As most of you know I often expand on reader’s comments and question for two reasons.
First so I have space to give a more through, considered answer.
Second so that all readers will more easily see the answer instead of it being hidden down in the comments chain where people really have to “dig” to find it.
Here’s a very interesting question I recently received from a young lady in the Philippines asking, of all things, a question about the cost of living in the USA.
In particular she wants to know about the amount of income her boy friend in the USA needs to be able to show in order to bring her to the USA on a K-1 Fiancés visa.
How Much Does He Need:
I’m just wondering what is the chance that I’ll be able to get a visa to join my American boyfriend if he is only renting in Houston and he said that his work pays him $13 an hour in 12 hours work a day.. 5 days a week.
For those of you weak on math out there, that works out to about $39,000 per arum, gross. Should be way more than the minimum requirement of 125% of the US Poverty level .. about $19,000 a year in the CONUS
Will that be enough proof to the embassy that he can support me? I read here that they require a proof of financial stability. I’m afraid that he’s not that stable.
I have a good education, work experience and always have a permanent job here in Philippines.
I think I’m the one who can help my boyfriend with his finances once I get there although I still need to find a job.
Will that be of value to convince the embassy to issue me a fiancée visa? Like I wouldn’t be a burden and I don’t need to solely depend on my boyfriend.
Also what if I marry him here so I’ll just apply for a spousal visa to join him in US.
More on that below, but rest assured you can work in the USA while holding a K-1 visa, so you can get a Social Security number and find a job as soon as you enter the US.
Even if he’s not that financially stable will the embassy be compelled to issue me a visa since he’s my husband already?
Well saying the Embassy will be “compelled” to issue a visa is making a very risky bet. The US Embassy is not compelled to issue any visa, and fiancée’ or spousal visas are turned down from time to time. Such visas are a privilege and not a “right” to anyone.
But in general, if both parties are honest and above board and meet the basic requirements such turn downs are vey rare indeed.
You both should, right now, visit and join the Yahoo group Mag-Anak. There are hundreds of Phil-Am couples there going through the same process you and your BF are going through. It’s a great resource.r
Basic Income Needs — Same Requirements For Fiancée or Spousal Visa:
To qualify on his/her own the sponsor of a K-1 visa fiancé(e) or a CR-1 Spousal visa must earn 125% of the US HHS Poverty Guidelines. This would be the farthest right figure on the chart provided here:
If you can’t read the chart, in 2014, the last year I can find the chart for, a Texas resident would need $19,662 annually. He appears to make well over that figure, more than $39,000 a ear based on what you wrote.
So, no problem there.
My additional question is if it’s necessary that my American boyfriend has his own house so embassy will grant me a Fiancée Visa?
I’m afraid that my boyfriend is not capable of buying his own house without me helping him to save.
There is absolutely no requirement that he “own” a house. A n apartment or rental house, mobile home, etc. is just fine. The US government has no interest in his living arrangements as long as he has an address where mail can be received.
The “Real” Question
Also I wanna know if his pay of $3,120 monthly will be sufficient enough for the two of us? I don’t know the cost of living in America particularly in Houston.
This is the one that only you (and he) can answer. The “cost of living” in any city, US, Philippines or anywhere else is basically up to the people who are going to do the “living” there. His salary alone is
This page can give you a very good approximation of average costs in Houston. In Philippine Pesos even. How much you two choose to spend, though, no chart or web site or “authority” can say.
I get questions from people all the time phrased as if the “cost of living” in some city is some sort of fixed amount that they can plug into some magic formula.
But it doesn’t work that way. The “cost of living” is more up to the two of you (especially to him as we Americans tend to spend WAY more than we have to in order to have things “the way we want them”, rather than what we really need.
Let me give you an example from here in the Philippines. Everyone “knows” that the cost of living in Manila is way more than any other city in the Philippines, diba?
Yet I just helped a foreigner friend find an upscale, but not “luxury” townhouse to rent in Quezon City for PhP 24,000 a month. But I could also help the same friend find a comparable house to rent in Makati or “The Fort” for Php 80,000 or Php 100,000 or more per month. easily 5 times as much as a similar home in Quezon City (which is part of Metro Manila for those unfamiliar with the geography here).
The Real Cost Is Up To You
So how should I state the cost of a decent rental home in “Manila”? Php 24k? Php 100K? Or some figure in between? There really is no “right” answer, now is there?
My view is, you two will do just fine … in Houston or any other US city … if he listens to you and tailors his spending to what any Filipina of average intelligence will spend. And you can show him this or tell him what I said … he’ll listen f he’s of average intelligence too 😉
Godspeed on on your journey.