We are now temporary residents. Our 90 day tourist visa expired and we had several options.
1. drive to Argentina and pay them $800(for all of us) for the privilege of driving into their country- as US citizens that would be the reciprocity fee for a tourist visa because that is what the US government charges Argentinian tourists to the US - thanks Uncle Sam! - and then come back into Chile on another tourist visa for 90 days
2. renew our 90 day tourist visa for $500(for all of us) here in Chile
3. apply for temporary residency which was FREE!
I think the odds were stacked heavily for option 3. Our friend, Guillermo, brought us down to the foreign office in Osorno and helped us fill out the paperwork. What a blessing he is. Not only is he friends with the ladies who work in this office but he goes through this process regularly with the Mennonites who come down here and it just so happened that he had to go to the office anyway to help a young man who had just arrived from the US. Wow. what timing.
We had to have a notarized copy of a letter stating that we are financially self sufficient. We filled out the one page application and submitted our pictures. We have to submit birth & marriage certificates and bank account statements. And for $200 for all of us, we can become permanent residents in one year.