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Old 02-22-2017, 07:34 PM   #1
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No fixed address: how do you manage?

We are about 4.5 years away from making the move to some very long jaunts in our future AS.

Something that keeps coming up is how do you deal with not having a fixed address? There are some things which require it or at the very least make life difficult without.

Do you have a friend receive physical mail and open it for you?

Bills and that sort of thing are easy. Everything is on line!
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Old 02-22-2017, 08:51 PM   #2
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Subscribe to a mail forwarding/scanning service like the one offered by Escapees. They give you a legal address for domicile purposes and will handle your mail for a fee.
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Old 02-23-2017, 05:36 PM   #3
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Last year we were out for 3 months. We went to the UPS Store and got the largest box they offered. You get an actual street address (same as the UPS Store) and you can give that to your post office as a temporary change of address, good for 6 months with 1 extension. (I think that's right)

If something doesn't fit, some UPS Stores, but not all, will put it on the shelf for you until you return; ours did. They griped, but they did it.

You can call them and ask how full your mailbox is and have them forward mail to you. Ask them to remove flyers and catalogs unless you want to pay first class postage to get them. (I also got someone else's mail, twice, same last name.)

Most (not all) small towns will accept general delivery. Visit the post office and see how long the lines are and ask first or it may be rejected or lost. I got better service at the one in a small city than a small town. Some state and RV parks will also accept your forwarded mail.

Beware that some mail cannot be forwarded at the sender's request. I needed to have our AS license renewed and it never got to me or got returned to the DMV, had to get a replacement. I had a bank and a credit union, neither monthly statement could be forwarded.

There are sites that will open and scan your mail if you pay for the service. UPS was our first choice just because it was close to the house and I go there frequently to send packages. I was happy with the service and would use them again, very reasonable. I think it was $100 for 3 months ($10 setup and $30 a month), largest box they had.

Another option we used this time was the Amazon locker. I had to order some repair parts for a laptop and they sent them to a locker in a nearby mall (you get to select from lockers near your location). You just take a smartphone with the email receipt and the locker will scan the bar code from the screen. Then one of the locker doors opens and you have the package(s). You have 3 days to pick up. Easy Peasy.
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Old 02-23-2017, 06:08 PM   #4
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One of the problems we had with the UPS service was where the mail was sent to.

2nd day Priority Mail can take a week in some parts of the country.


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Old 02-23-2017, 07:47 PM   #5
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Great suggestions.
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Old 02-24-2017, 10:52 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lily&Me View Post
One of the problems we had with the UPS service was where the mail was sent to.

2nd day Priority Mail can take a week in some parts of the country.


Maggie
We were in Florida and Texas, mail arrived in a couple days. The RV parks were pretty good about the receiving. The post office in Zephyrhills, FL took 20 minutes to find our 2 small packages. I think they were training a new person and the general delivery stuff seemed to be in one pile. Other than having to wait, it was OK. The best way is to have it sent to the RV park Some FL state parks will accept mail, some won't.
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Old 02-24-2017, 11:10 AM   #7
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I forgot, we changed our keyed front door lock to a touch pad. It was a simple change for us and if we needed to let a neighbor or anyone else have access it saved us having to create multiple keys. We'd just call them and ask them to check on things, gave them the code so they could go in.

A few other problems we've had. While our insurance company allows payment online, the bill comes by snail mail, no option for email billing. Same is true for the annual HOA bill, also due early in the year.

The other was with our Time Warner / Spectrum email bill. It stopped, no warning. I called them and they said they had no email address in our profile. I said they had been sending a bill by email all of 2016. I had them remove the late charge and paid the bill online. I also asked to be put back on a snail mail bill.

For these bills I set an alert in my calendar, complete with web site or payment address. When the alert goes off I just mail them the amount or go online if that's available.

A different issue was also with Time Warner. We have security cameras in and around our house so we can keep an eye on things. Rather than pay a high cable bill for months when we aren't there, I asked for "vacation hold" but kept the ISP on so we could check on the cameras. (They left the phone on too, only cable TV was not active, or so they said.)

TWC was happy to do this, saved me $200 over the 3 months. When we came back we restarted the service and the first bill was $300; double!. They said that the services we had negotiated before we left all went away and they were charging us full price for all them. When I threatened to drop everything they pulled back to the original monthly payment but took away 2 of the premium channels we had been getting. This year it's Spectrum and we've already been threatened because we didn't pay the bill they didn't send us, although we've been customers of cable for nearly 20 years, never late.

There was also a problem with our newspaper, not getting credit for the 3 months we were gone. Anyhow, little surprises with some things but overall not too bad.
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Old 02-24-2017, 12:49 PM   #8
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I have a good neighbour look after mine. She even deposited cheques for me since it was the same bank as hers.!
If I were doing longer periods I would have the mail forwarded to my son or daughter. That way you at least have someone who knows your business looking out for you
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Old 02-24-2017, 01:06 PM   #9
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do keep this thread alive. I have a few years myself, and i am learning as much as I can.

One person said, use a Domicile location for tax purposes. This was a key decision.

Others use kids, aunts, uncles, mom, dad, etc addresses.
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Old 02-24-2017, 01:09 PM   #10
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We tried forwarding mail for a period of time, and the post office will hold your second and third class for you...but only for 30 days.

Every 30 days it has to be picked up or taken to your home for someone else to collect it for you.

Don't need the second and third class mail, you say? You would be surprised what the sorter misses and leaves in there.

My responsible and adult son lives with his family just a mile from my home.

The best solution we found was to just have everything delivered to home as usual, he goes by a couple of times a week to check the house and take the mail in, looking thru it as he does so. He gets a small monthly stipend for handling this, just because.

He scans anything important and sends it on electronically..

If you are fulltiming, with no home to have someone go to, I think doing a change of address to something permanent, like Escapees offers, may be the best option. Then have everything forwarded for you to go thru yourself.

The last I knew, in order to get a P.O. Box you had to have a physical address.

This was post 9/11, and it may have changed by now.

Everything I can do online is handled that way...no need for paper bills of any sort, only email versions.


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Old 02-24-2017, 02:54 PM   #11
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The No permanent address problem

I was a full time RV'r for years what I did was subscribe to a mail forwarding address company. Mine is Americas Mail Box in SD just Google them and you can even talk to them on the phone to find out about their services. Through them you can become a SD resident which helps with Taxes and vehicle registration.

I have since moved to Mexico permanently and still use their service as my home address in the US. Many professions such as Long Haul Truck Drivers, Merchant Mariners, Religious workers, writers and others need such services and this fits the need.

Ask a lot of questions about costs and services as well as problems one is your health insurance company will they transfer to SD. There are many choices to make and one service might be better now and later not serve your needs so you change to something else.

I didn't want to burden my family with forwarding my mail and the Tax situation for me was better in SD. JMHO YMMV
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Old 02-24-2017, 04:00 PM   #12
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Having a trusted neighbor, friend or relative is great if you are keeping your home and come back from time to time. There are some different things being thrown out there, here's a clarification.

Holding your mail - The PO will hold all your mail for 30 days, that's it. It cannot be renewed and it is for your permanent address. It will be delivered on day 31 or earlier if you specify.

Temporary change of address - The PO will send mail addressed to your home to another address for up to 6 months. This can be renewed for another 6 months. You can use the UPS Store, Americas Mail and several others as the temporary address. There are different options for forwarding it to you. NB: With a change of address, the PO will send mail addressed to your house back to the sorting hub to be rerouted, even if the forwarding address is across the street. This can make mail delay for up to a week. (Ours goes from the PO a mile away, back to Indianapolis, then to the UPS Store a half mile away.)

UPS Store mailbox - UPS Store is like a post office box, not sure if you need a home or business address. You rent a box by the month, get a key and the key code to the front door so you have 24/7 access. This is a real street address that you can give out with your name (not UPS Store). You just include the box number on the street line. If you use this address, there is no delay because it's not forwarded, it goes right to your box. They will send it wherever you tell them and charge the shipping to your credit card.

PO Box - This is a legal address, just like your home. The PO has rules, as someone mentioned, you may need a real street address to qualify and it's sometimes hard to get a PO box because they're all taken. A PO box doesn't establish residency. You must use a mail service for that. I don't think UPS does that either. If you want your mail forwarded from the PO box you have to fill out a temporary change of address (see above).

Mail Service - There are a number of mail services available that you can use, especially if you are full timers without a brick and mortar home (or stucco, vinyl, aluminum, etc. ). They can establish residency, open and scan your mail, bundle and send your mail to you, among other services.
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Old 02-24-2017, 06:42 PM   #13
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We started using St. Brendan's Isle (sbimailservice.com) when we lived aboard our sailboat, and were always satisfied with their service. We have continued to use them while traveling in our Airstream. They are located in Green Cove Springs, FL. They offer many different levels of service and are always friendly and helpful.
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