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Should we or shouldn't we move back to UK?

Should we or shouldn't we move back to UK?

Old Jan 8th 2008, 10:09 pm
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Default Should we or shouldn't we move back to UK?

Hi-

I am an American married to an Englishman, we have been living in the USA for almost 4 years. It has had its ups and downs, my hubby has 2 degrees and can only get crap jobs, which he finds very difficult. He hates the long hours, little pay & no vacation time. We do not live near any of my family ( as they would drive us Crazy!) Our child is 3 and he would like for him to go to the schools he attended and see all the things England & Europe has to offer culturally. I love England, but when we were there this Spring, I noticed alot more rudeness toward Americans than I had before (for example- a lady in a shop told me to F-off back to America, just because I didn't move my son's pram fast enough so she could get by). I worry about the schools, and how we are going to afford to send him to the best, how are we going to afford a house, we live in a Big Victorian house - fixer upper but oh the space. How am I going to live with his parents for a year until we are settled and can get our own place?? I love them, but when you have been on your on since 18, how do you go back living under someone else's house and rules? My son is much more attached to my hubby's family than mine, so he would be fine moving. It's me that is worried. I don't want to make a wrong decision. My hubby gave up everything to come to America because that is where I wished to be, so don't I owe him the same? Is it safe in the UK? I think if we were going to be in the countryside of England I would be fine, all the beautiful villages and views. But being so close in near London worries me. I just do want to make the wrong choice and get there and want to come back to USA. Each side of the pond has its pros and cons. Anyone living in the UK or going back have any advice???

Last edited by bentley2007; Jan 8th 2008 at 11:09 pm.
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Old Jan 8th 2008, 10:31 pm
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Default Re: Should we or shouldn't we move back to UK?

Originally Posted by bentley2007 View Post
Hi-

I am an American married to an Englishman, we have been living in the USA for almost 4 years. It has had its ups and downs, my hubby has 2 degrees and can only get crap jobs, which he finds very difficult. He hates the long hours, little pay & no vacation time. We do not live near any of my family ( as they would drive us Crazy!) Our child is 3 and he would like for him to go to the schools he attended and see all the things England & Europe has to offer culturally. I love England, but when we were there this Spring, I noticed alot more rudeness toward Americans than I had before (for example- a lady in a shop told me to F-off back to America, just because I didn't move my son's pram fast enough so she could get by). I worry about the schools, and how we are going to afford to send him to the best, how are we going to afford a house, we live in a Victorian house now 5,000+ sq feet- fixer upper but oh the space. How am I going to live with his parents for a year until we are settled and can get our own place?? I love them, but when you have been on your on since 18, how do you go back living under someone else's house and rules? My son is much more attached to my hubby's family than mine, so they would be fine moving back. It's me that is worried. There just doesn't seem to be an easy solution. My hubby gave up everything to come to America because that is where I wished to be, so don't I owe him the same? Is it safe in the UK? I think if we were going to be in the countryside of England I would be fine, all the beautiful villages and views. But being so close in near London worries me. I just do want to make the wrong choice and get there and want to come back to USA. Any Americans living in the UK have any advice???
Cost of housing is a real problem if you move to the U.K.
Not just British real estate prices but the exchange rate with the U.S. dollar which is low.

Has your husband thought about getting his U.S. citizenship before he goes back?

As for your son, whether you decide to go back or not, you should get him a British consular birth certificate and British passport (assuming husband was born in the U.K.). He can have both British and American passports.
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Old Jan 8th 2008, 10:37 pm
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Default Re: Should we or shouldn't we move back to UK?

Originally Posted by bentley2007 View Post
Hi-

I am an American married to an Englishman, we have been living in the USA for almost 4 years. It has had its ups and downs, my hubby has 2 degrees and can only get crap jobs, which he finds very difficult. He hates the long hours, little pay & no vacation time. We do not live near any of my family ( as they would drive us Crazy!) Our child is 3 and he would like for him to go to the schools he attended and see all the things England & Europe has to offer culturally. I love England, but when we were there this Spring, I noticed alot more rudeness toward Americans than I had before (for example- a lady in a shop told me to F-off back to America, just because I didn't move my son's pram fast enough so she could get by). I worry about the schools, and how we are going to afford to send him to the best, how are we going to afford a house, we live in a Victorian house now 5,000+ sq feet- fixer upper but oh the space. How am I going to live with his parents for a year until we are settled and can get our own place?? I love them, but when you have been on your on since 18, how do you go back living under someone else's house and rules? My son is much more attached to my hubby's family than mine, so they would be fine moving back. It's me that is worried. There just doesn't seem to be an easy solution. My hubby gave up everything to come to America because that is where I wished to be, so don't I owe him the same? Is it safe in the UK? I think if we were going to be in the countryside of England I would be fine, all the beautiful villages and views. But being so close in near London worries me. I just do want to make the wrong choice and get there and want to come back to USA. Any Americans living in the UK have any advice???

I'm not American living in the UK but I'm sure you won't mind me replying

Why do you have to live with your husband's parents for a year? Do they live in London and if so which part? Can you not rent somewhere for yourselves?
Do you have an area in mind that people can maybe help you with?

You ask 'is it safe in the UK'? - It depends on which areas you are looking at. The UK certainly isn't without it's issues with crime, drugs and anti-social behaviour even in the beautiful villages you love but some areas of the UK are much worse than others.

You can live in a 'beautiful' village and still be less than an hour from London by train of you want to if your in-laws live there giving you the best of both worlds.

So far as rudeness goes just rise above it. Ignorant people are worldwide. I got called a Pommie Bitch a few of weeks ago for asking a woman to pick up her dog's mess from outside my daughter's school.

There is never 'an easy solution' but in the end only you can decide what is best and right for your family in your paticular circumstances. Good Luck
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Old Jan 8th 2008, 10:38 pm
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Default Re: Should we or shouldn't we move back to UK?

Originally Posted by bentley2007 View Post
Hi-

I am an American married to an Englishman, we have been living in the USA for almost 4 years. It has had its ups and downs, my hubby has 2 degrees and can only get crap jobs, which he finds very difficult. He hates the long hours, little pay & no vacation time. We do not live near any of my family ( as they would drive us Crazy!) Our child is 3 and he would like for him to go to the schools he attended and see all the things England & Europe has to offer culturally. I love England, but when we were there this Spring, I noticed alot more rudeness toward Americans than I had before (for example- a lady in a shop told me to F-off back to America, just because I didn't move my son's pram fast enough so she could get by). I worry about the schools, and how we are going to afford to send him to the best, how are we going to afford a house, we live in a Victorian house now 5,000+ sq feet- fixer upper but oh the space. How am I going to live with his parents for a year until we are settled and can get our own place?? I love them, but when you have been on your on since 18, how do you go back living under someone else's house and rules? My son is much more attached to my hubby's family than mine, so they would be fine moving back. It's me that is worried. There just doesn't seem to be an easy solution. My hubby gave up everything to come to America because that is where I wished to be, so don't I owe him the same? Is it safe in the UK? I think if we were going to be in the countryside of England I would be fine, all the beautiful villages and views. But being so close in near London worries me. I just do want to make the wrong choice and get there and want to come back to USA. Any Americans living in the UK have any advice???
Hi,
firstly why do you have to live with his parents? I agree living in someone elses house is very stressful and we only had to do it for 6 weeks before coming to NZ by the end of that time we were feeling the pressure, can't you go it alone...rent if you are not able to buy.

Other than that why not give the UK a try...yes you will get rude people just as you do everywhere in the world. Cost of living well if you choose private school then you pay...if he goes to the state school you don't so you just maybe need to look at your options and costs really.

Only you can decide...but the UK can be a great place to live. I have lived in Oz, Germany, NZ and am going back to the UK in a weeks time. It has a lot to offer see it as an adventure and go for it, if it doesn't work out all you have lost is money...which is not the most important thing in life and you may find you will settle. A key factor is getting the fundamentals right which I know for me would be our own place!

Buying and renting check out prices on www.rightmove.co.uk

Good luck with your decision.
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Old Jan 9th 2008, 9:25 pm
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Default Re: Should we or shouldn't we move back to UK?

Originally Posted by bentley2007 View Post
Hi-

I am an American married to an Englishman, we have been living in the USA for almost 4 years.... Our child is 3 and he would like for him to go to the schools he attended and see all the things England & Europe has to offer culturally. I love England, but when we were there this Spring, I noticed alot more rudeness toward Americans than I had before (for example- a lady in a shop told me to F-off back to America, just because I didn't move my son's pram fast enough so she could get by). I worry about the schools, and how we are going to afford to send him to the best, how are we going to afford a house, we live in a Big Victorian house - fixer upper but oh the space. How am I going to live with his parents for a year until we are settled and can get our own place?? I just do want to make the wrong choice and get there and want to come back to USA. Each side of the pond has its pros and cons. Anyone living in the UK or going back have any advice???
Hi Bentley,
I am in a similar situation deciding whether to move to the UK or not. I am British born but grew up in the US. My wife has an opportunity to relocate there and my citizenship makes it slightly easier for us to even consider it. Yes, we worry about schools, housing, taxes, safety, etc., but it all really comes down to what you want from life. You said it yourself at the end of your post... each side has its pros and cons. To me, life is about experience. I currently have a very safe, if not all that profitable, job at a university, but I'm not sure that a "safe" life necessarily equals a "good" life. Yes, moving will be scary and probably nerve-racking, but it will also be a HUGE adventure, come good or come bad.

You have family there... though why you would have to live with them I'm not sure. We will not make huge salaries, (we look to be able to net about 2400 pounds a month) but should still be able to get by in a rented house for about 900/mo. But even if you did have to live with them, like I said, it's about the adventure. So you spend a few months living in a sitcom, so what? Suck it up and look at the good times.

One of my sons' (5 and 9) favorite movies is Finding Nemo. If you have a 3 year old I bet you've seen it. I love it as well, and relate to the neurotic, overly-cautious Dad. One of the scenes which really struck me is when Dorri and Marlin are hanging by their fin-tips to the tongue of the blue whale they are "stuck" in. Dorri says that the whale is telling them to let go. Marlin is worried that the whale is going to swallow them, but she wants to trust the whale. He says "How do you know something bad isn't going to happen??" She thinks about it and says, "I don't!" and let's go. Reluctantly, so does he.

A lesson I have taught myself is that nothing I have been afraid of has ever turned out as bad as I imagined, and rewards can be found in every experience.

If you let go, you might end up exactly where you want or need to be, or you might end up swallowed. If you hold on for fear of the unknown, you can only be sure of keeping your familiar, if somewhat uncomfortable and boring, seat on a whale's tongue.

Ok... one more movie reference. Sorry - I'll keep it short. (the Brits are all saying "Yep, he's a Yank alright!). In Transformers the Movie, the Robot/Car wants them to get in so he can take them to safety, but they don't know he's friendly yet. The boy asks the girl, "50 years from now, when you look back at your life, don't you want to say you had the guts to get in the car?"

Ok, I'm done. Thanks... If nothing else I think at least I've convinced myself!
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Old Jan 9th 2008, 9:31 pm
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Default Re: Should we or shouldn't we move back to UK?

I have lived in London most of my life.

I brought up 3 children in London.

We were never, ever bored. There is just so much do to in London, not just for grown-ups but also for kids. Just have a look at Time Out - you are spoilt for choice as to what to do. And so much is either free or at least affordable.

Our children went to ordinary state schools and got a great education.

I never had any reason to be concerned about our safety whilst living in London.

I am currently in California but cannot wait to get back to London (as do our sons).

There is no place like it.

Okay, I admit I am biased....
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Old Jan 10th 2008, 3:01 am
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Default Re: Should we or shouldn't we move back to UK?

That was great Brit by Brit, I never thought of it in that way.

Oh....since there have been others asking....we have to live with my in-laws because as everyone knows housing near London is very expensive and we really do not wish to buy in that area. By the time we sell our home here( housing market not that great at the moment), pay the huge shipping fees to send just a few things over, we have been quoted $25,000 from Chicago to London, by 2 different companies. We have alot of new furniture and antiques and would love to bring them, plus we love our bedroom suites. Not sure if there will ever be a house big enough to fit them in.

What advice do you guys have on that, do we really slim it down or take what we love?

Also, we want to have a good look around to see where we would like to settle, as we have moved 3 times in the past 4 years. We want to settle somewhere permanently! A year or so at my in-laws would give us more down payment and a better sense of where we would like to be.

I love Somerset, Dorset & the Peak District. Anyone from those areas??

Last edited by bentley2007; Jan 10th 2008 at 3:22 am.
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Old Jan 10th 2008, 9:48 am
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Default Re: Should we or shouldn't we move back to UK?

Originally Posted by bentley2007 View Post
Hi-

I am an American married to an Englishman, we have been living in the USA for almost 4 years. It has had its ups and downs, my hubby has 2 degrees and can only get crap jobs, which he finds very difficult. He hates the long hours, little pay & no vacation time. We do not live near any of my family ( as they would drive us Crazy!) Our child is 3 and he would like for him to go to the schools he attended and see all the things England & Europe has to offer culturally. I love England, but when we were there this Spring, I noticed alot more rudeness toward Americans than I had before (for example- a lady in a shop told me to F-off back to America, just because I didn't move my son's pram fast enough so she could get by). I worry about the schools, and how we are going to afford to send him to the best, how are we going to afford a house, we live in a Big Victorian house - fixer upper but oh the space. How am I going to live with his parents for a year until we are settled and can get our own place?? I love them, but when you have been on your on since 18, how do you go back living under someone else's house and rules? My son is much more attached to my hubby's family than mine, so he would be fine moving. It's me that is worried. I don't want to make a wrong decision. My hubby gave up everything to come to America because that is where I wished to be, so don't I owe him the same? Is it safe in the UK? I think if we were going to be in the countryside of England I would be fine, all the beautiful villages and views. But being so close in near London worries me. I just do want to make the wrong choice and get there and want to come back to USA. Each side of the pond has its pros and cons. Anyone living in the UK or going back have any advice???

House prices in the UK, along with Australia, are extremely expensive, and despite the selective analysis of many who are desperate to get on the ladder, there is little sign this will change any time soon because there is way more demand than supply in the UK, the interest rates are low and will continue to fall through 2008, and the economy is still strong.

If you decide to move to the UK, my advice is: avoid the temptation to go to an area where the prices are cheaper because these areas will offer little employment and the houses there will lose more value in a price correction. Go to an area with good access to London (and therefore Europe), rent a nice property and SAVE until you have enough to be able to borrow much less than 100%. The upside is when you own a property here you will enjoy watching it increase in value in the long-term, and English houses are very good at retaining value.

As for cretins racially abusing you because of your nationality; these people are just hicks. Resist the temptation to tell them they only speak English because of the US military, and move along. There is a strong left-wing in the UK that was latent but is becoming more overt as the integration into the European state grows, and with this comes a heavy anti-Americanism.

Or you could just tell them you're Canadian and watch them squirm; they're so ignorant they wouldn't know the difference in accent.
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Old Jan 10th 2008, 6:34 pm
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Default Re: Should we or shouldn't we move back to UK?

Whatever you do, I'd make sure your husband gets his citizenship before you leave - if you then decide to come back, you'll have no hassles.
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