Moving from any country to another is a challenge. There is a long list of things to do to prepare to move. Thankfully, there are quite a few similarities between the UK and the US, and anyone wanting to move from the UK to the US will find it can be a seamless transition.

Before you start downsizing the house and withdrawing the children from their schools, you must set up an appointment with a well-reputed London immigration lawyer to help with all the legalities, paperwork, passports, and visa formalities

How to Prepare to Move to the US

How to Prepare to Move to the US


Once the documentation is covered, here are some tips to help you prepare for the move:

Prepare to Move by Downsizing

If you’ve lived in the UK throughout your life, there’s a good chance you’ve collected quite a bit of furniture, have investments, property, cars, and more. Begin the process by taking stock of your assets and liabilities. You should provide the local council and post office with your forwarding address, notify pension authorities, make arrangements for all loans and liabilities, and inform the tax office. 

Apart from these, it would be best if you also started settling outstanding dues and bills for utilities, canceled subscriptions, and other unnecessary assets.

Additionally, it would help if you considered downsizing the house. While you may want to use a packer and mover, you should also start donating any unwanted clothing, or household items.

Have The Correct Visa and Paperwork Ready

The United States has many types of visa classes based on eligibility and requirements. Your rejection or acceptance partially depends on selecting the correct type of visa for your shift. Shifting to the US for work will require a work visa or permit, while there are others for repatriation, students, elderly citizens, and more. 

The most common visa type is the work visa which helps international skilled workers fill the skills shortage gap in the US. Whichever visa type you choose, remember that the application and processing times vary. The backlog due to the pandemic has increased wait times even further. Keeping this in mind, it’s best to have an adequate buffer period before selling your home, cars, and more. 

Research Healthcare Insurance

Healthcare in the UK differs significantly from that in the US. UK residents, students, and visitors can avail of Medicare with the National Health Service (NHS). This is a free point-of-service provided by the UK government. No such service exists in the US. Everyone in the US needs comprehensive health and life insurance for themselves and their families. 

Emergency doctor visits can cost more in the US, and surgery costs without cover are astronomical. While you prepare for your move, you must go through all medical insurance covers methodically.

Prepare to Move by Renting a Storage Unit if Needed

When you’re still in the UK, contacting some reputable estate services in the US is best.  Depending on your itinerary, state, and city, you should check about paid storage options for your belongings. This step is crucial for people moving with their furniture and belongings yet not immediately looking to purchase a house.

The US has plenty of storage facilities, and most people who move for the first time prefer using these secure services while they finalize a home. Since many people live in temporary accommodation on short-term, finding a place to purchase may take time. 

Don’t Forget About Your Pets

When shifting, please do not leave your pets behind. There are plenty of options to safely bring your furry family to the US from the UK. Getting your pet to America should be a no-brainer since there are plenty of laws and regulations to help you out. The process is slightly complicated and requires your pets to be fully vaccinated (including rabies), get vet certificates, and whatnot. 

You may also find a slight quarantine period. However, despite these processes, you can live with your furry members peacefully in the US.

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About the Author: Patricia Davis Brown

Patricia, like her blog, is not a one-dimensional designer, which is evident in her accolades of 17 national design awards. Over a 38-year career in the industry, she has carved a niche in several areas of design. Licensed in interior design and certified in kitchen and bath design, she offers a full menu of design services ranging from whole house interior design, kitchen and bath design, lighting design, full remodels, commercial design and universal (ADA) design. Patricia is a sought-after speaker in the industry and has been published in many publications as seen on her interior design firm’s website, She writes for such publications as QuinStreetinc, Relaxed Remodeler, and talent offering design tips.