If you are moving to London there will be a million and one things to think about before you move. It is important to get organized as fast as possible, because you’ll want to get established and settled into your new London flat as soon as possible. The best way to ensure that your move to London is successful and hassle free is to prepare a lot of the ground work before you leave home.
- Rent or Buy. If you are going to be living in London for a few years you might want to purchase a home of your own. It is always better to rent for a while so you can have a good look at the area that you want to buy a home in. Prices in London vary tremendously depending on how close they are to the city and what amenities they have.
- Make sure your new employer has sorted out your visas before you leave, as you may need to show proof of employment at your port of entry. Getting your paperwork in order before you leave will ensure that you are able to do certain things like open a bank account, and register for healthcare as soon as you arrive in London.
- If you are bringing pets over with you then you need to ensure they have the correct paperwork. The PET passport will enable you to have your pets travel with you and they will not have to go into quarantine when the reach the UK.
- If you have children with you then you will need to decide on their education. There are two types of education in England: State and Private education. State schools are funded by the government and private schools are funded by parents who pay fees for their children to attend. Where your child goes to school is heavily dependent on the area in which you live, so this will also play an important part in your decision about where to rent or buy a home in London.
- The new banking regulations have made it impossible to open a bank account in England while residing in another country. You will only be able to open a bank account once you are here. Make sure that you have all of the documentation required by your bank so that your account can be opened immediately, and funds transferred from your home bank. It is difficult for foreigners to get credit in England ,and having a good credit rating is essential if you want to get something as simple as a mobile phone contract. Try to bring contactable credit references from your home to help you apply for credit.
You may find that you feel lonely for a while after you move to London, especially if you are not working. The trick is to get out into the community and do as much as you can that will involve you in community life in your suburb. Immerse yourself in English culture, ask questions and try out new things. You’ll soon be well on your way to being a Londoner and will be looking at the tourists and shaking your head as you confidently make your way around the city that is your home.