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Dual US/UK Citizen moving to US

Dual US/UK Citizen moving to US

Old Dec 21st 2014, 11:58 am
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Default Dual US/UK Citizen moving to US

Hi guys, I will soon be finishing a degree in Politics & International Relations at a Russell Group university in the UK. I am a dual US and UK citizen but have grown up in the UK. However, having visited the US many times over the years (predominantly California but also other states) I am thinking about moving there. I have only ever lived in one place my entire life (London) and feel that when I graduate would be a good point at which to make a leap and experience a different culture. I have no partner or kids to worry about, and have a lot of relatives in the US.

Obviously there are no visa issues, I have a US passport/ social security number and could start working there tomorrow if I so wanted. My main query is the difference in cost of living and quality of life in the US vs the UK, and also employability rates. How happy are you that you moved to the US? Is there anything you miss about the UK? Should I find a job before I leave or wait until I get to the US? With my degree I'd like to work in government or charity work, though I know not having lived in the US that government work may be harder to get into.
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Old Dec 21st 2014, 12:34 pm
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Default Re: Dual US/UK Citizen moving to US

Hi sarahmoose, it's hard to compare quality of life and cost of living, since California is a big state. As for work, you can look around online etc., but in practical terms, I'd wait till I was settled in the US before seriously looking, since you don't have qualifications or much professional experience, I would assume.

If it was me, I would pick a sympathetic family member or friend to live with for a little while, get an entry level job, and think seriously about going back to school for a masters degree in a field that interests you. Unfortunately, the big barrier to newcomers in the US is health insurance. To be prudent, you have to have it. Going to school full time can take care of health insurance, I believe.
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Old Dec 21st 2014, 12:36 pm
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Default Re: Dual US/UK Citizen moving to US

Your questions are almost impossible to answer without a better idea of where you want to live. Just like in the UK, it's a lot more expensive to live in London than it is to be in the sticks. The same is true of the US. New Your, LA, the Bay Area, Chicago, etc. will be a challenge financially compared to living outside a much smaller city.

Where I live (rural NE Georgia), 11 years ago, I was able to buy a 3200 sq ft newly constructed house on an acre of land for under $140k. The same thing in San Francisco is likely to be in excess of $1.5-2 million!

Of course, this is reflected in salaries too. I earn a lot less than I would in Atlanta, for example, and I have a lot less entertainment options.

You can certainly look online for jobs to get an idea of what's available, but you do need to be available for interviews. You may be lucky and find a company that's happy to wait for you, but that could put you in rare air.

Living in the US is a lot different from visiting as I'm sure you are aware. If you have family here, I would recommend an extended holiday here staying with them and getting the local papers, exploring the job market in the area and get an idea of prices generally.

There's plenty of advice available to you on here when you can be more specific. Some of it is even useful!!

Good luck and welcome to BE.
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Old Dec 21st 2014, 12:52 pm
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Default Re: Dual US/UK Citizen moving to US

With your degree Washington DC might be the easiest place to find a job. After London you'll probably find DC and the surrounding Maryland and Virginia suburbs a lit less expensive.

On a practical note, are you up to date with your US taxes? Being a student you might not need to have filed, but you should make sure everything is in order.
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Old Dec 21st 2014, 1:32 pm
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Default Re: Dual US/UK Citizen moving to US

Originally Posted by nun View Post
With your degree Washington DC might be the easiest place to find a job. After London you'll probably find DC and the surrounding Maryland and Virginia suburbs a lit less expensive. .....
Are you sure? I looked briefly at relocating to that area for a job in DC, and found house prices to be comparable with the greater New York city area.
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Old Dec 21st 2014, 1:38 pm
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Default Re: Dual US/UK Citizen moving to US

Originally Posted by Pulaski View Post
Are you sure? I looked briefly at relocating to that area for a job in DC, and found house prices to be comparable with the greater New York city area.
I assume the OP is not looking at buying property at this stage ...
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Old Dec 21st 2014, 2:46 pm
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Default Re: Dual US/UK Citizen moving to US

Hi Sarah -

I'm doing exactly the same thing as you. I have family in Downey CA and Sarasota FL, at the moment I'm going to stay with some family in Florida and see where life takes me.

I'm applying for lots of jobs at the moment whilst still In the UK, having lots of enquiries and the job market seems pretty vibrant. My friends over in Florida are telling me they're all receiving job offers galore and that the economy seems to be doing very well.

As everyone said it depends where you want to go but generally outside of really big cities cost of living compared to your income seems much better in the USA. You'll have to pay for healthcare which is costly mind.

Let us know how it goes! I booked my tickets for the end of February not too long ago, very excited would be an understatement!
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Old Dec 21st 2014, 2:49 pm
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Default Re: Dual US/UK Citizen moving to US

Originally Posted by robin1234 View Post
I assume the OP is not looking at buying property at this stage ...
The cost of renting is approximately a function of the price of buying (if buying is expensive, so is renting). .... And also an inverse function of the "excitement factor" of renting in that building/ development/ neighbourhood.

FWIW when I came over on a marriage visa, it was virtually impossible to get any interest until I actually visited the US at my own expense for interviews, so don't expect much, if any, response to any enquiries or applications you make from the UK. .... You can spoof a US address for your résumé and applications using a PO Box at a UPS Store (use their street address and "Unit #" or "Apt #") and a local VoIP phone number that'll ring in the UK.

Last edited by Pulaski; Dec 21st 2014 at 2:58 pm.
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Old Dec 21st 2014, 3:27 pm
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Default Re: Dual US/UK Citizen moving to US

Originally Posted by JimFL View Post
My friends over in Florida are telling me they're all receiving job offers galore
All of them are getting multiple offers galore?

That doesn't seem plausible...however, if so, what kinds of jobs?
And what qualifications/experience required?
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Old Dec 21st 2014, 3:28 pm
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Default Re: Dual US/UK Citizen moving to US

Companies that recruit globally or from throughout the US may interview via Skype, so this may be a good idea to mention in you resume if you are searching from the UK.

I had this happen to me when I was applying to a cruise line and although I'm in Georgia, it was was a lot cheaper, let alone quicker, to interview this way rather than fly me to Miami.
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Old Dec 21st 2014, 3:52 pm
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Default Re: Dual US/UK Citizen moving to US

Originally Posted by sarahmoose View Post
Hi guys, I will soon be finishing a degree in Politics & International Relations at a Russell Group university in the UK....
So does the missus, well a master. She now works in a bank :/

As for your Q's, they're pretty pointless unless you have a specific location in mind.

The answer will be massively different for Western MA compared to Boston, never mind comparing California to Virginia.

For the general info, the wiki is a good place to start.

Welcome to BE though and good luck!
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Old Dec 21st 2014, 3:56 pm
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Default Re: Dual US/UK Citizen moving to US

Originally Posted by nun View Post

On a practical note, are you up to date with your US taxes? Being a student you might not need to have filed, but you should make sure everything is in order.
And if the OP is a bloke, if they have filed for SS...government jobs and a lot of think tank type places usually require it.

Lot of government think tank type places dotted along the coast, NY/Boston too.
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Old Dec 21st 2014, 6:00 pm
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Default Re: Dual US/UK Citizen moving to US

If anyone wants affordable California living...

Trona, San Bernardino County, California - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old Dec 21st 2014, 6:05 pm
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Default Re: Dual US/UK Citizen moving to US

Originally Posted by Bob View Post
And if the OP is a bloke..........
..........his username suggests he may have some unresolved issues to work through
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Old Dec 21st 2014, 6:16 pm
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Default Re: Dual US/UK Citizen moving to US

Originally Posted by Hotscot View Post
All of them are getting multiple offers galore?

That doesn't seem plausible...however, if so, what kinds of jobs?
And what qualifications/experience required?
In sales based roles, there seem to be lots of ads for these jobs on the job sites too.

One friend works in Insurance, the other in Advertising sales.
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