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  • nogc_noproblem
    08-06 12:14 PM
    A man realizes he needs to buy a hearing aid, but he is unwilling to spend much money.

    "How much do they run?" he asks the clerk.

    "That depends," says the salesman. "They run from $2 to $2,000."

    "Let's see the $2 model," the customer says.

    The clerk puts the device around the man's neck. "You just stick this button in your ear and run this little string down to your pocket," he says.

    "How does it work?" the customer asks.

    "For $2, it doesn't work," the salesman replies. "But when people see it on you, they'll talk louder."

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  • nogc_noproblem
    08-06 11:50 AM

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  • validIV
    06-27 12:45 PM
    nothing you have said below answers my question. In 30 years if u are paying 1500 for rent that is 540,000 that is gone. Instead if you used that money to pay the interest, you canclaim that 540,000 as a deductible. Let me say it slowly so u can understand.

    540,000 of rent nets you zero in 30 years.
    540,000 paid towards interest makes it a deductible. That is the difference. In the 28% tax bracket you receive an extra 5,040 a year in your tax refund. But if you are renting you receive zero. That amounts to 28% of that money u lose renting which is a whopping 151,200 in 30 years which is huge.

    Again let me repeat 30 year rent of 1500/month is 540,000 down the drain. As a renter toy claim to save money while u are losing 1500/month. As an owner that 1500 goes to interet which I can get back 28% every year. You don't.

    I'm not even calculating principal here.

    When you rent the amount you save is the same as the principal+equity+property value of my home and savings combined. And in that case after 30 years i managed to get something back with that money you lose in rent. Even if u rent for 30 years the home you mightve wanted to buy 30 years ago at 400,000 is now 800,000. You cannot Afford to buy it anymore. And on top of that you blew 540,000 renting. I blew 540,000 on interest but guess what? I got 151,200 of that amount back in tax returns.

    Why can you not see that? Your arguments do not display any financial sound to renting other than you like to throw 1500 a month away.

    Pandey ji / Valid IV
    o.k..I will explain it slowly ..I can understand that those who are homeowners will justify their home purchase. some maybe in denial and have their head in sand.
    honestly, few months back, even I would have purchased a house . if I had, I would still admit -- that home is not necessarily good investment but a place to stay. even after I buy, I would still say that renting in an apartment has its advantages. here are 2 links in english.
    Why rent? To get richer - MSN Money (
    Why Your Mortgage Won't Make You Rich - (
    now you need to read this carefully else you won't understand what the authors are trying to say ..since it is bit unclear but it has good points (not trying to make fun here :)) read since they are superb articles
    but here is even simpler explanation and hopefully that will explain what I am trying to say ..if you still don't understand ..u will need to find someone else to explain.
    first renting gives you flexibility say, u get better job offer or lose job - you don't lose lot of money compared to house if you have to move.
    for 250K house, you pay around 300 property tax, 60 HOA fees, 150 - 200 in maintenance (recurring like lawn plus once in long term like roof, painting etc) , 100 - 150 extra in utilities. you pay downpayment of 50 k ..if you were to invest that money in better investments (mutual funds, stocks, high CDs. bonds) would make 250 - 300 per month. plus add fees when you have to sell the house, insurance, termite protection etc etc ..
    plus in many cases, you end up buying a house further away than if you were to rent (since many want brand new house ) ..this means extra 250 - 300 in gas + vehicle degradation per month.
    (ALSO SAY U WERE IN MICHIGAN OR IN CALIFORtNIA -- you could get away from the state after making money easily if you were renting. .home means you could end up stuck there).

    I agree in apartment you get less space and hence I mentioned - u need to ask - do you really need extra space at this time in life - if yes, then home is better. (but renting a home is even better esp if prices are still falling in your area in this case).
    btw - as of now rents are going down -- you just need to negotiate.
    now you don't get the money back in rents..but neither do you get money paid in the expenses listed above.
    (in other words - you don't get money back that you pay in rent yr apt BUT you get a place to stay ..this is not India where you can sleep on foot path - so you need a place. apartment property owner will make a small profit - but that is the system)

    before you jump - house is good when it appreciates by atleast 1 -2 percent above inflation and I am not saying that you should never buy a house.
    there are many other points and I will post it in IV WIKI ...and I hope this helps newcomers ...this is my last personal post ...and do watch the movie :) ..once again I did mention in plain english that it is worst case scenario (the movie "pacific heights")..but best case scenario is not good either if you are a landlord with property in US while you are in India (or vice versa).

    hope that answers your question ..please note: the above is for normal cases ..but if you get a good deal or short sale or foreclosed home for 50K --- then yes, buying makes sense !!

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  • apt29
    08-05 03:14 PM
    The whole notion of EB2/EB3 was introduced before bigtime arrival of IT industry. In IT, the difference in job requriements between the EB2 and EB3 are thin and vague. Hence the confusion. It is possible that some EB3 folks applied, so there was risk of denial at that time(1998-2003) even with BS+5 years experience and IT industry is just catching up. So a lot folks, who waited to applied later (2004-) went for EB2.


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  • perm2gc
    08-11 11:52 AM
    In February, Dobbs asked a guest on his show: "The fact is that we are seeing hundreds of jobs being outsourced on the basis purely of a corporation's interest in achieving the lowest possible price for labor. Does that make sense to you?" Later on the same show, he declared, "Corporate America and U.S. multinationals are shipping jobs for only one reason, not for greater productivity, not for efficiencies, those are purely code words for cheaper labor costs."

    Dobbs even asks viewers to send him the names of companies that outsource. He then posts the list (scroll down) on his CNN website, under the heading, "These are U.S. companies either sending American jobs overseas, or choosing to employ cheap overseas labor, instead of American workers."

    "The results of this issue are crucial to the kind of country we live in," Dobbs told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution in April.

    But there comes a time when Dobbs takes off his anti-outsourcing hat. That's when he switches from financial journalist to investment advisor-for-hire, peddling a monthly newsletter containing his investment recommendations. Pony up $398 and you receive Dobbs' investment tips for two years. You'll recognize some of the companies that Dobbs recommends. That's because they're on his list of firms that are "exporting America" by shutting down U.S. operations and opening overseas facilities.

    The Lou Dobbs Money Letter is published by Phillips International Inc., which is associated with Eagle Publishing, a leading publisher of conservative-themed books. In each issue, Dobbs singles out one favored company, in which he encourages subscribers to invest. He conducts an invariably softball interview with the firm's CEO, which allows both Dobbs and his guest to tout the company's prospects.

    Unlike most investment advisors, Dobbs goes beyond talking up the earning potential of these companies. He typically goes out of his way to praise them as good corporate citizens. The newsletter keeps a running tally of the companies profiled, under the heading, "The following companies have been featured in the Lou Dobbs Money Letter as those 'doing good business with good people.'" The appeal is alluring: You're not just buying a smart investment choice, you're buying a piece of good citizenship.

    Dobbs devoted a column in the March issue to touting the prospects of the Minnesota-based Toro Company, which makes outdoor landscaping-maintenance equipment. He told subscribers that Toro was a "long-term wealth-builder," and praised Toro's "formal code of ethics, something I think is sorely needed at more of America's companies," and its "...exemplary corporate governance structure, which aligns the interests of shareholders, employees, and customers." He concluded his interview with Toro CEO Kendrick Melrose by frankly telling him, "I like the way you treat your shareholders, employees, and customers."

    One wonders whether Dobbs' admiration extends to Toro's 2002 decision to move 15% of its workforce -- about 800 jobs -- to Juarez, Mexico. Indeed, CEO Kendrick Melrose might be interested to know that Toro appears on Dobbs' own list of companies that are "exporting America."

    And Toro is not alone. Of the 14 companies Dobbs has highlighted for investors since starting his newsletter last year, eight appear on his CNN website as companies that outsource jobs.

    Greenpoint Financial is another company that's received conflicting treatment from Dobbs. CEO Tom Johnson enjoyed the Dobbs interview treatment in June 2003. Dobbs promised readers, "I think you'll find Tom's comments and the way he runs his business thought-provoking and insightful."

    Apparently one of the "thought-provoking and insightful" methods that Dobbs was referring to was not the 2002 decision by Greenpoint to export much of its mortgage and customer-service operations to Bangalore, India, a move that produced significant savings, but that cost 150 U.S. workers their jobs. Greenpoint Mortgage, a subsidiary of Greenpoint Financial, appears on Dobbs' list of outsourcers.

    When Dobbs features a company in his newsletter, he tends to stand by them, no matter what information subsequently comes to light. In December 2003, Boeing CEO Phil Condit was forced to resign amidst an ethics scandal. Dobbs had interviewed Condit for the newsletter back in June, and wrote at the time: "Boeing ranks Number 35 on Fortune's list of most admired companies. I think Phil has a lot to do with that."

    After Condit's resignation, Dobbs ran a "Special Boeing Update" in the December edition of the newsletter, in which he told subscribers: "In the face of adversity, the company is being up-front and honest abut its problems...Boeing has just proven that its priorities are in the right place."

    But according to the Communications Workers of America (CWA), Boeing has sent 5000 U.S. jobs overseas in recent years. And Dobbs' assurances that Boeing's priorities are in the right place don't seem to square with his inclusion of the company on the "exporting America" list.

    Similarly, in November 2003, Dobbs called Bank One chief Jamie Dimon "a conscientious CEO," who "runs a tight ship with solid corporate values."

    Late last year, Bank One announced plans to merge with JP Morgan-Chase and Co., which has a reputation for shipping jobs overseas. In another special update, Dobbs reassured his readers that, "[Dimon's] ability to orchestrate this merger and have it viewed as a positive move by a testament to the fact that Jamie did it for all the right reasons. As a numbers guy, Jamie knows what works and what doesn't. And I'm confident he's going to do some remarkable work in the coming months."

    Again, Dobbs neglected to tell readers that Bank One is on his "exporting America" list. According to a company spokesman, Bank One has outsourced two to three hundred jobs -- mostly in software development -- to India in the last few years.

    The list goes on. In May 2003 Dobbs talked up Washington Mutual to investors. According to the CWA, the banking services giant has sent 30 jobs overseas. Washington Mutual appears on Dobbs' CNN list of outsourcers.

    In August 2003, Dobbs promoted Office Depot, telling investors that, "[T]he company and CEO Bruce Nelson believe strongly in making Office Depot a 'compelling place to work, shop, and invest.'" Sure enough, Office Depot is on Dobb's list of companies that are "outsourcing America."

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  • rimzhim
    04-09 11:43 AM
    Very true indeed. I am sure you have gone through the full nine yards and understand. Also you will still be an asset no matter what. That is not the case with "consultants".
    Thx for saying that. My boss who is a professor in a research university at least thinks that way, and also believes that I am a leader (FYI riva2005). Frankly, if you are not displacing an American, and there is legal proof of that, there is no reason to worry. Also, mjrajatish: yes, it will be difficult to move in 2 weeks. Same holds for me too because they have to prove that Iam not displacing another American in the new workplace. I see nothing wrong in that.


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  • mbawa2574
    03-23 09:57 PM
    This whole GC process is unpredictable. Don't waste ur life for it. Do whatever u think is best for you. It will be America on the loosing side if they deny u the GC after u have bought the home.

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  • geesee
    06-06 05:01 PM
    I agree with above few posts.. I wouldnt recommend buying a house if you are working in technology field.. Most of the companies are sending tech jobs offshore and god forbid if you find yourself in a situation where you dont have a job for couple of months, at least you have an option to pack up and go back to own country... I myself bought a house in 2005, I dont regret the decision, but I would feel much safer otherwise.


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  • mmillo
    07-08 12:57 PM

    r u the same from !! people r looking out for u in this immigration greencard darkness..


    we miss you and your experience

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  • nojoke
    05-03 02:33 AM
    NAR has been constantly changing their prediction. They predicted that we will be having growth in the later part of this year. Now they changed their tune. It is now 24% down. Nextmonth they will say 35% down. NAR is a joke


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  • gotgc?
    12-17 10:44 PM
    It is true that 99.99% of Muslims are not terrorists. But 99.99% of World's hardcore terrorists are Muslims.

    It is absolutely true...why is that all terrorists are muslims..something is wrong...

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  • nojoke
    04-14 02:05 PM
    It is not going down everywhere...I am in a location where people are buying houses like mad and the prices are actually better than last year.

    And yet, some people in my location are thinking about nothing but resale. They are not able to see a home as anything other than an investment and I am referring to such people in my earlier post.

    Where do you live? Give it time...


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  • insbaby
    03-25 07:05 AM
    Ok, so everytime I see a rent vs buy discussion I see apartment living compared with living in a house. This may not apply to a lot of other places but here's how it goes in SF Bay Area:

    Apartment: Decent sized 2 Bed/2 Bath --- $1600 pm
    House : Decent sized 3 bed/2.5 bath --- $2000 pm

    House : Decent sized 3 bed/2.5 bath --- $3500 pm

    So, is additional 1500 pm worth the money? Why not rent a house? What's the point of trying to get into a sliding market when even Greenspan can't say where the bottom is?

    I am in a decent sized apartment right now and if I have to upgrade its a rental house. Buying in a sliding real estate market doesn't make sense to me.

    35% to 40% of your 'take home' can be spent on the residential property. If the total monthly payment for home does not exceed that limit, if you really need, if you are willing and if you can, it is not a bad option to buy.

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  • rameshvaid
    07-14 05:23 PM
    EB3-I..please print the attached word doc and sign and mail it to Department of state..this week

    Moderator could you makes this Sticky please

    Could somebody also post the adderess of USCIS please..

    I mailed letter today..



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  • Macaca
    05-30 05:44 PM
    What Will It Take for Companies to Unlock Their Cash Hoards? ( By JASON ZWEIG | Wall Street Journal

    There is a cash crisis in corporate America�although it comes not from a shortage of the stuff, but from a surplus.

    In the first quarter, the five companies with the greatest cash hoards�Microsoft, Cisco Systems, Google, Apple and Johnson & Johnson�added $15 billion in cash and marketable securities to their balance sheets. Microsoft alone packed away roughly $9 billion, or $100 million a day. All told, the companies in the Standard & Poor's 500-stock index are sitting on more than $960 billion in cash, a record.

    To be sure, at many companies the cash piling up is at global operations that generate "undistributed foreign earnings" that can't be brought home, under U.S. law, without incurring taxes of up to 35%. But hundreds of billions in cash remain available�and idle.

    Meanwhile, the payout ratio�the proportion of earnings paid out as dividend income to shareholders�fell to 28.9% for the past four quarters. That, says S&P senior index analyst Howard Silverblatt, is the lowest level since 1936. Dividends are going up�Intel, UnitedHealth Group and WellPoint have recently raised them�but cash is still piling up far faster than most industrial giants can possibly find a prudent use for it. Of course, investors themselves might have a better use for the cash, if they could get at it.

    As Daniel Peris, co-manager of the Federated Strategic Value Dividend fund, says, "The likelihood of spending money poorly is increased by having a surplus of it."

    Microsoft's purchase price for the online telecommunications firm Skype, widely criticized as too rich at $8.5 billion, almost precisely matches the amount of cash that Microsoft raked in last quarter. Was that torrent of cash burning a hole in Microsoft's pocket?

    "No way," says Bill Koefoed, general manager of investor relations at Microsoft. "We see this as being a very strategic acquisition."

    The heart of the problem, as the great investor Benjamin Graham pointed out decades ago, is that the best interests of corporate management and outside investors are at odds. That is especially true for giant companies whose growth has been slowing. "The more dubious the company's prospects�the more anxious management is to retain all the cash it can in the business," Graham wrote. "But the stockholders would be well advised to take out all the capital that can be safely spared, because these funds are much more valuable to them if in their own pockets, or invested elsewhere."

    Amnesia is another culprit. In the past, companies paid out vastly more of their profits as dividends, and they should again. "If there were a greater historical sensibility among investors and managers," Mr. Peris says, today's low payouts "would be called out as an abnormal situation that's likely to lead to that money being less well-spent than it otherwise might be."

    Dividends have gotten short shrift in recent years as investors have come to favor companies that instead use cash surpluses to buy back their shares. Meanwhile, with the economic recovery barely out of the sickbed, many companies are reluctant to invest heavily in expansion. Others want to keep cash handy for potential acquisitions. So cash sits idle�even as interest rates, after inflation, are so low that cash often produces negative real returns.

    Benjamin Graham made three simple proposals in 1951 that deserve to be revived.

    First, investors need to realize that a company's cash is a valuable asset, even when interest rates are low; if management won't put it to good use, investors must speak up. As Graham wrote: "When the results on capital are unsatisfactory, it is appropriate for stockholders to�insist that it be returned to stockholders on an equitable basis."

    Second, companies should set formal dividend policies. Rather than paying or raising dividends out of the blue, they should state in advance what proportion of earnings they expect to pay out as cash dividends. If, instead, they plan to use excess cash to buy back shares, they should offer hard evidence that the stock is undervalued.

    Finally, Graham advocated that leading companies should pay out two-thirds of their earnings as dividends. That rate isn't as radical as it might sound, even though it would amount to more than a doubling from today's levels. The dividend payout, as a percentage of total profits, has averaged 52.3% since 1936 and 46% over the past two decades, according to Standard & Poor's.

    If the companies in the S&P 500 raised their payout ratio to 50%, Mr. Silverblatt estimates, that would put an extra $207 billion into investors' pockets�at a time when shareholders' dividend income is taxed at historically low rates.

    "Companies are basically earning more than they've ever made before, but their payouts are nowhere near that high," says Mr. Silverblatt. "They're holding their cash really tight. You can call them Scrooges if you want."

    A Generation of Slackers? Not So Much ( By CATHERINE RAMPELL | The New York Times
    Made in America: Manufacturing Jobs Are Coming Home ( By Patrick Smith | Fiscal Times

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  • paskal
    07-08 09:15 PM

    seriously thinking about sending an email to Oppenheim, Charles to consider moving the dates in the bulletin liberally so no visas r lost each year..before there is another debacle with the October bulletin..

    maybe he is the right person to hear our misery..but not sure if they even consider our emails and tell us not to teach them what to do..


    thanks for your enthusiasm, i would suggest though - not writing to good old charlie, and focusing instead on your local lawmakers (HR and senators).
    We can make this fiasco a catalyst towards incremental reform of the immigration system. There remains a chance that we could get a bridging amendment before the year is up, to provide some relief at least- maybe recapture of numbers or 485 filing. If you have questions about what to send your lawmaker- or present a a meeting- look up your state chapter or contact iv core members- try sertasheep- send him a pm with your specific request.


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  • desi3933
    07-11 12:12 PM
    My wife (secondary applicant on I-485) started job 1.5 months after her H4 to H1 approval. She needed to wait for SSN and that took 1.5 months. Will that create any issue? I am planning to use AC21 to change job. Will that result in extra scrutiny?

    That should not cause any problems.

    On another note, one can start working as long as he/she has applied for SSN. One does NOT need ssn at hand to start working.

    Not a legal advice.

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  • rsdang
    08-22 11:56 AM
    One hand on steering wheel, one hand out of window.

    - Sydney

    One hand on steering wheel, one hand on horn

    - Japan

    One hand on steering wheel, one hand on newspaper, foot solidly on accelerator...

    - Boston

    Both hands on steering wheel, eyes shut, both feet on brake, quivering in terror

    - New York

    Both hands in air, gesturing, both feet on accelerator, head turned to talk to someone in back seat

    - Italy

    One hand on horn,

    one hand greeting,

    one ear on cell phone,

    one ear listening to loud music,

    foot on accelerator,

    eyes on female pedestrians,

    conversation with someone in next car

    - Welcome to India!


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  • B+ve
    06-09 03:01 PM
    This is for sharing and suggesting your views, ( :)who are not opposing for buying a home now or in the near future and those who are staying at Bay Area, CA or similar places in US) where the medium home price is still looks like quite unaffordable :

    for example, in Bay Area, CA - places which has good school districts and neighbourhoods like Cupertino, Fremont, Redwood shores etc., (please add other good places also...) - the medium home price of a new independant home (anywhere from 1500 to 3000 sq.feet) will be atleast in the price range of $700000 - 2+ Millions.

    Other options are :
    1) Moving to the outskirts, around 40 or 50+ miles - places like San Ramon, Gilroy etc. (remember commute will be too hectic...). In these places also, the above mentioned homes will cost $450000 and up.

    2) Go with an old condo/town home (in Bay Area, usually an old house is 25+ years YOUNG!!!) and after 5+ years look for an old independant home and after another 5+ years, move to your dream home. (I don't know whether we, most of us who are in the GC mess might be in 35 and above age group, have any juice left to do so rather than try to settle down within a couple of years. And one more thing, are these places really worth for spending this much for houses? (I know its a personal choice and lot of factors come in to play...)

    3) Move to a more affordable place so that even if there are some hick ups in career or other ups and downs in life, it won't affect the mortage payment (considering ones personal interests and other factors like employment opportunities, climate, diversed community etc etc.) - places like Dallas, Austin, Phoenix, Atlanta etc. (feel free to add other cities also).

    Please comment/share your thoughts (I am agreeing there may be slight variation in above price ranges) and really sorry if we discussed this in any other threads....


    08-09 02:03 PM
    While most of us here have US Citizenship as their long term goal, they overlook that fact and focus on manipulating stuff to get a GC which might have severe consequences while applying for Naturalization.

    Let me share with you the story of my friend who just got his US Citizenship in 2007.

    He was out of status without salary for around 6 months during the recession time (2001/2002) and didn’t have W2 for that period either. When USCIS questioned his out of status, he just submitted a letter from the employer stating that they owe some $$$ during that period and will be running his back pay at the earliest. This letter nullified his out of status and was sufficient to satisfy the IO to get his I-485 approved.

    Infact, the company in question didn’t run his back pay at all after his I-485 approval and went bankrupt.

    While applying for Naturalization, one of the items that the beneficiary has to prove is “Good Moral Character”. While scrutinizing his records they found that he didn’t file his tax returns during the year in question and denied his naturalization.

    He had to run from pillar to post and finally got hold of a good attorney who was able to prove that the employer who was supposed to pay the back wages went bankrupt and hence he wasn’t paid, because of which he could file his tax returns. He submitted a letter with proof of bankruptcy and succeeded in his appeal resulting in approval. The whole case dragged for around a year.

    Hence please pay attention to every minute detail before and after you get your GC, so that you don’t end up in a mess while applying for naturalization.

    07-14 08:48 AM
    fine, then why are we working so hard to remove the per country limit? That was set by law too!!!

    We can't pick only those options that would favor us. Sometimes changes bring hard-luck.

    Sure sometimes change can bring hard-luck, but remember that if you want to change your luck at my expense purely based on your length of wait and regardless of skill level as established by law, then DON'T expect me to not push back. Another letter countering the position can always be written in an individual if not collective capacity.

    I also wonder where was all this thought about change and hard-luck when EB2-I was shafted last year and numbers spilt over to EB3ROW.