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Move back to UK or stay in Canada?

Move back to UK or stay in Canada?

Old Jun 24th 2021, 1:46 pm
  #1  
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Default Move back to UK or stay in Canada?

After 16 years of living in Canada, we are considering moving back to the UK. It seems like a much harder decision than it was when we moved to Canada. I think we realise this is a one way ticket with no coming back.

Our eldest son has just graduated high school and our youngest is in grade 9. Both are excited at the prospect of moving to the UK.

Is anyone else feeling the same, or made a decision to stay or go? My head and my heart are all over the place. My heart says go back, but my head keeps telling me it might be a big mistake.

Any advise, wisdom or opinions are welcome.
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Old Jun 24th 2021, 2:16 pm
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Default Re: Move back to UK or stay in Canada?

Originally Posted by John_B View Post
After 16 years of living in Canada, we are considering moving back to the UK. It seems like a much harder decision than it was when we moved to Canada. I think we realise this is a one way ticket with no coming back.

Our eldest son has just graduated high school and our youngest is in grade 9. Both are excited at the prospect of moving to the UK.

Is anyone else feeling the same, or made a decision to stay or go? My head and my heart are all over the place. My heart says go back, but my head keeps telling me it might be a big mistake.

Any advise, wisdom or opinions are welcome.

If you own a house in Oakville then, financially, this would be a good time to go.
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Old Jun 24th 2021, 2:36 pm
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Default Re: Move back to UK or stay in Canada?

Well the Clash asked the question should I stay or should I go now.

Why did you leave the UK? If for reasons that Canada seemed a good idea at the time or other reason then what makes you think the UK will be any better and now especially with Brexit. You want honesty well here goes. Unless I won the lottery then the chances of me moving back to the UK are remote but never say never. My 2 grown up children live here and only 1 lived in the UK for less than 2 years as a baby. Sure move back to a country that has increased in population, housing prices have soared and if needed the availability of jobs. Yes the UK still has a lot to offer but the green grass that you left over 16 yrs ago is it still the same green or a different shade which could be for the better or worse.

Everybody is different and has different circumstances and one advantage I have is that I have no close family members left in the UK so the drawback to the UK isn't strong for me.
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Old Jun 24th 2021, 2:57 pm
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Default Re: Move back to UK or stay in Canada?

We do live in Oakville, and could sell our house and buy somewhere decent in the UK. That is a huge driver for us.
My Wife is Canadian, which is why we moved here. We love it here, but it's just a tad boring. We're also thinking about opportunities for the kids as they grow up. Toronto just isn't London.
To be perfectly honest, it it was just myself, I would have moved back to the UK years ago. The big question is whether moving back would be the right thing for the whole family?
The points about overcrowding etc., are all valid and something that gives us pause for thought.
I remember sitting in our flat in London preparing to move to Canada when the news came out that Joe Strummer had died. Maybe the Clash references is an Oman?
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Old Jun 24th 2021, 3:14 pm
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Default Re: Move back to UK or stay in Canada?

Originally Posted by John_B View Post
After 16 years of living in Canada, we are considering moving back to the UK. It seems like a much harder decision than it was when we moved to Canada. I think we realise this is a one way ticket with no coming back.

Our eldest son has just graduated high school and our youngest is in grade 9. Both are excited at the prospect of moving to the UK.

Is anyone else feeling the same, or made a decision to stay or go? My head and my heart are all over the place. My heart says go back, but my head keeps telling me it might be a big mistake.

Any advise, wisdom or opinions are welcome.
Only you can decide and everyone will have different reasons or moves to a different location within the country. Some people hate Canada, some people hate the UK, some people never settle and others have the tools to make it work anywhere. I suppose one downside for young people is Brexit and that limits opportunities if you want to work and travel in Europe but they didn't have that in Canada either.
Although I much prefer our part of Ireland and thought Kent was overcrowded, it's not as if the whole UK is overcrowded either. Cornwall vs. a huge Canadian city might seem less crowded. Personally I'm just glad that we in Ireland remain in the EU and that makes owning a holiday home or splitting time later on much easier. But that is just my view and as said, we all have different reasons.

Last edited by Moses2013; Jun 24th 2021 at 3:16 pm.
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Old Jun 24th 2021, 3:25 pm
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Default Re: Move back to UK or stay in Canada?

Originally Posted by John_B View Post
After 16 years of living in Canada, we are considering moving back to the UK. It seems like a much harder decision than it was when we moved to Canada. I think we realise this is a one way ticket with no coming back.

Our eldest son has just graduated high school and our youngest is in grade 9. Both are excited at the prospect of moving to the UK.

Is anyone else feeling the same, or made a decision to stay or go? My head and my heart are all over the place. My heart says go back, but my head keeps telling me it might be a big mistake.

Any advise, wisdom or opinions are welcome.
If you all want to go, if you can afford to go, and if you all have the ability to return if you decide you don't like it, why would it be a mistake to try it? Why would it be a one-way ticket?

Give it a go... you're a long time dead.
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Old Jun 24th 2021, 3:34 pm
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Default Re: Move back to UK or stay in Canada?

Originally Posted by John_B View Post
. Toronto just isn't London.
Which is why my daughter, born in Canada, sold up in Toronto and emigrated to Tower Hamlets. I haven't heard of anyone else choosing that specific path.
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Old Jun 24th 2021, 3:43 pm
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Default Re: Move back to UK or stay in Canada?

Originally Posted by Jingsamichty View Post
If you all want to go, if you can afford to go, and if you all have the ability to return if you decide you don't like it, why would it be a mistake to try it? Why would it be a one-way ticket?

Give it a go... you're a long time dead.
I seem to remember you can only bring your net worth into Canada tax free one time only. So if we decided to move back again, we might have a hefty tax bill. We also just don't want to go through the whole thing again. But we are all Canadian citizens, so that will always be an option.

I like your outlook on you only live once. That's also a big factor for us, or at least myself. Moving would be another adventure too.

The way I see it is as long as we are together as a family, we will always be home. Wherever that happens to be.
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Old Jun 24th 2021, 3:47 pm
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Default Re: Move back to UK or stay in Canada?

Originally Posted by dbd33 View Post
Which is why my daughter, born in Canada, sold up in Toronto and emigrated to Tower Hamlets. I haven't heard of anyone else choosing that specific path.
Interesting. We lived in Bow, near Vicki Park. I loved it when I was younger. It's a great place to live when you are starting out. Not sure I'd live there now. Mainly because it's so expensive now.
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Old Jun 24th 2021, 3:58 pm
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Default Re: Move back to UK or stay in Canada?

Originally Posted by John_B View Post
Interesting. We lived in Bow, near Vicki Park. I loved it when I was younger. It's a great place to live when you are starting out. Not sure I'd live there now. Mainly because it's so expensive now.
Well, yes, they moved the year before the Olympics and stayed for three years or so. It sounded great fun, balcony on the river, bus boat at the door.


The rent, initially, was 450 pounds a week.
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Old Jun 24th 2021, 4:01 pm
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Default Re: Move back to UK or stay in Canada?

Have you tried another part of Canada? Sorry just slipping in this useless piece of advice before someone else does.

16 years is a good run but it seems like you're at an important point where if you can go it would likely not impact the education of your children. Also as pointed out your property value is likely far higher.

The overcrowding argument around the UK is a load of bollocks. The Golden Horseshoe has overcrowding everywhere. The 401 at it's busiest is worse than the M25.

Your children would have more opportunities to travel, more fun universities and better job opportunities in the UK so you might owe that to them. If you feel it's time go for it- you know you'll assimilate quickly and it will be a novelty for a year or two for everyone regardless.

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Old Jun 24th 2021, 5:58 pm
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Default Re: Move back to UK or stay in Canada?

Originally Posted by JamesM View Post
Have you tried another part of Canada? Sorry just slipping in this useless piece of advice before someone else does.

16 years is a good run but it seems like you're at an important point where if you can go it would likely not impact the education of your children. Also as pointed out your property value is likely far higher.

The overcrowding argument around the UK is a load of bollocks. The Golden Horseshoe has overcrowding everywhere. The 401 at it's busiest is worse than the M25.

Your children would have more opportunities to travel, more fun universities and better job opportunities in the UK so you might owe that to them. If you feel it's time go for it- you know you'll assimilate quickly and it will be a novelty for a year or two for everyone regardless.
Thanks for the feedback.

We've looked around at other places in Canada, but it's either moving out to the boonies or spending a fortune for something similar to what we already have.

Personally I avoid driving on any highway here, unless absolutely necessary. The QEW is just a massive car park. And you can forget the 400, unless you are a complete masochist.

We'd be looking at the home counties. We'd like a 30 to 40 mins commute into London for work etc. I agree, once you get outside of the M25 it's much less crowded.

The irony is that when we moved to Canada in 2005, the house prices here we so much cheaper than the UK. Now it's almost the reverse (London and others excepted).
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Old Jun 24th 2021, 6:03 pm
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Default Re: Move back to UK or stay in Canada?

Question for the OP. What would you be going back to?
What do you find boring?
Every time I go back to visit, I am reminded why I left. Somethings are nice, but I find people and the UK has changed. I have changed as a person so the values or things I liked I have grown out of. Do you find you have changed as a person living 16 years in Canada?
There will be different opportunities for the children. But I do know people that have moved here in Canada as it would be better opportunities for their own children.
Have you thought about a different part of Canada..?
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Old Jun 24th 2021, 10:20 pm
  #14  
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Default Re: Move back to UK or stay in Canada?

When were you last in London? The Home Counties etc? I'm just wondering if you're thinking fondly of what isn't there anymore.
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Old Jun 24th 2021, 10:29 pm
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Default Re: Move back to UK or stay in Canada?

Originally Posted by John_B View Post
We do live in Oakville, and could sell our house and buy somewhere decent in the UK. That is a huge driver for us.
My Wife is Canadian, which is why we moved here. We love it here, but it's just a tad boring. We're also thinking about opportunities for the kids as they grow up. Toronto just isn't London.
To be perfectly honest, it it was just myself, I would have moved back to the UK years ago. The big question is whether moving back would be the right thing for the whole family?
The points about overcrowding etc., are all valid and something that gives us pause for thought.
I remember sitting in our flat in London preparing to move to Canada when the news came out that Joe Strummer had died. Maybe the Clash references is an Oman?
Make sure that you only go to shops for locals. We'll have no trouble here.

All kidding aside, the UK is not the same place as it was in 2005 when you left. I have been back in 2016 and 2006 and then probably once a year for some reason all the way back to 1981 and people move on, life moves on, towns/people change and before you know it you're drinking a Tim Horton's double double after getting it in a drive thru lineup in your Suburban SUV and you say to yourself, 'hey, I've arrived, this is nirvana'. If that is something you can identify you won't like the Home Counties anymore and the GTA is for you.
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