House Downsizing

How To Move To England From America

| Published by

If you’ve ever considered how to move to England from America, here are some pointers to get you started. Our number one tip would be preparation and to talk to an expert in the UK well in advance of your move . A move of this magnitude requires careful thought and planning, and possibly even specialist advice. Hiring a property finder is a sure-fire way to lighten the load and can provide a lot of reassurance and comfort when dealing with unfamiliar agencies or processes.

How To Move To England From America:  Securing A Visa

If you don’t already hold British citizenship or have settled status, we would strongly recommend that you explore your visa options prior to fully engaging with an England property search. It is possible that any visa conditions imposed upon you could impact your property criteria and priorities, particularly in regards to a decision about renting or buying.  All new rental tenancies are now subject to “Right to Rent” checks to ensure you are entitled to live in the UK.

For any stay of longer than 6 months you will require a specific visa. Which one you choose will depend heavily on your circumstances and motivation to move. Valid reasons for requesting a visa are work, family, study or investment. If you already have connections in the UK, you may be eligible for one of the following visas.

A Spouse Visa is available to any individual whose husband, wife or civil partner is a British citizen/has settled status. For most people, this is the preferred option as it will give you the right to work without restriction. For a successful application you will need to prove that your marriage is legal within the UK, that you are able to live with your spouse and that you can exist independently of any government financial assistance. In addition, your spouse must be able to prove that they meet the minimum income requirement of £18,600.

Other relatives of British citizens/those with settled status will need a Family of a Settled Person Visa. This visa allows you to live in the UK for up to 33 months before seeking an extension. To apply you must be over 18 years old, have a good understanding of English and be able to prove your familial relationship.

To secure a Tier 4 Student Visa you will need an offer from a UK educational institution. You will also have to demonstrate your ability to cover all your living costs and tuition fees.

For further information about UK visas and other legal queries about how to move to England from America, check the government website here. 

How To Move To England From America:  Finding A Property

Whether you’re planning on renting or buying, finding the perfect property can be a great source of stress and tension.  The rise of the internet has made the process marginally easier by allowing you to browse properties online from thousands of miles away, but we all know that estate agent photos never tell the full story. When you’re living in the USA, it can cost a lot of time and money to fly over to view properties in person, especially when you begin to factor in hotel and transport costs. That’s where a property finder comes in.

If you are looking to buy a property we can select and view properties on your behalf. Following these viewings, we will provide detailed feedback and draw up what we believe to be a compelling shortlist. If you wish, we can provide video in addition to photos of the viewed properties.

When you’re wondering how to move to England from America, the local knowledge of an English property finder can prove invaluable. We know exactly which streets to avoid, which areas are upcoming, where you’re likely to get a good return on your investment and more. Our extensive local networks and contacts mean that we often hear of so-called “off-market” properties which change hands privately or before they are advertised.

How To Move To England From America:  Setting Up Your New Life

The work of a property finder doesn’t stop when they keys are exchanged. Moving to a new country takes a lot of organisation and we’re here to help. From a financial perspective, we can put you in touch with specialists who will guide you through the process of arranging a mortgage without a UK credit history and open a bank account.   Our financial and legal experts will also be able to establish how much stamp duty you are liable to pay, dependent on your other property holdings.

A property finder can also provide you with recommendations for reliable removal companies, building surveyors, architects and tradespeople. If your family are joining you on this move, we can help you select and apply to primary and secondary schools, both state and private.   Bear in mind that the UK and US education systems are also different.  In the UK children must be in school the year that they turn 5, so will usually start in Reception class at age 4.   Grade 1 in the US corresponds to Year 2 in the UK.

Once you have found a property we can help you to find the most competitive utility contracts.

If you wish to bring a beloved family pet with you, you will need to obey UK rules. These include ensuring that your pet is microchipped, has a valid veterinary certificate and has been given a rabies vaccination at least 21 days in advance of travel. Failure to follow these rules could result in your pet being quarantined for up to 4 months. 

County Homesearch have experience in guiding individuals through how to move to England from America. Contact us on 0333 939 8300 to discuss how we can help you.