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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

I am likely to be offered a job in London and would like to get some advise on the living costs there, before I discuss my package.

1. Rental cost for a 2 BR flat in Staines or any other good locality near Staines ( preferably furnished)
2. Average monthly living expenses for a family of 3 ( me, wife & child)
3. Good schools near Staines.

Thanks,
 

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1. Rental cost for a 2 BR flat in Staines or any other good locality near Staines ( preferably furnished)
To research rentals:

Primelocation: Homes & Houses For Sale, Estate Agents, Property Search
UK's number one property website for properties for sale and to rent
FindaProperty.com Houses for sale, rent, estate agents & house prices

2. Average monthly living expenses for a family of 3 ( me, wife & child)
Typical monthly expenses:

Phone and internet ~£40
Cable~£45
Mobile phones for 2 ~£70
Electric
Gas
Water will vary whether metered or flat rate
TV licence ~14
Council tax varies by borough council and the size and value of the property. Expect between £100-300. For Staines: Spelthorne Borough Council - Council Tax, Community, Environment and more
Grocery websites:

Tesco.com - online shopping; bringing the supermarket to you.
Waitrose - Online Grocery Shopping | Free Delivery | Recipes | Wine | Party Food
Home - Morrisons
Sainsbury's

Public transport
Car
Petrol

3. Good schools near Staines.
To research schools:

Ofsted | Find an inspection report
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you nyclon for a detailed response. The links provided are quite useful.

Do you know if Staines is a family friendly location?

Thanks,
 

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My brother lives just outside Staines in a little village called Stanwell.
It's very nice, and family-friendly.
The only drawback is.... it's on a main flight-path to Heathrow Airport, so can get a bit noisy.
Staines itself is a reasonable-sized town, with good shopping facilities, and probably everything a family needs.
 

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My brother lives just outside Staines in a little village called Stanwell.
It's very nice, and family-friendly.
The only drawback is.... it's on a main flight-path to Heathrow Airport, so can get a bit noisy.
Staines itself is a reasonable-sized town, with good shopping facilities, and probably everything a family needs.
If your job is in or around Staines, fine, but commuting into Central London is by South West Trains, and it isn't pleasant. I was on it this week on the same line that goes to Staines (from Waterloo) and it was a nighmare - 20 min journey taking one hour with delayed and cancelled trains, diversions and overpacked carriages. Not my idea of a daily commute. With only 4 carriages it's busy at the best of times.
 

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When I was nobut a lad, Staines was in Middlesex
It's now in the London Borough of Spelthorne, just to the south and south west of Heathrow Airport. Middlesex survives as part of postal address, but it hasn't been an administrative area since 1965. Staines Urban District was transferred to Surrey in that year, and to the new London Borough of Spelthorne in 1974.
 

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Kind of complicated isn't it? Administratively it's a borough within Surrey County Council, but postal address is Staines Middlesex, because Royal Mail organises postal districts differently. In the North West where I live, Oldham, Bolton, Rochdale, Bury etc, for example, are in Lancashire for postal purpose, but aren't part of Lancashire County Council as they are unitary authorities (Metropolitan Borough). There are many such examples.
For civil defence, rubbish collection and policing etc, again towns and boroughs may fall under different authorities.
 

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Kind of complicated isn't it? Administratively it's a borough within Surrey County Council, but postal address is Staines Middlesex, because Royal Mail organises postal districts differently. In the North West where I live, Oldham, Bolton, Rochdale, Bury etc, for example, are in Lancashire for postal purpose, but aren't part of Lancashire County Council as they are unitary authorities (Metropolitan Borough). There are many such examples.
For civil defence, rubbish collection and policing etc, again towns and boroughs may fall under different authorities.
It is not, however a London Borough, as far as I can tell. At least not now.
 

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It is not, however a London Borough, as far as I can tell. At least not now.
It used to be, until the Greater London boundary was redrawn in 2000. It used to be then in Met Police area, but now comes under Surrey Police.
 

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Surrey was always south of the river. My ancestors in WW1 fought and died on the Somme in the Middlesex Regiment.

Ah well times change.......
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks for all the responses. I got some response from the employer on the pay package. They have offered me a salary of about 60K + couple of thousand pounds as allowances. Would this be enough for a family of 3 ( me, wife & child 8yrs) for a decent living. I not looking at an extravagant lifestyle. Just decent middle class lifestyle, but it shouldn't be like living on a shoestring budget. I have heard that London is one of the most expensive places. Appreciate your comments.

Thanks,
 

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I have heard that London is one of the most expensive places.
Not a worry if you're coming from Dubai. London is significantly cheaper than Dubai for many key things, amongst others:

- clothing/footwear
- toiletries
- groceries
- alcohol
- broadband
- mobile phone usage
- satellite TV
- utilities
- furniture
- bedding
- books
- toys/babycare items

The only things I can think of which are significantly cheaper in Dubai are cars, petrol and cigarettes!

teuchter
 

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Thanks for all the responses. I got some response from the employer on the pay package. They have offered me a salary of about 60K + couple of thousand pounds as allowances. Would this be enough for a family of 3 ( me, wife & child 8yrs) for a decent living. I not looking at an extravagant lifestyle. Just decent middle class lifestyle, but it shouldn't be like living on a shoestring budget. I have heard that London is one of the most expensive places. Appreciate your comments.

Thanks,
Yes, London is very expensive, but you have indicated that you will be looking to live in Staines which is in Surrey, not London. Housing in particular is expensive in London but the farther away you get from Central London, the less expensive things become and the more you get for your money space wise.

I previously provided you with a list of general monthly expenses with estimates or links. It would be useful to build yourself a budget based on your lifestyle.

This link will help you determine your after tax pay:

UK PAYE Salary Wage Income Tax Calculator 2012 UK. Updated for 2012/2013 inland revenue tax year. Calculate wages pension national insurance and student loan repayments online.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thanks for all the updates..

I understand that my employer would be sponsoring me for a Tier 2 visa. So will I be able to apply for my wife's & child's visa alongwith mine or do I have to enter UK first and then apply for my family's visa?

I'm a lebanese with UAE automatic driving license. Do I have the option to get my UAE license converted to UK license after arrival?
 

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I'm a lebanese with UAE automatic driving license. Do I have the option to get my UAE license converted to UK license after arrival?
No, you cannot convert a UAE licence to a UK one. You will however be permitted to drive for up to 12 months on your UAE licence, during which time you will need to take and pass the UK driving test. After being in the UK for 6 months (you cannot do it earlier), you should apply for a UK provisional licence, which will permit you to take lessons with a driving school (optional but recommended) and take the UK driving test.

Note: if you have not taken/passed the test within 12 months, you will no longer be permitted to drive in the UK.

Details here: Driving on licences from all other countries, and students on a foreign licence : Directgov - Motoring

teuchter
 
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