Moving back to UK, but where?

(6 Posts)
ShangPie Sun 04-Apr-21 01:53:53

After a decade of living overseas, we’re moving back to the UK in the summer. It’s a positive step for us and while we’re sad to leave some parts of expat life behind, we’re looking forward to moving back.

The issue is, where to go?? How to select a place to live when there’s no ‘home town’ to return to? I grew up on the South coast but have no real connection to that place now. My family are spread all over the world and can fly in to visit once that’s a thing again. The ILs are in a tiny village in the NE and they would like us to be near-ish (we agree on the -ish part but need a suitably large exclusion zone grin) We both have WFH jobs so no work location pressure, apart from needing a good internet connection.

How to find your new place? I’m not talking about the property itself, but the town / area - do we pick based on schools? Size? Community? Nearby nature / greenery / beaches? Property prices? We just read the Times Best Places to Live last week and so many places look great but it all seems so random... How to meaningfully search and look at this now from overseas? Or is it better to simply park it for now and figure it out when we’re back?

Anyone had this when moving back? How did you manage it? I’d love to hear suggestions

OP’s posts: |
pomacentrus Sun 04-Apr-21 05:30:49

If you've been living overseas I'd start by considering your tolerance for short winter days, and dodgy summers. For example though they are beautiful I couldn't live in Scotland/Lake District as there isn't enough sun and daylight for me.

Will your family be flying into Heathrow?, I'd put a 2 hour drive limit from there.

There's been a couple of good "if you could live anywhere in uk" threads recently.

After that its really personal preference on your priority for coast/mountain/city etc. You'll get more value for money in somewhere that doesn't have a direct rail connection to a major city.

ShangPie Mon 05-Apr-21 01:09:55

Thanks @pomacentrus, will definitely search the ‘if you could live anywhere in the UK’ threads

Weather is a factor for sure, but we are happy to trade pollution here for cold and wet.

OP’s posts: |
TheTeenageYears Mon 05-Apr-21 01:26:18

In your shoes I would consider:

What are your schooling requirements if you have DC?
What financial constraints do you have - are you in a position to be able to afford to buy a house anywhere in the U.K.? If not looking at what you can get for your money in different parts of the U.K. is a good place to start.
Proximity to airports for ease of seeing family scattered around the world.
Leisure interests - if you are big fans of hill walking living in central London probably isn't ideal
Is WFH viable long term? Is there much chance of either of you needing to job search in the local market in the future?

MangosteenSoda Mon 05-Apr-21 01:52:00

Harrogate/Ilkley/other West or North Yorks town. I’m going purely on the comment about being close, but not too close to the NE.

I moved back 2 years ago after 17 years abroad (last place was Shanghai) and moved close to family. I think you do need to come up with a wish list/practical list of some sort. Too much choice can be as bad as too little.

WildGarlicTime Mon 05-Apr-21 07:47:06

It depends how close is too close to your DILs. But there are many beautiful places with brilliant schools in the North East.

A PP has already mentioned Ilkley, Harrogate and around North Yorkshire.

Might also be worth considering Durham, the Tyne Valley in Northumberland (Hexham, Corbridge, Riding Mill, Stocksfield etc) - all very beautiful and incredible countryside.

Also Morpeth and Tynemouth / Whitley Bay Area.

All the above have great schooling, good pubs, culture, etc. Welcome back!

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