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Chapter 1 – Getting Started

First things first. Once you have decided to move, set a tentative date and work backwards from there. That will give you an idea of timescales and how long you realistically have.

INVENTORY: Take an inventory of your possesions. Draw up a list of things you want to sell, give away or take with you. Be realistic about what you plan to take, keeping in mind shipping costs, availability in India and storage issues. Leave those spices behind.

HOUSING: If you own a house, put it on the market as early as possible or think of the possibility of renting it out. Talk to reliable estate agents to get an idea of the current local market. If you are renting, give your landlord enough notice.

BANKING: Talk to your bankers. Open an NRI account in India or if your bank in the UK has a branch in India, get them to help you sort out your transfer of funds. Internet banking makes this easier, but you’ll need all the help you can get. Look at all the investments you have and decide what to do with them. Will you ‘break’ them or let them remain in the UK till maturity? If you are leaving money in the UK, you can apply for a NORD account where your money will not be taxed but you will receive gross interest. HSBC provides this facility; check with your bank for similar products.

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