Moving to silicon valley, California in June with a nearly 3yo...

(36 Posts)
FSB Mon 16-Apr-12 15:19:42

Grateful for any advice/tips/dos and donts!!

We'll be based in San Carlos, 40 mons south of San Francisco

Thanks smile

It didn't take long at all for DS and DH to get green cards. 4 and 6 weeks respectively, but I think that is some sort of record.

CaliforniaLeaving Thu 15-Nov-12 01:51:20

Have a look on www.britishexpats.com there are lots of people in Silicon valley, they will tell you everything you need to know, and where to buy Bisto too.

Finn4 Thu 15-Nov-12 00:34:53

Hi All, I have just moved to San Carlos (3 months ago) and am in need of help finding good places to eat, meet new people etc- help me settle in more, I am having a hard time x

FSB Wed 25-Apr-12 21:12:49

That's an interesting point Paula... It takes years and years to get a green card though, doesn't it? I'll have to get DH to check the conditions of his visa...

MumPaula Wed 25-Apr-12 20:37:34

Don't buy a house until you get Green cards (or unless one of you is a US citizen already) there have been quite a few on Visas who have been made redundant and you aren't given long to pack up and leave the country, some visas don't transfer you are stuck with one employer only. Property is had to sell now and also expensive (the realtor get about 6% of the full sale price) some have had to leave before selling up and then sell at a loss to get out from under it.

MumPaula Wed 25-Apr-12 20:33:18

I think HOP nailed it!
It is very frustrating at first (and occasionally still for me)
I remember asking for water, how hard is that? The waitress looked puzzled, I asked again, I was puzzled, in the end I asked in Spanish, she understood that confused apparently it's wadder, not water you will eventually make yourself understood.
I was lucky (maybe) my MIL helped me with a lot of things, like I needed Corn flour, she picked our Corn starch. She was an American who had lived in UK her most of life so that was handy.

FSB Tue 24-Apr-12 22:10:19

We're moving for DHs work, but fully intend to settle there long term. So will probly be looking to buy a house after the first year... Why is it so expensive under 5 yrs? Are there lots of one-off costs associated with buying?

The electrical thing is a pain in the bum! Can't believe I've got to get all new appliances! I assumed we'd just be able to get the plugs changed.. blush

SittingBull Tue 24-Apr-12 17:37:13

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ragged Tue 24-Apr-12 08:26:22

I would say that "nice area" San Diego prices are like most of London, but Bay area is like "nice areas" of London, iyswim. The money will go out differently: petrol cheap, preschool atrocious. Housing kind of comparable, but buying a house is much dearer than renting (over less than 5 yrs or so). Dental & medical care shock whilst eating out reasonable. Swimming lessons shock shock.

SittingBull Mon 23-Apr-12 20:55:46

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

VintageNancy Mon 23-Apr-12 16:42:50

Oh and baby E is lovely and snuggly smile.

VintageNancy Mon 23-Apr-12 16:40:39

Yep we bought all new electrical too except my sewing machine, MacBook and printer. I think we've got US cables for them all now to save using adapters.

Hopandaskip Mon 23-Apr-12 15:14:00

depends if your appliances are 110/240 or just 240. If they are just 240 you need a transformer and they are big, ugly and wasteful. On the most part we just got new appliances. The ones with rechargeable batteries (like an almost new expensive bosch drill) we kept. You end up spending an insane amount to start with replacing things you already had. In our second month here we needed to buy a fridge ($1K) a washer and dryer, a vacuum, a hairdryer, an iron etc etc.

FSB Mon 23-Apr-12 14:46:03

Also, I'm a bit confused about electrical appliances... Will ours work there with travel adaptors, or can we get the plugs changed, or do we have to buy all new appliances?... Thanks

FSB Mon 23-Apr-12 14:41:19

... How's the baby nancy? smile

FSB Mon 23-Apr-12 14:40:51

Ragged, we live in a fairly pricey bit of London, not chelsea or anything, but more waitrose than Asda..! So I'm hoping it won't be too much of a shock. Looking on the Internet at what great houses we could buy for the same price that our piddly little flat is worth in London is quite eye opening!! grin

FSB Mon 23-Apr-12 14:36:43

Wow thanks for all the links sitting bull, I'll look them up... Im in the restaurant business and looking to get an interesting job for a small independent company (my current company has 35 restaurants, so smaller than that!).

Our DD will be 3 in July. How about yours? How long have u been out there?

ragged Fri 20-Apr-12 07:13:27

It's very very expensive. Even by California standards. And I say that as a San Diego native. We looked at moving to Bay Area/Santa Clara valley about 2 years ago quite seriously. DH company decided not to move, anyway, but the cost of living was a huge concern for us.
There is an area online resource, LasMadres. They come highly recommended.

VintageNancy Fri 20-Apr-12 05:55:55

Hi FSB I'm south of San Jose as I think I mentioned on the Living in America thread.

We moved in December and love it here. My top tip for meeting people is meetup.com. I've joined a moms group and made friends before Dd even arrived. I can't wait to get out and see them all again now she's here.

If you have any specific questions on things like shipping, social security, banks etc let me know.

SittingBull Fri 20-Apr-12 05:34:56

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SittingBull Fri 20-Apr-12 05:31:31

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SittingBull Fri 20-Apr-12 05:31:14

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SittingBull Fri 20-Apr-12 05:29:47

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SittingBull Fri 20-Apr-12 05:25:39

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Hopandaskip Fri 20-Apr-12 03:23:04

brrr surfing up there is coooolllllldddd! It can be quite grey and overcast on the west side of the bay. Our friends used to live in Burlingame and decided based on the weather to move to the East Bay.

Catinthe, we have been to Los Gatos for water polo tournaments a number of times, it is really nice there!

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