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Old 08-25-2012, 07:55 AM
 
Location: chicago area
4 posts, read 52,777 times
Reputation: 13

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I've read several of the threads on moving to stx and will be visiting again there in Feb. of 13. I would like to meet some residents to talk about the island. I'm 61 and my wife is 57. We've read several of the books about the island and about moving there, so we have a good idea of what to expect. The recent closing of the refinery and the subsequent downturn to the economy is causing some concern.
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Old 08-25-2012, 11:18 AM
 
Location: Hawai'i
1,392 posts, read 2,753,456 times
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What is bringing you to STX?

Reading books is totally irrelevant now and will not tell you what to expect. Everything has changed, dramatically, for the worst since January. We will not even go back to visit friends, and that's after spouse living there 34 years.
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Old 08-25-2012, 02:55 PM
 
Location: St Thomas, US Virgin Islands
24,671 posts, read 63,082,990 times
Reputation: 26596
Quote:
Originally Posted by HiloDiver View Post
What is bringing you to STX?

Reading books is totally irrelevant now and will not tell you what to expect. Everything has changed, dramatically, for the worst since January. We will not even go back to visit friends, and that's after spouse living there 34 years.
Oh the harbinger of gloom and doom!

OP: Go to the VI Moving Center at USVI Moving Center - The Ultimate Resource for Relocating to and Living in the Virgin Islands for a plethora of general information along with an active forum where residents will answer questions you have once you've waded through all the general information available. Island living isn't for everyone which is why there's such a huge attrition of newbies but everyone tries to provide newcomers with as much information as possible to enable their decision. We get damned if we do (rose colored spectacles) and damned if we don't (too negative) but for someone to say that that they won't even go back to visit friends because of dramatic changes since Hovensa closed is seriously out there.

Once you've read through all the general information you'll understand better the importance of a "PMV". Suggest you plan your February visit as a PMV and not as a visitor/tourist. There's a big difference between the two. Good luck!
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Old 08-26-2012, 01:39 AM
 
Location: Hawai'i
1,392 posts, read 2,753,456 times
Reputation: 703
Quote:
Originally Posted by STT Resident View Post
Oh the teller of the truth of what is happening on St. Croix.
Fixed that for you.

Island living is AWESOME.

HOWEVER. Island living since Hovensa closed is extremely dangerous.

We are island dwellers at heart, and by nature, we love island living. We would not even consider mainland living and we are loving our new island home.

There is no reason on this earth for anyone to relocate there at this time.
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Old 08-26-2012, 12:55 PM
 
Location: chicago area
4 posts, read 52,777 times
Reputation: 13
Thanks Hilo and STT resident. Reason for moving there is semi-transitioning-to full retirement. I understand some of the problems caused by the closing of Hovensa and the ensuing ripple effect. Thats what is giving me pause. Hilo, you said that you lived there 1.5 yrs., could this be causing some of your neg. comments? I wouldn't mind talking to you if possible.

STT, could it be possible to talk to you also? What's a PMV?
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Old 08-26-2012, 01:19 PM
 
Location: Hawai'i
1,392 posts, read 2,753,456 times
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Retiring there is foolish, the cost of food is outrageously high (to contrast...I just moved to Hawai'i and food, known to be expensive in Hawai'i, is cheap here) and you have the highest electricity costs in the entire nation. There is little that can be purchased on island, for anything past KMart goods you need to have it shipped in which is expensive.

Now, mind you, we didn't mind these difficulties until the Hovensa closing. Crime has escalated incredibly badly...you did read that the sheriff was shot last weekend, right?...after 34 years of never being a crime victim at home, we were burgled twice at home, while we slept. We lived in a very safe area and it was shocking.

At this point, going out to dinner is taking your life into your hands. Nearly everyone I know has been robbed at gunpoint in a restaurant at some point in their time there (spouse included).

The roads are horrific and your car will be a POS in no time at all. Potholes everywhere, they do not fix them. Don't drive at night, too hard to see, few road stripes or lights, and the potholes.

Businesses closing like crazy, no I am not at liberty to reveal things told to me in confidence, but the downward spiral is real.

My spouse lived here for 34 years and if he were on line...his comments would be far more harsh as he knows far more of the negativity there. Friends left behind keep saying we got out just in time.
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Old 08-26-2012, 08:34 PM
 
Location: The Great State of Arkansas
5,981 posts, read 17,025,539 times
Reputation: 7659
Quote:
Originally Posted by mike55 View Post
What's a PMV?
A pre-move visit - go there and live like a local for more than a vacation period of time. Figure out where to find a mechanic, get a haircut, do your weekly shopping, where's the laundromat, find pet food - all the things you will have to do daily to immerse yourself in a real life. Most people would recommend at LEAST two weeks, but I'd say it would take close to a month to figure it out to any degree. You really can't determine anything if all you do is go to the beach and out to eat. Price things - tires, fans, lawnmowers, compare grocery costs. Get a utility bill (it's a shocker). Talk to people about their experience getting cars licensed, getting utility services, figure out who will work on your cistern pump (unless you're in a condo). All the things you can do easily now may be a little more difficult. Not insurmountable, but you sorta learn what island time is all about.
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Old 08-26-2012, 10:33 PM
 
Location: Hawai'i
1,392 posts, read 2,753,456 times
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Great ideas, Sam!

We spoke at length with the OP today, and it's up to him and his wife to make up their minds on what to do. We wish them the best, and we sincerely hope they consider a much safer, far less expensive place to relocate.
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Old 08-27-2012, 06:40 AM
 
Location: St Thomas, US Virgin Islands
24,671 posts, read 63,082,990 times
Reputation: 26596
Quote:
Originally Posted by mike55 View Post
Thanks Hilo and STT resident. Reason for moving there is semi-transitioning-to full retirement. I understand some of the problems caused by the closing of Hovensa and the ensuing ripple effect. Thats what is giving me pause. Hilo, you said that you lived there 1.5 yrs., could this be causing some of your neg. comments? I wouldn't mind talking to you if possible.

STT, could it be possible to talk to you also? What's a PMV?
A PMV is a "pre-move visit" and if you go to the VI Moving Center site I linked earlier you'll find a ton of related information there.

Many people do retire to the islands but many more residents leave at that time of life. The COL is very high and if you have any major medical problems your options aren't nearly as many as you'll find in better-equipped stateside areas. Dozens of my older friends have (sadly) left over the years for these reasons and it's obviously something you need to research very carefully on your visit.

As far as HiloDiver's never-ending negativity is concerned, I've no desire to get into a peeing contest over what I perceive to be huge over-embellishment. We've gone through many ups and downs in the close to 30 years I've lived here and no doubt this will always be so. Island living isn't for everyone and I can't stress this enough but, for many, the positives far outweigh the negatives. Do your research and then come down and see for yourself. You're more than welcome to PM me if you have any more questions. Good luck!
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Old 08-27-2012, 11:54 AM
 
Location: Hawai'i
1,392 posts, read 2,753,456 times
Reputation: 703
Never ending negativity? That's rich. I am an extremely positive person and lived in denial about STX for far too long. At some point we had to get real and face that the place is the wild west. You live on STT, not STX. It must be nice over there in cruise ship/resort/tourist paradise for you. Personally we could never live in such a crowded place...STX was paradise until just a few months ago. Spouse loved it for 34 years. He was in denial for a few months but now you couldn't pay him to go back there...he had to face the facts that you are in denial of.

"Island living" is FANTASTIC and both of us have lived on other islands before STX, and now. It is why we relocated to yet another island. Island living is not the problem. STX is the problem. Keep your head in the sand if you must but don't mislead others into thinking that STX is safe. It is not and you do others a great disservice. I'm sure they will be thinking of you as they are robbed at gunpoint in a restaurant. Just today on one of the STX Facebook groups, people were talking about what good happened to them this weekend and one of the replies was "I was not robbed at gunpoint at a family restaurant."

Mike, if you do move here, get MASA or Skymed...if something happens to you, you will have to fly away. Bring money, LOTS of money, electric bills are beyond astounding and food costs twice what it does on the mainland. At least housing and cars are cheap right now as people are fleeing in droves...you can pick off their losses like a buzzard.
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