Moving to the US next month, got a couple of questions.

RoaringMdog

Member
Oct 26, 2017
203
The Netherlands
Hey all,

as the title says, i'll be moving from Europe to the States next month. After a long wait i finally got my k1 visa approved. I'm bringing my desktop and my ps4 but i'm not sure if i can really use them there. Can i just buy US power cords and plug those into them? Or will i end up frying them?

Also, i know credit scores are incredibly important over there. Does anyone have any experience with immigrating over there and how to start building a good credit score?

Any help would be appreciated :)
 

crazyfunster

Member
Oct 27, 2017
2,403
you'll need a converter.

As for credit history- perhaps try to get a card that works in the US, and have your European credit score/info ready in case you need to show it- you do start with a blank slate in the US.
 

FliXFantatier

Master of the Reality Stone
Avenger
Oct 25, 2017
3,357
Los Angeles
Any electronics with internal power supply should be fine. I still have my European PS4 and just switched the cord. Anything with a motor (food processor, drill) is not going to work.

Credit is a pain in the arse because it will be difficult to get a credit card approved to build credit. I assume your spouse has ceded history. She or he might be able to add you to their accounts for you to build credit.
Elsewise start from scratch open an account with Schwab.
Also if your in a western state the Bank of the West has a dedicated program for expats, where you can get a credit card straight out of the gate without prior history, assuming you have a good job.

If you are still more than 6 months out you could also open an amex account in Europe. As an existing customer you can get a card in the US without background too, that’s what we did in preparation to moving here.

Drivers license was a pita for us back then because it was an impossible cicrle:
To get a drivers license you need a car to get a car you need insurance to get insurance you need a drivers license and a rental is not officially allowed for the test. Might not be a problem if your spouse has access to a car for you.

We came over on an L1 3 years ago. Ama
 
Last edited:

lupinko

Member
Oct 26, 2017
1,628
You should check, but for most modern electronics, they usually have a universal PSU.
 

FliXFantatier

Master of the Reality Stone
Avenger
Oct 25, 2017
3,357
Los Angeles
you'll need a converter.

As for credit history- perhaps try to get a card that works in the US, and have your European credit score/info ready in case you need to show it- you do start with a blank slate in the US.
A European credit card is not going to help. No one is going to care. Except for the amex example to streamline getting a card in the US.
 

LL_Decitrig

Member
Oct 27, 2017
10,034
Sunderland
On the topic of electrics, it still depends on the mains standard of your original country but most if not all European countries operate on about 220-250V alternating current. US domestic mains supplies run on 110V. Your existing European gear therefore cannot be overloaded, but you may need to buy a US power supply or mains adapter for some items, or consult the manual for others. Sony PS4 has a built-in power supply. Many modern power supplies can handle both US and European mains sources, but some really old ones need you to flip a switch on the device. Bottom line: consult the manual or talk to a local support engineer for that device in the US.

Electric kettles and other devices that draw a very high current may not work so well in the United States because the lower domestic supply voltage limits the rate at which they can consume power.

Television sets in the United States use a different system. Europe mostly has PAL/SECAM and the United States has NTSC. There are also issues caused by region coding of American DVDs. Don't expect your European DVDs to play on American equipment and don't expect American DVDs to work on European equipment. Now may a good time to sell off your DVDs and switch over to streaming media, if you had already been considering doing this.
 

CDX

Member
Oct 25, 2017
807
Usually electronics will say something like 100V-240V ~ 50hz-60hz and if they do you just have to get the right plug and they work worldwide.

If you are still more than 6 months out you could also open an amex account in Europe. As an existing customer you can get a card in the US without background too, that’s what we did in preparation to moving here.
Yep, American Express is the only card company I can think of that does that. So if you can get an AMEX in your country of origin first, do that.

Otherwise one of the easier ways to establish a US credit history is by getting a pre-paid secured credit card.
 

JaredLast

Member
Nov 11, 2017
160
Hey all,

as the title says, i'll be moving from Europe to the States next month. After a long wait i finally got my k1 visa approved. I'm bringing my desktop and my ps4 but i'm not sure if i can really use them there. Can i just buy US power cords and plug those into them? Or will i end up frying them?

Also, i know credit scores are incredibly important over there. Does anyone have any experience with immigrating over there and how to start building a good credit score?

Any help would be appreciated :)
You don't need a converter for the PS4, just swap the cable. Desktop power supplies will often have a switch on them to change between 110/240 volt. First thing to try to do is get your social security number, everything else that you are going to want to do requires that. I entered the US on a K1 Visa three years ago so if you have any questions let me know.
 

Freakzilla

Member
Oct 31, 2017
3,400
To build your credit get your SS#, open a bank account, and get yourself a secured credit card.
 

XolSec

Member
Feb 18, 2018
1,371
I’ve moved to a couple of places temporarily in my years and I must say the US is the one I’ve had the hardest time.

I had a SS number when I got here (required by my employer) so I guess that made things a bit easier.

Chase and WF didn’t want anything to do with me for some crazy reasons, another bank let me open a savings and checking account for DD and gave me a secured CC right away. I started building my score this way.

When I was ready to buy a car, I went to a driving school and took a written exam followed by a driving test using their own car. Got my License and then I wa able to buy a car. Insurance now became the issue, as for some reason my premiums are through the roof.

I assume housing is not an problem? that was an adventure for me coming here without a credit or renter’s history.
 
Last edited:

prophetvx

Member
Nov 28, 2017
947
I did the move about 5 years ago. Getting credit in the US is an incredibly painful process, it helps to know someone already living there. Getting a phone contract? Be prepared to pay a massive downpayment ($500 or more) or have your contract in someone elses name. Internet and/or cable you will need to pay $200+ or the first year of the contract up front.

Getting these things will help build credit but the quickest path is to find a bank that provides a secured credit card, I did a secured card with $2,000 paid upfront via US Bank and was getting offers for unsecured cards with a limit of $5k within about 6 months.

Getting a drivers license and the SSN was fun as well. SSN took about 6 hours waiting at an office, getting your drivers license requires your visa, SSN and an up to date letter from your employer saying you're still employed, as well as proof of residence. Dependent on your state obviously but they're pretty brutal with the paperwork, so make sure you check all the requirements, I had to go back twice because of wording or something wasn't formatted correctly in the employment letter.

It is honestly one of the most painful experiences one can go through, everything requires credit or your SSN and any company will exploit people with poor or no credit history. I was lucky enough to know someone who was renting out their property, I can't imagine how difficult it would be to add that on top of getting everything else organized.
 
Last edited:

Rei no Otaku

The Fallen
Oct 25, 2017
1,078
Cranston RI
Drivers license was a pita for us back then because it was an impossible cicrle:
To get a drivers license you need a car to get a car you need insurance to get insurance you need a drivers license and a rental is not officially allowed for the test. Might not be a problem if your spouse has access to a car for you.
Just go to a driving school. AAA is the most common option. You use their car for practice and the test. Also if you do driving lessons most insurance companies will lower your premiums.
 

Acrano

Member
Nov 2, 2017
262
Germany
You may need a new power supply for your PC. Most modern models don´t habe a switch on the back or maybe they have if it´s a prebuilt system. PS4 should be fine with a new plug.
 

LL_Decitrig

Member
Oct 27, 2017
10,034
Sunderland
You may need a new power supply for your PC. Most modern models don´t habe a switch on the back or maybe they have if it´s a prebuilt system. PS4 should be fine with a new plug.
I'd definitely suggest that any money spent shipping a desktop computer across the Atlantic would be wasted. A laptop is a different matter, and for those devices you usually only need to buy a new cord from the power supply to the wall.
 

prophetvx

Member
Nov 28, 2017
947
You may need a new power supply for your PC. Most modern models don´t habe a switch on the back or maybe they have if it´s a prebuilt system. PS4 should be fine with a new plug.
Most PSU's will do the switching automatically. Going from Europe to US is safe, going the other way is the concern as europe runs 220v whereas NA is 110v. Worst case scenario, US outlets don't provide enough voltage to power the device, take a US device to Europe and you may have a fire hazard.
 

PoppaBK

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,320
I moved to the US 16 years ago so some things may have changed.
I believe you can apply for your SSN ahead of time now, I was stuck for a month being unable to get paid as they had added an extra delay in processing time for SSNs. So make sure that you have that sorted before you come here.
In Virginia at least you can take your test in a rental car, bring a credit card with you as you will need one to rent a car, and bring a translation of your license if it is not in English. You will need a bunch of documents to get your license, including proof of address.
Credit. Credit is a bitch when you first move here. Get a gas card or a secured card as soon as possible and start using it and paying it off in full as soon as possible. I would say stay away from local dealers when it comes to buying a car they will try and scam you six ways from Sunday. I got a used car from CarMax at 12% interest with no credit, hopefully they still offer something similar. It sounds high, but compared to the 35% some dealer tried to sneak through on me by desperately trying to only tell me the monthly payment it was amazing.
 

prophetvx

Member
Nov 28, 2017
947
One thing I forgot to mention when getting credit. When getting a secured card, make sure you NEVER exceed 30% of your limit and pay it off in full every month. Credit agencies take that limit very seriously, it will put you back years in credit building if you don't follow that rule religiously, but make sure you use your credit regularly.
 

Acrano

Member
Nov 2, 2017
262
Germany
Most PSU's will do the switching automatically. Going from Europe to US is safe, going the other way is the concern as europe runs 220v whereas NA is 110v. Worst case scenario, US outlets don't provide enough voltage to power the device, take a US device to Europe and you may have a fire hazard.
Ah, I didn´t know that I thought they just sold different models depending on the region. It´s been years since I had a psu with a switch.
 

shnurgleton

Member
Oct 27, 2017
9,739
Boston

The Albatross

Member
Oct 25, 2017
8,228
1) You'll need a converter for any electronics, they're pretty cheap on Amazon. I believe European -> US converters are cheaper than US -> European converters because European voltage is usually... 240 volts, where as most voltage for normal electronics in the US is 120, right? For standard electronic equipment like a PS4 basic ones should be good... Things like hair dryers and anything that requires a lot of electricity to generate heat requires one of those adapter/converter things. I'm unsure of PC PSUs to be honest.

2) Don't stress the credit score thing, it's completely overblown by the internet and credit score scam service marketing. It's beneficial when borrowing in the US to have good credit history, and because credit history generally doesn't follow you from the EU to the US and vice-versa, you might have no credit history which doesn't mean you have bad credit, just no credit history. If you're opening up a US bank account when you're here, look into applying for a credit card from that bank. They'll give you a normal card, backed by Visa or Mastercard, not many benefits, but a low APR (interest rate), and you can use it for small purchases each month here and there, and just pay it off each month. You'll pay no interest, get a few small benefits (security, convenience, maybe some points/perks), and start to build credit history in the US. Many people use credit cards for gas/petrol in the US because of convenience and bonuses like double-points (cash back, shopping rewards) for using it at gas stations, and so that's a good idea. Within a month you'll have a credit history and have a low, but ultimately meaningless credit score and it'll progressively go up as you're financially responsible. Credit history matters when making a major purchase on credit, like buying a home through a mortgage or buying a car through an auto-loan... But when you're buying a house the lender/broker isn't just looking at your score which is ultimately an arbitrary number, they're looking at your history which is meaningful (e.g., have you paid your bills on time, have you ever defaulted on a loan in the last ~7 years, do you have a good balance of available credit and income, etc).

The credit agency industry has spent a lot of money over the last 25 years marketing to Americans that their credit score is the most important thing in the world. "I can't get a job without a good credit score!" "I can't get an apartment without a good score!" 98% of the time it's marketing bull shit, though there is a sliver of truth behind some of them (employers can pull credit reports on you, but they're not credit scores; rental agencies can pull credit reports on you), most of it's misleading bull shit. But because credit score is such an e-penis on the internet of people bragging about their high scores, it feeds into this marketing bull shit. RIght now, credit is easy and available because the economy is so strong, and so you shouldn't have any trouble doing a normal credit-bearing thing... Like if you want to buy a car you should have no trouble securing a reasonable loan from a reasonable lender with normal rates... If one lender won't give you 4% APR over 60 months for a car, go to another lender and they probably will (or through a dealership... Your mileage may vary here, but I've found that the major car dealerships usually give good rates through their lending arm). Banks are competitive right now because interest rates are low and the economy is historically strong. Most of the hooplah around credit scores is marketing bull shit created by companies who try to prey on your anxiety and fear and make money off of you... sites like CreditKarma, 1800CreditScore.com, or the thousands of others over the last 10, 20 years.

A year ago I made a similar tool to the Credit Score tool from Credit Karma, etc., to check your ResetEra Member Validity score. Trust me this is a VERY important number and everybody should know their validity score... it'll give you so much more confidence when replying to posts to know your validity score ahead of time:

https://member-validity-score.glitch.me/

In the US, hundreds of millions of dollars is spent by financial scammers preying on people's anxiety about credit. "I can't move out of my parents house because I don't know my credit score!" "This girl won't date me because I don't know my credit score!" -- BUT SIGN UP FOR CREDIT KARMA AND GET YOUR FREE CREDIT SCORE* AND THEN YOU CAN MOVE OUT OF YOUR HOUSE AND FUCK THE SUPERMODEL OF YOUR DREAMS. They're really effective ads because in the US if you attach an arbitrary number to anything, people will care about it, brag about how high their's is online, and lie whenever someone asks to make that number higher than it might actually be. It's like talking about dick length on the internet.




*Free: Might not actually be free, and we sell your private financial data to the Russians
*Credit Score: Might not actually be a credit score and might just be a random average of some numbers that some schlub is making up
*Also if your score is "low" we're going to nag you, prey on your anxiety, and try to get you to give us money for products that you don't need that won't do anything for you, but it's our business model.
*The Russians
 
Last edited:
OP
OP
RoaringMdog

RoaringMdog

Member
Oct 26, 2017
203
The Netherlands
Wow, thanks everyone. Thats a lot of helpful information!

I'm moving to South Gate, California. I know i have to wait 2 weeks before i can even apply for a SSN aince that's how long it takes for me to be in the system. I have housing and a phone line covered aswell, going to live with my fiancee(soon to be wife) and she said she can just add me on to her contract as an extra line.

Did some searching and i found that Wells Fargo seems to be easiest for getting a bank account, so i'll try that first. Never had a credit card before, so i'll make sure to be responsible with it and stay well under that limit. I've been seeing a ton of ads on podcasts about ways to build credit faster, so i might have to check that out.

Fiancee had a car, so that makes getting a drivers license a bit easier too which is nice.
I just ordered the power cables and i'll check my pc later if it has that switch. If not i'll call the place i got it from.

Not looking forward to sitting at home for 5-7 months before i get cleared to work, but atleast it gives me plenty of time to do all the other stuff i need to do.

Thank you all so much for the info!
 
Last edited:

Futureman

Member
Oct 26, 2017
3,490
Wow, thanks everyone. Thats a lot of helpful information!

I'm moving to
WHERE? WTF?!

Unless you really need a loan right away, I wouldn't worry about the credit score stuff. I never did anything out of the ordinary besides paying all my bills on time and have a few cards open that I pay off in full every month and my credit score is like 820 which is really good.
 

prophetvx

Member
Nov 28, 2017
947
1) You'll need a converter for any electronics, they're pretty cheap on Amazon. I believe European -> US converters are cheaper than US -> European converters because European voltage is usually... 240 volts, where as most voltage for normal electronics in the US is 120, right? For standard electronic equipment like a PS4 basic ones should be good... Things like hair dryers and anything that requires a lot of electricity to generate heat requires one of those adapter/converter things. I'm unsure of PC PSUs to be honest.

2) Don't stress the credit score thing, it's completely overblown by the internet and credit score scam service marketing. It's beneficial when borrowing in the US to have good credit history, and because credit history generally doesn't follow you from the EU to the US and vice-versa, you might have no credit history which doesn't mean you have bad credit, just no credit history. If you're opening up a US bank account when you're here, look into applying for a credit card from that bank. They'll give you a normal card, backed by Visa or Mastercard, not many benefits, but a low APR (interest rate), and you can use it for small purchases each month here and there, and just pay it off each month. You'll pay no interest, get a few small benefits (security, convenience, maybe some points/perks), and start to build credit history in the US. Many people use credit cards for gas/petrol in the US because of convenience and bonuses like double-points (cash back, shopping rewards) for using it at gas stations, and so that's a good idea. Within a month you'll have a credit history and have a low, but ultimately meaningless credit score and it'll progressively go up as you're financially responsible. Credit history matters when making a major purchase on credit, like buying a home through a mortgage or buying a car through an auto-loan... But when you're buying a house the lender/broker isn't just looking at your score which is ultimately an arbitrary number, they're looking at your history which is meaningful (e.g., have you paid your bills on time, have you ever defaulted on a loan in the last ~7 years, do you have a good balance of available credit and income, etc).

The credit agency industry has spent a lot of money over the last 25 years marketing to Americans that their credit score is the most important thing in the world. "I can't get a job without a good credit score!" "I can't get an apartment without a good score!" 98% of the time it's marketing bull shit, though there is a sliver of truth behind some of them (employers can pull credit reports on you, but they're not credit scores; rental agencies can pull credit reports on you), most of it's misleading bull shit. But because credit score is such an e-penis on the internet of people bragging about their high scores, it feeds into this marketing bull shit. RIght now, credit is easy and available because the economy is so strong, and so you shouldn't have any trouble doing a normal credit-bearing thing... Like if you want to buy a car you should have no trouble securing a reasonable loan from a reasonable lender with normal rates... If one lender won't give you 0% APR over 60 months for a car, go to another lender and they probably will (or through a dealership). Banks are competitive right now because interest rates are low and the economy is historically strong. Most of the hooplah around credit scores is marketing bull shit created by companies who try to prey on your anxiety and fear and make money off of you... sites like CreditKarma, 1800CreditScore.com, or the thousands of others over the last 10, 20 years.

A year ago I made a similar tool to the Credit Score tool from Credit Karma, etc., to check your ResetEra Member Validity score. Trust me this is a VERY important number and everybody should know their validity score... it'll give you so much more confidence when replying to posts to know your validity score ahead of time:

https://member-validity-score.glitch.me/

In the US, hundreds of millions of dollars is spent by financial scammers preying on people's anxiety about credit. "I can't move out of my parents house because I don't know my credit score!" "This girl won't date me because I don't know my credit score!" -- BUT SIGN UP FOR CREDIT KARMA AND GET YOUR FREE CREDIT SCORE* AND THEN YOU CAN MOVE OUT OF YOUR HOUSE AND FUCK THE SUPERMODEL OF YOUR DREAMS. They're really effective ads because in the US if you attach an arbitrary number to anything, people will care about it, brag about how high their's is online, and lie whenever someone asks to make that number higher than it might actually be. It's like talking about dick length on the internet.




*Free: Might not actually be free, and we sell your private financial data to the Russians
*Credit Score: Might not actually be a credit score and might just be a random average of some numbers that some schlub is making up
*Also if your score is "low" we're going to nag you, prey on your anxiety, and try to get you to give us money for products that you don't need that won't do anything for you, but it's our business model.
*The Russians
I can assure you, as an immigrant, credit score is absolutely not overblown. As soon as your SSN starts with a different first 3 digits from a US citizen, you are subject to far more scrutiny than a "no credit" history citizen.

I spent at least $3k in deposits, excluding a rental property to get around credit issues. Coming from a country where I never had to provide my SSN for anything other than filing taxes, the US is incredibly backward in this regard.

There is also no converter that changes 110v to 220v. Devices either have inbuilt voltage switching or they don't, the plug just changes.
 

U2NUMB

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,264
[/QUOTE]
Did some searching and i found that Wells Fargo seems to be easiest for getting a bank account, so i'll try that first. Never had a credit card before, so i'll make sure to be responsible with it and stay well under that limit. I've been seeing a ton of ads on podcasts about ways to build credit faster, so i might have to check that out.

Yep even if you dont apply or want a Wells Fargo account you have one... they are really good at making accounts.

Congrats and welcome to the US... hope the move goes smooth.
 

The Albatross

Member
Oct 25, 2017
8,228
OP, if you're moving to the US as part of your job or employer, I'd ask if they have recommended places to live/rent, and HR can probably help you with places to buy a car or do other things. At my company we have a very large number of people on Visas working/living here from India and China, some Europeans, and a lot rent from a handful of places that the company has a good relationship with at least for their first year or two. Same with auto dealers.

I can assure you, as an immigrant, credit score is absolutely not overblown. As soon as your SSN starts with a different first 3 digits from a US citizen, you are subject to far more scrutiny than a "no credit" history citizen.

I spent at least $3k in deposits, excluding a rental property to get around credit issues. Coming from a country where I never had to provide my SSN for anything other than filing taxes, the US is incredibly backward in this regard.

There is also no converter that changes 110v to 220v. Devices either have inbuilt voltage switching or they don't, the plug just changes.
I think there's confusion because a lot of money is spent lying to people about credit score. Most rental agencies get a credit report which may include credit score (the arbitrary number that Experian, TransUnion, and the others use to just arbitrarily fuck with you and make money off of your anxiety), but usually they're looking at your credit report. Credit history really matters with renting, but the emphasis on score is part of this 25 year marketing blitz to scare people into buying products that they don't really need. It's gotten to the point where people just think "Credit Score" when really they mean "Credit Report." In my post I tried to differentiate and explain that your credit history matters and it's good to build up a solid credit history, but not to stress out about your credit score.

Similar to potential employers. Advertising around credit scores try to get you to think that your potential employer is getting your credit score and determining whether they'll hire you based on that. Employers don't even get your score, they get a condensed report (if they do run it) that doesn't have a score but has a basic credit history. At least, this was true as of a ~year ago the last time I looked into it in a similar topic.

The US is incredibly backwards and the credit score industry is a scam. Credit history and credit report are still ... fucked up ... but at least make some sense (e.g., you're making a major financial purchase on a loan, it makes sense that the lender would want to see your history in how you pay things off). I just rail against the score aspect of it because it's sooo overblown.
 
Last edited:

prophetvx

Member
Nov 28, 2017
947
I think there's confusion because a lot of money is spent lying to people about credit score. Most rental agencies get a credit report which may include credit score (the arbitrary number that Experian, TransUnion, and the others use to just arbitrarily fuck with you and make money off of your anxiety), but usually they're looking at your credit report. Credit history really matters with renting, but the emphasis on score is part of this 25 year marketing blitz to scare people into buying products that they don't really need. It's gotten to the point where people just think "Credit Score" when really they mean "Credit Report."

The US is incredibly backwards and the credit score industry is a scam. Credit history and credit report are still ... fucked up ... but at least make some sense (e.g., you're making a major financial purchase on a loan, it makes sense that the lender would want to see your history in how you pay things off).
Oh I don't disagree about the credit industry. However, when you're starting out, it's a huge pain in the ass dealing with companies for said lack of credit score. For example, when getting my internet setup at home, there was a single provider in my area. They demanded that I actually pay out MORE than the total value of my 2 year contract in full to provide service as a deposit. Verizon refused to even give me cell phone service, thankfully my company allowed me to put it on their contract.

Once you get a secured card and are there for about 6 months, you can pretty much qualify for a mortgage at that point, it doesn't take long to build the credit provided you are diligent. However, if you have a non-standard SSN, you are pretty much treated like you'll bail the country at any moment. I was there on a 2 year E3 visa and my wife on a TN-1, I'm sure it's different for green card or even H1B visa.
 

The Albatross

Member
Oct 25, 2017
8,228
Did some searching and i found that Wells Fargo seems to be easiest for getting a bank account, so i'll try that first. Never had a credit card before, so i'll make sure to be responsible with it and stay well under that limit. I've been seeing a ton of ads on podcasts about ways to build credit faster, so i might have to check that out.
Sounds like you'll have a lot of the hardest stuff eased in for you by living with your fiance, so that's great.

I wouldn't follow any financial advice from advertisers on podcasts, esp. about building faster credit. Take it slow, don't try to get ahead, or take shortcuts. These companies advertise on podcasts because it's cheap to advertise there. Think of a credit card just like a bank card / debit card in the EU, where you only spend what you have and pay it off each month... You'll get some basic benefits of using a credit card (people keep saying security because in the US, credit cards are more customer friendly than using a bank card if your card/number is stolen, the credit card companies will refund you instantly by law and you have access to services like charge backs if you're incorrectly charged for something) and slowly, gradually build a good credit history. Things like your phone plan and other bills will gradually contribute to that too.

Wells Fargo is probably fine, we don't really have them around us in the North East, but a lot of us in the US on this forum (includ. myself) recommend "Credit Unions." Credit Unions and banks are basically the same thing except credit unions tend to be smaller, individually/customer owned, and they tend to have better, more personal customer service than the giant national banks. There's a little trade off, sometimes a credit union will be less convenient than a big national bank.. But these days, that's not really the case anymore. Alternatively, if your wife has a bank account somewhere you can open up an account where she has her's and there might be some conveenience factors ... Like transferring money from one account to the other is usually easier/faster if you're both with the same bank. Zelle isn't as common in the US as it is in Europe, many banks are on it but not all yet.
 

sangreal

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,480
Don't overthink it, you'll have plenty of time to figure things out. For electronics just check the label -- if it says 110-220v or whatever your'e good. Your wife can add you as an authorized user on her cards.

Congrats on the wedding
 

PoppaBK

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,320
OP, if you're moving to the US as part of your job or employer, I'd ask if they have recommended places to live/rent, and HR can probably help you with places to buy a car or do other things. At my company we have a very large number of people on Visas working/living here from India and China, some Europeans, and a lot rent from a handful of places that the company has a good relationship with at least for their first year or two. Same with auto dealers.



I think there's confusion because a lot of money is spent lying to people about credit score. Most rental agencies get a credit report which may include credit score (the arbitrary number that Experian, TransUnion, and the others use to just arbitrarily fuck with you and make money off of your anxiety), but usually they're looking at your credit report. Credit history really matters with renting, but the emphasis on score is part of this 25 year marketing blitz to scare people into buying products that they don't really need. It's gotten to the point where people just think "Credit Score" when really they mean "Credit Report." In my post I tried to differentiate and explain that your credit history matters and it's good to build up a solid credit history, but not to stress out about your credit score.

Similar to potential employers. Advertising around credit scores try to get you to think that your potential employer is getting your credit score and determining whether they'll hire you based on that. Employers don't even get your score, they get a condensed report (if they do run it) that doesn't have a score but has a basic credit history. At least, this was true as of a ~year ago the last time I looked into it in a similar topic.

The US is incredibly backwards and the credit score industry is a scam. Credit history and credit report are still ... fucked up ... but at least make some sense (e.g., you're making a major financial purchase on a loan, it makes sense that the lender would want to see your history in how you pay things off). I just rail against the score aspect of it because it's sooo overblown.
When you first move you have no score and nothing on your report, so it doesn't really matter. You also have no verifiable rental history or address history which makes getting a rental harder, hell you don't even have an address. Also a lot of online forms assume US phone numbers and US addresses, which can be a massive pain. Even now, 16 years later I have issues with things like applying for some jobs, because the fields sometimes don't allow non-US addresses for education institutes or jobs, or they require a GPA or major and minor.
 

Elandyll

Avenger
Oct 25, 2017
3,795
I'm from France (but naturalized) and living in the US for the past 16 years, sometimes going back to viait family.

Yes to the electronics.
PS4 has a universal (internal) power supply, you'll just need the right power cord as the plugs arendifferent. Was the same on PS3, you can use it directly.

On the back of your pc desktop at the psu level, unless universal, there should be a switch 220/110. Just make sure it's on 110 in the US, and get the right cord.

Edit: about credit, the way I built mine was by starting small with a NTB (car oil change/ tire store) credit card, with a $800 limit. I eventually upgraded to a Kohls with a bigger limit ($2000+), and more recently to a full Amazon /Chase credit card (I'm not a big fan of credit myself, but rewards were nice). It will take time (a few years) to get to a decent credit rating. Make sure you do not skip payments, specially mortgages.

Also to remember: you build credit by using it, but be careful not to get over your head.
 

Babyshaq90

Member
Oct 28, 2017
184
Wow, thanks everyone. Thats a lot of helpful information!

I'm moving to South Gate, California. I know i have to wait 2 weeks before i can even apply for a SSN aince that's how long it takes for me to be in the system. I have housing and a phone line covered aswell, going to live with my fiancee(soon to be wife) and she said she can just add me on to her contract as an extra line.

Did some searching and i found that Wells Fargo seems to be easiest for getting a bank account, so i'll try that first. Never had a credit card before, so i'll make sure to be responsible with it and stay well under that limit. I've been seeing a ton of ads on podcasts about ways to build credit faster, so i might have to check that out.

Fiancee had a car, so that makes getting a drivers license a bit easier too which is nice.
I just ordered the power cables and i'll check my pc later if it has that switch. If not i'll call the place i got it from.

Not looking forward to sitting at home for 5-7 months before i get cleared to work, but atleast it gives me plenty of time to do all the other stuff i need to do.

Thank you all so much for the info!
Interesting that you are moving to South Gate. I work in the area and live 15 min away. Does your fiancé happen to be hispanic? Get ready for some of the best Mexican food since South Gate and the surrounding areas are mostly Hispanic/Mexican people. Wells Fargo is one of the big banks, along with Chase, Bank of America and Citibank and they would all be good for ease of use online and for physical locations. Some of these banks offer credit cards with low limits to help build credit, I know BoA has it since I bank with them but I imagine the others might have some form of variants. Good luck and get ready for the cultural awakening!
 
OP
OP
RoaringMdog

RoaringMdog

Member
Oct 26, 2017
203
The Netherlands
Interesting that you are moving to South Gate. I work in the area and live 15 min away. Does your fiancé happen to be hispanic? Get ready for some of the best Mexican food since South Gate and the surrounding areas are mostly Hispanic/Mexican people. Wells Fargo is one of the big banks, along with Chase, Bank of America and Citibank and they would all be good for ease of use online and for physical locations. Some of these banks offer credit cards with low limits to help build credit, I know BoA has it since I bank with them but I imagine the others might have some form of variants. Good luck and get ready for the cultural awakening!

She is! So many good places to eat near her place, i'm afraid of how much weight i'll gain these first few weeks.. Her mom already promised a proper mexican meal when i get there. It's one of the things i'm looking forward too the most.


Following this thread as I’m applying for the K1 later this year and moving next year too.
Goodluck! If you need help during the process VisaJourney is a great place for help and information.
 

Cilla

Member
Oct 29, 2017
270
Queensland, Australia
She is! So many good places to eat near her place, i'm afraid of how much weight i'll gain these first few weeks.. Her mom already promised a proper mexican meal when i get there. It's one of the things i'm looking forward too the most.




Goodluck! If you need help during the process VisaJourney is a great place for help and information.
That’s what everyone says and I’ve looked a few times! I’m pretty confident in the process as I’ve successfully done it for the UK prior. There’s just a few things that I’m not 100% sure about!