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ok.. cost of living.. really different???

(14 Posts)
chloeb2002 Wed 07-Sep-11 02:45:34

curiosity has finally gotten the better of me.. I keep hearing the ..oh Australia has become so expensive the uk is so cheap now.. so i decided to mock shop.. the only thing i didnt add in was meat ( i buy form butcher not supermarket) and fresh veg ( this is insanely cheap here and fresh at fruit barns) and i can really see no difference.. buying what i normally buy the difference is negligable.. so i looked at electic and gas.. we dont have gas.. but our electitc is less per unit than quoted in uk.. only just...so it appears to me there is so little difference.. Differences i can see are... private health.. yes we have that here and didnt in uk.. mostly for dentist.. we were lucky in uk and had an nhs dentist..however company pay a portion of this expense..Clothes admittedly target isnt as cheap as tescos or george.. but i do buy bargains.. $5 t shirt from k mart.. etc.. We dont have water rates as we are on tanks...

so is it just me or is the grass about the same???

cjdamoo Wed 07-Sep-11 02:55:28

Grass is Grass our spiders have more bite. I do find family outings a damn site cheaper here. There is lots to do for free and even a trip to the zoo or reptile park seems to cost much less.

Lookhere Wed 07-Sep-11 03:01:22

I think a lot of it stems from the expectation that Australia will be ridiculously cheap. When it turns out to be more or less the same there's a kind of shock for people.

tryingtoleave Wed 07-Sep-11 03:45:12

I think it is just that the exchange rate has changed so much. When I went to England I had to triple everything to get AU$, so it seemed ridiculously expensive.

thelittlestkiwi Wed 07-Sep-11 03:58:09

How do things stack up as a proportion of average wage though? Food here in NZ is stupidly expensive- fruit and veg have shot up recently. I have no idea how people on minimum wage feed their families. Lots of kids here don't have shoes to go to school. I just can't imagine that in the UK.

WhatSheSaid Wed 07-Sep-11 05:42:36

It's hard to work out all the costs involved in your life and whether it's more expensive here or not.

On the face of it, most things you buy in the shops here (in NZ) are more expensive than in the UK. Petrol is cheaper. And I have a feeling things like insurance, rates and so on are cheaper here. I think I spend a lot less on days out here - so much of it is free with beaches, parks and a big regional park full of walks in the hills, all close to where I live. A year's pass to the zoo cost me $80, which as we go every couple of weeks or so, works out as very cheap.

Longer term, no stamp duty or capital gains tax here which benefits a lot of people. But then higher interest rates on mortgages. Swings and roundabouts I guess. I know in any major city in the UK we probably wouldn't be able to afford a decent sized 4 bed detached house with garden and although that sort of house is the norm here, I do feel I don't mind paying a bit more for everyday groceries to have this sort of place to live in.

Tortoiseonthehalfshell Wed 07-Sep-11 05:50:54

Meat is one of the big differences between Australia and the UK, though, so that's worth adding in. It is different, though, I think; my English friends are horrified at the amount I spend on food, and I shop fairly frugally and also at butchers, local fresh food, etc.

But it's not really food that I notice, it's clothing and furniture. With the exchange rate the way it is, I buy clothing, books and toys online in England or the US and pay shipping to Australia because it's significantly cheaper than buying them here. Which is mad, but the way it is.

And the price of cars! For a 5-8 yo sensible non-glamorous 4-door family car, which we need fairly urgently, we're looking at around $AU10K. Seriously.

vickibee Wed 07-Sep-11 06:06:36

what about housing costs, are homes cheaper to buy / rent. Also childcare costs? Apparently Uk Has highest chilcare costs in the world. These are the biggest items in a family's budget.

WhatSheSaid Wed 07-Sep-11 06:14:40

I believe childcare costs are cheaper here than the UK but you have fewwer staff members per number of children. E.g for children under 2 the ratio is 1 adult to 5 children here and (I think) 1 adult to 3 children in the UK.

So a nursery with 15 under 2s here could have just 3 staff members whereas in the UK it would have to have 5. So you could say you are paying for having more staff to look after your children in the UK.

Housing costs relative to average wage are quite high here, though you kind of get more house for your money I think - detached properties being the norm here. We wouldn't be able to get anything like our house here in a big city in the UK (though we are in a relatively cheap bit of the city we live in)

chloeb2002 Wed 07-Sep-11 06:14:53

But dont you think .. in general its the same...I agree family days out are cheaper.. unless you got o teh big theme parks.. but then we just bought annual gold coast passes.. so they work out cheap.. You see in England i still refused to buy .. budget meat.. being of farming stock.. I know waht goes into cheap meat and would go veggie before i ate it! I have allways used local butchers and i can safely say my local butcher here is much cheaper than it was in the uk.. dont get me started on how much we paid for prawns in blighty.... now they are allways in the house!
Wages in both dh's job and mine ( nurse) are better here, tv said average wage in aus is now 77k $ in uk its only 20k gbp.. and housing affordabilty outstanding.. we have 5 acres and 5 bed place within an hours drive of the CBD of brisbane.. couldnt do that in UK!
cars.. yes i was shocked at that.. but that said i think unless you buy a car thats been trashed on the beach... they last longer .. probably less harsh weather, freezing temps.. snow..oh and private car sales are much more affordable than car yards..we bought two 4 wd cars when we arrived.. both 10k. both ran well for a further 4 years.. one still going... one traded in... new car prices seem better...
i guess im just cynical.. yes australia has become more expensive but....
oh.. the litlestkiwi.. sadly lots of kids cannot afford shoes for school in the uk....even when we still lived there prior to the cc.

Tortoiseonthehalfshell Wed 07-Sep-11 06:18:56

Ah, see, I'm a lawyer, I'd earn way more in the UK. A friend of mine who moved from Adelaide to London, an IT guy who works for a big bank, has found himself richer over in London with pretty much exactly the same lifestyle despite supporting his partner; he now owns a very nice 2BD garden flat in Islington.

Childcare is cheaper here, but there's less options; nannies are more expensive, au pairs unheard of, everyone uses the big centres.

I can't afford prawns, acreage or theme parks, but I don't know if I'd be able to over in England either, so.

chloeb2002 Wed 07-Sep-11 09:00:25

we have an au pair... and interestingly dh works in IT.. and now earns way more than he did in uk.. however some of his collegues dont... My friend is a lawyer and in her words australia is backwards...they dont even have her kind of law let alone pay a good salary...
We pay $13 a kilo for big king prawns.. in the uk we paid 20 gbp for frozen kings...
Still I think its swings and roundabouts...
For us the benefits are better lifestyle.. more free stuff for the kids.. cheaper sports.. I love PCYC...and I must admit i kinda like most Aussies....

thelittlestkiwi Wed 07-Sep-11 09:06:46

CB- I know lots of people in the UK struggle to feed and clothe their kids. But I've not heard about lots of children going to school barefoot in the middle of winter there. There was an article about that on our news during the recent polar blast. True it doesn't normally get that cold here but I still find it upsetting.

chloeb2002 Wed 07-Sep-11 21:59:51

sadly littlestkiwi.. as a previous commnuity nurse in the Uk i can vouh for the fact that not only can people not buy shoes butu some people dont send kids to school as they cannot afford to buy them school stuff..shoes, clothes, uniform, alot of families send kids just to obtain free school meals..and the balance of a free meal at school means they think they dont have to worry about an evening meal at home.. thats sad.. even more sad is that it isnt on the news.. its accepted culture.. Im sure it happens all over the world.. usa, nz, uk, aus every part of a developed economy has an stream deprivation.

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