Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Realistbear

Living Overseas -- merged threads

465 posts in this topic

I am giving increasingly serious thought to returning to the US as I do not like the look of post-Gordon Britain with or without a massive HPC.

I have a US permanent resident card that expires in June so I have to make my mind up relatively quickly as it is an enormous hassle to get another one!

Colorado, Vermont are at the top of the list as of today. Nice houses can be bought for around $250k in countryside that is not too bad with property taxes to match. Affordability, friendly people, a new Audi A4 2.0T for $26k after discount, no sense of being financially raped everytime you go out to dinner, most of my family emigrated there and haven't ventured back to the UK like I did 2 years or so ago,

I think I have had enough of rip-off Britain, Gordon Brown and his ilk, overpriced houses, crowded conditions and ever increasing taxes.

Anyone else at the brink and making plans to sod off somewhere? Where?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[quote name='MarkG' post='903966' date='Dec 27 2007, 06:28 PM']A bunch of us have already gone :).[/quote]


Top 3 reasons why?

Where to?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[quote name='Realistbear' post='903968' date='Dec 27 2007, 06:30 PM']Top 3 reasons why?

Where to?[/quote]
As much as I'd like to emigrate, I'm not giving in and giving up the 'investment' I've put into this country, in terms of the tax and NI I've contributed together with the 6 years served in the Armed Forces. Why should I leave and make way for all and sundry to the UK that have not contributed a penny.

If I [i]could[/i] 'cash in' my NI contributions, I'd be taking them over to Singapore.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I am. I have some serious decisions to make in the next 6 months about where I live, what I do long-term and, to be frank, the UK is looking less and less like the option.

I have been ill with stress for several years, am now recovering thank goodness and find myself in a position where I can potentially be mortgage free and in my early 40s here by the end of 2008 or I can move somewhere else. I have no family at all anymore since my Mum passed away two Christmases ago and I find the stress of my previous profession, IT, to be miserable, forever changing and just too demanding. I am looking now to those nice big modern houses in the likes of the US, Canada, Oz and NZ that I could have in a nice quality setting... and they are tempting.

I do not like the stress, noise, dirt and over-taxation of the UK. I do not like what I have seen in the NHS and do not wish to come old here in the UK. We treat old people terribly here in the UK and, trust me, you do not wish to become old here if you have no one to fight your corner. Having said that the NHS is some kind of safety net and I worry about the US where, as I have seen with my own eyes, ill people not being treated because they have no health insurance and elderly people not getting prescriptions because they simply cannot afford them.

I have to say Canada and NZ interest me a great deal - NZ for quality of life, Canada for quality of life and a decent health system. I think the US is a place to go to when you are young and healthy to make money and get out ASAP. I have my doubts about Oz as I fear it might become one giant desert in my lifetime.

Other places I would consider are other parts of the EU such as Spain, Netherlands and perhaps the likes of Sweden.

I am fed up with the chav culture here in the UK, fed up with everything coming down to the lowest common denominator, fed up with things not working, fed up with rising crime, fed up with dirt, fed up with being taxed to the hilt, fed up with driving hours just to get to and from work, fed up with a Society where Men are basically shafted in relationships and divorce - noticed in another thread someone commenting how many on here have female partners who are not British. Most of my male friends in their 40s and 50s are the same and will not go near a British woman again for a relationship let alone marriage - fed up with feeling like an alien in my land of birth and just, well, just fed up with being powerless to do anything about it.

It is a big decision. I am scared to do it for all sorts of reasons. I am scared if I go somewhere else and something happens to me that no one will know but, in truth, that is no different from here.

A friend from London was down here in Swansea today - a former Swansea lad - and he was asking why Swansea thinks it can justify London prices for houses that are tiny and run-down. He also commented on how dirty the City is and what a mess the Council has made of developing the City centre. The wonderful Gower, Pembrokeshire and Brecon Beacons are all nearby and if it was not for them I would definitely go.

Does that help?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Where to?

Marin, just north of San Francisco.

Top 3 reasons?

Wanted to live abroad for a while, as we're still young (just turned 30 and 28).

Wasn't willing to pay extortionate prices for property in the UK. Seemed like a great time to move to the US with the exchange rate being what it is. It now seems like the pound is starting to turn, so it was a good move in that regard. Mind you, nothing can stave off inflation it seems.

I get to work for the creator of Star Wars :o . Every day at work is a geek's dream :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[quote name='Realistbear' post='903968' date='Dec 27 2007, 06:30 PM']Top 3 reasons why?

Where to?[/quote]

I'm off to the USA on tuesday to see my girlfriend.

I've never visited the west coast before so this'll be pretty exciting.

If all goes according to plan, I'm gonna propose and emigrate to the USA. I'm pretty mindful that the 2008 election is pretty important this time round and getting someone into the Whitehouse who isn't just a shill for the CFR and the corporations is pretty important. I think you can guess where my support lies from my signiture.

I don't really want to end up in a fascist America but with things as they are, the options are pretty limited. I've got more faith in the American people putting up a fight. The battle is already lost in the UK and i'm desperate to get out of here.

2008 is gonna be a terrible year for the British people.....and it'll get a lot worse

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[quote name='Realistbear' post='903965' date='Dec 27 2007, 06:26 PM']I am giving increasingly serious thought to returning to the US as I do not like the look of post-Gordon Britain with or without a massive HPC.

Colorado, Vermont are at the top of the list as of today.
Anyone else at the brink and making plans to sod off somewhere? Where?[/quote]

Watch out for that supervolcano in Wyoming!
No seriously, I lived in Germany for two years, and am glad to be back.
I missed the healthy disrespect for authority that I think is ingrained in the British psyche, and also the brown sauce and crisps! I found the atmos a bit sterile, but i did like the public transport running on time and the bars open till 4am withpout being full of bingers.
One thing I never got used to was the shops closing on saturday afternoons, and not opening until monday; I am simply unable to plan ahead for basics like milk and bread!

Nope, I'm staying put for now.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[quote name='mattsta1964' post='903980' date='Dec 27 2007, 07:47 PM']I'm off to the USA on tuesday to see my girlfriend.
If all goes according to plan, I'm gonna propose and emigrate to the USA.[/quote]

Good luck!

I've read some horror stories over at the British Expats forums about people travelling to the USA, and stating their reason for entry as "Going to visit girlfriend/boyfriend" and being refused entry immediately. So be careful, and just say you're going on holiday! :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[quote name='RedMercury' post='903984' date='Dec 27 2007, 06:51 PM']Good luck!

I've read some horror stories over at the British Expats forums about people travelling to the USA, and stating their reason for entry as "Going to visit girlfriend/boyfriend" and being refused entry immediately. So be careful, and just say you're going on holiday! :)[/quote]

Yep. Thanks for that advice I'm well aware of this problem

They don't stop thousands of immigrants pouring over the Mexican border though do they? Bloody ridiculous

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[quote name='Realistbear' post='903968' date='Dec 27 2007, 07:30 PM']Top 3 reasons why?
Where to?[/quote]

Britain sucks, my girlfriend lives in Canada, and we bought a largish three-bed detached house with double garage in a fairly up-market area in Saskatchewan for the price of a two-bed flat in an ex-council terraced house in Surrey. If I'd been able to move here two years ago we'd have been able to buy a decent house in one of the most sought-after areas... if there's a recession we might even sell this one and move up-market anyway, even with the amount we'd lose on on this house we'd end up saving money over buying a fancier one this year :).

Actually, this area is comparable to where I grew up in the South-West of England; a city based historically around agriculture but with a fair smattering of small manufacturing and service companies. One of my relatives recently bought an apartment (two bed, I think) in an old house in that city in the UK, and paid more for it than our house here... on the other hand, the house that was converted into apartments is a century or two old and may still be standing in another century when this house will probably have had to be rebuilt.

I thought property tax here was quite high (about 1300 pounds a year), but I just looked up council tax on the web and a similar house in that part of the UK would be paying the same or more. Either way, even after a 25% pay cut I have a substantially better standard of living here that I did in Surrey.

[quote]Canada for quality of life and a decent health system.[/quote]

It's worth noting that a lot of things aren't covered 'cost free' in the Canadian system (at least, not here in Saskatchewan). You even get charged for calling out an ambulance, if you don't have extra insurance; of course most jobs do offer health insurance on top of what you get from the government.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I have more than seriously looked at emigration and actually been to scout out housing and schools. Nothing seems to fit the bill - getting the right combo of hosuing and schooling for still very young children is difficult.

Here is the short story of my search.

Canada - decent schools but housing very very expensive due to commodity boom - will look again in a few years when boom is over and the Canadian Dollar has collpased. I know someone from Canada who is married to an English woman - she says its great but the winter is unremiting and long - even his parents go South to Arizona for the winter.

Northern Italy - Housing seems to be limited to flats unless you live way out in the middle of the Tuscan/Umbrian countryside and Brits have bid up property prices sky high in those areas. Schools very run down.

Guernsey - housing is London prices but local schools are absolutley excellent.

USA - same housing bubble as here but ex pat schools are quite good in places like Boston/Washington. May look again when US Dollar collapses and house prices have moderated. Have a fair number of British friends in Boston/Washington.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[quote name='RedMercury' post='903984' date='Dec 27 2007, 06:51 PM']Good luck!

I've read some horror stories over at the British Expats forums about people travelling to the USA, and stating their reason for entry as "Going to visit girlfriend/boyfriend" and being refused entry immediately. So be careful, and just say you're going on holiday! :)[/quote]
Yup the yanks have lost the plot.

Better the devil you know; for all its faults there are advantages to the UK. I've travelled enough to realise that, after a while the novelty wears off and you begin to miss all sorts of silly little things.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
top three reasons for NOT emigrating to the US


Gun proliferation
Lack of culture
and its full of Americans

Sort that out and I'd be there in a flash :lol: :lol: :lol: Edited by gravity always wins

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'll be in Singapore from mid January and no intention of returning.

Readers may be aware of my experiences in Asia, in particular how I was hoping to set up business in Singapore two years ago while building a house for my Balinese wife only to find out she was involved with a gangster there in Bali. Said gangster attempted to mudder me (Glaswegian accent) . I lost everything and went bankrupt.

Two years on I've recovered from the trauma and on Christmas Day this week who should I get a call from? It turns out said gangster has now fleeced my estranged wife of everything. No surprise there. In some ways I'm sorry for her : If there was Olympic Gold on offer for Psychopathy he'd murder the competition. No, seriously.

My plans there are, among other things, to set up production of a device I've patented that makes electric kettles energy efficient. I do genuinely expect to make money from this.

As I was trying to say in the news forum this morning, my experience of Singapore is that it goes to great lengths to make doing business easy.

For a while, out of patriotic reasons, I wanted to set up production in the UK but my experience of the DTI's ineptitude made me think otherwise. Patriotism doesn't pay the bills, but then again why show enthusiasm for a country so coldly indifferent to the outrageous social injustice of such a severely and dangerously polarised property market?

I might come back if Charlie Brooker is made President, though. That'd be a laugh.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[quote name='gravity always wins' post='903995' date='Dec 27 2007, 08:04 PM']top three reasons for NOT going

Gun proliferation
Lack of culture
and its full of Americans

Sort that out and I'd be there in a flash :lol: :lol: :lol:[/quote]

By and large I've found the Americans that I work with to be highly intelligent cultured individuals. I certainly don't think the USA has a monopoly on idiots (although I've met my fair share of cretins here). I think it is a big mistake to analyse the country as one big lump. It's a fookin huge place with a massive variance of people and attitudes. Personally I prefer the East and West coasts. The Americans I know refer to the rest of it as "fly-over country".

Gun proliferation is always going to be a hot potato. I actually went to the range on xmas eve with my father and brother who are visiting, for the first time ever. I can see how people can get carried away with their guns, but to apply the British attitude on weapons to America is wrong; It is a part of their culture and they're for the most part brought up shooting and respecting firearms. There were kids in there of 7 shooting handguns(!). Of course if Britain were to repeal its firearm laws there would be bloody murder in the streets with every chav left right and centre with a gun, so I'm happy that Britain does have a ban. FWIW I came out of that range with a big grin on my face (as I'd scored the most :D), but there's no way I'd ever have one in the house.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[quote name='nmarks' post='903997' date='Dec 27 2007, 08:12 PM']I might come back if Charlie Brooker is made President, though. That'd be a laugh.[/quote]


Seconded.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[quote name='The Masked Tulip' post='903974' date='Dec 27 2007, 06:41 PM']It is a big decision. I am scared to do it for all sorts of reasons. I am scared if I go somewhere else and something happens to me that no one will know but, in truth, that is no different from here.[/quote]

It is indeed a big decision that needs to be thought through very carefully. I have a friend who went to live in Canada in 2004, thinking it would be easy to adapt and adjust to a different life. It was not to be. Basically he found it hard to get a job, didn't know anyone in Toronto or anywhere else in Canada, and found it difficult to socialise and fit in with their way of life. He returned to the UK in 2005 before sinking into deep depression. He was on antidepressents for much of 2005 and 2006 before moving to Bulgaria towards the end of last year. He bought an old house there as a renovation project, but once again he found himself with no job or friends so returned to the UK. Needless to say, he is now clinically depressed once more.

It might sound harsh, but the reality for most is that there is a very good chance that a life abroad may not work out. If you only want to live abroad to be able to afford a house, then I would say that is no guarantee of a happy life at all. And don't think things are necessarily better elsewhere.... the grass is almost not always greener on the other side.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[quote name='Realistbear' post='903965' date='Dec 27 2007, 06:26 PM']Anyone else at the brink and making plans to sod off somewhere? Where?[/quote]

Romania. Why?

Sunny summer. Snowy winters. Beaches. Mountains. Un-spoiled medieval towns and villages. Highly educated population, no chavs, fantastic nightlife, beautiful women, fabulous food, great beer. Cheap living, no language barrier.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I left for Berlin, Germany. Britain’s governing authority and bureaucratic nanny state are the major reasons I wanted to leave. I also loath the dump-on-thy-neighbour attitude that I was experiencing too often. Germany has its problems too but I haven't discovered enough of their bad traits yet!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Seriously thinking about returning to Oz. Lived there for five years but returned to the UK for what was only meant to be a short time as my mum was

very sick. That was over ten years ago and I am still here. My missus is Australian so there should be no problems getting back out except that she

quite likes it here now.



Main reasons for going:

High cost of living including housing.

Lousy climate

Too much immigration, which is completely hypicritical as I would then be the immigrant, but I guess we share a common language.

The lifestyle over there is completely different. People know how to enjoy themselves.

G.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[quote name='Craig77' post='904003' date='Dec 27 2007, 08:16 PM']Basically he found it hard to get a job, didn't know anyone in Toronto or anywhere else in Canada, and found it difficult to socialise and fit in with their way of life.[/quote]

Yeah, hiring culture here is very different to the UK, and an awful lot of jobs are handed out to 'friends of friends' rather than openly advertised (or they're advertised and then handed out to 'friends of friends'). That said, in a sense I got my last three jobs in the UK that way as I'd previously worked with people who had worked at those companies or were then working for them.

Winter hasn't been a big deal yet despite -20C temperatures (and -30 or lower with wind-chill). Biggest issue is driving, I'm thinking of getting a 4WD of some description because only the major roads really get cleaned up properly.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[quote name='nmarks' post='903997' date='Dec 27 2007, 07:12 PM']I'll be in Singapore from mid January and no intention of returning.

Readers may be aware of my experiences in Asia, in particular how I was hoping to set up business in Singapore two years ago while building a house for my Balinese wife only to find out she was involved with a gangster there in Bali. Said gangster attempted to mudder me (Glaswegian accent) . I lost everything and went bankrupt.

Two years on I've recovered from the trauma and on Christmas Day this week who should I get a call from? It turns out said gangster has now fleeced my estranged wife of everything. No surprise there. In some ways I'm sorry for her : If there was Olympic Gold on offer for Psychopathy he'd murder the competition. No, seriously.

My plans there are, among other things, to set up production of a device I've patented that makes electric kettles energy efficient. I do genuinely expect to make money from this.

As I was trying to say in the news forum this morning, my experience of Singapore is that it goes to great lengths to make doing business easy.

For a while, out of patriotic reasons, I wanted to set up production in the UK but my experience of the DTI's ineptitude made me think otherwise. Patriotism doesn't pay the bills, but then again why show enthusiasm for a country so coldly indifferent to the outrageous social injustice of such a severely and dangerously polarised property market?

I might come back if Charlie Brooker is made President, though. That'd be a laugh.[/quote]


I'm sorry to hear of your bad luck nmarks, good luck with the innovation.

For me, Thailand . . . why? Because the wife lives there, won't move to the UK. Plus it's fun. Forget all this corruption stuff you hear. I spent half my life there and only ever experienced what I consider to be the most efficient government system I've ever seen. Even when it's in Police State mode, you'd never know, they don't intrude on people's lives like the UK Govt.

Many will disagree I'm sure. Don't care, I love the place.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[quote name='Craig77' post='904003' date='Dec 27 2007, 09:16 PM']It is indeed a big decision that needs to be thought through very carefully. I have a friend who went to live in Canada in 2004, thinking it would be easy to adapt and adjust to a different life. It was not to be. Basically he found it hard to get a job, didn't know anyone in Toronto or anywhere else in Canada, and found it difficult to socialise and fit in with their way of life. He returned to the UK in 2005 before sinking into deep depression. He was on antidepressents for much of 2005 and 2006 before moving to Bulgaria towards the end of last year. He bought an old house there as a renovation project, but once again he found himself with no job or friends so returned to the UK. Needless to say, he is now clinically depressed once more.

It might sound harsh, but the reality for most is that there is a very good chance that a life abroad may not work out. If you only want to live abroad to be able to afford a house, then I would say that is no guarantee of a happy life at all. And don't think things are necessarily better elsewhere.... the grass is almost not always greener on the other side.[/quote]


Yes, I agree with you. The grass is certainly not always green on the other side and, at the end of the day, there are hundreds of worse places on the planet to be born and brought up in than the UK. But... I am by myself, have no ties now and simply no longer feel that I fit in in this country. Oddly, when I was working out in the San Francisco area several years back I felt relaxed, chilled out and 'at home'. I am also aware that I am still grieving for my Mum and have mixed emotions about several things that have gone in my life in recent years, in fact over the past 20 or 30 years, that are perhaps clouding my views on things at the present time.

I am also havnig some bizarre experiences of late where elederly people, complete strangers to me, are turning to me and telling me to do what I want to do, to move on and to go where I want to go. It is fascinating.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Going to Oz tomorrow for a month to check it out.

If we like it we will leave hopefully within a year.

Reasons for leaving?? where do you begin there is so much you could point to.

If I had to condense it down I'd say a lack of integrity or honour among those that we have elected and the lack of space. More people crammed into the same space more traffic and no sign of it ending.

Corruption and sardines filters into your life in a variety of ways and the future looks very bleak. GB has said we are the financial hub of the world and we all know money does not bring happiness yet this is what the country is set up to chase - money. We're not going to manufacture anything anymore.

I hope we all like OZ cause don't know where else I like that is far enough away from it all.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0