201 per VJ); in mail 12/24/07.

01-09-2008 = File from USCIS to NVC, 1-4-08; NVC creates file, 1/15/08; to consulate 1/16/08.

01-23-2008 = Consulate gets file; outdated Packet 4 mailed to fiancee 1/27/08; rec'd 3/3/08.

04-29-2008 = Fiancee's 4-min. consular interview, 8:30 a.m.; much evidence brought but not allowed to be presented (consul: "More proof! Second interview! Bring your fiance!").

05-05-2008 = Infuriating $12 call to non-English-speaking consulate appointment-setter.

05-06-2008 = Better $12 call to English-speaker; "joint" interview date 6/30/08 (my selection).

06-30-2008 = Stokes Interrogations w/Ecuadorian (not USC); "wait 2 weeks; we'll mail her."

07-2008 = Daily calls to DOS: "currently processing"; 8/05 = Phoned consulate, got Section Chief; wrote him.

08-07-08 = E-mail from consulate, promising to issue visa "as soon as we get her passport" (on 8/12, per DHL).

08-27-08 = Phoned consulate (they "couldn't find" our file); visa DHL'd 8/28; in hand 9/1; through POE on 10/9 with NO hassles(!).

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20 minutes ago, TBoneTX said:

Do the CR-1.

 

Search "apartment locators" in Phoenix.  Talk to some.  They'll have the insiders' knowledge to help you feel secure.

If "apartment locators" yields no hits, call a real estate company.  They can refer you or even help directly.

Okay, that's an excellent idea, thank you!

 

I'll try to convince her of the CR1, instead, as I do more research on it. 

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Posted (edited)
37 minutes ago, JnJ2006 said:

Is the denial rate higher or lower than the K1, by chance?

On the topic of denial; if Montreal denies the K-1 they send the I-129F back to USCIS where that case becomes stuck (i.e. USCIS will not send it back to the consulate, no matter what). If Montreal denies the IR-1/CR-1 then the I-130 is sent back to USCIS. USCIS then sends a NOID, which you can challenge. If the challenge is successful, then the I-130 is reaffirmed and sent to Montreal.

Missileman has a comparison:

6 hours ago, missileman said:

K-1
       More expensive than CR-1    
    Requires Adjustment of Status after marriage (expensive and requires a lot of paperwork)    
    Spouse can not leave the US until she/he receives approved Advance Parole (approx 5-6 months)    
    Spouse can not work until she/he receives EAD (approx 5-6 months)    
    Some people have had problems with driver licenses, Social Security cards, leases, bank account during this period    
    Spouse will not receive Green Card for many months after Adjustment of Status is filed.

  

CR-1
    

    Less expensive than K-1    
    No Adjustment of Status(I-485, I-131, I-765) required.    
    Spouse can immediately travel outside the US    
    Spouse is authorized to work immediately upon arrival.    
    Spouse receives Social Security Card and Green Card within 2 or 3 weeks after entering the US    
    Opening a bank account, getting a driver's license, etc. are very easily accomplished with GC, SS card, and passport.

    Spouse has legal permanent Resident status IMMEDIATELY upon entry to US.

 

Edited by HRQX

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