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Anyone moved back to the UK after a few years?

...the good, the bad or the ugly...

post 11.Dec.2017, 06:48 PM
Post #16
Location: Gothenburg
Joined: 18.Jul.2012


I have often wondered how i could move back to London but i just can´t afford it. I live better here when it comes to housing.

Ivé been here since 1990 and a few years before that and i admit, i love my homeland. I´m English nothing else.

What i really laugh about are the fools that became Swedish citizens because of Brexit. If they had permanent residency there was never any worry.
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post 12.Dec.2017, 02:11 PM
Post #17
Joined: 20.Nov.2016

Yes, went back to the UK after several years in Sweden.

A little daunting at first and our daughter being 5 would go straight into the UK school system, but this hurdle was overcome (we waited a few weeks for a school place) and I have to say the UK schools system is far better than anything Sweden has to offer.

Although we were in Sweden for several years, I never found a job and calculate that I applied for circa 2,500 positions. I'm actually probably still active in a few recruitment processes as they take so long in Sweden.

I just find the cost of living and quality of life to be better in every respect in the UK, generally with better life opportunities.

We still come back to Sweden to see relatives a couple of times of year. It's a nice place for a holiday.
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post 13.Dec.2017, 10:21 PM
Post #18
Joined: 28.Jun.2011

A nice place for a holiday indeed, yes those were the days smile.gif Great to hear your experience of moving back was a positive one!
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post 9.Jul.2018, 03:54 PM
Post #19
Location: Gävle
Joined: 28.Feb.2016

I went back to visit family in march for 2 weeks and got multiple job offers just by visiting old friends and saying hi to my old co-workers and bosses.

I was very tempted to take them up on the offer and just cancel my return ticket lol. I can see myself moving back pretty soon if there's no improvement here with my situation. I've been keeping in touch with my colour sergeant as well, I really enjoyed the last 6 years I spent in the army and only left because we moved here. Not sure if I can re enlist with my previous rank or pay grade though...
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post 11.Jul.2018, 12:38 AM
Post #20
Joined: 7.Jul.2006

As someone who came to Sweden pre credit crunch, I've had many doubts along the road to survival in Sweden. It's not a utopia as people will present Sweden as. Unfortunately, I'm a stubborn bitch and have managed to hit an equilibrium that works for me now. However, that could change. My young children have good quality education, are very happy and it feels safe. My feeling is based on experience and intuition and that I believe rightly or wrongly, that my children would find it more challenging to adjust to a UK culture, which in my opinion is more aggressive and challenging. That's an opinion I've had since I left England.

In terms of safety and security, the UK is in a difficult situation with austerity leading to burglaries and car theft being treated as admin issues. Massive issues with gang rapes of girls in certain parts of the country. London has seen a massive upsurge in moped gangs, stabbings and shootings as this is replicated in other partsof the UK, but on a smaller scale. A BBC documentary has highlighted this where police have admitted big issues due to austerity. The NHS is in crisis, as well as social services, which I have seen first hand. It's a lottery as to the level of treatment you get. Add in the expansion of zero hour contracts, 4 million regular users of food banks and you get a picture of what is currently happening in the UK.

Brexit is another big issue in that the uncertainty and incompetence of the current amateurs, the immediate term after March 19th, looks quite scary. Brexit imho, will work in the medium to long term, but with no help from the politicians. If you go back to the UK, you may find that it's not working and it will become much more difficult to get a job and live in the EU post Brexit should you want to return.

Sweden is also experiencing a hidden austerity within the police force, hence the increase in crime. Living where I do in Stockholm, I haven't experienced any issues, but I'm lucky to live in a so called 'good area'. The medical system here seems to perform okay, but again it has big issues, despite the country spending a bigger % of GDP than the UK. This is a mixture of incompetence at a political level and privatisation of services, run by private equity firms that then bag the profits offshore.

The one thing that I have noticed when it comes to jobs, is that the prevalence of English has increased, driven a lot by startups (Stockholm is a big hub) and international firms). Walking around Stockholm, I hear it more and more every year.

Property prices are near their highest levels in relation to earnings. It just seems to go up every month. A typical 3 bed terrace where I lived outside London was about 225K, now it's 400K! Add in stamp duty and I just don't understand how those price levels are maintained. It's not sustainable. The currency was 14kr to 1 pound, now its's much stronger. So, for me, that's an advantage, but if you came over just a few years ago, then it might not, especially as the pound dipped below 10kr for a short while.

However, saying all this, you have to trust your instincts and define your priorities in the right order. Only you know what is acceptable for you. If you're really unhappy and you've tried to make it work, then after 2 years, you should seriously consider your options. Draw up a list of positives/negatives for both countries and try to go from there. My friends are doing okay in the UK and are happy. So, despite the issues in the UK, many people are living well. But of course, you have to calculate a lot of parameters due to the big upheaval and costs involved.

Anyway, I wish you luck and hope you find the best route for you and your family.
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post 11.Jul.2018, 09:56 AM
Post #21
Joined: 20.Nov.2016

QUOTE (Mib @ 11.Jul.2018, 12:38 AM) *
In terms of safety and security, the UK is in a difficult situation with austerity leading to burglaries and car theft being treated as admin issues. Massive issues with gang ... (show full quote)

Whilst these are genuine issues they are given undue prominence and over-reported by the [UK] media. I work in central London and have never seen or heard of anyone who has been targeted by moped gangs. Similarly in relation to stabbings and shooting these are gang and drug related crimes, with few innocent victims - small crumbs of comfort I know.

I'm also not convinced that NHS is in crisis and based on my experince I believe that healthcare and education is better in the UK than Sweden, but it can be a postcode lottery for sure. Economically, the country is approaching another boom and one of the reasons for the Brexit vote was mass immigration - immigration needed to supply businesses in all sectors with skilled and unskilled labour.
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post 11.Jul.2018, 11:24 AM
Post #22
Joined: 25.Jun.2009

Like many posters on this thread, we also struggled with the question of which country was the best place for our family. Eventually, we moved back to the US despite that it also has a higher crime rate (and much of the other problems mentioned above in MIB's post) than Sweden...but it all depends on where you live n the US. We relocated to a rural area with good schools and low crime. Our kids have grown up safely and successfully. It was the right move for our family.

So what country is best for raising a family? I don't think there is a universal answer. Each case will be different.
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post 11.Jul.2018, 01:26 PM
Post #23
Joined: 5.Feb.2018

QUOTE (Bsmith @ 11.Jul.2018, 12:24 PM) *
I don't think there is a universal answer. Each case will be different.

Finally we agree on something. Even if you know EXACTLY what your priorities are, and carry out a complete and comprehensive review of every possible nation, there is no perfect answer, just a best fit. Every country has its downsides, you have to find the one in which the upsides outweigh them for your situation.
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post 11.Jul.2018, 01:50 PM
Post #24
Joined: 7.Jul.2006

QUOTE (GamlaSkogHisingHope @ 11.Jul.2018, 10:56 AM) *
Whilst these are genuine issues they are given undue prominence and over-reported by the [UK] media. I work in central London and have never seen or heard of anyone who has be ... (show full quote)

Like you, I have NEVER experienced any crime in the UK, other than my car was once broken into. My friends and family also have thankfully lived without any big incidents. When I go back to my home town or into London, I've never felt unsafe. Even here in Stockholm, when there were riots, people asked us if we were okay. I never noticed the riots. Stockholm apparently has high gun crime and again, I've not been a victim. Burglaries have increased and as a result, our building has improved security as well as the individual apartments. But the statistics are real and growing as police are unable to cope in the UK and over here. It doesn't mean London or the UK has become unsafe.

But I guess if you lived in say Rinkeby or Brixton in London, then our realities would probably be different. All I can say, is that people come across more stressed in say London and in its suburbs. I noticed that over 10 years ago. The main reason, I believe is partly cultural, but because of everyday stresses like too much traffic on the roads, more people in a smaller area, an expensive public transport system that would always let me down on a Friday afternoon when I wanted to go home.

My family have had great difficulties with the NHS and social services. The hospital staff are amazing, but overworked with less resources. My Father was kept in hospital unnecessarily because they couldn't get social services in place in time. They sent him back when he wasn't ready. GPs are resigning or working part time, so harder to get appointments. That's why my Wife is always getting requests to go back. A good friend of ours resigned as a specialist nurse. When she returned from maternity leave, her female Manager said she didn't want to hear about childcare issues on the 1st day! She's now resigned and working in the private sector. This is happening all over. On the flip side in Sweden, our local hospital didn't have enough knowledge experience with an issue with my daughter. We had to pay a consultant in England to help us. It was the best decision we made. Again, GPs in Stockholm are resigning or on sick leave due to stress. Mainly due to private companies getting paid to see as many patients as possible although I believe that may have changed.

The more I've been in Stockholm, the more I've appreciated the less crowded it is and less traffic. The transport system is fantastic and cheap. It's not perfect, but it's more integrated. It means I don't have to pay for a car, which as an addict in England, I could never have imagined. The 4 weeks summer holidays, parental leave is also a big bonus for me.

But when all is said and done, you have to make a decision that's personal to yours and your family's happiness. That's what matters at the end of the day. But take your time and evaluate all the issues before coming to that final decision. Be aware of the challenges that could be coming due to Brexit. Maybe even apply for a Swedish passport if you qualify, so you can avoid all the post Brexit issues in the future. The worst situation would be to return to the UK and still feel the same unhappiness. Then what do you do? Just give yourself as many options as possible so you're not forced into a corner
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post 11.Jul.2018, 03:08 PM
Post #25
Joined: 25.Jun.2009

[quote name='robbie1985' date='11.Jul.2018, 01:26 PM' post='932614']
Finally we agree on something.

Well, there you go...
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