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Moving to London is something that millions of people around the world dream of. For most, it is the ultimate goal. Boasting of rich cultural history, great economic opportunities, and breathtaking architecture, London is a place that is very easy to fall in love with.
It is no surprise that London attracts 19 million tourists each year. London is also famous to writers and musicians who aspire to relocate to London. This is because there are already thousands of world-famous artists that have created their masterpieces while overtaken by the beauty of the city of London. Majority of London’s residents vow that London is one of the best places to live in.
So in case you are also one of those who are planning to live there for good, make sure you hire a Removals or Man and Van company in London to make your move a lot easier. You can also read this guide on choosing a moving company to help you decide.
Considered a historical capital filled to the brim with breathtaking architecture, both modern and ancient, it is quite a given that millions of its residents have already decided that they would be living in London permanently. I am sure that the number of residents would double, if not triple if the cost of living in London is not one of the highest in the world.
The population of London has to deal with a very high cost of living. However, this is a small sacrifice for a taste of the city life that many just dreams of having. With some budget cuts, downsizing and a humbler lifestyle, Londoners make do. Moving to London alone is also an option. As Samuel Johnson would say, “When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life.”
There are some things that you have to know first before you start your moving to London checklist, pack your bags, call the moving company and complete your move. For example, it would do you well to be informed about the real estate market in London, so you know where the best places to live in London are. Before you make the move to London, it is also important for you to know if the lifestyle and culture is something you are comfortable with. Here are some of the best things to remember when moving to London.
The first thing you have to know before you move to London is how to save. You may have a lot of disposable income now, but London, if you’re not careful, will draw you out and leave you broke.
The city of London has seen its fair share of people going bankrupt abruptly after just a few weeks or months. It is common for many to subscribe to expensive lifestyles after moving to London, which in the long run, proves to be unsustainable. Another problematic mistake that happens is that newly-transferred Londoners still do not know where to find a cheap place to live or go to for food or a good time.
Here are some tips on how to save up on your money when you make the move to London.
Despite the high cost of living in London, many are still choosing to live in London. Londoners continuously find a way to continue to enjoy the beauty of the city without cutting a hole in their pockets. One great way that Londoners decide to do to save on rent by downsizing.
Downsizing is the process of moving from one place to another, which is smaller, cheaper and probably in a poorer part of the town. The furniture and other items that will not fit in their new houses are stored in self-storage facilities. You may also consider hiring furniture movers to help you transport it to the storage unit. The storage facility industry has seen a substantial boom, especially as more and more Londoners are choosing to downsize as they simply cannot afford to pay their rent per month.
Many residents are also sharing flats and apartments, which results in smaller storage space inside their homes. To fix this problem, many rent self-storage facilities. Self-storage is also an option if you’re moving to London from another part of the UK. The self-storage industry, in fact, is one of the sectors that have seen the most significant growth in the UK. People use self-storage facilities in London not only to store their belongings but to store business supplies and products, and even use these units as alternative offices.
Because of trying times, micro-flats are also the trend right now in London. Micro flats are usually about 19 square metres in size. That is way too small for any individual with a reasonable amount of belongings! The rise in its popularity could allude to the fact that money is tight and we all have to save up on cash whatever your profession is.
When you move to London, you will realize that finding a place with low rent is harder than finding a needle in a haystack. Whatever place is cheap has a long line of people waitlisted. And If a property opens up, it will get scooped up within hours. However, you should not get discouraged.
Be aware also of too-good-to-be-true offers. Do not give out an initial deposit before you see the place with your own eyes. The description may be quite appealing, but in actuality, it may just be a rat’s nest with a roof.
One great way to save up on rent is to look for real estate that is outside of the city centre. Real estate in the city centre would obviously be more expensive than places outside. And even if you live outside the centre, you wouldn’t have to worry about getting around because London has a reliable and efficient public transport system which can take you to the places where you need to be.
Unless your profession is a highly regarded one like a doctor or an engineer, London is not a place where you can really increase your savings. Even the infamous Los Angeles is far cheaper to live in than London. The truth is that London is not only very expensive at an average of £827.52 to around £2,933.29 per month without rent, and sadly those living in London do not experience much financial growth.
As London is the capital city of the UK, you will find that your bank account may encounter some difficulties. So, if you are set on this London move, it is also important for you to be ready to make little adjustments along the way. Here’s a comprehensive guide on how much house move costs.
First of all, before you make unnecessary expenses, you have to make sure to set aside the amount to pay for your car plan, phone bill, healthcare, council tax, your credit card bills, and any other monthly obligations you may have.
You may also want to cut back on some things, such as eating out. Restaurants in London cost an average of £80 to £100 for two people per meal. It doesn’t sound too bad, does it? However, if you’re getting a week’s worth of grocery items for two people from a local store, the cost is roughly the same. That means if you eat out more than a couple of times a week, you are already spending far more than what it would cost to make your food at home for a whole week!
Also, since you’re moving to a new home, it would be wise to choose a cheaper alternative to getting cable. Cable plans cost about £25 to £50 per month. That’s a few hundred pounds you may use on something else if you choose to either opt for streaming or a TV aerial plan!
When it comes to saving money and earning it, Liverpool is one of the most budget-friendly options. According to Numbeo, the price of goods and services in London are 29.31% higher than in Liverpool.
Some say that the only way to get to know the real London is to dive into the pub culture. There are over 3,000 pubs in London, and a great way to meet people and make friends is to go where the locals go, which is the pub.
Go where the locals go as it obviously will cost you less than the expensive bars which are intended for tourists. If you’re looking for an authentic English experience, there are a few traditional pubs from the 16th century, such as Lamb & Flag and the Spaniards Inn.
At the Grenadier, you’ll find a pub with a story and a ceiling filled with money to pay off the debt of a ghost. The legend says that a soldier was killed after cheating at a game of cards, and the only way to redeem his soul is for the living to pay for his journey.
Moving to London is expensive. Rent is sky-high and is one of the highest in the United Kingdom. Groceries are also much more costly, which means that you need to take care of your expenses, else you lose track of your budget, and before you know it, you’re bankrupt.
Living in a much more expensive place does not mean that you should not have fun anymore. You simply have to know where to go. It might be hard to believe, but most of the museums in London are actually free. So if museums are up to your speed, you can spend hours upon hours learning the history of England or see a T-Rex simulation at the Natural History Museum.
If you’re interested in biology and the human body, you can also check out the Hunterian Museum’s collection of deformed skeletons and dissected animals.
Moving to London with kids does not have to be expensive. Often, many people who live in London and want to start a family decide to walk away from the city because of the impending expenses of having a child. However, you should know there are plenty of free activities that kids can enjoy in London that are free.
Potterheads or fans of the Harry Potter series by JK Rowling can get a taste of the magical journey of Harry Potter by going to Platform 9 ¾ at King’s Cross. Platform 9 ¾ is more famously known as the magical gateway to the train that takes students to Hogwarts.
Not a fan of Harry Potter? Take your kids to a pirate ship at Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Playground and have them exert all their energy there.
Perhaps, one thing that sets the United Kingdom apart from other first world countries is its numerous green spaces. London has many green parks where residents can spend their days in.
While London doesn’t have a good reputation when it comes to fighting pollution, we believe the nickname “The Big Smoke” is undeserved. So, if you’re moving to London, you don’t have to worry about the lack of outdoor space too much. The city has many green spaces where many a Londoner, as well as tourists can relax, take a walk, and admire wildlife. In some parks, you will even find deer running around.
Some parks have tennis courts, skateparks, football facilities, outdoor chess boards and playgrounds for children. These parks are free of charge and have numerous courts for Londoners to have a space to play various sports like Badminton, Tennis, etc.
Foreigners moving to London are always fearful of feeling out of place in the city. However, they could not be more wrong. In London, the de facto official language is English. Still, the city is so diverse that over 100 languages are spoken there, not to mention the many neighbourhoods dominated by various cultures. To give you an idea, over 40% of the London population happen to be ethnic minorities.
So no matter where you come from, there’s always a small neighbourhood in this city that will make you feel at home.
If you plan on moving to London for Uni, but don’t quite have the money for it yet, there are still a few options for you as well.
For example, the University Of The People is one of the most appreciated volunteer-based universities with no tuition fees. While you do need to pay a fee for the degree, it costs significantly less than your standard bachelor’s degree.
For the time being, there are only two options: business administration and computer science. But new subjects could be added soon.
Many universities in London also offer scholarships that can help the cost of living in London as a student go down. So, if you are set on moving to London for Uni, then you may want to start looking for scholarships you could qualify for. If you’ve got too many stuff to bring with you during your move to your dorm, might as well consider getting a student storage. You can book a man and van to help you transport your things. To know the size of van you might need, check out this van size guide. Also read this ultimate student moving checklist to help you plan your move accordingly.
There is a high probability that your London relocation is the result of a job opportunity you couldn’t refuse. However, if you’re moving to the city without a concrete plan in mind, then you should probably know that with the cost of living in London, it probably won’t take you long to go bankrupt. You don’t have to worry, though! London is a huge city that has an abundant amount of job opportunities for all kinds of people.
It is, however, advisable that you make sure you have a job waiting for you before moving to London. Life in the city is, after all, extremely expensive and not at all practical for a person who is looking for work.
If you are moving to London, you should be open to the idea of not taking your car everywhere you go. Driving in the streets of London can be a nightmare, because of all the traffic. But if you take modes of public transport like the tube or a bus, not only will you reach your destination faster, but you’ll also save money. Public transport in and out of London is one of the best in the world.
There are many options for transport links available in the big smoke.
The Underground, or The Tube, for example, runs through all of Greater London, covering about 270 stations. That means there is a tube station close by, almost whenever they may be!
Moreover, aside from The Tube, you may also travel through the Overground, DLR, and the Rail Services which you can take to get to all over London, and even neighbouring areas. You may also take a bus, tram, cable car, or riverboat to get to where you need to be! And the best part? You don’t have to purchase numerous transport cards to get around, as an Oyster Card makes way for a unified ticketing system between these means of transport.
A tip, though: Despite the many options for travel, you still would want to make sure to travel outside peak times to avoid foot and vehicle traffic.
Cycling and walking are both popular with Londoners as well especially for destinations that are close by or within walking distance. Not to mention, both activities improve your overall health and are good for the environment, speaking of which, make sure you follow the recycling and waste management rules in London – there can be strict fines.
If you are moving to London from another country whether as an expat, a student, a spouse, here are some tips you may want to keep in mind:
There are different UK visa requirements for EU citizens and citizens of UK Commonwealth countries, as compared to those moving from the United States or other countries. Moreover, there are different requirements and restrictions for those coming in with a student visa, a spousal visa, or a UK ancestry visa.
I don’t think I’ve stressed enough times how expensive life in the big city is. From food prices, house prices, council tax costs, and utility costs, you will be spending a pretty hefty sum of money, even for city dwellers all across the world!
As mentioned above, London life, in particular, can get pretty overwhelming when you don’t prepare financially. So, be sure to set aside an amount to open a UK bank account where you can better keep track of your money while living in the British capital.
One London Guide won’t cut it! Research, research, research! Read up on everything you may need to know about London!
“What does South West London take pride in?”
“What can you find in Central London?”
“Is South East London as beautiful as they make it out to be?”
“How do I get to North London?”
“Is there a train going to South London?”
“What can I see at Oxford circus?”
“Is London truly better than New York?
These are only some of the questions that you need to ask before moving. Moreover, you would want to visit the UK Government website to any other questions you may have! If you are moving with pets, this article might help you out.
Moving to London can be tricky, but it is all worth it. To help you relocate, you can rent out storage facilities from us or have a Man and Van company make your life easier. Obviously, making the move to London would entail way too many things to do, but you do not have to fear as moving to London may just be one of the best decisions you have ever made. Read this moving house checklist to help you plan your move.
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