View Full Version : Advice needed

Loose rivets
14th May 2014, 22:45
In the midst of a really crappy time, and one thing that's cropped up is the difficulty of shipping stuff back to the UK at a reasonable rate. It's bewildering how things have changed. In 1991 I picked up the phone and a quarter container was plonked on my drive. It turned up on my UK drive a few weeks later. $1,300

Now, a box that I could just about pick up is going (or not going) to cost me half that. Am I missing something? I don't mind waiting weeks for the stuff to arrive. In fact, the longer the better.

Trouble is, as many PPRuNers know, I'm going back to having to find a place by myself, and so not even sure where to send things. Crappy, but would be doable if it was affordable.

The kids say just 'get rid of it'. But they don't understand. One thing is the plane my mother bought to do woodwork. I've used it most of my life. There are boxes and boxes of stuff, and I confess to being irrationally attached to some of it. Now, days before our house sale was to become final, the buyer's lender started asking more questions. :ugh:

After obtaining absolute assurances about the sale, folk have been carrying house contents out for three weeks - more often than not at 15 cents on the dollar, and we now have the chance of the sale collapsing. Never again.

Is there any way to get a load of low value items across the Atlantic? Heck, I'd even like to bring my Wellies home. In a lifetime, they're the only ones I've found that are comfortable and strong. I think they cost $9 at Home Depot. Daft I know, but when you have feet that seem to be as wide as they are long, shoes become something that one makes last a lifetime.

Oh, and that watch thing I got involved in. I ended up getting about 20 Seiko 7A series watches, and was getting nifty at rebuilding them. (They are typically 25-30 years old and the first [Chronograph] crystal driven analog watch in the world. Four stepper motors into an almost conventional drive-train.) It's incredible how at peace I was while fettling those. Took my mind off . . . other things. Does anyone know what duty I might have to pay on used personal goods - the issue being I haven't owned some of them for 6 months. The Customs web sites are so full of info, I can't sort the wheat from the chaff. I guess the main thing is VAT.
I have all the 'bay' records of purchase. Smashing hobby. Wish I'd done it years ago.

And again, thanks to those that dropped me kind PM. Indeed, one PPRuNer, offered me the use of his home - but it was in the US, so still the specter of the hospital owning my soul would be there. Such a shame, I'm equally at home in both countries, and will miss terribly, the kids we've helped to raise.

cockney steve
14th May 2014, 23:56
AIUI ,the cheapest way is a container.....if you haven't got a container-full, there are shipping-agents who specialise in bringing together these part-loads....Consolidators?
The watches, being old andpersonal possessions, AFAIK, are not vat-able Duty may be another issue....maybe worth writing to HMRC....wether you'lll get the correct answers is another issue.

15th May 2014, 07:59
As Cockney Steve says, go for a part container load but also prepare a comprehensive list of what you have and write 'NCV' (No Commercial Value) beside second hand items and annotate as 'used household/personal items', the watches could go down as 'personal hobby material', only give values for new items. You have a duty free allowance anyway. The agent in the UK will probably clear it all but the lists do help and you may need them for insurance as well. You might want to rent a Lock-Up for a while until you have a place.

15th May 2014, 08:20
I'd be surprised if someone on here couldn't help out in the UK.

Where are you sending the stuff from ?
Which country ?

Loose rivets
15th May 2014, 14:54
I'm still in Texas, with the house buyer's bank wanting more information days after the closing date. Slept on a mattress again last night. Total mess.

I have a lock up in my old town, Frinton Essex ($20,000 down the drain in the last 10 years.) We were only going to be here for a year or two. 2011 I started selling off stuff that had been in the family for generations. It all comes from two people becoming quite different and not wanting the same things in life. Mind you, I was so gung ho, never dreamed I'd be creaking around with a bad back an not able to use the tonne of tools I'd stashed here and there.

I've taken on board the declaration points. I have snipped jpgs of all the watch-seller's screens and my buying details, but it's this 6m thing - I don't know if personal items like that have an allowance that can bypass that rule - but twenty watches seems a bit obsessive.

I need a house with a shed. But one like this:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v703/walnaze/Cars/img004.jpg (http://smg.photobucket.com/user/walnaze/media/Cars/img004.jpg.html)

15th May 2014, 19:46
Loose Rivets............

I moved about 25 years ago across the Atlantic- Eastbound.
I rented a 35foot container and got the moving company to pack my stuff in one end and my car in the other.
The amount of cash I saved by not having to buy a car in Europe at Norwegian prices compensated for the cost of the move.
The hardest part was the documentation required by the authorities for the import of my vehicle without paying taxes on it.
Good luck with your move.

16th May 2014, 00:15
Hang on a sec LR. It's not that complicated. Suggest you decide what it is you want to ship and do your own estimate of how many M3 it'll occupy. Add 30% to your estimate to cover your own sub-estimates. Consult two or three consolidators, also known as NVOCCs, for quotes. Or more, if you have the time and patience. Declare everything as "used household goods" (I'm assuming that's what they are) unless, of course, you're intending to smuggle your brand-new Harley in under the crockery. Which would be a bad idea as those x-ray scanners keep getting better and better.

Forget, for the time being, your watch collection as part of the cargo, I don't think you want it being packed together with other stuff in a container; better to carry it as personal luggage and declare it whatever way is more suitable (get professional advice or HM Customs advice on that before you set off into that lobster trap!).

As for the shed, I'd like a drive-in one as well but that's for another thread!

16th May 2014, 00:23
And if weight as regards your personal luggage goes is an important item - Cunard are doing some very sharp prices - and they don't stop at 20Kg!

16th May 2014, 01:08
Loose Rivets, l only read the latest couple of posts so probably missed


Are we talking divorce ?

At times of stress it is sometimes beneficial to have outside help,

if only to tell you that the crocodiles are in fact up to your arse.

It is not always possible to make sensible decisions alone.

Best of luck.

Loose rivets
16th May 2014, 03:58
Are we talking divorce ?

Heck, no! I hardly know you.:p

No, seriously, there are no other people involved. She's just decided she doesn't like my sense of humor. Why, only a moment ago, she came into (what's left of) my den and I mentioned a 'funny' email to a vital manager acting for the buyer.

Thanks for the update, *****. We'll be here in the morning hopefully bringing the house to a 'broom clean' state or better. Right now it looks like I need six strong men and a huge truck to complete the task, but I have a wife that seems to have turned into Wonder woman, so I'm going to sit back with a glass of wine and watch her doing it.

Well, I thought it was funny, but she stomped off with a force only possible with Wonder Woman's energy banks. Shame. We used to roll about laughing together.

Talking of laughter. Number three kid in Austin replied to my plaintive description of my love for his grandmother's Record plane. He'd heard it before, but this time he said:

"Just walk onto the aircraft with it cradled in your arms. When challenged, just say - 'I didn't want to miss my plane.'

I can't imagine where he got his humor from.:rolleyes:

Will look at above possibilities when sober. Thanks for the input.

16th May 2014, 04:06
lf she ever forms a club ......

Good luck !

16th May 2014, 09:18
Loose, I've come to realise that life is all about compromise. You seem to be on a good wicket with the fettling of those Seiko watches, so junk everything else and just focus on this value adding activity.

Sometimes its better to just accept the compromise and move on with life, I know because I'm currently in a similar position as yourself. E.g. I have a 100Kg oil cooled welder from my father where I just did a 30 second seam weld today without it even giving a hint of overheating. Sadly I have to let it go as I don't have a place to store it and it's only worth it's weight in steel.

Curious Pax
16th May 2014, 10:00
LR - sorry to hear of your predicament. A thought, probably irrelevant but based on experience with my mother. You don't think this recent change in your wife is due to a health issue of which you are both unaware? I'm sure you will have thought about that, but if that were to be the case it would be a shame to complete the paths you are both heading down if there is a fixable (or at least diagnosable) cause? Given the apparent state of your relationship however, I'm not sure how you would broach the subject!

Best of luck.

16th May 2014, 13:00

I appreciate that PPRune is a wonderful source, but we are a bunch of people who's commonality is simply Aviation. Professionally or in some cases just an interest.

What may be applicable in this case is specifice Ex-pat advice from a source such as:

Expat: Brits abroad, UK citizens overseas - Telegraph (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/expat/)

Just an idea.

16th May 2014, 14:09
Difficult situation to be in I'll be bound.
ian 16th is quite right.

HM Revenue & Customs (http://customs.hmrc.gov.uk/channelsPortalWebApp/channelsPortalWebApp.portal?_nfpb=true&_pageLabel=pageLibrary_ShowContent&id=HMCE_CL_000282&propertyType=document)

Any reputable relocation mover such as this one:

About Us - Gerson Relocation (http://www.gersonrelocation.com/about-us/)

Should be able to handle your move from anywhere in the world to anywhere in the world. They should also be able to give you useful heads up information about UK Customs and Excise. I suspect that all such operators are expensive but the trick is not to get into the hands of a bad one.

Another option, for example would be to fly on KLM and just buy three or four extra suitcases worth of baggage. Trouble with that of course is you'd attract the attention of HMRC with your teetering trolley of personal effects-but not so much if you came via AMS as if you trundled directly into LHR.

The Seiko collection might be of small value in monetary terms perhaps? Couldn't you pack them up with the purchase receipts or a valuation from a Texan pawn broker and just bring them across as hand baggage? Jewellers' tools would have to be packed of course but they could go in the same cheap suitcase as the plane and all could be stuffed down the top of a Wellington boot. You could wear those onto the aircraft anyway.
Cunard these days is nothing of the British it once was, being a parastatal of the Carnival empire. They'd probably love to have you onboard with almost limitless luggage allowance given their recent history of calamitous cleanliness.

Whichever route you have to follow, good luck, it's not fun and why not consider divorce. It might free up some of the brain tracks and allow a separate sense of identity and development. Divorce can be a thoughtfully liberating experience even though tinged with the sorrows of yesteryears' remembrances.