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  1. To send a modest amount of money to Mexican family who has no bank account. What are some ways this can be done? Thanks.
  2. Thank you Alan and Mudgirl. Yes I have an RFC but that does not mean I know how to set up an account with SAT online. I asked an accountant in Mexico and he said much what Alan said: why didn't the notario complete this at the time of the closing on the house sale. I have spoken with the notaria office. The office manager said he could get me a password and file the declaration for $175 usd. That seemed high to me. I plan to discuss this with him day after tomorrow (Monday), and find out why it was not done as part of the closing. Can I ask that you stay tuned to this thread, as making the trip into Mexico each time is a full day's journey. I would like to limit my trips to SAT, and if my trips to SAT become more than two, then I have to evaluate. Thanks.
  3. I am Res. Permanente, will be in Texas to make the SAT declaration over the border at SAT (Hacienda). Sold my house in Mexico, but the notario did not do the SAT declaration. What are the steps to do this? Can I just show up at SAT, or what? I have heard I need a username/pswd established to get into SAT website. How is this done, can I do it? Then I heard I need an appt to visit the SAT office, but I should think having a username/pswd should come first, yes? Can I get it done in one visit, make the appearance, make the declaration with the house closing papers in hand, pay anything due, and be done? I suspect if I do not make the declaration, then I won't be able to buy again a house in Mexico. Thank you for any information. Much obliged.
  4. Bridge II in Laredo at mid-day 2 hours and 50 minutes wait. All six lanes open. Advisory on Internet said 2 hour wait for Bridge II. (170 actual minutes to go less than one mile.) "Infrastructure spending" surely will make use of unused acres of ground and expand to 12 lanes of entry, or 24 lanes of entry not six lanes for Bridge II. The highest sin and compelling worry is carbon recapture, burning fossil fuel waiting in line for 170 minutes.
  5. I am looking for a small cargo trailer manufacturer located near the Outlet Mall on the way to Guad from Joco, on the opposite (east) side of the highway. Does anyone have contact information: name, telephone, etc.? I hear they make open-top, but high-sided trailers. Thank you.
  6. Thanks folks. I was not aware that the Telmex office had re-opened. I thought it had been closed because of Covid. Has anyone been to the office in Ajijic/La Floresta area? When did it re-open? Thanks!
  7. I am simply wanting to move my hard phone line to my new house. My Telmex hard line is in my name, has been for years. After two hours yesterday on the phone trying to get Telmex representatives to answer various phone calls to their various service numbers, I wound up always being transferred to dead-ends. An "ejecutivo" was promised to be waiting to help me, but never answered the transfer. I was given new service numbers to call (which were not active). Eight hours later, I went online to Telmex and created a Mi Cuenta. That sends me to a Chat. The Chat does not present the option of Cambio de Domicilio or Cambio de Servicio or anything similar. I know the entire world, not just Telmex and not just Mexico, suffers from technology that has made very difficult getting the simplest tasks accomplished. In short, does anyone have a recent working phone number for Telmex service, specifically to get a hard phone line transferred to a new domicile? Thanks.
  8. I would caution anyone going with solar hot water to go to Simapa and get the hard mineral analysis of the well that serves your home. They will print it out for you, usually an annual report. One of the several problems I have experienced is hard mineral buildup in the coils of the solar collector tank. That buildup can stop the flow of water from the roof to the rest of the house. Basically, count on annual maintenance to have the calcium and other hard minerals blown out of the coils and pipes with help of a compressor and muriatic acid. One solution is to buy a water softener (suavizador (electronic or the old fashioned kind) and insert it into the line so that the solar coils and collector only get demineralized of "softened" water. Then the annual maintenance of "blowing out" the calcified mineral blockages can be prevented. I was not a happy customer of one of the companies (and an individual) being chirped up on this board, but I vented enough about that company a couple years ago. That horse is long beat dead. They sold me a poor fit and function, and left me with the expense of having to adapt it numerous different times. The owners of the company, behind the scenes, are Mexican, and from my experience do not believe in going the extra mile for the customer. It was in effect, "You bought it. You paid for it. It didn't quite work the way it was supposed to, but that is your problem now to spend the extra money to make it work, because in most instances, it will work, just not yours." If I had to do it all over again, and I went solar hot water, I'd definitely spend the $500 usd for a water softener, or I'd come up with a way to filter out calcium at least. Not to repeat, but any good solar hot water company should know the pozo (well) that serves your home, and should be able to predict whether you will or will not have mineral buildup problems. If they don't know off hand, then go to Simapa, get the water analysis report, and show the solar company the report, and let them analyze the hard minerals. Some wells are good, some are problematic. Good luck.
  9. Mostly, That irascible poke of a challenge simply is so far from the truth, it hurts me to respond. That FBU office is NOT trained in the ins and outs of a U.S. SSA office. It is merely performing adjunct services such as getting an initial pension applied for to start, and even at that, they can barely get that function accomplished. (I know first hand.) The person I worked with at FBU was courteous, well intentioned, but couldn't get the forms right after three attempts. She did eventually succeed, and she was persevering in doing so. That is not how an SSA office operates, as I have spoken with them countless times on 800 numbers over the last five years, as well as in person at offices in the U.S., as well as on the phone with small town SSA offices where a person does not have to wait 45 minutes on hold on an 800 number. SSA people, for the most part, are ensconced in forms and procedures, and rules, and mathematical formulas to help people determine the nature of their new relationship with SSA, right down to months of startup, and amounts expected. The Consulate merely shuffles basic starter application paperwork into an SSA receiving office inside the U.S. Then the SSA contacts the applicant from the U.S. That FBU auxiliary function hardly resembles the command center of an SSA office, which also makes determinations of premiums for Medicare Part B, and no, most certainly an FBU cannot do anything an SSA office can do. They would not know where to start, or have an SSA supervisor or director on hand to make decisions. I agree, on the other angle, that if a consulate must validate who a foreign living American citizen is, in order to initiate a pension, or to get a passport renewed or applied for, then that consulate reasonably should also be able to validate that the American is alive and is who s/he says s/he is, and no interruption in pension payment should occur. Yes, to answer your challenge, I spoke with the person who was forced to travel to Laredo to validate himself as alive and who he was, and yes, it worked and his backchecks were sent him, and he is fully on board. If I may make a suggestion, before you attack someone or cast doubt on what they are posting you might ask youself if you know even half as much as they do about the subject at hand. Cheers. There's your well deserved rebuke.
  10. Lovely thread and lovely threaders. I have heard stories of Americans living in Mexico having to go to Texas to prove they are alive. This was expressly for restarting pension checks from SSA that had been suspended. My consternation at the time was that an appointment with the U.S. consulate in Guadalajara "should" have availed a proof of life, but apparently no such service process or procedure is accepted by Social Security Administration, or one does not exist. Thus, when consulate visits resume at Lakeside (American Legion, LCS) post-pandemic maybe this proof of life issue needs to be raised. If a U.S. citizen can apply for a passport via consulate visits to Lakeside, then surely proof of life and identity are an integral part of that process. After all, we cannot risk anyone running around the world misrepresenting U.S. citizenry (sic).
  11. The office phone number is 376-766-5563.
  12. Walking distance, 100 meters west of Dental Express. On the lake side. Dra. Justina Lopez. 1,000 pesos per etda treatment. 234-B address.
  13. P.S. ~11+ hours, but I went 75 to 80mph most of the way. 5:45 a.m. left hotel in Laredo for Bridge II. Border crossing had two vehicles going south, but hundreds coming north. 4:35 p.m. arrived Chapala Centro.
  14. Left Laredo at Bridge II around 6 a.m. Inspection took 15 to 20 minutes. The young MX border official went through just about everything I had bagged or in suitcases. Unusual, as I was traveling half-empty. I asked the officials standing nearby if the crime associated with the Sabinas area had decreased the last couple months. (I had read kidnappings still occurring in July.) He said crime on the road was less, but particularly when starting out early just before dawn. I drove for an hour or so in darkness, and when another car passed me, I sped up to stay with that car. Safety in numbers. Seemed like common sense. The Sabinas area did have some gathering of people off the side of the road, but I kept on. Chose Matehuala route not Saltillo-Zaca, glad I did. Roads are quite smooth, even new, except for a 10 to 20 mile stretch close to Lagos de Mareno. Thanks to the poster who put up the camera shots of the lanes to Guadalajara when on the SLP bypass. I used an old Garmin and that made apparent what the road was doing, and that it was a northwest-southwest bypass of SLP. Except for mountain curves, the driving was more pleasant than the Saltillo-Zaca-Aguas route which I have taken countless times. Aguas is always a stressful congested pain, period. I always thought Matehuala was "out of the way, less direct," but my odometer read 680 miles from Nuevo Laredo crossing to Chapala, and I challenge anyone to post that the Saltillo-Zacas route is fewer miles than 680. If it is, it can't be many miles less. I agree with the poster about the improvements made at interchanges, eg. the Chapala turn onto Libramiento Sur de Guadalajara is seamless now, and no real involvement is required with Zapotlanejo at all. I recall years ago having to go under bridges on unimproved roads just to try to get on the correct highway leading to Zapotlanejo. Now the new exchanges make everything painless, stressless, not a source of continuing confusion. This trip may have been the only trip where I did not make a single wrong turn inside Mexico, with the exception of needing to go into Matehuala to Soriana to an ATM when I could have used an ATM at Walmart on the frontage road, and not go into Matehuala at all. HSBC nicked me for 5.5% exchange rate commission on top of a 74 peso ATM fee. Lordy. Awta be a law against it. This route south of Monterrey is filled every 50 miles or so with single Guarda Nacional white "highway patrol" sedans. They lie in wait for speeders. Speeders do get pulled over, but normally only the ones going 90 mph to 100+ mph. I must have counted a dozen individual police cars stretched (spaced in intervals) from Monterrey to Lagos Moreno, and I counted zero police cars from Nuevo Laredo to Monterrey. Something is wrongheaded here, IMO. What is more important? Saving lives from criminals who kidnap and kill, or catching speeding motorists and levying fines. I found the allocation of police south of Monterrey simply made zero sense, since the Highway of Death north of Monterrey towards Nuevo Laredo has claimed 71 disappeareds in the past year mainly in and around Sabinas, and that has captured international headlines, hearkening back to the 2010 era of innocent victims. Who cares what I think, of course, about govt decisions made by any country. I gave up on that notion a long time ago. Cheers, and thanks for the support from the posters who made my trip "feel" more secure.
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