• What to Know Before Moving to Brazil

    by Patrick Redmond | Oct 16, 2014

    Moving To BrazilLife in Brazil is unlike anything else you’ll experience in this world. The tropical location lends itself to plenty of outdoor fun and recreation, while large urban centers provide great opportunities for professional growth. Plenty of families decide to put down roots and stick around because the people here are some of the friendliest you’ll find in South America

    Because of the vast size of the country, however, there is no one-size-fits-all guide to moving to Brazil. If you’ll be going to one of the major cities, you’ll find a much different way of life than if you take up residence in a small coastal village. Here are some tips for navigating your way around this large and vibrant international destination.

    > Secure a Residence Visa First: In order to do most things in Brazil (including opening a bank account, renting a home, or getting a cell phone), you’ll need a visa first. Always make sure your paperwork is in order before you make the move.

    > Have Employment Lined Up: Good jobs are hard to come by in Brazil, so it’s best if you have employment lined up and ready to go before you arrive. Not only will this allow you to establish a budget ahead of time, but you can also find a residential neighborhood close to your job to cut back on transportation costs.

    > Always Visit Before You Lease/Buy/Rent: Although Brazil is emerging as an economic powerhouse, the country is not without its problems. There is a large disparity among the rich and the poor in the country, and the real estate proves it. Always explore an area by foot (and both during the day and at night) before you move in, so you know for sure what to expect from your community.

    > Cost of Living Differences: The cost of living in Brazil is actually much higher than most people anticipate. Because this large country has such a huge population living in poverty, it seems to outsiders as though living there would be less expensive than living in a regular U.S. city; however, this is rarely the case if you want to maintain your current standard of living. In fact, three of Brazil’s major cities (Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, and Brasilia) are listed among the 50 most expensive cities in the world. Expect rent/mortgage costs to take up the largest portion of your monthly income, followed immediately by transportation costs and private school (if you have children).

    > Pets are Welcome (With the Right Vaccines): Pets that are cats and/or dogs can be brought into Brazil as long as they have the proper International Health Certificate from a veterinary professional. Any other animals will need a special import permit from the Ministry of Agriculture in Brazil.

    > Make your Healthcare Plans Now: The healthcare system in Brazil isn’t always equal to the care in the United States, but it can be. Public hospitals tend to be crowded and busy, and may not meet your usual standards. Private facilities, however, are some of the best you’ll find in South America, though the costs are steep. It’s usually best to set up private insurance to access these facilities ahead of time.

    Life in Brazil can be everything you want from an expat experience you won’t soon forget. With the right planning and preparation, you can enjoy your stay—no matter how long you plan on making it.

    • International Moves
    • Brazil
    • Moving To Brazil
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  • northAmerican works with the Gary Sinise Foundation

    by Ryan Cox | Oct 15, 2014

    Gary Sinise Foundation
    See northAmerican on Fox News Wednesday October 15

     

    northAmerican Van Lines will be part of a featured news segment on wounded warrior SSG Travis Mills and the Gary Sinise Foundation, which will air Wednesday 10/15, at 7pm Eastern Time on the Fox News program “On the Record with Greta Van Susteren.”  The program will focus on SSG Mills and the Gary Sinise Foundation “Smart Home” he received this week in Maine.  northAmerican agent Cord Moving and Storage transported the new “smart furniture” for SSG Mills’ home, and northAmerican Van Lines General Manager Andy Kroll will be participating in the official dedication of the home on Wednesday, October 15 in Maine, along with planned notable attendees and Governor of Maine Paul LePage.

    For more information, visit:

    www.travismills.org

    www.garysinisefoundation.org

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  • Best College Hometowns

    by Patrick Redmond | Oct 10, 2014

    Friday-Favorites-Best-College-HometownsOne of the reasons people pack up and move to a new town is because of college—and we don’t just mean the students. If you work for a college or university as part of the faculty, administration, or even grounds crew, you may find yourself facing a relocation. From large public universities known for their medical training to small private colleges with hundreds of years of prestige paving the way, colleges are a great place to put down roots and build a career.

    College towns are also great places to live. When so many people work at, attend, or have ties to the school, there’s a great sense of community that results. Here are five college towns that embrace the collegiate spirit and provide a great lifestyle while they do it!

    > Cambridge, MA: If you take into account neighboring Boston, the “town” of Cambridge isn’t all that small. However, the college spirit is strong here, with such notable schools as Cambridge College, Episcopal Divinity School, Harvard University, Hult International Business School, Lesley University, Longy School of Music, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. With so many schools in such a concentrated area (the town’s 100,000 population is made up of 1/3 students), you can’t go far without running into a reminder of the college vibe.

     
    > Corvallis, OR
    : Home to Oregon State University, this quintessential college town offers a great taste of the Pacific Northwest lifestyle. Corvallis is known for its commitment to green living, sustainable lifestyles, and outdoor adventure—something both students and faculty members here embrace.

    > Iowa City, IA: If you want a great literary scene, an engaging night life, and a beautiful setting all rolled up into one, Iowa City is the place for you. The annual writer’s conference and book festival here are some of the most well-known in the country, giving the entire city of 70,000 residents an intellectual vibe.

    > Ithaca, NY: When you close your eyes and picture a “college town,” chances are you’re visualizing a place just like Ithaca. Both Cornell and Ithaca College are found here, which means the city population of 30,000 residents is mostly made up of students—all of whom enjoy a good music scene and restaurants/bars that cater to their preferences. The upstate New York setting also provides the seasonal beauty and isolation most people associate with academics.

    > College Station, TX: As the name suggests, College Station is all about Texas A&M University, which makes its home here. The school is noted for its incredible research projects (funded and run by institutions like NASA, the National Institute of Health, the National Science Foundation, and Office of Naval Research), as well as its football team, the Aggies.
    • Friday Favorites
    • college
    • College Hometowns
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  • A Guide to Atlanta Suburbs

    by Patrick Redmond | Oct 08, 2014

    Moreno Valley MoversAtlanta isn’t just a city—it’s a huge, sprawling region with hundreds of neighborhoods and suburbs. There are 242 neighborhoods within the city itself, with hundreds more spread out through the region. In fact, more than half of the “metro Atlanta” area lives outside of the city limits, making their homes in both incorporated and unincorporated suburbs. This is great news for anyone who wants to work in Atlanta without living in the urban center—but it also means that finding the best suburbs in Atlanta could take some time.

     
    Here are a few of the more popular and up-and-coming areas that reside in and around the downtown center.

     > Alpharetta: This Atlanta suburb is located to the north of the city, and is ideal for those who enjoy the outdoors. Known for its parks, equestrian centers, and great trails for biking and jogging, this is an area where families are encouraged to be healthy and active. It also has the home prices to match, with the average somewhere in the $300,000 region.

    > Buckhead Village: Located within the city proper, Buckhead Village (or Buckhead) is considered one of the best neighborhoods for urban living and walkability. Homes here tend to be much more urban (think condos and apartments), though there are a few mansions to break things up. Life here is defined by the access to hundreds of restaurants, clubs, and shops nearby.

    > Castleberry Hill: Just south of the main downtown center, Castleberry Hill is one of the more historic neighborhoods in the area. The condos and lofts are popular among artists and young professionals on their way to the top.

    > East Atlanta: As the name suggests, East Atlanta can be found on the east side of the city, near Georgia State University. One of the first areas to recover after the decimation of the Civil War, this area is filled with history and older homes, including fifties bungalows, candy-colored Victorians, and Craftsman homes. Although East Atlanta contains several different neighborhoods worth checking out, one of the more popular is the artsy, youth-oriented East Atlanta Village (EAV).

    > Flowery Branch: The name of this suburb outside of Atlanta might conjure up images of parks and tree-lined streets, but it’s most famous as the training site of the Atlanta Falcons. Still, the name fits, and you’ll find a small-town feeling with good public schools and low home prices for young families.

    > Johns Creek: For affluent living with access to local country clubs, golf courses, and Blue Ribbon schools, you’ll want to explore an area like Johns Creek.

    > Kennesaw: One of the most historic suburbs you’ll find outside Atlanta, Kennesaw is home to a state university and several museums highlighting its role in the Civil War. The city was selected by Family Circle magazine as one of the 10 Best Towns for Families.

    > Mariettta: Marietta is one of the largest Atlanta suburbs, although its distance so far north of the city makes it less than ideal for daily commuters. However, if you want access to the city but would prefer to live in a smaller city of under 60,000 residents, Marietta offers affordable real estate and a charming backdrop.

    Because Atlanta is so large and so diverse, it’s always a good idea to see these neighborhoods and suburbs for yourself before you purchase a home. It’s also smart to hire a local real estate agent who can help you navigate your choices so you find the perfect place to call your own.

    Do you currently live in an Atlanta suburb? Share with us the name of your suburb and what it has to offer.  We want to hear from you.

    • Location Specific
    • Georgia
    • Atlanta Suburbs
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  • Moving to Atlanta, GA

    by Patrick Redmond | Oct 03, 2014

    As the capital and largest city in Georgia, Atlanta captures everything that’s great about living in this Southern state. Within official city limits, the population is around 500,000—a number that pushes well past the 5 million mark if you look within the larger metropolitan area.

    What’s interesting about Atlanta is that there is no one feature that defines this city. The economy is diverse and strong, but is spread out over various industries. The landscape is lush and green, but also full of urban high-rises and development. Its history extends back well into the nation’s earliest days, but there isn’t as much focus on historic monuments here as there are in many other cities in Georgia.

    In short, life in Atlanta is exactly what you make it. Whether you’re moving here for work, school, retirement, or because you’re ready to experience a new way of life, you’ll be sure to find where you fit.

    Living and Working in Atlanta

    One of the biggest benefits to living in Atlanta is the economy. Considered an “alpha-world city,” it has the fourth largest number of Fortune 500 companies in the United States, falling only behind New York, Houston, and Dallas. You’ll find the headquarters of Coca-Cola, Home Depot, UPS, Delta Airlines, AT&T, and Rubbermaid, as well many national restaurant chains, tech companies, and financial groups.

    These corporations give Atlanta a very modern feeling overall, as does the fact that it has always been a transportation hub, developed by and for railways. And because so much of historic Atlanta was destroyed during the Civil War, few buildings remain from the city’s earliest days. You will find some late Victorian architecture in the streetcar suburbs and individual neighborhoods, but most residents enjoy a modern setting everywhere they turn.

    Fun and Entertainment in Atlanta

    Although Atlanta is technically a Southern town, it doesn’t boast the same Southern feeling that many of its neighbors have. Sure, you’ll find a warm, balmy temperature year-round, but because so many people move to the city from all over the world, the culture is global and unique.

    Residents enjoy all aspects of city living, including ballet and opera, a booming music industry, tourist sites that played a major role in the Civil Rights movement, their local Braves and Falcons sports team, huge urban parks, and enough restaurants that you could never eat at them all. Add to this colleges like the Georgia Institute of Technology and Georgia State University, and you have a setting that can’t be beat.

    Welcome to Atlanta!

    Atlanta is one of those places you have to experience to understand. Thousands of tourists flock here every year and decide to put down roots, while just as many students and young professionals find that their chances of success here are high thanks to good job opportunities and a low cost of living.

    Enjoy a city that offers all the perks of a huge metropolitan center, but that never forgets to be who it is. Moving to Atlanta is just the start of your next big adventure.

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    • Gerogia
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