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Living in London - A quick query

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novaflux
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Living in London - A quick query

Postby novaflux » Tue, 20 Jun 2006 11:55 am

Hiya guys
This is definitely off-topic, off tangent but I thought I'd try my luck here if there is anyone from London originally. Just to understand a bit more of the housing, council and tax issues pertaining to working in London.

ANyone can shed some light on the tax levels and if you rented an apartment there, how much hidden costs are there?

Cheers all
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Plavt
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Postby Plavt » Tue, 20 Jun 2006 1:54 pm

Novaflux,
I live in London but your query is not specific enough. However, I can tell you renting private accommodation is very expensive not only will you have rent you will also have to pay the community charge (poll tax) and then there are of course the utility bills (e.g. gas, electricity, water rates possibly others). How much may depend on the area but usually flats (apartments) are anywhere from £800 per month upwards and tend to be the same nationally. Therefore it is unusual to find them single occupied unless somebody has a very well paid job or access to a lot of money.

Council housing is the cheapest but you have no chance of getting it, not only is it in short supply nationals often have to wait years. Note the community charge is reduced by 25% for single occupancy.

Hope this answers some of your concerns.



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Postby novaflux » Tue, 20 Jun 2006 2:46 pm

Hey Plavt

Thanks for replying! yeah I guess I was being a bit vague...

Cost of eating, dining and transport etc I am familiar so not much of an issue since I lived as a student in england before. I have a potential offer to work over in London and I guess it's a different kettle of fish...

I have to start thinking about my pay and how much tax will come off it.
Renting a studio apartment the price range I am looking at
and also looking at that council or poll tax you were talking about...
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Postby novaflux » Tue, 20 Jun 2006 2:47 pm

Plavt

you are still living in London now?
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Postby Plavt » Tue, 20 Jun 2006 3:28 pm

novaflux wrote:Plavt

you are still living in London now?


Yes, as regards your other post, the cost of eating can vary greatly depending on your tastes, locality and where you care to shop. For weekly shopping the major Supermarkets are Sainsburys, Tesco, Safeway, Iceland, Morrisons and Marks & Spencer (if they have a food division - tends to be major cities only). Sainsbury's would seem the most popular with Marks & Spencer being the most expensive. Transport is expensive, if you travel by tube make sure you get an oyster card it reduces the cost tremendously, taxis forget it, in London the fares are astronomical exacerbated by waiting in traffic. As an example from the airport to where I live is about an hours drive and cost almost a £100, the same distance in Singapore a mere £5.
Council tax is according to area with London being the most expensive, even worse it is banded and a property in London is often in a more expensive band and a cheaper one elsewhere. Income tax is around 30% and there is the National Insurance (NI) contribution but I don't know how this affects foreigners. Dentists have become a pain in the butt hardly any will do NHS work and the prices are crippling for many, you might care to use something like Healthshield for a fixed fee per month you get all your expenses back (so I am told). Hope this helps.

Plavt.

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Postby novaflux » Tue, 20 Jun 2006 5:35 pm

Plavt

Ahhh thanks a lot for your info sharing!

ok so Income tax is at 30% irregardless of income level? Or is it much like in Singapore where there are escalating tax brackets/bands meaning it goes higher the more you earn?

Hmm, looks like it costs way more to have same quality of life I have here in Singapore...

BTW - If i lived near say Tower Bridge or the west end like Gloucester Rd the council taxes may differ on the apartment that I rent? SO if i rented a studio apartment for example. Say if I paid 1k in rent, on top of that I have to pay council taxes based on bands like you mentioned.. will there be more hidden costs other than bills like maintaineance fees etc?
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Postby Plavt » Tue, 20 Jun 2006 6:20 pm

To answer you question on tax it does increase (somewhere around 40% I think) when you get to somewhere around the 36K mark I don't know the exact figure.

Unless you are financially well endowed you may as well forget those areas you wish to live in, both are in central London and yes you will have to pay council tax on top of the figure you quote. Please note these are areas with rents higher than the national average (around £600 upwards per week possibly more absurb whatever) I really don't know what figure but property around Gloucester Road most likely sells in the millions.

All in all London is much more expensive than Singapore and many people live well out even those who work shifts. While I was employed by London Underground a good number of drivers lived in Peterborough and at least one lived in Cardiff! This shows the feelings of people towards remaining or living in the capital.


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Postby novaflux » Tue, 20 Jun 2006 6:31 pm

Holy Cow!
Cannot imagine living far out of central since the national rail is not known for it's reliability... gotta wake up like 4 - 5am to get in to work?
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Postby Plavt » Tue, 20 Jun 2006 6:57 pm

Maybe not as bad as I made it seem if say you were living at Haywards Heath (Between Brighton and London) the journey time is less than 50 minutes and trains run all-night or the best part of. In this region there are so many trains the hold-up is getting them in and out of Victoria (from Brighton to London is via Clapham Junction Britain's busiest junction and station). Areas of West London or in that direction are a better consideration (e.g. easy access from Reading to Paddington.) Chiswick, Ealing and Richmond are worth considering. Richmond may not be cheap but I think you would like the area which has easy access to the District Line.

A few possibilities but do remember accommodation is difficult to find so get here before the University term starts when students will grab whatever is going.

Plavt.

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Postby novaflux » Tue, 20 Jun 2006 9:32 pm

wow hey thanks a lot this is really insightful!
okay lemme go figure out my messy life now and see where the wind takes me heh... i kinda miss london tho, used to travel there on business quite a bit... i used to live at gloucester rd station at the milleniums... nice place... And I lurve the roast duck at bayswater 4 seasons. Have you eaten there before?
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Postby Plavt » Tue, 20 Jun 2006 9:36 pm

Seldom get down there these days although it's ok for the odd day or night out. Might see you some day.

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Postby novaflux » Tue, 20 Jun 2006 11:44 pm

i see, whereabouts in london are you located?
yeah if I do go over, will let ya know and we can have a pint!
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Postby wirby » Fri, 23 Jun 2006 2:53 pm

Studio flats may be cheaper in London, but I do agree that it is best to find a property outside of London as it is much cheaper. Take a look at the below link for property prices in London. :wink:


http://www.propertyfinder.com/cgi-bin/r ... bed=&o=def
Wirby


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