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America is a popular destination for expats relocating and it's a great place to work or start a new life with endless opportunities in a massive and diverse country.
Our guide below gives a lot of information on all aspects of living in the USA and Moving to USA from UK or any other European or worldwide location.
Many or our clients ask for information on Moving to New York for work, or moving to California for a new life, or moving to Florida for increased use of holiday homes. There are many reasons for a move to America but we can cover any move, from any location and destination through our comprehensive range of Agents and Partners throughout the world, all operating to high international relocation standards.
If you are planning on Moving to America from UK then scroll down through the information below which we hope will inform you of all aspects of moving to the USA, especially if you are moving from UK to USA as this is one of our main operating routes including moving from London to New York.
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Thinking of moving to America? Moving to the USA has much to offer and provides a great intercultural experience – from the vast and beautiful countryside, like the pleasantly mild Pacific Northwest, to learning how American people celebrate the Fourth of July, one of the most famous of Americas holidays, up to tasting the USA’s favorite dishes such as stuffed turkey. Attracted by the abundance of possibilities and the incredible vastness of the United States of America, international migrants are moving to the USA in droves. As an expat moving to the USA, you will come to appreciate the country for its varied scenery and its multitude of cultures. Its diversity is reflected in its society, geography, and even climate. Because of the country’s sheer possibilities, working in the USA may be an attractive option for you. Besides the dream of making it from rags to riches, there are many reasons for choosing the USA as your expat destination. The USA, home to people with origins in all corners of the globe, is the third most populous country in the world. Only India and China have larger populations. America has a diverse culture and one region is very different from another. Whether it is the bustle of city life, or the relaxed country lifestyle you are after, moving from UK to USA, you will find it all.
How to move to America, moving to the USA, you will need a visa. For visa purposes, US authorities distinguish between two main groups of people moving to the USA: immigrants and nonimmigrants. Both groups are divided into several categories, the most important of which will be described below.
Everyone who comes to the USA for a specified, limited period of time with no intention of settling permanently is considered a nonimmigrant for visa purposes. The various visas correspond to the different reasons for moving to the USA.
This visa is for people who wish to work in a specialty occupation, are involved in Department of Defense research or development projects, or are fashion models of international prominence.
As a general requirement (except for fashion models), applicants need to have a Bachelor’s degree or an international equivalent (usually four years of study at an institution of higher education). The number of visas available in this category is capped at 65,000 per year, and the period of stay is initially limited to three years.
To apply for this visa, you must have continuously worked for your employer in a management or executive position for one year within the three years prior to your transfer.
You can initially be transferred for one year in order to set up an office in the US or for three years in order to work in an already established office.
This visa is intended for those who have attained national or international acclaim, recognition, or distinction and who are coming temporarily to the US to continue working in the area of extraordinary ability. This applies especially to the fields of science, education, business, sports, arts, motion pictures, and television. Initially, the O-1 visa is valid for three years, but it can be extended by up to a year at a time if deemed necessary by the US Citizenship and Immigration Services.
Applicants for the E-1 visa need to be nationals of a country with which the United States maintains a treaty of commerce and navigation and must carry on principal and substantial trade with the US. Employees of applicants or a qualifying organization may also be eligible for an E-1 visa.
This visa is very popular with companies and independent businesses, as there is no limit to the number of extensions granted after the initial period of two years has passed.
Regardless of whether they have the same nationality as the applicant, family members can apply for E-1 visas too, and spouses are even able to apply for a work authorization.
The most well-known immigrant visa is most likely the much sought-after Green Card, or, as it is officially called, the Diversity Visa Program.
As for employment-based immigration, there are five preference categories, EB-1 through EB-5. Your prospective US employer will have to submit proof that there are insufficient qualified US workers available and/or willing to fill the position. Your employer also must prove that hiring you, a foreign employee, will not have a negative impact on the wages and working conditions of US workers in similar positions.
Applicants for EB-1, EB-4, and EB-5 visas are exempt from this rule, however.
If your business in the USA will take no more than six months, you can make do with a B-1 Temporary Business Visitor visa.
In the USA, it is common for people, even in low-paid and simple jobs, to take pride in their work. Mobility is also an important aspect of working in the USA, especially for people who want to get ahead. Generally, employees and business people are expected to jump at a career opportunity, even if it means relocating with their entire family.
A considerable number of companies and business people also take on a variety of social responsibilities towards their local communities. Voluntary work, charity donations, and fundraising activities are common and highly regarded practices. Given the minimalistic social safety net, US society relies very much on these values and endeavors.
People working in the USA are often employed without protection from dismissal by any clauses in their contract. There may either be no contract at all or one that doesn’t specify the need for a valid reason for dismissing an employee, and the employee is also free to leave at any time without having to specify a reason. This can be risky for anyone trying to set up a new life in the USA, so if you are negotiating a contract, try and include as many protection clauses as possible. You will find however, a variety of anti-discrimination laws, all of which are taken very seriously to ensure equal opportunities for all people working in the USA, regardless of age, race, religion, gender, or disabilities.
A few general guidelines are worth keeping in mind for most people working in the USA. An average working week is around 40 hours, so the same as the UK, although in the US, working overtime is fairly common and often expected. Furthermore, employers are not required to grant employees any paid vacation, sick leave, or federal holidays, which means that if you plan on working in the USA, you should plan to also include this in any negotiations of your working contract. Both parents of newborn children are, however, entitled to twelve weeks of unpaid leave.
Also points to discuss with any future employer:
Many employers choose to hire immigration lawyers to handle the visa application process for overseas employees. As this usually costs them several thousand dollars, international employees might be required to cover the cost if they decide to resign or leave before their specified period of working in the USA has come to an end.
House Buying and moving to the USA from UK
Buying property in the USA is way more common than renting, and there is something to suit everyone. This is also why many real estate agents focus on houses and apartments which are for sale and clients who are interested in buying , if you are looking to rent , then looking in the papers or magazines will more than likely lead you to what you are looking for. If you are moving to the USA from the UK for a longer period of time or even plan to settle down there for good, buying a home makes a lot of sense. Still, the entire process of buying a house or an apartment is incredibly complex and there is a lot you have to keep in mind when buying property and moving to America.
Buying property in the USA is not a problem for foreigners. You do not any type of visa, Green card or even US citizenship to be able to do so. However, before you can purchase your dream home in the United States, you need to secure an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number, a number issued to foreigners who are not eligible to obtain a Social Security Number.
Finally, to find the right kind of property, the one that is your dream and doesn’t come with a set of unpleasant surprises, you should work with a realtor you can trust. So called Certified International Property Specialists (CIPS) usually have undergone a lot of training and have experience in dealing with foreign buyers. They explain to you how buying property in the USA works and assist you when it comes to the paperwork, closing costs, and other details, and are ideal if you are buying prior to moving to the USA.
Furthermore, real estate agents know your new home town very well. They know which areas are perfect for young, single people, and which would make a great new home for families, as well as which neighborhoods you should avoid when buying property in the USA. the more information you can give them on exactly what you are looking for, the more they can narrow down the suitable property for you. At the end of the day, they can find exactly the type of property that you might be looking for and help you negotiate a good price for your new home-to-be. When it comes to dealing with the paperwork at a later point, they might be able to refer you to an attorney as well, as they are experienced in all aspects of house sales.
Even though a reliable and professional real estate agent might save you a lot of time and nerves, you will have to be the one to decide which neighborhoods you prefer. Neighborhood's can vary even though they are just a short distance apart, and many realtor agents will be able to let you know what each area has to offer, and how that will benefit you. Your realtor can, of course, give you some pointers about buying property in the USA. you will need to decide what type of property you are looking for, whether that be an apartment or a villa. try to decide as much as possible before engaging your realtor, so that the job of house hunting is made easier for both parties.
There is a lot of information you should gather before you decide to go house hunting. you should investigate the average housing costs, allowing you to come up with a budget for your purchase not forgetting to account for closing fees and other costs. You can find a vast amount of information on the internet and many realtor companies have very informative and up to date property portfolios online.
If you decide to move to the USA, chances are you will be able to find a climate that suits you. The states of the USA are more like individual countries and the climates follow suit. Large parts of the western half of the US have either an arid, semiarid, or highland climate, interspersed with some alpine climatic zones. However, expats moving to the United States can also find more pleasant climates in the west, such as the marine West Coast or even California’s Mediterranean climate.
The northeastern quarter of the country is mainly humid continental, with summer temperatures rising the further south you go. If you move to the southeast, you will encounter a humid subtropical climate in most states, descending into a tropical climate in the very south of Florida. if you are looking for the more tourist areas, this area of America is where to head.
Most people moving to the USA will be aware of more or less common extreme weather events such as tornados and hurricanes during the summer months and blizzards in the winter.
Texas is an agricultural state and an industrial giant. Second only to Alaska in land area, it leads all other states in such categories as oil, cattle, sheep, and cotton. Texas ranches and farms also produce poultry and eggs, dairy products, greenhouse and nursery products, wheat, hay, rice, sugar cane, and peanuts, and a variety of fruits and vegetables.
Chemicals, oil refining, food processing, machinery, and transportation equipment are among the major Texas manufacturing industries. Sulfur, salt, helium, asphalt, graphite, bromine, natural gas, cement, and clays are among the state's valuable resources There are many job opportunities in Texas in a variety of disciplines, and for those looking at moving to Texas for the outdoor life, farming here can be a fantastic way of life.
$50 billion a year is spent by millions of tourists visiting more than 100 state parks, recreation areas, and points of interest such as the Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center in Houston, the Gulf Coast resort area, the state capital in Austin, the Alamo in San Antonio, and Guadalupe Mountains National Park.
Texas shares borders with the U.S. states of Louisiana to the east, Arkansas to the northeast, Oklahoma to the north, New Mexico to the west, and the Mexican states of Chihuahua, Coahuila, Nuevo León, and Tamaulipas to the southwest, while the Gulf of Mexico is to the southeast.
Moving to Colorado? With the highest average altitude of any US state, the common saying in the Centennial State is, “Go to the mountains—it’s good for you!”
Colorado boast the lowest rate of obesity in the country, not surprising with its 1,500 peaks over 10,000 feet high and 54 monsters over 14,000 feet high. Hiking here is popular, and Colorado attracts those looking for a healthy lifestyle.
Moving to Colorado, you will find some of the wealthiest communities anywhere, it’s no wonder President Theodore Roosevelt referred to this part of the USA as the “Switzerland of America.” With its amazing natural surroundings, clean air and healthy lifestyle, moving to Colorado is an enticing prospect, especially if you are a lover of the great outdoors.
Located in the American Heartland between the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers, Iowa is a rural state with small towns dotted throughout the beautiful countryside and the occasional mid-sized city. If you’re moving to Iowa, you’ll find low crime rates and the cost of living is also fairly low compared to the rest of the USA. With plenty of wide open spaces, and friendly neighborhoods the state of Iowa is focused on family life, and suits people looking for outdoor pursuits.
Once you learn about the in-state rivalry among universities, which is fairly complicated and competitive, you should find moving to Iowa pretty easy. Iowa winters can be harsh and a bit of a shock! Sub-zero temperatures, several inches (or feet) of snow, icy roads and high winds can make moving to Iowa during the winter months of November to March almost absolutely impossible. Whilst the summer months, especially July and August, can be dangerously hot and humid, so again don't plan moving to Iowa during this period, as you may end up with heat stroke.
Arkansas is full of little gems - literally! and dotted with a few surprises on the way. If you’re moving to Arkansas, you can visit North America’s only diamond mine in Murfreesboro and take in the history and healing powers of Hot Springs at Bath House Row. Famous natives such as Johnny Cash, President Bill Clinton and Sam Walton have all made their mark on America with a flair and style that you’ll find nowhere else but in Arkansas!
The low cost of living in Arkansas is primarily due to its abundance of agricultural products. Some cities, such as Pine Bluff, even boast living expenses that are as much as 25 percent lower than the rest of the country. Cotton, wood, rice and soybeans are all cultivated in the state’s rich alluvial soil, while cattle and poultry farming form a significant part of its income. Moreover, these products are processed in the immediate vicinity as they’re produced, so consumers in Arkansas avoid having to pay additional costs for transportation and import taxes.
It’s very humid during the summer in Arkansas, especially at lower elevations, where average temperatures are around 93 degrees Fahrenheit. Heavy rainfall can lead to flooded roads and cut-off bridges, so be prepared when driving! Winters are dryer and cold with averages between 32 and 51 degrees Fahrenheit. There’s still a significant amount of snowfall in the mountains in the north, while areas south of Little Rock get storms with icy rain that can make for hazardous driving conditions. you also need to beware of tornadoes. Though these mainly hit during spring and summer, they can occur year-round.
Famous for its sweet southern hospitality, particularly in the southern parts of the state, moving to Alabama is perfect for any family or those looking to retire. Perhaps your dream is to live in an old, southern mansion, or antebellum house. Moving to Alabama means you can make this dream a reality, as these types of homes are more affordable than you might think. Lower than the national average by about 12%t,he cost of living in Alabama, has remained relatively stable over recent years. However, keep in mind that the average salary tends to be lower here as well, so if you are looking for jobs you need to take this into account. Salaries do depend on areas within the state, with Huntsville having one of the highest yearly salary averages in the state, while Gulf Shores has one of the lowest.
Alabama climate in very hot and humid, with heavy rainfall and frequent, extreme weather storms in the form of hurricanes, thunder and tropical storms. Most parts of the state see the occasional tornado and rain often comes in a torrential downpour. Hurricanes, tropical storms and tornadoes are all common, frequent occurrences, but locals are well informed on how to prepare properly with warnings and drills regularly performed to keep you up-to-date on proper safety precautions and evacuation routes when necessary. Weather is one of the most important elements to think about when deciding on the best time to move to Alabama. Try to avoid moving in March, April, May or November, as these tend to be high-storm months. October may be the best month to move, as this is often the driest, most mild month of the year.
Nicknamed The Evergreen State, Washington is known for its tech-savvy inhabitants and evergreen forests. 60% of its population lives in the Seattle metropolitan area. In the Spokane area, another popular location for those moving to Washington, you’ll find a haven for outdoorsman, with 77 lakes and numerous parks, and hiking trails. Moving to Washington provides a wide variety of outdoor pursuits.
Washington has many cities to choose from and you will find the some that suit your budget better than others. For instance, groceries, utilities, transportation and healthcare will cost you more in Seattle, compared to the cost of living in eastern Washington.
The amount you spend on a house will depend entirely on the area in which you live. The housing costs in Washington run higher than the national average in some areas.
When moving to Washington, you will enjoy an array of climates. The western half of the state enjoys an oceanic climate and Seattle has, on average, 201 cloudy days, 93 partly cloudy days, and an average of 71 days of sun each year.
There is an average of 150 rainy days with an average of 37.17 inches of rain each year. The winters are cloudy and the average high/low temperatures on one day vary little. The relatively dry summers are gorgeous and average 75 degrees Fahrenheit.
Temperatures can, however reach into the 80s and 90s during July and August.
The part of Washington on the eastern side of the Cascade Mountains enjoys a humid continental climate. Spokane enjoys warm, dry summers and an average of 260 days of sunshine a year. The winters are wet, cold and snowy. Eastern Washington is protected from the weather extremes by the Cascade and Rocky mountains.
Minnesota is vastly made up of rural areas and lots of lakes, If you have a love of the outdoors, nature and sports, you will no doubt enjoy moving to Minnesota and all it has to offer with varying outdoor pursuits. Whether you love nature and the outdoors or city life, there’s an area of Minnesota for you. There are the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, with a family-friendly vibe and green living style. If suburbia is what you’re looking for, you might choose Brooklyn Park, a beautiful area filled with parks, trails and biking paths. And don’t rule out the smaller towns located along the state’s many lakes when moving to Minnesota, as they provide a village like lifestyle often perfect for families and those looking to retire.
Minnesota has a definite four-season weather pattern , but winter tends to be very long, with colder temperatures sometimes lasting up to six months of the year. Summers are fast and furious with heavy rainfall. Spring and fall are the least extreme, but tend to bring several thunderstorms and tornadoes.
Winter brings opportunities for fun, outdoor activities like downhill skiing, snowboarding, snowmobiling, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, ice skating and ice fishing. The winters are sunny, and even though the temperatures are low, not unlike many of the famous ski resorts in Europe.
Summer, can get quite humid and hot, but the many lakes and the jet streams all over Minnesota help to keep temperatures from getting too extreme. The northern half of the state is less humid than the southern half and sees less rainfall. August tends to bring several tornadoes and thunderstorms because nearly half of the year’s overall rainfall occurs during the late spring and summer months.
New York has a lot to offer lovers of arts and culture. One of the state’s most impressive arts venues is the Frank Gehry-designed Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts at Bard College. Some 200 colleges and universities are located in New York state. The State University of New York (SUNY) system provides a public option, complete with in-state tuition, and there are plenty of private options, too..
From Long Island rosé to Finger Lakes Riesling, there are many notable wines in the New York state, and winery trips are a great option for long weekends. It’s not just the wine scene that’s booming. New breweries and distilleries are always popping up in New York. So if you like beer and whiskey, the Empire State is a great place to live. If you’ve always dreamed of starting your own brewery or distillery, you’ll face steep competition but moving to New York, you’ll have a vibrant community of fellow enthusiasts to turn to for advice, the state has an educated populace and many charming college towns. New York’s food scene doesn’t end at the borders of New York City. The whole state is ideal for foodies. That’s due in part to the amazing produce that grows in New York, but also to the presence of the Culinary Institute of America in upstate New York.