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how to fund the move before UK house is sold

how to fund the move before UK house is sold

Old May 17th 2016, 11:08 am
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Default how to fund the move before UK house is sold

Hello helpful people,

We've got a house to sell in the UK with a large amount of equity (more than 50% in a desirable part of SE England).

However, we will be setting up in the US a few weeks before our house is sold in UK. With no credit record (or job!) in the US it will mean paying outright for a car and several months rent, amongst other things. In the San Francisco area this is clearly not going to be cheap!

We don't have much in the way of savings as we've been ploughing it in to the house. I could use a 0% credit card for any expenses we incur in the UK but need a short term loan to fund these big initial costs in the US.

I know that 'bridging loans' were common in the past but not sure what options I've got now. I could take out a 2nd mortgage but don't really want the fees & hassle for such a short time.

Any ideas? I can't be the first person who's faced this problem, can I?!
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Old May 17th 2016, 11:28 am
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Default Re: how to fund the move before UK house is sold

With no job lined up (and the usual question here is then 'what visa?'), what's driving the timescale? Why not stay those few more weeks in the UK, and move afterwards?
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Old May 17th 2016, 11:45 am
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Default Re: how to fund the move before UK house is sold

Fair questions!

I'll be on an IR-1 visa (wife is USC) and she's going on ahead with the kids (who also have US passports) to set things up. With pets in the house that are coming with us, young kids, plus some work I have to finish here, it's the only way we can do it.
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Old May 17th 2016, 11:54 am
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Default Re: how to fund the move before UK house is sold

Originally Posted by carlrush View Post
Hello helpful people,

We've got a house to sell in the UK with a large amount of equity (more than 50% in a desirable part of SE England).

However, we will be setting up in the US a few weeks before our house is sold in UK. With no credit record (or job!) in the US it will mean paying outright for a car and several months rent, amongst other things. In the San Francisco area this is clearly not going to be cheap!

We don't have much in the way of savings as we've been ploughing it in to the house. I could use a 0% credit card for any expenses we incur in the UK but need a short term loan to fund these big initial costs in the US.

I know that 'bridging loans' were common in the past but not sure what options I've got now. I could take out a 2nd mortgage but don't really want the fees & hassle for such a short time.

Any ideas? I can't be the first person who's faced this problem, can I?!
How long has your wife been out of the US? Does she have any credit rating here? That will affect what credit you may get and the cost of it.

Do either of you have jobs to go to?

If both of these are negative then you are going to struggle and delay and/or getting cash secured against your UK home may be your only option.
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Old May 17th 2016, 12:00 pm
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Default Re: how to fund the move before UK house is sold

Originally Posted by MidAtlantic View Post
How long has your wife been out of the US? Does she have any credit rating here? That will affect what credit you may get and the cost of it.

Do either of you have jobs to go to?

If both of these are negative then you are going to struggle and delay and/or getting cash secured against your UK home may be your only option.
My wife has been living in the UK for 12 years and I've never lived in the US so credit score is going to be zero.

We've got lots of connections for work but no firm offers. To be honest we won't start hunting seriously until we're over there. Not anticipating major problems finding something and once the house is sold will have enough cash to get by for a while in case the hunt takes longer than expected.
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Old May 17th 2016, 12:05 pm
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Default Re: how to fund the move before UK house is sold

Maybe I'm missing something, but if neither of you have jobs to go, then why the rush to move - can you not wait until the house has sold and you can fund the move yourself rather than trying to find a loan?
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Old May 17th 2016, 12:17 pm
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Default Re: how to fund the move before UK house is sold

Originally Posted by christmasoompa View Post
Maybe I'm missing something, but if neither of you have jobs to go, then why the rush to move - can you not wait until the house has sold and you can fund the move yourself rather than trying to find a loan?
Are the kids school age, do you have a very specific area in which you'll definitely be living/ job hunting (by wife's family, perhaps).

I wouldn't want to move kids to the US, then find that I had to move them again in a few months and they'd be changing schools. I'd sell the UK house, rent in the UK for 6 months, then plan out the US move to tie down the area with a job/ rental house, THEN move the kids across once I was certain they'd be staying at X school.

Much less bother if they're still toddlers, though.
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Old May 17th 2016, 12:17 pm
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Default Re: how to fund the move before UK house is sold

Originally Posted by carlrush View Post
My wife has been living in the UK for 12 years and I've never lived in the US so credit score is going to be zero.
This is not necessarily the case. Does your wife have any credit cards still running? My wife was in the UK for 11 years but kept a couple of credit cards alive. We used them infrequently when visiting the US, etc. That activity maintained her credit rating which was very useful when we moved across.

Originally Posted by carlrush View Post
We've got lots of connections for work but no firm offers. To be honest we won't start hunting seriously until we're over there. Not anticipating major problems finding something and once the house is sold will have enough cash to get by for a while in case the hunt takes longer than expected.
My thoughts? Big mistake. You don't provide details but I would suggest you plan for "major problems finding something". Delay things until the house is sold, or a lot closer to having the money in the bank. As per others...why the rush?
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Old May 17th 2016, 12:21 pm
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Default Re: how to fund the move before UK house is sold

Originally Posted by carlrush View Post
....Not anticipating major problems finding something...
People have said the same, but lack of US experience can be a hassle in the job market. Suppose it depends on what you do, but it's not something to count on.

As for money, use your UK credit cards...or scale back what you buy when you get here.
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Old May 17th 2016, 12:37 pm
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Default Re: how to fund the move before UK house is sold

Originally Posted by carlrush View Post
My wife has been living in the UK for 12 years and I've never lived in the US so credit score is going to be zero.

We've got lots of connections for work but no firm offers. To be honest we won't start hunting seriously until we're over there. Not anticipating major problems finding something and once the house is sold will have enough cash to get by for a while in case the hunt takes longer than expected.
My USC wife was in the UK for longer than this but kept a bank account and credit card open and active. She had a reasonable credit score when we moved over.

I am really not sure what you expect to happen. No jobs, children, no savings. What about health care from the day they land?

I feel that you should review your timing and only go ahead when you have a substantial cash buffer from the sale of your home.
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Old May 17th 2016, 12:44 pm
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Default Re: how to fund the move before UK house is sold

We are on the same sort of schedule. Planning on moving in the Summer holidays to ease kiddos in before they start school in the US.

My USC husband has been applying for jobs from here, but feels he needs to actually be in the States to be able to react quickly / meet people etc. Similarly (and perhaps optimistically) we are hopeful he'll find a job pretty quickly. In the meantime, we are lucky in that we have people we can stay with.

However, financing everything is a constant headache. We too have 0 credit (my USC husband has lived here for over 15 years). So we've be working with a bank in the US to build credit gradually for the past year (through secured cards etc.) And also set up AMEX cards in the UK to transfer to the US.

With regards to cars - try International Autosource - they've been helpful with finding us a way to finance a car.

Our difference is that we've gone ahead and sold our house (it completes in 2 weeks time), which means we may have the money, but without my visa in place yet (my CR1 interview is early June), it's a risky approach...

The other thing we've done (again a little risky, but only way we could finance everything before the house sale), is to take out a loan here in the UK. Using our good credit here, we've got a good interest rate and know it can be paid over time with money from the house. Also, my assumption is that as much as my credit rating won't benefit my US credit, it also won't hurt it!

I also went ahead and got Experian and Equinox credit reports in the UK to take with me - just in case it may help in the States - I scored 999 out of 1000, so hoping - even if just for something informal - that may help.
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Old May 17th 2016, 1:00 pm
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Default Re: how to fund the move before UK house is sold

I should add a bit more background....

Kids are 3 & 1 so planning to rent for a year to build up credit rating, establish jobs etc before buying. We can then make decision based on schools & jobs.

I don't underestimate the risk of travelling without job but it's hard to be taken seriously without being over there. We're both in fields that appear in demand and have had lots of interest but decided to firm up offers when we get there. Not having a job is a worry but we will have the capital to keep us going for a good while.

Moving to a rental in the UK doesn't seem that attractive as its delaying our move, having the hassle of moving twice and giving money to a landlord. With pets and kids, the idea of moving on the day we compete our house with no where to live in the US doesn't look possible.
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Old May 17th 2016, 1:24 pm
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Default Re: how to fund the move before UK house is sold

Originally Posted by carlrush View Post

Moving to a rental in the UK doesn't seem that attractive as its delaying our move, having the hassle of moving twice and giving money to a landlord. With pets and kids, the idea of moving on the day we compete our house with no where to live in the US doesn't look possible.
It's the pets that are the complicating factor, as you could otherwise be quite flexible with extended stay hotels or vacation rentals. Are there any friends or family who could have them for you for a little while?

Whereabouts are you planning on living and when is your projected move to take place? I know some of the southern states don't permit pet transport during the summer months, as the airports get too hot and they can't guarantee to keep the cages cool enough.
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Old May 17th 2016, 1:34 pm
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Default Re: how to fund the move before UK house is sold

Originally Posted by kodokan View Post
It's the pets that are the complicating factor, as you could otherwise be quite flexible with extended stay hotels or vacation rentals. Are there any friends or family who could have them for you for a little while?

Whereabouts are you planning on living and when is your projected move to take place? I know some of the southern states don't permit pet transport during the summer months, as the airports get too hot and they can't guarantee to keep the cages cool enough.
You're right, the pets are the main hassle here! Sadly no family in the UK who can take them and don't really want to put them in a cattery for a few weeks in the US. They're 12 years old so won't survive change after change.

Moving to the East Bay in Sept and it looks like flying in to San Francisco is ok at that time of year.
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Old May 17th 2016, 1:41 pm
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Default Re: how to fund the move before UK house is sold

Tricky logistics... is there any way your wife could go over alone for a while, and do a big job hunting push? Again, not ideal with having such young children, but there isn't an easy solution.

I personally wouldn't want to move halfway through the UK house sale, because what if it falls through? And if you want to move in September, are you thinking of the house going up for sale in, say, July? That's quite a slow month for the housing market.
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