Monday, June 03, 2013

"What's the plan now?"

My buddy Mike asks, "What's the plan now?" now that I've been hired by a Korean university. My emailed reply (lightly edited for privacy and clarity):

What's the plan now? Good question. I know I've got a lot of affairs to settle here, and not much time to settle them. I had been planning to "think out loud" on my blog about this question, but I may as well let you know first as to what's likely to happen. Feel free to add in anything I might not have considered.

1. My Apartment. I'll be leaving before November, which will mean breaking the lease contract. Doubtless there will be a penalty to pay. I'll have to talk with my rental office about that, and will eventually have to provide them with an exact "move out no later than" date. I'm guessing—ballpark figure—that I'll move out between August 15 and August 20, since the Korean semester begins on September 1. I need to ask Catholic U. Daegu whether they need me earlier for any sort of orientation, and if so, what they'll be doing about my housing arrangements.

2. Public Storage. This has always been part of the plan, and I want my stuff stored in an indoor, climate-controlled facility, not one that's exposed to the elements. I know just the one, too: it's in Newington, VA, not far from Fort Belvoir. (Where all those huge tanks are.) Most PS facilities these days allow a person to have a month of storage for free; that'll be a good way for me to kick-start my time in Korea, i.e., by not having to pay that first month.

3. Address Change Notification. I'm probably going to have my US address changed over to David's residence, if he'll permit that. I need to talk with David. I'd change my address over to Sean, but there's a chance that Sean may be moving back to Boston sometime over the next year. David just bought his huge house, so he's not going anywhere for a few years. I'll also need to draw up a list of all the creditors and other parties who need to be made aware of my change of residence—my bank, my credit cards, my OneMain loan office, my eMax loan office, Sallie Mae, Capital One, my rental office, the local post office, etc.

4. My Car. Obviously, I'd like to give the car to your eldest daughter. Just as obviously, you and I would both like to be absolutely sure the car is safe for her to drive; that's the paramount concern. You've also very generously offered to buy the car from me. I'm not in a financial position to argue with your generosity, but the rub is that the car needs to be given the automotive equivalent of a full-body scan and a thorough tune-up to your satisfaction. God knows how much that'll cost. I'm willing to pay for that expense, but I might not be able to pay it immediately, nor all in one lump sum; this might have to be a pay-by-installments job in which you pay the mechanics and I pay you. You and I should sit down, at some point, and discuss particulars.

I also need to cancel my insurance once we effectuate a title transfer. (We'll have to do that at a DMV branch; the transfer can happen for $1.) After I cancel my insurance (which is between me and Progressive), you'll need to hook the car up with the insurance policy of your choice.

5. Plane Ticket. This promises to be nice and expensive. On average, round-trip prices are around $1600-$2000. I'll need to save up my cash. Luckily, I'll be working 32-hour weeks during the summer, so I'll be piling on the dinero. Plus, I'll continue tutoring on weekends, so that's a few hundred extra dollars per month.

6. Disposition of My Possessions. I have items that I want to give to you and your family, and things I want to give to David and Sean. I've got bookshelves that I hope to contribute to YB, and a very nice dresser that I'd like to sell on eBay (unless you guys want it for one of the kids). My books will need to be boxed up and put into climate-controlled storage. Same goes for clothing, kitchen items, and other possessions. My bed, with its old, collapsed mattress, will likely be tossed out unless someone finds a use for the metal frame and the box spring. Ultimately, I won't be bringing that many possessions with me to Korea—at least, not initially. Assuming I'll be in Korea for the long haul (i.e., until I'm old and really gray), I'll come back to the States periodically and tote back a box of books (or whatever) from public storage.

7. What Else? "There's always one more thing to do," says the guy in "Bridge on the River Kwai." What am I missing? Ah, I know: cancelling my cell phone and making Sean the sole policy-holder! That's one thing. Cancelling my ISP is another. At least I don't have a land line to worry about, nor any cable TV. What else, what else... I know I'll have to clean up the apartment once it's been emptied out, so my housecleaning equipment (Swiffer, paper towels, sprays, scrubbers, vacuum cleaner) will have to be among the very last things I pack out. Ah, yes—I'll have to talk with the town admin office about property taxes, electric bill, and other lingering debts that come due later in the year.

That's all I can think of at the moment. What'd I forget?





John from Daejeon said...

Breaking the lease to move overseas shouldn't be that big of a deal, but you might lose your deposit. That was all I lost the two times I broke my lease, but even though I broke the lease a first time, the same apartment complex took me back when I returned with no questions asked as I always paid on time and had a job.

John from Daejeon said...

If you can lock down your departure date, United has one-ways from D.C. going for $620 right now on on flights leaving 8/20-8/22, but they want to gouge me for nearly $900 on those same days from Houston (IAH). Unbelievable.

Kevin Kim said...


I didn't see the fantastically priced $620 ticket, but I saw some cheap ones for $800 or so (those are 2005 prices!). I'll keep in mind for when I do finally purchase a plane ticket.