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Cost of renting a house in the US

Cost of renting a house in the US

Old Apr 8th 2009, 7:29 pm
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Default Cost of renting a house in the US

Well I thought it's about time we had a good look at the finances of our future life in the States, so I'm wondering about the cost of living in the US.

My USC spouse has lived in the UK for the past 4 years. And has no US credit rating, and as we have no assets to really speak of, I'm assuming renting is our only option.

We will be living in Pensacola, Florida to start off, and looking at current prices, $700 will get us a nice 1200sq ft house, which is small but definitley doable for the first year or so, as it will only be my wife and I in the house.

I have no idea as to the cost of water/electric/internet/cable

Are we looking at a figure of around $1000 "all in"?

Another issue is as we have no credit rating and not many assets, buying a car on finance is going to be an issue although we are going to need a car, is that going to be possible or will we have to buy a cheap piece of crap on a credit card until we establish some credit?

I have a credit rating of over 850 here in the UK, can that be "transferred" to the states?
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Old Apr 8th 2009, 7:48 pm
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Default Re: Cost of renting a house in the US

Originally Posted by Wilto View Post
I have a credit rating of over 850 here in the UK, can that be "transferred" to the states?
I don't live in FL, so can't answer your other questions. But I can tell you that your credit rating in the UK means diddly squat here. There is a good wiki here about gaining credit in the US. I think there are a few credit cards that may xfer your payment history which will expedite you acquiring credit here - AmEx being one of them. You may try for an AmEx before you leave.

Are you sure your US wife has no credit rating? If she had any credit cards or a loan before she left, she would still have a rating here.
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Old Apr 8th 2009, 8:02 pm
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Default Re: Cost of renting a house in the US

Originally Posted by sunflwrgrl13 View Post
I don't live in FL, so can't answer your other questions. But I can tell you that your credit rating in the UK means diddly squat here. There is a good wiki here about gaining credit in the US. I think there are a few credit cards that may xfer your payment history which will expedite you acquiring credit here - AmEx being one of them. You may try for an AmEx before you leave.

Are you sure your US wife has no credit rating? If she had any credit cards or a loan before she left, she would still have a rating here.
Nope she has nothing unfortunately, we are young ones well younger than the average.

So good idea is to apply for an British Amex card?
I will inquire and see what the field of play is on that.
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Old Apr 8th 2009, 10:34 pm
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Default Re: Cost of renting a house in the US

If your wife is a USC she may still have a bank account or something (note: has she been filing her taxes properly eventhough overseas?). She might be able to open an account in the US through her parents address or something.

Without a credit rating you'll have a harder time renting from apartment buildings / complexes, but if you are renting a house from a landlord/owner, then there is more of a chance they'll skip the credit report and go on more of a 'like the looks of you' kind of thing. It will help if you have some bank statements showing you aren't destitute or a letter from an employer showing your salary.
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Old Apr 9th 2009, 12:49 am
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Default Re: Cost of renting a house in the US

Have a search through the site and read the wiki, there's good stuff on setting up credit and all that fun stuff.

One thing though, if you have no credit you might need to put down deposits, so anything from $200-1000 for each utility.

If you rent, you'll probably need first and last months rent plus between 1-3 months down as deposit that'll be returned when you leave.

$1K a month I think is having a laugh though because electricity can be $200-500 a month, especially when it's hot with the AC on. Water should be included in the rent as would rubbish collection if it's offered and property taxes etc.

Cable/Internet/Phone around $150 a month if you have a few channels, might be less but then again you might not have much choice of providers then it'll be more expensive.

Car insurance also won't be cheap....neither will groceries, especially if you want to eat anything that's not crap for you. We spend at least $250 more like $350 a month on groceries for 2 people not including stuff we get for the baby...and we're eating not very much, bugger all snacks and minimal junkish foods.
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Old Apr 9th 2009, 1:59 am
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Default Re: Cost of renting a house in the US

you might want to take a look at www.city-data.com
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Old Apr 9th 2009, 2:30 am
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Default Re: Cost of renting a house in the US

With it being a Navy town, they're used to dealing with younguns. Be careful though and watch your back in that regard..............

I lived there for a few months when I was 21 and ex was in the Army Ensign program. I liked it and loved the beaches.
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Old Apr 9th 2009, 1:26 pm
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Default Re: Cost of renting a house in the US

One of the first things landlords check is credit history; you may have a hard time getting into a place to rent, especially through professional rental management company. As Bob said, the lack of credit will also make for some hefty deposits for utilities.

Just an guess on a no frills household monthly budget:

House $850
Renter's insurance $40
Electric $250
Water/sewer $120
Car $300
Auto Insurance $120
Gasoline $100
Phone/TV/internet $60
Food $400
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Old Apr 9th 2009, 2:26 pm
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Default Re: Cost of renting a house in the US

Originally Posted by ironporer View Post
One of the first things landlords check is credit history; you may have a hard time getting into a place to rent, especially through professional rental management company. As Bob said, the lack of credit will also make for some hefty deposits for utilities.

Just an guess on a no frills household monthly budget:

House $850
Renter's insurance $40
Electric $250
Water/sewer $120
Car $300
Auto Insurance $120
Gasoline $100
Phone/TV/internet $60
Food $400
But I would assume that renting a house with no credit is easier than getting a mortgage?

Plenty of teeny tiny houses for $500 in Pensacola, looks like we will be forcred to live cheap.

Obviously by the looks of it there will be no mortgage and no car finance in the first year or so, and the best way of building up credit is to spend on credit card and pay off straight away, and pay everything on time, on the Amex front, obviously I have to apply from this side of the pond, are some cards better than others or just the very fact I have one is what counts?

Last edited by Wilto; Apr 9th 2009 at 2:33 pm.
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Old Apr 9th 2009, 4:13 pm
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Default Re: Cost of renting a house in the US

Originally Posted by Wilto View Post
Well I thought it's about time we had a good look at the finances of our future life in the States, so I'm wondering about the cost of living in the US.

My USC spouse has lived in the UK for the past 4 years. And has no US credit rating, and as we have no assets to really speak of, I'm assuming renting is our only option.

We will be living in Pensacola, Florida to start off, and looking at current prices, $700 will get us a nice 1200sq ft house, which is small but definitley doable for the first year or so, as it will only be my wife and I in the house.

I have no idea as to the cost of water/electric/internet/cable

Are we looking at a figure of around $1000 "all in"?

Another issue is as we have no credit rating and not many assets, buying a car on finance is going to be an issue although we are going to need a car, is that going to be possible or will we have to buy a cheap piece of crap on a credit card until we establish some credit?

I have a credit rating of over 850 here in the UK, can that be "transferred" to the states?
When we moved out last year and were looking for a rental I printed off my UK credit report from Experian, printed my last 6 months UK bank accounts, and took my husbands offer letter stating his salary details, with me when I went to meet the agent. I think he was a bit taken a back by me being so up front about having no credit in the US. We had no problems renting the house we wanted then.

Also, a Ford dealer agreed to use our UK credit history for a car loan. Its not a great rate but you have to start building up your credit history somewhere. I had to phone/email around a lot though before I found this particular dealer who would do it, it wasn't all Ford dealerships.

We had an account with HSBC in the UK, but hadn't used it for around 5 years after falling out with them. I went to them in the US though and they gave me a credit card with a $4k limit on without me even requesting one.

I would also have been really stuck without my Amex.

Good luck with the move.
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Old Apr 9th 2009, 5:48 pm
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Default Re: Cost of renting a house in the US

Originally Posted by Wilto View Post
But I would assume that renting a house with no credit is easier than getting a mortgage?

Plenty of teeny tiny houses for $500 in Pensacola, looks like we will be forcred to live cheap.

Obviously by the looks of it there will be no mortgage and no car finance in the first year or so, and the best way of building up credit is to spend on credit card and pay off straight away, and pay everything on time, on the Amex front, obviously I have to apply from this side of the pond, are some cards better than others or just the very fact I have one is what counts?

You very well may be able to finance a car now, since the car companies are all dead in the water. Your interest rate may not be the best though.. Consider a prepaid / collateralized credit card to get some credit history. There ought to be umpteen threads on how to establish US credit....check them out- soon you'll be swimming in debt like the rest of us!
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Old Apr 9th 2009, 7:48 pm
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Default Re: Cost of renting a house in the US

Originally Posted by Wilto View Post
...on the Amex front, obviously I have to apply from this side of the pond, are some cards better than others or just the very fact I have one is what counts?
just get a bog standard AmEx card as they'll take your UK history to give you a limit, then in the US you'll be able to use your UK card to get a US one.

Last edited by Bob; Apr 9th 2009 at 7:54 pm.
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Old Apr 10th 2009, 1:36 am
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Default Re: Cost of renting a house in the US

Have you spoken to your UK bank about any relationships it may have with US institutions that can help you? I had a realationship with HSBC and they had a "partnership" with Wells Fargo. They were able to help me get a mortgage (but I'm sure they would have helped with rental too), although my credit rating here was still a big fat zero! It takes about 6 months to start registering in "the system" and during that time you don't want to go mad with lots of applications for credit as that will only hurt you with the negatives on your report before you've even started! Get a banking relationship established, checking and savings, maybe get a small loan for something and keep up to date and regular with payments - it does work eventually but you just have to be paitent.
 
Old Apr 14th 2009, 9:23 pm
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Default Re: Cost of renting a house in the US

My $0.02: why does someone with "no assets" want to finance a car? Financing a depreciating asset is not a good idea in general, and won't help you get from having no assets to having assets.

Why not pay cash for a used car, which are dirt cheap in the US? The cheapest is to buy from an individual seller, and they won't take a credit card. They will of course take money from your auto loan. But you likely don't need a loan to buy an inexpensive Honda, Toyota, etc.

If you need to use borrowed money even on a used car, what about using your good UK credit to get some 0% balance transfers? Do they do that in the UK? If so, write yourself a 0% check or transfer the funds into your debit account, then use that to purchase the car.

Last edited by Johnny Blood; Apr 14th 2009 at 9:30 pm.
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Old Apr 14th 2009, 11:10 pm
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Default Re: Cost of renting a house in the US

Originally Posted by Johnny Blood View Post
My $0.02: why does someone with "no assets" want to finance a car? Financing a depreciating asset is not a good idea in general, and won't help you get from having no assets to having assets.

Why not pay cash for a used car, which are dirt cheap in the US? The cheapest is to buy from an individual seller, and they won't take a credit card. They will of course take money from your auto loan. But you likely don't need a loan to buy an inexpensive Honda, Toyota, etc.

If you need to use borrowed money even on a used car, what about using your good UK credit to get some 0% balance transfers? Do they do that in the UK? If so, write yourself a 0% check or transfer the funds into your debit account, then use that to purchase the car.
maybe because until you get 'some' credit you cant build a credit score. Ive been here 18 months or so and all credit etc is in husbands name so my credit score is still abysmal and i cant even get a lousy storecaed.
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