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Aussie mumsnetters - how expensive is it?

(130 Posts)
feeltheforce Tue 09-Apr-13 20:34:29

We have our visas and are planning to move later this year/early next year but people keep telling us - don't!

Several people we know who have visited family have said it is eye watering and their relations are struggling to make ends meet.

I am now having serious second thoughts as the salaries in my husband's profession seem lower. I'd really like some honest advice from the ground smile

Thank you.

feeltheforce Wed 01-May-13 14:38:51

Just been looking at it on google earth!

SavoyCabbage Wed 01-May-13 13:20:08

Yes definitely commutable, if that's a word. Straight on to the Eastlink. Or drive to a train station.

feeltheforce Wed 01-May-13 13:07:06

Thanks savoy. Do lots of people commute into the CBD. I got the impression that people all lived in central suburbs.

Anyone know anything about the Dandenongs (Belgrave etc)? That looked nice on a map.

SavoyCabbage Wed 01-May-13 03:10:34

Worst link ever!

That was supposed to be google maps. Get the little orange man to walk along some of the streets. I just picked a couple of random ones

Drayton Crescent
Smedley Road
Rainbow Valley

SavoyCabbage Wed 01-May-13 03:04:42

You could look at Park Orchards if you want rural but not far out of the city. There are some amazing 'properties' as they say and it has a very rural feel width="425" height="350" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" marginheight="0" marginwidth="0" src=",+Park+Orchards,+Victoria&aq=0&oq=55+dtayton+cres+park+orchards&sll=-36.605471,145.469483&sspn=6.665663,13.425293&ie=UTF8&hq=&hnear=55+Drayton+Crescent,+Park+Orchards+Victoria+3114&ll=-37.783347,145.205478&spn=0.00641,0.013111&t=m&z=14&layer=c&cbll=-37.783617,145.205245&panoid=k_IxxFB-nyLQyjMa5y6aJg&cbp=12,147.7,,0,0&output=svembed"></iframe><br /><small><a href=",+Park+Orchards,+Victoria&aq=0&oq=55+dtayton+cres+park+orchards&sll=-36.605471,145.469483&sspn=6.665663,13.425293&ie=UTF8&hq=&hnear=55+Drayton+Crescent,+Park+Orchards+Victoria+3114&ll=-37.783347,145.205478&spn=0.00641,0.013111&t=m&z=14&layer=c&cbll=-37.783617,145.205245&panoid=k_IxxFB-nyLQyjMa5y6aJg&cbp=12,147.7,,0,0" style="color:#0000FF;text-align:left">View Larger Map</a></small> maps

Or Warrandyte or even Wonga Park.

chloeb2002 Wed 01-May-13 02:50:48

Oh and i have no idea about any school private or public that doesnt accept expats.

chloeb2002 Wed 01-May-13 02:50:10

I think it depends where you are going. It will be hard to get a school sorted without a job and an address so you know where you are living! Ideally come for start of new school year which is about 28th January. Lots of state schools in a small area, or private schools in some areas!

feeltheforce Sun 28-Apr-13 20:26:01

Have now added 'stress about schooling' to 'stress about healthcare' and 'stress about finding a house with a pool that we can afford more than one week in' (oh and stress about DH finding a job).

Australia is not quite the laid back experience I was expecting biscuit.

Seriously should I be looking for a school now given we are coming in Jan/Feb next year? and don't any of these private schools allow for expats?

AussieDollar Sat 27-Apr-13 02:35:55

Return flight to UK for 1 adult and 2 children: We go on holiday in Oz instead. This actually wasn't for a holiday, a family member in the UK had been diagnosed with a terminal illness. We're holidaying in Oz this year.

chloeb2002 Fri 26-Apr-13 22:01:18

Ferny grove .. Lovely area.. Amazing Indian at arana hills... Sitar express I think.. I could also have written your post... However we live near caboolture and our choice of private schools is.. Interesting... And state schools require full body armour! And we have private health.. I guess bring a nurse and seeing the mess qld health is in atm that's part of it. Basic health cover is all, to avoid some tax too! And age loading when I am crumbly and need attention. grin I too will be refusing to leave Aus.. Brisbane even unless its in a box!

twilight3 Fri 26-Apr-13 11:27:29

I found it, sorry

twilight3 Fri 26-Apr-13 11:26:37

thylar I mean

twilight3 Fri 26-Apr-13 11:26:10

tylar is there a way I can pm you please?

twilight3 Fri 26-Apr-13 10:51:52

It'll be a couple of years, but you're on my list, I love you already flowers

thylarctosplummetus Fri 26-Apr-13 10:14:43

And always happy to make new friends as long as they don't harp on about how hot it is in the summer, how they couldn't live without their air con and pool, but they don't think they can afford to send little Johnny to Stuckup Grammar School, because the Australian electricity process are so extortionate. smile

Drop me a line when you get here, and I'll take you out on the town grin

thylarctosplummetus Fri 26-Apr-13 10:01:35

Patricks Road State School.

twilight3 Fri 26-Apr-13 08:49:09

also would you mind telling me the name of the school, since you're so happy with it? Thanks

twilight3 Fri 26-Apr-13 08:48:13

thylarctosplummetus when I move over I'll find you and you'll be my best friend, we think so alike. If you don't want to, I'll force you grin

thylarctosplummetus Fri 26-Apr-13 03:51:11

Actual expenses we have in Brisbane (2 DCs, one in daycare, one in state school prep).

Rent: $440 per week. 3 bed house in nice area, 25 minutes from CBD.
Car: $480 per month - Mazda 6 estate bought new on finance. Rego (car tax) includes 3rd party insurance, and costs $660 a year.
Food: $150 per week - don't do all your shopping in Coles/Woolworths, use the local shops instead - much cheaper and better quality.
Electric: $350 per quarter - no pool, use air-con a bit, but not much.
Water: $25 per quarter
Foxtel: $85 per month
Phone line: $15 per month
Internet: $35 per month
Health Insurance: No health insurance - had no problems with Medicare for myself (hip problems needed MRI and consultant) and DS (annual trips to see a paed). As private medical cover is a rebate system rather than insurance, I see it as a total waste of money. Having said that, ambulance cover is free in Qld.
Contents Insurance: $300 a year
Daycare: $90 per day (once we've become permanent residents, this will be rebated at 50%)
Train: $150 per month
Petrol: $140 per month
Mobile phone: $15 a month
School fees (state school): $180
Before/After school and vacation care: $22 a day (price includes two after school activities per week which change each term, including dance, martial arts, soccer etc)
Additional school fees: $0 per year
Activities (swimming/gymnastics): $150 per term per child (not through school)
Return flight to UK for 1 adult and 2 children: We go on holiday in Oz instead.

Now, obviously we don't have the lifestyle that many of the posters above have, but we hardly live in abject poverty. We have annual passes to the Gold Coast theme parks ($99 per person) that we use about once a month, the museums and art galleries in Brisbane are free (and very good). We also regularly go to the beach (free) and the local parks are excellent. Both me and DH work, and our combined income is ~$160k before taxes.

The local state school is rated more highly than any Catholic or private school within 5km, and we had no problems enrolling with 6 months notice. DS (who has some problems) has settled in brilliantly, and we've had really positive feedback and results. A full set of uniform for the year set us back about $180.

Also, if you're earning Australian dollars, don't try and convert everything to GBP. The AUD/GBP exchange rate isn't the same as the salary or cost of living comparison. Generally the salary/COL rate is 2.2AUD:1GBP. Also savings rates are much higher over in Oz.

If you want to come over to experience Australia, then I would suggest you don't stay within the British ex-pat cocoon. Australia is a wonderful, amazing place with its own share of ups, downs, ins and outs. I love it here, and I would never move back to the UK unless we were deported.

saffronwblue Fri 26-Apr-13 02:57:59

I put DS down for Penleigh and Essendon Grammar when he was three, for a year 7 entry. He was not offered a place as "we had left it so late."

On the other hand, DD got a place at Lowther Hall Girls Anglican Grammar for year 4 a few months after we first enquired.

The suburbs in Melbourne's north can be very dreary (except for Essendon and the fabled Moonee Ponds which are nice and quite expensive). The Macedon area is outside Melbourne and is a mix of rural and small towns with good access to the city. Miles away from beaches but bushland, wineries and horse country.
I agree with Eltham - it is also very lovely. Most well-heeled expats head to Brighton but there is much more to Melbourne imo.

FanjoPaterson Fri 26-Apr-13 02:53:12

What Mosman says is true- my parents put my name down at 4 for private boarding.

Mosman Fri 26-Apr-13 02:43:02

People put children's names down for schools at birth

echt Thu 25-Apr-13 19:18:19

Get on to the pomsinoz forum for lengthy and informative threads about this. I believe if you import a car on a working visa, you have to take it with you when you leave. It's in the thousands.

A fair number of folk bring special cars because, apart from the cost of buying them in Oz, they hold their value. Oh, and they don't rust.grin

feeltheforce Thu 25-Apr-13 16:49:07

Thanks I'm going to spend the weekend having a look at these suggestions. Someone told me not to live north of Melbourne but Macedon looks nice.

I am interested that you can't always get into independent schools - does that include primary?

echt we thought of bring one of the cars (an Audi Q5) because we heard it was extortionate to buy in Oz. But I haven't looked into the cost of bringing it biscuit - am I in for a shock?

Mutley77 Thu 25-Apr-13 15:08:26

I would say Eltham or maybe Hurstbridge would be good suburbs to look at. Eltham is very leafy and towards the edge of the city - Hurstbridge is pretty "country" and you probably could get a pretty large plot. They have a fast train link to CBD from those areas too.

However you are far from the beach if you go that side.

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