Jump to content
House Price Crash Forum

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

Darkman

Do I Stay Or Do I Go?

Recommended Posts

I have a real quandary right now. I left the UK in 2012 to try my luck in the USA. And right now my wife and I plan to return to the UK. However, her son has thrown a spanner in the works and has appealed to her to stay on an emotional level and move to California to be nearby. Whether he's right or wrong to do that isn't the issue though. It just makes it tougher for me to decide because the USA still tempts me on many levels & especially California. I liken it to someone pushing a box of chocolates under your nose, you love chocolates but you know they're not good for you :)

I planned to return to the UK based purely on sensible "mature" factors. In truth many things in the UK appall me, so it was a hard decision to make.I am not a super skilled worker and take what is available. In the USA life can be tough for low earners... we're mainly talking healthcare here. I currently don't have health care (though that is partly due to a planned departure). My previous jobs here didn't provide health care either. I found myself driving to Mexico to have wisdom teeth removed because it would be too expensive in the US. Crazy stuff.

In the UK my previous employer is ready to take me back, though with a salary cut. But it's a long term very secure job, and that's attractive. Obviously in the UK expensive health care is generally a non-issue, something Brits take for granted IMO. I also have aging parents in the UK, though they're fine with me being in the US. With a job lined up and European safety nets, you can see why the UK is the safe (though dull) option. I'd also view a UK move as protecting my wife from the US healthcare system, not just myself. In our 40's now this becomes more important.

But there's another side to this of course.

I came to the USA for a reason, to live a more exciting and better life. And tbh that has been a success. The fantastic weather makes many things more bearable. Some people prefer the grey and cold, but to me that's insanity. There is also a certain joy in knowing wherever you drive, you can park for free and actually have enough space to open your car doors and step out :lol: The American people have been mostly fantastic. chavs don't exist here and neither does the whinging and miserable character traits that so many Brits seem to revel in. I can walk into a store and hear great classic rock music instead of horrific junglist nonsense or boy band trash in the UK. Sorry if some of these things seem trivial but added up they mean something. Life just seems so much more pleasant here and feels like "home".

Financially we are in a pretty good position. No mortgage necessary, significant savings and other streams of income. So even if struck down by illness, in truth we could probably take it in our stride. This financial position may actually put us above the average working class American, so I can't claim we are really in the "poor" bracket.

Finally I must admit I have been a little lazy here. It's hard surrounded with beauty and sunshine not to get into a "holiday state of mind". With some real effort I could have applied for better jobs with eventual healthcare, and improved our outlook. Mild illness had a lot to do with this though (ironically) and took my energy away. It also scared me perhaps, because I realised I could need regular healthcare just like anyone else (I was previously invincible heh). But I could put this right in future, and knuckle down. Having longer driving experience now opens up more job opportunities, and with my health under control I could take on those long American hours and rare time off. In other words, with some conviction I could give all this a better shot. Having driven all over California & loving it, it's very very tempting. Not everyone has this opportunity.

I'm 50/50 on it. So come on, slap me round the face and tell me to snap out of it. Tell me what to do! :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You're young still. Don't be afraid. You can move to California and make it work. The UK is bad on so many levels: weather, the people, overcrowding , especially in the SE of England. You'll always regret the things you didn't do.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Stick with California all the way.

incedently ive just been made redundant and am planning on touring California for 3 months possibly as early as next week.

i seem to only be eligible for a 3 month tourist visa on the visa waver programme.

Can i get a longer stay? Like 6 months to a year?

have no relatives in US.

is it sunny all the time? Was thinking of venice beach area to start off.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Spent 2 years in California. Best working time of my life. Too expensive where I was to buy a house, however :lol:

Very much depends where you will be though. Coast from Big Sur to SFO is the best region.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Forget your windy, cold, damp previous life.

CALIFORNIA !

Why am I not living there?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Jeez you guys aren't making the idea of a return easy. I feel shamed even considering it! :lol:

i seem to only be eligible for a 3 month tourist visa on the visa waver programme.

Can i get a longer stay? Like 6 months to a year?

have no relatives in US.

is it sunny all the time? Was thinking of venice beach area to start off.

Hmm I thought you'd be entitled to 6 months, but I suppose the USA isn't a soft touch like the UK ;)

Actually no it's not sunny all the time. It depends largely on where in California you are heading, and during winter the rain can fall like anywhere else. I got rained out in LA last November, and I hear it's raining again this week. My sister informed me that San Francisco can have awful weather, and even when I was in San Diego last January it was really overcast. However at other times of the year California weather is pretty hard to beat :)

Anyway there are some posters here who actually live in Cali already who can advise you better than I can. I live in Arizona where rain is as rare as sunshine in England!

ps- if you do your research and find out the best place to park for Venice Beach without paying a fortune, let me know. I might head there next weekend.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm sure this won't go down well with some of the posters but surely in some of the worst case scenarios healthwise you can always come back here?

Given that you're 40ish, have rellies there, mortgage free (by the sounds of it) and reckon you could amp things up a bit to boost income - go to Cali. But in the advice of the song, leave before it makes you too soft.

Reading that back, however, makes me wonder why I don't follow the missus' extortions to go back to her homeland of south east Asia... Ah...I know it's because it's almost never less than 30 degrees and 80% humidity. I'd melt! But if I lost my job here, perhaps I'd seriously consider it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hmm I thought you'd be entitled to 6 months, but I suppose the USA isn't a soft touch like the UK ;)

Canadians are allowed in for six months. Britons for three.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Forget your windy, cold, damp previous life.

CALIFORNIA !

Why am I not living there?

Why am I not living there is well? California is the one where they take healthy eating to crazy levels yeah?

No relatives there so I guess I've got no chance.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

While the health service ponzi scheme in the UK is still free and can stave off implosion from an aging population I would consider that the biggest advantage of returning. Also the fact we are pretty gun free here.

Meanwhile since you have left we have had three months of decent weather from July- September 13, the preceding 10 months were all cold and below mean and since the autumn it has been unseasonably mild but has rained nearly every day. So remember the weather is crap here.

I voted for come home.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

While the health service ponzi scheme in the UK is still free and can stave off implosion from an aging population I would consider that biggest advantage of returning.

Meanwhile since you have left we have had three months of decent weather from July- September 13, the preceding 10 months were all cold and below mean and since the autumn it has been unseasonably mild but has rained nearly every day. So remember the weather is crap here.

It is quite amazing how depressing life in England becomes due to the weather.

It's as if you live for 3-4 months of the year (summer, if there's good weather) and then just hibernate for the remaining 9. I need to move. I'd even move back to Sweden and life with the serious darkness because you can at least do stuff outdoors on the snow and have a pleasant non-wet experience.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Waste of time coming back now.

What you don't realise yet is that your move to California has destroyed any possibility of feeling happy in the UK, but you'll soon realise it if you go back and will find yourself pining to leave again.

Pull your finger out and get yourself better work out there.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Depends what you want. Personally I don't mind the weather in the UK (spent 15 months living in the south of France, the nice weather most of the time didn't make that much difference to my life and quite honestly I started getting bored of it). I would rather live in the attractive bits of the UK than anywhere else in the world to be honest, but we seem to be in a country hell-bent on getting rid of those (keep them in a few national parks and screw the rest). The people here seem to encompass the best and the worst - like most things British they're better the more off the beaten track you go, but the rest, again like everything else, are a cancer slowly eating its way through the country. So I suppose I'm saying stay in the USA.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sixteen years in the U.S.A gives me a larger pension than thirty years in the U.K would have done, even after the 25% reduction for taking it at sixty two and the deduction of 50% of my U.K.pension.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sixteen years in the U.S.A gives me a larger pension than thirty years in the U.K would have done, even after the 25% reduction for taking it at sixty two and the deduction of 50% of my U.K.pension.

This will probably be a no brainer for those with nic shortfall and already retired when details are released , assuming either works pension or capital disqualifies the minimum income guarantee.

http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/pensions/article-2518835/Autumn-Statement-2013-retirees-buy-extra-state-pension.html

Annuity rate of 26.9% if voluntary contribution rate is used (which it may not be) ...£705 buys £190 pa :blink:

Somewhat unfair that the minimum income guarantee is there for someone that may have never done a days work, so this levels the playingfield.

On the public finances front I''m guessing a quick fix for the National debt, meanwhile thrice the liabilites off balance sheet as the annuities get paid over several decades. :lol:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My guess is that the UK is in a post imperial stage and just like Rome and Spain is seriously on the way down.

Most manufactured goods in the shops seem to come from other countries.

Too many jobs have been off shored.

Despite what the politicians say, Britain is not a great place, nor are its people.

The UK is now heavily over regulated, full of stupid PC nonsense with a class of professional 'offendees' just waiting to pounce, over populated and tearing itself to pieces.

We cannot celebrate winning the first world war, or any of the many other great things that we have done because it will cause offence.

The free speech that people fought and died for has been long proscribed.

And some parts of Britain are no longer British.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well I don't know.... :)

Differing answers on different forums do tell a story. Ask the same question on an expat forum, and the response can be totally different, because they've experienced both sides and learnt the hard way. To an extent I've learnt the hard way too with some issues I've had to contend with. But let's not get carried away, I'm not saying the views expressed here are therefore invalid. Far from it.

But I will say I am a little taken aback at the strength of feeling here. Maybe I shouldn't be, because when I left the UK I don't think it's an exaggeration to say I hated the place. And not just the weather either. From the BBC to NIMBYs, house prices to the royal family, I had truly had enough. And I still have. But....

I have learnt there are two sides to every coin. The "multi-culturalism gone wrong" hinted at is absolutely present in the USA too, and perhaps in a more deadly form. England isn't the only place with dire weather. Have you seen weather reports from the US recently? I got caught in an almighty freeze-f*** in Atlanta. And Oregon has more rain than the UK even. Yes you can get more house for your cash in the US, but don't count on keeping it if you break your arm, have a car crash or get cancer. And IMHO the nice parts of California are similar to London now i.e. they're for the rich to enjoy.

Anyway... just saying. I have zero regrets about coming to the USA. It's been an unforgettable blast. But I also got my ass kicked in various ways and learnt some lessons. I can say for sure most states in the US aren't necessarily any better than the UK. Bad weather, political correctness, corrupt politicians, ethnic segregation and a rich/poor divide. I can't say the Americans are a let down though. Their can-do attitude and superb customer service has been such a breath of fresh air. But I'm biased, I did marry one.

I do think I've broken my attachment to London though. Just don't need it anymore. So assuming I return my next plan will be a move away from the south east and towards a less congested and cheaper area. A dog and small garden is probably enough..... for now :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well I don't know.... :)

I do think I've broken my attachment to London though. Just don't need it anymore. So assuming I return my next plan will be a move away from the south east and towards a less congested and cheaper area. A dog and small garden is probably enough..... for now :)

What about your wife!.....moving forward can mean moving back to the UK.... moving backwards means moving back to old job, old familiar suroundings, the things that made you want to move originally.... There is no perfect place, everything is a compromise..... Good luck in what ever you decide. ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well I don't know.... :)

Differing answers on different forums do tell a story. Ask the same question on an expat forum, and the response can be totally different, because they've experienced both sides and learnt the hard way. To an extent I've learnt the hard way too with some issues I've had to contend with. But let's not get carried away, I'm not saying the views expressed here are therefore invalid. Far from it.

But I will say I am a little taken aback at the strength of feeling here. Maybe I shouldn't be, because when I left the UK I don't think it's an exaggeration to say I hated the place. And not just the weather either. From the BBC to NIMBYs, house prices to the royal family, I had truly had enough. And I still have. But....

I have learnt there are two sides to every coin. The "multi-culturalism gone wrong" hinted at is absolutely present in the USA too, and perhaps in a more deadly form. England isn't the only place with dire weather. Have you seen weather reports from the US recently? I got caught in an almighty freeze-f*** in Atlanta. And Oregon has more rain than the UK even. Yes you can get more house for your cash in the US, but don't count on keeping it if you break your arm, have a car crash or get cancer. And IMHO the nice parts of California are similar to London now i.e. they're for the rich to enjoy.

Anyway... just saying. I have zero regrets about coming to the USA. It's been an unforgettable blast. But I also got my ass kicked in various ways and learnt some lessons. I can say for sure most states in the US aren't necessarily any better than the UK. Bad weather, political correctness, corrupt politicians, ethnic segregation and a rich/poor divide. I can't say the Americans are a let down though. Their can-do attitude and superb customer service has been such a breath of fresh air. But I'm biased, I did marry one.

I do think I've broken my attachment to London though. Just don't need it anymore. So assuming I return my next plan will be a move away from the south east and towards a less congested and cheaper area. A dog and small garden is probably enough..... for now :)

Your feet will be itching again within a year IMO, but hey, everyone is different.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Medicare, guns and inequality....what you get when the far right hold sway. A very disturbing combination and the reason the US is not for me.

Outside the nonsense that is the South East, the UK is still one of best places in the world to live.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Question for Darkman - doesn't Obamacare make the health insurance issue a bit better now in the USA?

I could tell you if I understood it :)

It's far too early to say for sure. I think it has three tiers of insurance, and you either choose one or get fined for not doing so. But it's still insurance you're paying for and whether it covers you well in reality or not is unknown. It's a step in the right direction, but these initial stages aren't hugely helpful.

The bottom line is no one knows if the Affordable Care Act is here to stay or will be repealed somehow. A new regime could send the US back to square one. Personally I think it could take 20 years or more to get a trustworthy decent system in place similar to our own.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • The Prime Minister stated that there were three Brexit options available to the UK:   289 members have voted

    1. 1. Which of the Prime Minister's options would you choose?


      • Leave with the negotiated deal
      • Remain
      • Leave with no deal

    Please sign in or register to vote in this poll. View topic


×

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.