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Move to Nova Scotia or stay in UK?

(34 Posts)
FiKelly Mon 31-Aug-09 11:15:16

Currently DH & I live in a seaside town in Somerset with our 2 dc's.. ds 3yrs and dd 3months. Although originally from scotland we moved here 5 yrs ago to help my parents who'd been down here for a while. I'm an only child and my mum was undergoing chemo for the 3rd time. She has had the all clear for 4yrs now.

DH and I have talked about emigrating to NZ or Canada for a very long time but haven't done it because of my mums health. DH's aunt is getting on age wise (nearly 90) and we'd only have enough points to go to Nova Scotia while she's alive..

So should we take the plunge and go? What would I love? Although DH has been a number of times.. I've only been to USA not Canada. What would I miss?

We want to give our dc's the best prospects we can in life. Education, Lifestyle, Work etc.. would they be better?

If we went we'd only need half the mortgage we have atm at the most and be able to clear it in 15yrs.

So what do you think? Opinions good/bad would be much appreciated. Thanks x

FiKelly Mon 31-Aug-09 18:30:58

Also been wondering.. for anyone who has gone through the emigrating process.. how long did it take?

madwomanintheattic Mon 31-Aug-09 19:18:22

it's 6-12 months now if you are applying FSW. or are you hoping to go under a provincial scheme? (not sure about ns as we are the other side)
just be thankful you didn't apply 3 years ago lol - you'd still be in the queue like we are. wink it was 36 - 48 month processing then. grin
good luck!

madwomanintheattic Mon 31-Aug-09 19:19:20

6-12 months now if you are going FSW and qualify lol. have you checked the cic webpages? <should have qualified my last post lol!)

FiKelly Mon 31-Aug-09 19:49:06

36-48 months!! OMG that's dreadful especially as i imagine when you make the decision to go you'd just want to get there asap..

from what i've read we have to go FSW.. dh's aunt has lots of family still go canada so we can't go via the family route. in ns they do have a nominee program too.

prob a dufus question but what are the cic pages?

madwomanintheattic Mon 31-Aug-09 20:29:23

we applied Sept 06 and have just had medicals lol...

i just meant the official Government Canada immigration webpages - i wasn't sure if you had just looked on immigration consultant 'check your points' tools or whatever as some are a bit hit and miss. grin

6-12 months then, if you tick all the boxes. if you have contacts in ns does that mean you might have jobs lined up?

have you discovered 'britishexpats.com'? they have a canadian forum with a really good wiki and tons of helpful posters too. loads of advice.

FiKelly Mon 31-Aug-09 21:46:07

yes been reading through the gov site and nova scotia. dh passes the points checker even without a job offer which is great.

he's going to speak to his family there and see if they can look out for jobs in his field. we plan to go for an extended holiday asap so i can see nova scotia and hopefully get the ball rolling jobs wise.

thanks I didn't know about britishexpats.. off for a look now :-) well as soon as dd (3months) takes a break from wanting more boob!

if you've just done the medicals you'll be off v soon then? how exciting!

madwomanintheattic Tue 01-Sep-09 19:28:34

we actually moved almost a month ago for dh's work, so completely separate to our immigration application, it was just coincidence that the medical request arrived a month before we were due to fly... you couldn't plan it lol!

it may be a lot longer for us as dd2 has some issues that are likely to complicate our application (she has a physical disability). essentially if she is deemed to be a burden on society (officially lol) then our pr application will be turned down and we'll be back to blighty at the end of the 2 years.

it'll probably take another year of appeals etc before we know one way or another. if it goes over 12 months then we all have to retake meds again etc etc. it's a pita, but as we've been waiting since sept 06 another year isn't going to make a lot of difference. we always knew it was going to be a gamble. tons of points lol, but they aren't much use in some circumstances.

enjoy planning your trip - they are loads of be members in ns, so you should get some good info!

FiByTheSea Wed 02-Sep-09 11:09:36

Thanks so much for the heads up on BE I have joined and even written my first thread grin

I'll keep my fingers crossed for you that you get to stay grin

DH has the points but as you say that's just the start. Luckily he is a financial investigator for the Inland Revenue so might qualify under the FSW category. So much research to do it's quite overwhelming at first!

Can't wait to visit...

expatinscotland Wed 02-Sep-09 11:15:21

Go for a visit! I worked with two ladies from Nova Scotia and they were lovely .

One was the most amazing knitter. And she knitted a jumper with a picture of the hockey player Sergei Federov on it and got on TV!

midnightexpress Wed 02-Sep-09 11:29:43

I have friends who did it this year (to NS) and they are loving it, especially for the children I think. So much more space for them. There's also another MNer who is relocating to Halifax next year. Movingoutofblighty, I think her talkname is, so maybe you could hunt her out.

FiByTheSea Wed 02-Sep-09 13:13:09

Thanks expat We are definitely going for an extended holiday/visit to family in Dartmouth next spring. I am very excited and daunted all at the same time! I am also a craft nut... knitting/crochet/sewing/quilting etc and I know i'll have no problems carrying on my hobbies there... I am a dressmaker/designer to trade so maybe i'll start a business there too?

Thanks midnight those are exactly some of the reasons we're hoping to go. When I have a spare min i'll search out movingoutofblighty will be good to hear how someone who's been there and done that is getting on.

expatinscotland Wed 02-Sep-09 13:44:42

My mother's visited twice she liked it so much the first time she went!

It's a place with a very rich history, too.

jumpyjan Wed 02-Sep-09 14:16:01

No advice but watching with interest as I am going through a similar dilemma at the moment (moving to Canada for a better life?)

Nova Scotia does sound great - I have had some dealings with an office there through work and the people sound lovely.

FiByTheSea Wed 02-Sep-09 14:42:56

jumpy we've been dithering for years now... but for us it's the now or never stage. DS will be due to start proper primary school in sept 2009 when he's 4 due to where his birthday falls in august. We'd hate to uproot him after he'd settled into school.. so the more and more DH chat the more certain we are to go. If we don't like it for some reason we're quite willing to face the prospect of having to start from scratch financially if we come back...

The more i find out good and bad the more i still want to go!

FiByTheSea Wed 02-Sep-09 14:44:12

not looking forward to having The conversation with my mum and dad though hmm

FiByTheSea Wed 02-Sep-09 14:45:10

ooops wrong year in my previous post... meant sept 2010!

madwomanintheattic Wed 02-Sep-09 17:19:16

be aware that kindergarten starts later in most provinces - not sure about ns, but here they don't start ft until the year they are six (and the dates are worked out differently, end feb as opposed to end aug). worth checking, esp if you are planning to work and so will be using daycare for longer smile

shubiedoo Wed 02-Sep-09 17:29:56

Not much time to post but I live in Dartmouth NS, am Canadian but used to live in Ireland where I discovered Mumsnet... (and still love it!) I would say this is the best province in Canada hands down, for climate, quality of life, education etc.
Kids start Primary (full day school) when they are 5, can start when they're 4 but must turn 5 by December 31. I'm happy to answer questions if you like, will keep checking this thread!

jumpyjan Wed 02-Sep-09 17:40:00

shubiedoo totally hijacking (apologies FiKelly hope you don't mind) but would love to know if you feel your DC's have a better life in Canada and why. Really interested to know what sort of things they do out there that they could not have done at home etc. How do the schools differ etc?

shubiedoo Wed 02-Sep-09 18:12:29

Hi jumpyjan,
Class sizes much smaller, no more than 25 in a class, where we were in Dublin there were 40+. More smaller schools in more areas generally, so lots of children walk to school. The library system is excellent, with free programs for preschoolers. Municipal government organizes low cost recreation programs, dance, sport, music etc. for all ages. Property is much cheaper so we got a great detached house in a good area. Dartmouth has wonderful lakes, some with swimming beaches, lots of canoe/kayak clubs. In fact a lot of Canada's Olympic rowers are from Dartmouth!
Of course Dublin had some of these activities but often it would take 45 minutes to drive to them or they'd be oversubscribed...
That said, the winter is long and that sometimes gets me down.
We love it here, luckily dh does too!

stepaway Wed 02-Sep-09 18:14:31

at last - someone considering emigrating to one of the more interesting parts of Canada!

pros: the Martimes has beautiful scenery and is known for friendliness! it's a holiday destination for many Canadians.

cons: you'd need to check but historically the maritime provinces have always been worse off economically. so finding work could be tricky. traditionally, many young people leave the maritimes to find work in more urbanised parts of canada (e.g. Ontario, BC, Alberta). Also, in parts of Nova Scotia there would be very few 'outsiders' and you may feel like it's hard to break into a community where people have spent their whole lives. (this is much less true of big cities in Canada).

hope this helps with your decision.

expatinscotland Wed 02-Sep-09 18:39:52

how exciting!

we'd LOVE to visit Nova Scotia!

apparently, there's an enormous gaelic-speaking community there.

FiByTheSea Wed 02-Sep-09 19:17:05

jumpy hijack away grin I bet you've the same kinda questions as me!

shubie thanks for your answers.. class sizes that small are exactly what i'd hoped they'd be and the after school stuff too. The start date difference of primary school would mean ds starting a year later.. that i think would be better as i feel him starting 2wks after his 4th birthday is bit young :-(

IKWYM about winters too.. we lived in scotland up till 5yrs ago and got v excited if we reached summer temps above 22 degrees!

stepaway thanks too.. DH has said similar things about employment.. his most likely place to find work is in Halifax. His cousin in Dartmouth takes the ferry to work in Halifax and dh has said he'd be ok with that. His current commute to work is about an hour so anything up to that would be ok as far as he's concerned. Close knit communities can be daunting but i'm sure with all of dh's family there it would help?!

stepaway Wed 02-Sep-09 21:46:04

FiBytheSea sorry hadn't realised that you have lots of in-law family over there. disregard my comment about being an outsider!!

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