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  • FIRST POST
    • jobseeker2018
    • By jobseeker2018 8th Apr 18, 2:05 PM
    • 2Posts
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    jobseeker2018
    Moving to London?
    • #1
    • 8th Apr 18, 2:05 PM
    Moving to London? 8th Apr 18 at 2:05 PM
    I currently live in a regional city. The type of position I need to further my career is rare here if not non-existent. There are more opportunities for me in London. I have never worked in London but have been been there for courses etc. My main concern is around cost of living.

    Any advice for moving to London for work? or has someone made the move and can share their experience?
Page 1
    • agrinnall
    • By agrinnall 8th Apr 18, 3:11 PM
    • 19,897 Posts
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    agrinnall
    • #2
    • 8th Apr 18, 3:11 PM
    • #2
    • 8th Apr 18, 3:11 PM
    It's going to be very expensive, so unless you can expect a massive salary increase you should be prepared for a significant drop in your standard of living compared to where you are now.
    • macman
    • By macman 8th Apr 18, 3:33 PM
    • 41,797 Posts
    • 17,318 Thanks
    macman
    • #3
    • 8th Apr 18, 3:33 PM
    • #3
    • 8th Apr 18, 3:33 PM
    Specifically, you need to look at rent/housing, and public transport costs if you need to commute.
    No free lunch, and no free laptop
    • another casualty
    • By another casualty 8th Apr 18, 4:21 PM
    • 3,464 Posts
    • 5,333 Thanks
    another casualty
    • #4
    • 8th Apr 18, 4:21 PM
    • #4
    • 8th Apr 18, 4:21 PM
    Interesting . What kind of work do you do? Is it something you could work from home a couple of days a week for example?

    The pluses of working in London , mmm ..Oyster card . Esssential for travelling / commuting .

    What part of London would you be thinking of working ?
    The square mile was a cesspit when I quit approx 18 months ago.
    There is/was a cycle superhighway being built causing massive obstruction and inconvenience . Leaving my experience of the square mile , I enjoyed working in Holborn . Less beggars than the west end , which is a bus ride or 15 min walk from there. Covent Garden and the strand were cool places to work . London Bridge has got hugely busy since the shard and at the moment lots of road diversions . Horses for courses and all that.


    Cheapest places to live iirc were east London / north London .
    Having said that everywhere is costly nowadays .
    • Gavin83
    • By Gavin83 8th Apr 18, 4:55 PM
    • 5,031 Posts
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    Gavin83
    • #5
    • 8th Apr 18, 4:55 PM
    • #5
    • 8th Apr 18, 4:55 PM
    Rent will be expensive, considerably more so depending on where you're coming from. Most other costs will be the same. Therefore make sure that increased salary covers the increase in rent.

    I live in London and love it here but it isn't for everyone. It is undoubtably a great place to build your career though.
    • anamenottaken
    • By anamenottaken 8th Apr 18, 9:23 PM
    • 4,090 Posts
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    anamenottaken
    • #6
    • 8th Apr 18, 9:23 PM
    • #6
    • 8th Apr 18, 9:23 PM
    When I moved from the Midlands (working for a charity, living with parents) to London (working for a statutory body, initially living in a YWCA) I doubled my salary.

    What would you expect your London salary to be?
    • dlmcr
    • By dlmcr 8th Apr 18, 10:14 PM
    • 142 Posts
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    dlmcr
    • #7
    • 8th Apr 18, 10:14 PM
    • #7
    • 8th Apr 18, 10:14 PM
    I am sorry to be blunt but I would go as far as to say that if you need to move to London to further your career then you need to change career.
    If you work through the figures you will very rarely be financially better off working in London. If you go there for career enhancement for a period of time then fine but then ask yourself what you will be doing and where you will be going after that period of time. Back home where the types of jobs that you do / want are non existant? Somewhere else in the country? Why not just go to that somewhere else first?
    Trust me you do not want to be getting to the age of 40+ working in London doing the rat race every day 2hrs ++ spending a huge chunk of your money in rent (and it will be rent because it will be almost impossible to buy anywhere unless you are on a huge salary or come into a deposit some other way) and commuting costs. It might be fine when you are in your 20s and single, when / if you meet someone to settle and have any quality of life whatsoever it just won't be possible based on the housing costs anywhere near London unless you are on a seriously good salary.
    • boliston
    • By boliston 8th Apr 18, 10:26 PM
    • 2,598 Posts
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    boliston
    • #8
    • 8th Apr 18, 10:26 PM
    • #8
    • 8th Apr 18, 10:26 PM
    Quite a few people from my workplace have relocated to london and they mostly seem a lot happier having made the move - if you currently live in a decent sized city then the benefits might not be so much but i live in a bit of a "one horse" town where jobs are quite limited, mainly just minimum wage type work in retail and hospitality. You would need to be able to deal with having more basic accommodation, possibly much smaller and even a shared property, but some people are happy with this compromise for better job prospects.
    • Planet Switzerland
    • By Planet Switzerland 8th Apr 18, 10:38 PM
    • 143 Posts
    • 101 Thanks
    Planet Switzerland
    • #9
    • 8th Apr 18, 10:38 PM
    • #9
    • 8th Apr 18, 10:38 PM
    When I moved to London it was inevitably more expensive to rent but not by a huge amount, £180 a month more to be exact and the extra money I earned was more than that.


    However I did go from one of the most desirable areas of my previous town in a full size house just outside the town centre to a one bed flat in an area in London many consider to be too far out and a bit boring.


    In the end I bought a property here and don't intend to move out anytime soon.
    • Toucan_toucan
    • By Toucan_toucan 9th Apr 18, 1:32 PM
    • 16 Posts
    • 7 Thanks
    Toucan_toucan
    I moved to London six years ago - it just happened to be where I got offered a job rather than a particular plan. A few things I'd add to the above:


    1. as mentioned, housing costs are probably going to be considerably higher than what you pay now, and rented properties move really quickly - it's not uncommon for you to have half a dozen viewings booked only to find they all get snapped up by the first person who sees it.


    2. Landlords/agents can be funny about taking people on who are still in probationary periods at work - we had to pay a couple of months' rent in advance to cover this, and if you haven't got a job at all you'll really struggle (so, are you currently close enough to get to London easily/cheaply for interviews and house-hunting, or have you got someone you can stay with?).


    3. Be prepared to share a house/flat!


    4. Commuting can be pretty soul-destroying. Trains get full earlier and earlier in to their journeys, so the further in you live the more difficult it can be to get on a train (e.g. I live near New Cross, the last stop before London Bridge for Southeastern services, and often can't get on trains in rush hour).


    5. You might get stuck! I earn a much higher salary in London than I would for the same job outside London, but my cost of living isn't so much higher than it would be elsewhere - to move out of London I'd take a pay cut but potentially would pay more in housing/transport costs, so moving away isn't as easy as it sounds.


    6. General cost of living isn't that much more than a lot of places - my local pubs all charge less than £4/pint, the supermarkets are no more expensive and petrol is actually cheaper near me than it is in a lot of other places outside London.


    I do like living here, but it was never an ambition - just the way things worked out.
    • Fireflyaway
    • By Fireflyaway 9th Apr 18, 6:25 PM
    • 1,667 Posts
    • 1,781 Thanks
    Fireflyaway
    Could you move closer but commute? Milton keynes is an hours distance by train but the housing is pretty affordable. Also Aylesbury or High Wycome are both on the line and not too expensive. Its tiring though that's for sure and the train isn't cheap.
    Maybe try it out renting a room and see how it goes? I know 2 people recently moved out of London as they couldn't stand the noise and crowded streets but I have a family member who moved there and loves it! Depends on your lifestyle and what you enjoy.
    • zagubov
    • By zagubov 9th Apr 18, 6:52 PM
    • 15,239 Posts
    • 130,266 Thanks
    zagubov
    OP your rent may double and end up being more than half your salary. Transport is good, entertainment is good, but your new salary had better be more than good, otherwise your accommodation will be distinctly underwhelming.

    Unless you're trying to get experience and move somewhere more affordable afterwards, in which case enjoy the time!
    There is no honour to be had in not knowing a thing that can be known - Danny Baker
    • Doshwaster
    • By Doshwaster 10th Apr 18, 10:57 AM
    • 4,809 Posts
    • 3,934 Thanks
    Doshwaster
    If you are single and a new arrival to London then house/flat sharing may actually be quite a good idea, at least for the first 6 months or so until you get your bearings. At least it would be a way to get to know people and limit your living costs. There are plenty of flat share website available.

    I also wouldn't just limit your sights on London. There are other towns and cities in the South East which have excellent job markets but without some of the downsides of the capital.
    • John-K
    • By John-K 10th Apr 18, 9:35 PM
    • 516 Posts
    • 732 Thanks
    John-K
    I am sorry to be blunt but I would go as far as to say that if you need to move to London to further your career then you need to change career.
    Originally posted by dlmcr
    How so? If you are in the law, finance, politics, or a good few other careers then time in London can be time very well sent.

    Yes, it can be expensive here, but you can get wages that more than cover this.

    If you move back out a few years down the line you can find yourself with enough money to buy your home outright in many cases.

    A 2+ hour commute is far from normal, too. Iím lucky, mineís about fifteen minutes each way, and a lot of other people manage far less than two hours round trip.
    • zagubov
    • By zagubov 11th Apr 18, 12:17 AM
    • 15,239 Posts
    • 130,266 Thanks
    zagubov
    Toucan_toucan has summed it up well.

    I'd like to add a few odd points. Most of the outskirts have reasonable access to the centre, but not to other parts of the outskirts.
    Your commute is very likely to be a couple of hours round trip, maybe more but very rarely much less.

    Pubs charge iots. You can shop in cheaper supermarkets but they're not common and certainly not found centrally where land costs keep them out. Same for chains like B&M and HB. Lidl and Aldi are slowly gaining ground but not so much in inner London. Central London has its attractions but they're at tourist prices. Live music events are pricy and overbooked early.

    Driving is slow and very unpredictable. If you imagine it as two or three Birminghams or five or six Manchesters or Glasgows joined together you'll get an idea of the scale of it, minus the open space.

    I have family here now and won't move again. I do know many people who came for a while but who moved away when they wanted to start a family. There got the benefit of living here but escaped before the downsides fully kicked in.

    I would not want to discourage you from coming to work here. But come here with open eyes, and don't put down the place you've worked before. The penny might drop in a few years time that you'd be better of back there than in London, so keep your options open.
    There is no honour to be had in not knowing a thing that can be known - Danny Baker
    • ThemeOne
    • By ThemeOne 11th Apr 18, 1:45 PM
    • 1,190 Posts
    • 1,013 Thanks
    ThemeOne
    As mentioned above it can be awkward to get somewhere to live when you're either job hunting, or still in your probationary period. If you have any contacts or relatives in the London area, no matter how distant, it might be worth getting in touch to see if they could help you out re accommodation for the first few months until you're settled work-wise.

    I do understand what you mean about the work you want being non-existent anywhere but London - regrettably in many fields the UK is still a one-city country.
    • NineDeuce
    • By NineDeuce 11th Apr 18, 1:49 PM
    • 798 Posts
    • 736 Thanks
    NineDeuce
    You will to pay £1,000 per month to live in a one bed flat in a rubbish area that could only be kindly described as drab.

    You will need to earn double what you are on now to have the same lifestyle....
    • NineDeuce
    • By NineDeuce 11th Apr 18, 1:51 PM
    • 798 Posts
    • 736 Thanks
    NineDeuce
    You will to pay £1,000 per month to live in a one bed flat in a rubbish area that could only be kindly described as drab.

    You will need to earn double what you are on now to have the same lifestyle....
    • Sandy75
    • By Sandy75 11th Apr 18, 3:47 PM
    • 15 Posts
    • 10 Thanks
    Sandy75
    I moved to London about fifteen years ago. Got a job in politics (and therefore had to be in London) which paid £20k. Lived in South Wimbledon (Zone 3/4) but had a cracking commute to work - the one tube line all the way into work. It was financially tough but I still went out - there are lots of things to do at a low budget - you get quite canny at that.

    And then of course moving jobs / earning more things begin to get easier. Since then I've moved out of London to Berks and commute in when needed. I loved living in the city, met some brilliant people, soaked up culture (for me, opera, my friends tended to go to every gig possible East London).

    There are lots of reasons to move here, to stay and also to move on. London is a wonderfully transient place at times, but also one where you can build lasting friendships.
    • John-K
    • By John-K 11th Apr 18, 8:22 PM
    • 516 Posts
    • 732 Thanks
    John-K
    You will to pay £1,000 per month to live in a one bed flat in a rubbish area that could only be kindly described as drab.

    You will need to earn double what you are on now to have the same lifestyle....
    Originally posted by NineDeuce
    Or he could rent a place like mine for a lot more. Itís beautiful, central, on the water, and a great location for bars and restaurants.

    Itís expensive here for a reason, people want to live here, and there are jobs that make it all worthwhile.

    A graduate in an investment bank will start on £60,000+, for example.

    Yes, people need to think carefully, but like I did, you can turn up here with just a couple of changes of clothes and make your fortune.
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