This section is mainly about the accommodation aspects of living in London. Whether living to work or working to live accommodation will be a requirement. Similarly when studying.
When staying on short visits there is a vast range of hotels and hostels by facilities, locations and pricing; plus University accommodation during vacations.
For longer stays there are choices of:
- Buying or renting.
- Houses or apartments.
- Enquiring with others or on your own.
- Searching individually or in groups.
- Staying with friends and families.
- Searching Online, via the internet, on foot or face to face.
Assistance and advice may be available:
- Through property, estate and letting agents.
- Via accommodation offices at Universities.
- Via HR departments of potential employers.
- Via colleagues, friends and contacts.
- Via visitlondon.com, www.expedia.com and other similar websites.
Accommodation tips that may be particularly pertinent to London include:
- London is very large and very diverse so selecting the right location for accommodation is very important for affordability, facilities, access and transport.
- Costs can be high in London – compared with other cities and countries. So it is advisable to consider all accommodation related costs such as rents, rates, utilities, service charges, insurances, removals, standard and special travel costs.
- It is advisable to obtain expert advice for agreements when renting, surveys and conveyancing when purchasing, subletting, deposits, etc..
Salaries in London can be an average of 30 to 50% higher than the rest of UK. But actually there is no average in UK or in London – there are considerable variations by locations, sectors, positions and the state of the local and national economies. Any increased financial benefits in London are frequently off-set by cost of accommodation, transport and living. There may need to be other reasons to work and live in London than apparent better finances alone.
For many people ‘London commuting’ to offices, meetings and work locations is a way of life; although the increasing opportunities for teleworking and working from home continue.
Travel is the other key requirement related to living in London in addition to location and cost. A full range of options is explained by Transport for London on at www.tfl.gov.uk including accessibility provisions. Many visitors concentrate on the tube lines but the bus services and suburban trains can be very effective if a little difficult to understand initially. And there are cycle hire, black cabs, Uber and just walking.
Many books have been published for tourists on short visits to London including by such as, say: Rough Guide; Time Out; Lonely Planet. However for living and working in London different information and directions are required such as say “Living and Working” in London by Graeme Chesters and David Hampshire – although our copy is 6th Edition from 2012 and certainly things do change.
For maps when living and working in London there are many A to Z maps and books. Also via internet, for example Bing on www.bing.com/maps and Streetmap on www.streetmap.co.uk.