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About sectorbets

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  1. what do I need?

    It depends a lot on the airline. In the case of American and Continental which are my only options, a one way non refundable ticket can be as expensive as a non refundable round trip. But Spirit and JetBlue charge for each leg of the trip separately, so if you can use them, it might be a benefit to buy the legs separately. You won't know for sure until you go to the airline website, or the likes of Orbitz to look at the pricing options. I just took a look at Continental, and a round trip non refundable would be about $500 and a one way about $400 plus taxes and fees in each case, so at this very moment it MIGHT work.
  2. what do I need?

    Humans ?? Now that's a unique idea !!
  3. what do I need?

    I thought just for the heck of it I would look at current costs--I have to fly American or Continental, although it is always Continental in reality since it is much more convenient for me. So, as of right now I could fly round trip non-refundable for $498 plus fees versus $1560 plus fees for a refundable ticket--it's always the same every time I look--the non-refundable is always cheaper even if I threw away the return ticket. Now, it might not be true with Spirit or JetBlue, but I have never investigated since they aren't an option for me anyway. And If I were to really search hard, I could find a non-refundable for under $400 plus fees if I weren't fussy about the exact dates.
  4. what do I need?

    Many people talk about buying refundable tickets, but I have to say that buying a dirt cheap non refundable has always been cheaper than getting back half the price on a fully refundable even if I were to throw away the return portion of the dirt cheap one. There may be times when teh non refundable might cost more, but I gave up looking for them since I never found a better deal
  5. You mostly have to wait until you get here, but it's really no big deal...there are typically more properties than you can deal with, and you don't generally need a broker--local or gringo. Just find a B&B in the general area, and then work from there for a few days, and you will be all set--REALLY !!
  6. Amen--it is never simple and falls on the shoulders of many, and let's not forget that the Clinton administration wanted to push home ownership to the 67% level from the 60% or so where it was at the time and then that same goal was adopted by the Bush administration's ownership society strategy--the simple and noble goal of getting more folks into owning their own home led I think to all the things you identified above--as always, be careful what you wish for since the unintended consequences can be broad and deep
  7. Every region is different of course, but all I did is look at the Case Schiller data which is the only national data on home prices in major metropolitan areas, and is the generally accepted metric on Wall Street where I work. Take it or leave it--it is still the base metric used by investors. Everything you say about mortgages is correct of course, and some areas are rebounding and others are still falling. And I don't care even a little bit whether it was Bush or Obama in office--neither of their administration policies had much to do with home prices except maybe at the margin during the attempted stimulus. And I have no doubt there is still downward pressure on prices in CR, but just like in the US, some areas are better than others. And the most important comment I think is this whole thread is from Jim--NO ONE should consider borrowing their way into CR.
  8. Let's try some facts and then the opinion can fly: 1) Housing measured by prices peaked in the first quarter of 2006--did Bush make it peak--you chose. 2) Housing bottomed temporarily in the first quarter of 2009--did Obama make it bottom being in office for just a couple of months?? Chose again 3) Housing actually picked up modestly until the second quarter of 2010 until the various housing stimulus programs started to run out--couldn't be Bush that made it pick up a little--maybe Obama ?? 4) Housing slid again until it made a lower bottom in the first quarter of 2011--must be Obama. 5) And it is grudgingly trying to claw its way up again, but it is still well below the temporary peak set by the stimulus programs. 6) And the biggest drop by all measures was from the first quarter of 2006 until the first quarter of 2009. Do you really think that either president "caused" any of this other than the weak stimulus plan backed by Obama and watered down by the Senate so that the impact was fleeting. Alright...enough facts...I'll leave all the opinions up to you. But let's get back to CR...all that we should really learn from this situation once again is that the financial rules are different and trying to tackle everything by yourself can be very difficult, and sometimes impossible.
  9. I know that owning a home is part of the North American gene pool, but you might consider renting--you will be pleasantly surprised what is available, and that in general the prices are not out of sight. Owning seems to satisfy something deep in our North American souls, but renting can often be significantly better financially both short term and long term, but most of us from the North never take a serious look at how much better off we would be having all that extra cash to have fun rather than putting it into a house. Particularly if you are entering your seventh decade of life. Whadya say ?? Think about it for at least five minutes ??
  10. Month to month apartment

    If you are saying $2500 per month for an apartment, you will be pleasantly surprised that you can find terrific accommodations well below that, and month to month shouldn't be a problem at all. While you can probably do better locally after you get here, take a look at at craigs list to get an idea of what is available targeted at gringos.
  11. I haven't asked this question before, but it nags at me--why are so many Norte Americanos so hell bent on pouring a big chunk of their net worth into a retirement home? Rents are cheap. Properties are abundant. Flexibility is at its maximum. Now, I have to admit I did the homeowner thing for much of my life in the States, but the freedom we have by renting in CR, not to mention the substantial amount of cash that we have not dumped back into a house gives us even more security and freedom. Don't mean to hijack this thread, so if the moderators want to move me, please do, and I have no axe to grind--just curious.
  12. Same offer as before--I will be traveling ot the States Sep 11, so if you haven't found anyone by then, I'd be happy to take it, although I am in the SJ area so not too convenient for you.
  13. We are in Alajuelita which would scare away most gringos, but the condos are typically three bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a great room style for LR, DR, and kitchen, and bigger than most Tico homes and smaller than NA homes. There are maybe 200 units in a row house style--realtively new--less than ten years, and some amenities like a pool, armed guards, etc. Very pleasant environment inside the gate. Almost always something for sale and quite reasonable since almost all Ticos in the development. I just checked and there are a couple for rent for about 300,000 colones, but don't have a good handle on what a sales price would be.