You’ve probably heard that most of the flats here are either too old, too small, or too expensive to be considered a viable option. Fortunately, most of those stories are exaggerated. London Relocation has been helping people find homes in London for many years, and we are proud of our 100% success rate. It only takes a day with our service.
That said, renting in London is far from being a walk in the park. Some of the horror stories you’ve seen on the forums might have some truth to them. Luckily, if there is a challenge, there is also a way to either overcome or avoid it whether with professional help from a veteran relocation service provider or with plain old attention to detail.
Here are some tips you will need to know
Double-check on your security deposit
A security deposit is usually a month’s worth of rent you pay upfront. Technically it is still your money, and you should be able to get it back when you decide to switch flats or permanently leave the property you are renting for any other reason.
Three programs in the UK serve as enforcers of the law ensuring you’ll be getting your money back no questions asked:
Tenancy Deposit Scheme – http://www.tds.gb.com/
Deposit Protection Service – https://www.depositprotection.com/
My Deposits – https://www.mydeposits.co.uk/Sure, taking care of stuff like that is on your landlord, but you too should make sure that your deposit is protected by one of these services. As long as you keep to your end of the bargain, of course.
Don’t Skip the Tenancy Agreement
Nobody likes paperwork, especially when passing on it is much cheaper. Then again, being evicted, charged for household items that were never there, or even being arrested for breaking and entering into what you’ve considered your home for a couple of years, is probably not worth the gamble.
We live in a bureaucratic world where a gentleman’s agreement is as cheap as air in the eyes of the law. That’s why we never allow our clients to even consider a deal without previously checking the necessary paperwork.
In simpler words, never-ever rent without signing an Assured Shorthold Tenancy and inventory.
The Tenancy Agreement is an amazing starting point for setting the relationship between you and your landlord in stone. Alas, even the best of them don’t cover every scenario that may take place in the future. Luckily, you probably have more freedoms and rights (as well as obligations) than you originally thought. Feel free to check the full list of them on gov.uk.
Just to be sure, the list explicitly states that you are protected from unfair eviction, unreasonable rent, excessively high charges, and intrusion into your privacy, among other things, by the law.
In return, you are obligated to take good care of the property, pay the agreed rent on time, compensate for any damages that you may have caused, etc.
The prices in London are not set in stone. If you’ve found a property to your liking but it needs some repairs or decorative TLC – haggle without a second thought.
In 10 cases out of 10, you’ll get a better deal, if not from the get-go, then in the long run.
Double-Check Your Paperwork
London is a rich, colorful, engaging, vibrant… and pretty much any other pretty word in the book you can replace “crowded” with. It is filled with people all of whom need a place to live so, even despite there is no shortage of properties (once you know where to look), the competition is still high.
The best way to beat a competitor in a battle of tenants is your trump card – better paperwork. Make sure that you have everything you might need at the tips of your fingers.
You will need:
· References from previous landlords
· Superb credit ratings
· Your security deposit
Get London Relocation on your side
We highly suggest that you get help or at least a consultation from the seasoned professionals At London Relocation. They have the skills and the experience to swim in London’s property market like fish in the sea. Yes, their services will cost money, but what is that in comparison to your security, saved nerve cells, and, of course, a home you’ll be proud to call your fortress?
The Paperwork You Will Need
For US Residents
Congratulations to all citizens of the United States – your relocation to London is a breeze if compared to moving here from any other country.
All you’ll need is your passport and a Visa. Typically Americans apply for work and family Visas that don’t require too much paperwork. In the first case, all you’ll need is proof that you have family members residing in the UK.
The second case is a bit trickier, but still nothing too complex to follow. You need to secure a job and get proof that you will be earning an appropriate salary from your employer.
One more thing worth noticing is that you might be asked to show proof of the fact that you have enough money to support yourself for the time from your first arrival to the point of receiving your first paycheck. Nothing too big is needed here. A statement from your bank should do the trick just fine.
For EU Residents
This one is a tricky subject to talk about. For now, you don’t need any paperwork other than your passport to move her from any EU resident country.
That said, things might change dramatically after the UK goes through with Brexit.
We are sure that you’ll need as many papers as our American friends (or maybe less) so Brexit won’t be that big of a deal to you, but as of now, nothing can be said for certain.
Not to teach you how to live your life, but maybe it’s best to move now if you are considering a relocation to London as an option for the nearest future?
For Commonwealth Residents
For relocation from people residing outside the US and EU, we won’t be able to give you a comprehensive list of documents you’ll need. Not because the list itself is too long, but because it simply doesn’t exist.
The rules of applying for a Visa are different for every country from the Commonwealth. They depend on the policies your homeland supports; it’s financial and political affairs with the UK and a whole plethora of other factors.
If you are considering relocation to London it’s best if you check your specific requirements on gov.uk. They have comprehensive lists of paperwork every resident of the commonwealth might need to apply for a long-term Visa.
That said, there are still ways of living in the UK without any restrictions. You won’t need to dive deeply into paperwork if:
You are married to someone who had the right to live in the UK before January 1st, 1983. That said, you still have to be married to that person, and you must have remained a Commonwealth citizen since.
If you have proof that you were a member of the commonwealth on the 31st of December, 1982.
If your parents were either born or permanently residing in the UK at the moment of your birth or adoption.
Not that big of a list to pick options from, right? But hey, something is better than nothing!
In addition, these few things will need to be completed once you are in the UK:
Your National insurance Number.
An English Bank Account.
Your London Driver’s License
London is a fascinating place. It is one of the best cities in the world to live in.
The fact that everyone drives in the “wrong direction” from the perspective of practically every living soul on the globe, the narrow streets that were designed by the Romans for horses and carriages, and the number of people living here who need to commute add an uncomfortable level of getting used to when it comes to driving in the capital.
Alas, there’s no going around it. If you have to drive, you have to drive, right? And for that, you’ll need your driver’s license.
Exchanging Your License In The UK?
The odds are that you’ve already passed your driver’s test with flying colors in your home country. Why go through it again, when you can simply exchange your license? It still won’t be a walk in the park but hey, everything is better than starting from zero.
So what are the rules for exchanging your license in the UK?
· Australia, New Zealand, and Canada: If you have a driver’s license from any of these countries you are free to drive in Great Britain on your full for up to 12 months from the day you have officially become a resident. You’ll need to exchange your license after that period, and you will have 5 years to do so.
· America: The rules are pretty similar here as you too will get 12 months to drive on your full, with the exception that you will need to pass a theory and a practical test after your “trial year”.
· European Union: If you are not a resident of Great Britain than you can freely drive across Great Britain with your license until you are 70. That said, if your status changes and you’ll choose to become a resident here, then you will have 3 years worth of driving left. If you will choose to exchange your EU license for a UK license, you will only have 12 months.
How To Exchange Your License?
As you can see, there is no rush to exchanging your existing license in the UK. You can easily settle in, get used to the local roads and traffic, and then take the exams (if need be). More on the matter, you legally have a period of 5 years on your hands. You won’t be able to drive for more than one without breaking the law though.
So, how does one exchange a non-UK license?
Get in contact with the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency.
Order a D1 form (or any other DVLA forms you might need, like a D2 for driving a lorry, etc.) from them. See https://www.gov.uk/dvlaforms
Fill it in, and send it back along with any other documents you might need like a passport for identification, current license, and the fee of 43 quid.
Wait for 3 weeks or so and you will get your shiny new license mailed to you.
Pro tip: don’t plan anything that might require your passport like an abroad trip for the time being.
We are London Relocation, where people find their home guaranteed. We’re an all-inclusive service that’s helped 100% of our clients find their perfect property sign a lease and move in within their desired time frame.
You might be wondering what’s so difficult about the London property market that you can just do this on your own. Well, agents in London only hold private stock in their area they don’t share with other agencies through a multiple listing system. This means you can’t just go to one agency and see all the available options. That’s why you need London relocation. We will be your Multiple Listing system and exhaust the market. We guarantee you will find your flat through us.
We start by conducting a needs assessment so that we know what type of property you’re looking for when you’re looking to move into it and what area will best suit your lifestyle and your community. Our team will handhold you through this process to offer you personalized attention and to educate you on the local market so that there are no surprises.
On that viewing day, your personal agent will show you 18 to 25 properties. When a certain property has captured your hearts we will help you negotiate the rent and lease terms on your behalf. Customer service is our top priority.
So remember we work with the Leddy’s agents and landlords but we work exclusively for you. Our team of London ex-pats has been there, we understand the unknowns you’re facing and we can translate the difference. We want you to settle into your new life fast and seamlessly.
So just kick back let us do the work for you. You can take my word for it or have a look at our client testimonials I think you’ll like what you hear so give us a call or fill out a web form and start your move today
Call London Relocation today to get started at 800-903-1658 from the United States or from the UK +44 20 7993 0422. Our service is 100% guaranteed to find your ideal flat in one day!