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Berwick Street in London's Soho Neighborhood

Moving to England

By Joshua Wood, LPC

Last updated on Nov 27, 2021

Summary: Moving to UK: Expats, retirees and digital nomads talk about everything you need to know before moving to UK.

What do I need to know before moving to England?

When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to England, they said:

"There's a lot of red tape in England and it was difficult for me to start up here. Utility bills up to three years prior, from former homes, were requested, making finding a house to rent on my own an impossibility. Lucky for me, I rented a house with my brother for the first six months and managed to find a council house that was made available for a single Mum," said another expat in Sheffield.

"When you first move to London, you definitely want to live somewhere in the center, preferably the west end side of it, as this is where you will find the majority of other expats," added another expat who made the move to London.

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William Russell Health Insurance

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.

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William Russell Health Insurance

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.

Learn MoreGET A QUOTE

How do I find a place to live in England?

We asked expats how they chose their neighborhood and found a place to live. They answered:

"My brother lives in Sheffield, so I was lucky to have him show me around," commented one expat who made the move to Sheffield.

"I have moved several times since first moving to London. I now live near Marble Arch, which is very central (right next to Hyde Park and to Oxford Street). I've used Loot several times. More recently, I've been using London Property Watch," remarked another expat in London, UK.

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Homelike Rentals

We've partnered with Homelike, to connect expats and newcomers with temporary accommodations in UK. If you're moving to UK, rent a short-term, furnished apartment or home for the first few months from Homelike and take your time figuring out the best place to live in UK.

SEARCH RENTALS

Homelike Rentals

We've partnered with Homelike, to connect expats and newcomers with temporary accommodations in UK. If you're moving to UK, rent a short-term, furnished apartment or home for the first few months from Homelike and take your time figuring out the best place to live in UK.

SEARCH RENTALS

What is a typical expat home or apartment like in England?

"I live in a terraced house that is moderately priced. There are many options that appeal to expats alike," said another expat in Sheffield.

"I live in a flat, which is typical for the vast majority of expats who live in central London. I have also juts purchased a house, however it is in Zone 3, maybe 7 miles south of central London, where house prices are still somewhat affordable. The majority of expats however live in central London, and only the hedge fund manager and investment bankers among them can afford to buy property in central London," added another expat who made the move to London.

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What is the average cost of housing in England?

If you are thinking about moving to England, cost of living in probably a key consideration. Expats commented about the cost of housing:

"So far, accommodation in England is more expensive than any other country I've lived in thus far. I pay 400 Pounds for my house," remarked another expat who made the move to Sheffield.

"Housing costs are definitely higher here, significantly so. To rent a 2-bed apartment in a central location, you have to count with at least £400 per week," explained one expat living in London, UK.

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William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.
William Russell Health InsuranceExpat Health Insurance in UK

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.
GET A QUOTE

What should I pack when moving to England?

We asked people living in England to list three things they wish they had brought and three they wish they had left behind. They responded:

"I should have brought stock cubes, because the ones in England lack flavour. Having relocated from S.E. Asia, I wish I had brought hand woven cloths and sachet spice mixes. I shouldn't have brought any furniture, as stuff from charity shops in England are inexpensive," said another expat in Sheffield.

"Wish I had brought: 1) TV 2) Paintings Wish I had left at home: 1) School books 2) Valuables (I was burglared in first week in London)," added another expat who made the move to London.

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What cultural faux pas should I try to avoid making in England?

We asked people in England if they could share any humorous cultural blunders they commited. For new expats, keep in mind that these incidents are an inevitable part of expat life. Learning to laugh about them is the key!:

"I once stayed with an English couple and offered to wash the dishes after the meal. They were totally amazed that I scrubbed out the tea pot," mentioned another expat when asked about moving to Leeds.

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Why do people move to England?

When we asked people why foreigners move to England, they responded:

"Sheffield is U.K's hub for call centers, so people move here for job opportunities. Also, the university has a lot of foreign students," said one expat living in Sheffield, UK.

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William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.
William Russell Health InsuranceExpat Health Insurance in UK

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.
GET A QUOTE

What are medical services in England like?

When we asked expats and global nomads about the quality of medical care in England, they replied:

"NHS is okay for minor healthcare - check ups, vaccines, etc. that said, the women's check up (PAP smea) is archaic! Facilities don't have the proper examination table-stirrups to do a thorough screen," commented one expat who moved to London.

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About the Author

Joshua Wood Joshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000 and serves as one of its Co-Presidents. He is also one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. Prior to Expat Exchange, Joshua worked for NBC Cable (MSNBC and CNBC Primetime). Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Mr. Wood is also a licensed counselor and psychotherapist.

Some of Joshua's articles include Pros and Cons of Living in Portugal, 10 Best Places to Live in Ireland and Pros and Cons of Living in Uruguay. Connect with Joshua on LinkedIn.

Berwick Street in London's Soho Neighborhood

William Russell Health InsuranceExpat Health Insurance

Get a quote for international health insurance from our partner, William Russell.
GET A QUOTE

William Russell Health InsuranceExpat Health Insurance

Get a quote for international health insurance from our partner, William Russell.
GET A QUOTE

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