advice on moving


So I got a job in the States. At the moment, I am just thinking about what the best way to relocate will be (I'm in the UK now). Mainly, I am unsure about how to handle accommodation for after when I arrive. Obviously, I can't rent something before I get there. The University doesn't offer any assistance, and has no student housing available to provide one months' accommodation or so. Do I get a hotel room for ~1 week and hope I'll find something? I don't know how difficult/easy it is to find something in the states, given that I won't have a car and won't know the place at all. Also I don't know whether they require references etc to get a place. In addition, I will of course have to set up a bank account etc at the same time...I was just wondering if anyone on here who has been through a similar move has any advice to offer. I would really appreciate any morsels of wisdom, as the University isn't helping at all.


No direct experience but you may want to look at serviced apartments as a cheaper short-medium term option than a hotel (e.g. you might find a month to be a more realistic timeframe for getting everything sorted).


Hi tophdornottophd
you may try to find some apartments online and talk to people there. There could also be some facebook pages with foreign people living in the city you are trying to move and such pages are generally very helpful. There could also be some renting websites to check out. In short what I am trying to say is some online search might help you atleast get an idea of how the renting scene is in that city. Hope this helped.

T Everyone in the US uses it. I found a house share on it. They didn't need references or credit check. One person was already renting a place and was looking for more housemates. We had a skype chat and that was that. This was about 1 month before I moved there. I was looking for about 1 month prior to that and had 3 other 'skype' interviews because I was choosy about a place and people were choosy about who they wanted to move in. You can also see apartments advertising directly on there, if you want to live alone.

I set up a bank account on the day I got there. Just walked into a random bank with my UK debit card, passport and driver's licence and that was it. They didn't need any proof of address.

If you have any other questions about moving to the US let me know :)


Thanks, this is so helpful! I'm feeling really rather stressed at the moment - I'm finishing my Phd (well data analysis - there is no way I'm going to finish writing up completely before I go), as this is my last month on studentship funding (I have another writing up year). My supervisor is pushing relentlessly for me to write as much as possible, but I haven't had time off since Christmas and I'm so exhausted! On top of that I have to plan the move, visa application etc, moving my stuff out of the flat here, etc.
Thanks to TreeofLife for the skype hint, I would have never thought of that!
I thought maybe craigslist is like gumtree here (as in, dodgy), but if everyoen uses it, I'm going to give it a go!


It is quite easy to find a room to rent in summer in US/Canada... upon your arrival go to the student hall or food courts and there are always lots of adds on announcement boards from people who want to rent a room to students or postdocs. Internationals are usually preferred because they tend to be less problematic than locals who can party and have lots of people over....most of these houses do not need credit and they take cash and a bit of downpayment (usually one month rent)...All you need is a call and a visit, if they have the room available, you can be sure that you can have it... this is much easier to rent in summer.... Most of the houses near universities in the US and Canada have developed basements for students.. Craig list is perfect for smaller cities but can be less effective for bigger cities like LA or NY.


Thanks for all the advice. Now I have another question - how expensive is it to have a car? I assume insurance must be pretty high if you're from abroad - do you have to get a local driver's licence first?


Depends on your budget but you can buy a high milage or 10 or 12 year old Toyota Corrola or Hyundai accent as low as $1500 to $2000 or even cheaper but the killer is not the price of car is the insurance as you guessed. Also when you buy a car you need to get registry for the year and etc etc... You can drive with an international driving licence for sometimes but depends on each state's law you have to apply for your state driving licence. State to state, and province to province the laws are different...

if your aim is to stay for over a year, it is a good idea to have a car, for a shorter period, it really does not worth it. Also, when you decide to go back you will lose a lot on selling back the car.

For buying cars check or .ca.