So you’ve landed that job/university place/ *Insert Accomplishment* and you’re moving to London. The culture capital of the world, a melting pot of culture, the great city songs are written about….London is all that and so much more.
Let me share with you the top 5 things nobody will tell you before moving to this great city.
1. Finding a place to live IS Rocket Science
I’m being perfectly honest. I am not a rocket scientist, which is why I believe I am accurate in saying that finding a place to live in London is probably just as hard. What are the ingredients to finding a nice home you ask? I’ll tell you;
A housemate(s) that won’t kill you in your sleep….
…Who will live with you somewhere close enough to work/school….
…In a nice house/flat located in a safe neighbourhood….
Sounds pretty basic right? Or have I missed anything?…Oh Wait….In a flat that is available EXACTLY WHEN YOU WANT IT. That’s right, the property market moves really quickly and with London ranking 2nd on the Telegraph’s “Top 20 most expensive cities to rent property“, paying for an extra week while you move will probably put a dent in your pocket.
Finding the perfect place to live in London is challenging, but fear not, it’s not all doom. A handy tip and pretty much the only tip I have because I still haven’t found Nirvana in this aspect of life; Don’t be afraid to couch surf or get temporary accommodation. Don’t settle for a place that isn’t right for you,it will only make you miserable. Be ready to rough it for a bit after you move; humble yourself.
2. You spend your time traveling
Before you move to London, one of the most exciting things to look forward to is riding the tube everyday (at least for me it was). I am still chewing my words. There is so much to do in London, but you don’t realise how massive it is. If you find yourself having to commute to work, you will surprise yourself by the ridiculous positions are able you assume in a tube/train full of commuters. On a brighter note, it makes you appreciate the suburbs and countryside.
Handy tip: Have a getaway whenever you can, it will do you good!
3. Talking on the train is a no-no
This one! Apparently, there is an unspoken rule about speaking on the train/tube, EVEN ON A FRIDAY NIGHT! Now, having lived in the Midlands for 4 years, everybody talks to everybody, on the train, on the bus, everywhere. Coming to London and getting evil stares for having a conversation with your friend is a little weird. However, the longer you live in London, the firmer your spine gets, you learn to enjoy your conversations and ignore the haters *Flicks hair* (as long as you’re not shouting).
4. You will be broke most of the time
Yes. Don’t be fooled by the salary that was advertised to you. After Queen Lizzy has taken her lion share, and the peanuts have been donated to your landlord, the crumbs left for you to enjoy your life will hardly be enough.Okay maybe I’m exaggerating a little, just a little. That being said, you will often find yourself debating over the vending machine snickers vs the value pack snickers at the 99p store. I’ll leave the choice to you, I know where I buy my snickers.
5. Council Freaking Tax
If you’re in London for your first take on adult life, your first council tax bill is sure to leave you dazed.I ask everybody I meet to explain council tax to me. While the explanations I have received make some sense, none of them are quite enough to soothe my bleeding account. Nothing, absolutely nothing can prepare you for the sorrow that will cloud your heart (and bank account)
the first time every time you pay a council tax bill.
London is an extremely vibrant city and One I think everyone should experience.You either love it or you don’t. Safe to say, i’m still making my mind up.
Recently moved to London? Or have you grown up in this vibrant city? Share your thoughts below.
Until Next Time