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Old 03-18-2009, 01:50 AM
 
176 posts, read 609,513 times
Reputation: 96

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Hi there Guys,

This is my first post on this forum, and I'm glad I found it recently. I have been waiting for the right time to post.

On a personal note, I'm kinda glad I'm posting this on this forum, and not one specific to my professional field, as it allows a little more privacy in that regard, and some honest unbiased opinions.

A little about me. I'm a 30 year old Canadian Male, who left Canada in September of 2002 for Graduate level education. In between, I stayed 8 months straight in Toronto, so I have a feeling for the city where my family is well settled now. Before that, I grew up in Western Canada.

I've lived in NYC now for going on 4 years, and live in a 1 bedroom apartment in an outer borough, that is furnished a little more than you would expect the smaller sized apartments of Manhattan proper to house. It's been a little bit of soul searching the past few months, as I've wanted to move from this place that got me through my Professional Graduate degree (Health Sciences), and maybe put up shop in another/better borough.

Truth be known, I've really weighed the options of whether to stay in NY vs move back to Toronto, and the things keeping me in NY are small now that I graduate, whilst those of Toronto seem larger
1. Family
2. Work Experience/ Job Opportunities (S.I.N. vs no SS#)
3. Health Care
4. Social Network better than here, through Family Friends
5. Financial Savings
6. People and Quality of Life, which I've noted after all these years to be a very real difference.

I don't want to dog any one place over the other as I am still open to Job Opportunities on either side of the border, however at this point in my life, the only things keeping me in NY are.
1. The fact that you're living in NY
2. Single Living (I up until recently always thought I'd move back to my own place in Toronto, but have started re considering that. I have a job opportunity (House Physician, unpaid, perhaps slightly paid, we will see) within a short distance of my Parents place. We are of ethnic decent, and from what I read, its not too uncommon to have older Adults living with their folks in the Asian community, gleaming from one Canadian report on the web.
As well, putting money into a rental just so I can claim independant living, seems selfish when I have 100k plus debt from education, that they are helping me pay; I would be most welcome; As a family would save money, and I would have fair independance, after assessing some boundaries, not that there are that many.
My job situation proper would be re assessed in a ~12 months, and at the current cost of living in NY for me (~$40-50k a year, at a minimum), it makes sense to put that money back in the family unit, save during these hard times, pay off some debt vs. again, living in an apartment with no equity.)
Most of all for me you guys, I really miss having family and a better social support network than you can find as single male immigrant here. The nature of my education in NY was transient (hospital to hospital) and very few people (i.e. students) stick around after their bid. Also there's only so much you can grasp in a relationship sense from friends you meet on the town, if you know what I mean..

I hope I have your support on this one, and would like to hear your take on it.

Okay, back to Logistics

Suffice to say Guys, I'm ready to ship my personal effects, and lose my furniture in a hurry from this place. It took a while to consider letting go of the furniture that I and my friends worked so hard to choose out, and have served me well, but I just don't see moving it to Toronto being cost effective. (heard horror stories about U-Haul US>Canada, and can only imagine the Thousands a moving company might charge).

I am considering using one of two business I've found in NYC who buy used furniture. I'm not sure what my return is going to be, but I hope for something decent, and will be calling them soon to see.
(On a side note, a lot of my stuff is Metal,Glass - not condusive to succesful moving, and I guestimate original costs to be around 5k, if that helps in any of your advice.)
I really would like the stuff out in one shot, and am anti-Craigslist, and against the idea of having multiple window shoppers in and out for months.
Failing this idea in all seriousness, I will consider furniture donation.

My main question to you guys, is how to ship my personal effects, via boxes back to Toronto.
I have considered USPS (cheap. however from what I read they don't pick up), UPS (~$341 for 20, 18x14x11 boxes of 30lb weight each by estimate), and The Packaging Store - Packing & Crating Services.
I haven't called into the last link yet, as I'm waiting for you guys' advice first on this, and any other options for box pickup (I pack), and US>Canada Ship.
I know a little about the B4 forms (the one I use when I drive across, and the one I use via proxy delivery) but could definitely hear more on that regard from you.

How would I list the contents of these boxes?
Eg. A Box full of electronic knick knacks ('Used electronics - value $30)?
And what would be the customs charge for this on receipt in Canada if any?
Would a UPS vs Shipping Company+B4A form in this regard make a difference?

On that note folks, thank you for your advice in advance, and I hope this was a good read for you, and unoffensive to any Stateside friends.

I look forward to your advice.
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Old 03-18-2009, 07:13 AM
 
175 posts, read 1,559,565 times
Reputation: 190
Welcome back!!! It is funny that only yesterday I read it on the Globe and Mail saying that many expats in NYC and London are coming back to Toronto for a better career in the financial sector.
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Old 03-18-2009, 04:43 PM
 
176 posts, read 609,513 times
Reputation: 96
Hi evanusc,

Thank you! And thanks for replying to my post.

That would be an interesting and timely read for me. I tried searching for the article online but perhaps its only in the print edition.

Well, I look forward to any input you may have, and others that may come in. I am considering doing a trial run via UPS pickup and see how that goes if all else fails, but before that I may try posting on the question of shipping boxes on another expat forum.
Truly though, I really would like to get some input here, as this site impressed me the most out of all.
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Old 03-18-2009, 07:50 PM
 
4,282 posts, read 15,120,345 times
Reputation: 3980
Information regarding importation regulations for former residents returning to Canada is available at:

Information about moving back to Canada


Before shipping items trans-border with UPS, I'd ask very carefully about any additional charges such as those for customs brokerage. Personal experience has shown that a $40 item shipped from the US cost me $30 for shipping and an additional $45 for brokerage fees upon delivery. Check it carefully with UPS both in the US and in Canada.

Not sure what UHaul horrors you've heard of beyond the usual mechanical mayhem, but there shouldn't be any issues with bringing a UHaul trailer into Canada.
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Old 03-19-2009, 08:16 AM
 
175 posts, read 1,559,565 times
Reputation: 190
Please find the article here:
reportonbusiness.com: globeinvestor.com - Axed talent finds a home on Bay St. (http://globeinvestor.com/servlet/story/GAM.20090317.RBROKERAGES17/GIStory/ - broken link)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lionsdale View Post
Hi evanusc,

Thank you! And thanks for replying to my post.

That would be an interesting and timely read for me. I tried searching for the article online but perhaps its only in the print edition.

Well, I look forward to any input you may have, and others that may come in. I am considering doing a trial run via UPS pickup and see how that goes if all else fails, but before that I may try posting on the question of shipping boxes on another expat forum.
Truly though, I really would like to get some input here, as this site impressed me the most out of all.
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Old 03-20-2009, 02:17 AM
 
176 posts, read 609,513 times
Reputation: 96
Hey,

Thank you to both you Guys. That was an interesting read evanusc, thanks for following up. Any other expat articles you find are most welcome!

Cornerguy1, I have to be honest. When I read your post 2 days ago, it immediately put me off UPS and the like. Another posters comments on the brokerage fees that you mentioned, confirmed my fears about your $30/box experience, without even calling them.

I am ready to look into Allied vs United Van lines and friends with regard to a quote. I realized that I have some big items that I would like to move (a gym machine, that my family would love to use, more than I have fwiw!), that only a Van lines can make happen.

Personally, going with a Van line quote is a different psychological experience regarding my decision on this all.
I could be (A) Packing boxes surreptisously for a UPS move, and always default at the end and move to Brooklyn.
or
(B) Get an Allied Van Lines quote tout de suite, and cement my goal to move to Toronto without any recourse.

Hehe, I shall let you know how it goes in the next week, if not for your interest, but for anyone who comes across this thread under similar circumstances.
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Old 05-08-2009, 05:57 PM
 
Location: Fremont, CA
25 posts, read 380,925 times
Reputation: 37
I'm interested to know how your move went, who did you end up going with?
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Old 05-14-2009, 01:49 PM
 
176 posts, read 609,513 times
Reputation: 96
Hi, the move is still in the making. I have since abandoned the idea of UPS Shipping boxes method as per Cornerguy's post above, and the fact that I had heard of only one lady do it briefly without customs fees. Not enough to sway me.
Also, I didn't want to get rid of my furniture and other large things.
I am now about to choose the best quote among 4 or 5 larger shipping companies and have to do it soon, as next month is my move. The biggest delay in doing this was cost, and timing, as I just got back from finding a place. And the cost is easily over 5k on average. Now to decide, wish me luck!
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Old 05-14-2009, 07:25 PM
 
4,282 posts, read 15,120,345 times
Reputation: 3980
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lionsdale View Post
Hi, the move is still in the making. I have since abandoned the idea of UPS Shipping boxes method as per Cornerguy's post above, and the fact that I had heard of only one lady do it briefly without customs fees. Not enough to sway me.
Also, I didn't want to get rid of my furniture and other large things.
I am now about to choose the best quote among 4 or 5 larger shipping companies and have to do it soon, as next month is my move. The biggest delay in doing this was cost, and timing, as I just got back from finding a place. And the cost is easily over 5k on average. Now to decide, wish me luck!

Good luck.
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