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Possible move to Melbourne! Advice/help please!!

Possible move to Melbourne! Advice/help please!!

Old May 18th 2013, 2:14 pm
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Default Possible move to Melbourne! Advice/help please!!

Hi everyone,

My husband has accepted a job in Derrimut/Deer Park and we are currently in the final stages of the sponsored 457 visa process. We are a family of three and our son is 9. Obviously he is our main priority and we are looking of options where to live, he is a very active child, loves rugby and swimming etc. Then there are schools, travelling to and from work, hubby is looking at 30mins driving no more. If anyone could provide information on nice places to live with schools and good community living I would greatly appreciate it.

The company will be putting us in an hotel on arrival does anyone have any idea how long it can take to process a rental? This has all happened very quickly, it was not something we have planned or spoken about and now seems to be happening very quickly and to say I'm scared is an understatement but all three of us are up for the adventure!!

Many thankd
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Old May 19th 2013, 3:44 am
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Default Re: Possible move to Melbourne! Advice/help please!!

Hi Claireabelle and welcome to the forum.

Derrimut/Deer Park is in the western suburbs of Melbourne and you wil have a few options to choose from, but much will depend on your budget. If you like newer properties there are some nice places around Caroline Springs and Taylors Lakes, which would be a reasonable commute. The sticking point with these areas is schools. Some resources for you to look at are:

www.realestate.com.au and www.domain.com.au for properties
www.bettereducation.com.au and www.myschool.edu.au for school rankings.

The school rankings can be a bit subjective. We used to live in Taylors Lakes and our daughter attended Parkwood Green primary for the first 2.5 terms of prep (before we moved to NZ). We were happy with the school and TBH its probably one of the better public schools in the area. There are a number of Catholic schools as well.

If you want to be in a more established suburb, I would look at Niddrie or Essendon - both will be a bit more expensive than the new suburbs, but the choice of schools is much better. There's no shortage of sports clubs in most areas of Melbourne.

Times to process a rental can vary - mine for example only took about 20 minutes! I viewed the the house at a private inspection (not open home) and filled in the application form there and then. The agent went back to the office and fowarded the application to the landlord, did the reference checks, etc. and it was ours. I was lucky though and well-prepared. I made sure all the paperwork was with me - photocopy of passport and driver's licence for ID, copy of work contract showing earnings and a reference from our rental agent in NZ. The more prepared you are the better.

If you can give some idea of what sort of property you want and the rent you can budget for, I can probably narrow down areas for you a bit more, and others will have a better idea.

Hope that helps and best of luck!
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Old May 19th 2013, 11:30 am
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Default Re: Possible move to Melbourne! Advice/help please!!

Very good advice there. I wouldn't recommend Deer Park itself and you realise that it seems by saying up to 30 minute commute. As said you could go out a little to Caroline Springs which is now well established and has all the infrastructure in place; can't say anything about the schools but there's good shops, parks, open space etc.

Further out west is a newish development at Eynesbury which might be worth looking at - purpose built development around a golf course in the countryside but maybe too remote with a 9 year old. Lots live at Melton and commute but similar comments to Deer Park from what I know. Slightly further out is Bacchus Marsh which is more like a country town if you like that idea; plenty of clubs, sport and decent schools.

However, if you want to live in decent areas of Melbourne closer to the city then good suggestions about Essendon and Niddrie; my preference would be for the former but you'd need a decent budget for that if eventually buying and rentals will be higher. Taylors Lakes/Avondale Heights/Keilor East worth looking at.

Then again if you want to be further in, the inner west might be possible as with the ring road and Deer Park by-pass you can be in Derrimut/Deer Park in 20 mins from there. Williamstown/Newport/Yarraville etc. Plenty of clubs, sport and decent schools.

Derrimut/Deer Park - I'd guess Orica (formerly ICI) or university research fields?
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Old May 19th 2013, 12:39 pm
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Default Re: Possible move to Melbourne! Advice/help please!!

Thanks guys much appreciated and you were right we were told not to live in Deer Park but don't know why??? We are looking at paying around £400 per week but no more than £500 as we will be looking to buy if everything goes well, we are renting our house in Wales but will sell once we have made the decision to stay.

We have never been to Australia and like I said this is all happening very quickly! My husband was recently made redundant applied for a job on the other side of the world and didn't tell me until it was a done deal!! I am now going crazy on the Internet researching everything lol and have no idea what I am doing!!

The hubby does lithographic printing and the place he will be working is currently being built! I would also like to work and am currently a Safeguarding Support Officer within Social Services any ideas on what the Australian Social Services system is like?
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Old May 19th 2013, 12:43 pm
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Default Re: Possible move to Melbourne! Advice/help please!!

We would prefer a house with a large garden as we have an Alaskan Malamute who will also be coming with us although he will be a few months behind due to quarantine! Do you think he will be able to adapt to the weather?
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Old May 19th 2013, 2:22 pm
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Default Re: Possible move to Melbourne! Advice/help please!!

We have friends with a Malamute, although he was born here so don't know if that makes any difference. But he was fine - he did get hot in the summer but you just have to make sure they have good access to water and shelter out of the sun. I think there's quite a few malamutes and huskies in Melbourne. For properties with large gardens you might be better off with the newer suburbs (Taylors Lakes, Caroline Springs, etc.).

Deer Park itself is not a particularly well-off area, which is probably why you've been cautioned against it. Having spent some time on that side of town, I wouldn't live there and certainly wouldn't want to send my kids to the school. Another area worth looking at, although not cheap, is Keilor which is quite close to Deer Park but the local primary is very good and Keilor Village is quite nice with a small shopping centre and a great park. A friend of mine has kids at the school. There's also a much bigger area Brimbank Park which is great for dog-walking and the kids to ride bikes, etc.
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Old May 19th 2013, 9:13 pm
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Default Re: Possible move to Melbourne! Advice/help please!!

We lived in Albion, near Deer Park, for a few years and I also wouldn't live in Deer Park.

Funnily enough we used to have a dog walking business and looked after a malamute in Caroline Springs. Gardens were not that big in Caroline Springs, nor any of the other new build suburbs in which we worked. Parts of Caroline Springs have some lovely walks though. We also looked after a couple of huskies. I won't lie, I did wonder about the quality of life of some of those dogs in the middle of summer but much will depend on how you care for them. Australian culture (mostly) is for dogs to live outside and even in the shade 40 degrees is hot when you're wearing a fur coat (hell, it's hot when you're wearing shorts and a singlet). I was always much more comfortable with the few dogs we looked after who had access to inside throughout the day.
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Old May 19th 2013, 10:47 pm
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Default Re: Possible move to Melbourne! Advice/help please!!

Hi,

I worked in Derrimut for a couple of years and lived in Sanctuary Lakes (1Y), Altona (6m) and Caroline Springs (1Y), plus about 6 weeks in Williamstown when we first arrived.

Commutes to all of these are fairly easy, so these and the areas above can easily make it on to your list as possibles.

Everyone wants something different, so I would advise against committing too hard to an area before you have had chance to familiarise yourselves.

As a guide, work out what sort of home you could afford to buy. Once you have a number in mind, go on realestate and have a look at what that sum will buy you in various areas.

Once you have a couple of target areas, then look at school options.

Many people enjoy the new estates of Point Cook etc. Our rental on Sanctuary Lakes was nice enough but we were dissappointed with the local school. (Quick ping pong to UK) Rental in Altona was great for location, however we decided to school our daughter privately in Caroline Springs, so ultimately left Altona and moved to CS.

CS for us worked well. We were based in the early part of the development with lovely lakes and walking routes, plus established play areas.

The school was great, until it went bust. It has now reopened under new ownership, and seems to be doing well. Mowbray college in CS has also gone bankrupt I believe......

Alot of pupils ended up at Bacchaus Marsh, which seems to do a bus from all over the west side.

Good luck with your move, and feel free to ask any questions.

If it were me, I would aim towards Williamstown schools

PS, you may need to pay school fees on your visa. I am sure someone will advise
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Old May 22nd 2013, 3:04 pm
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Default Re: Possible move to Melbourne! Advice/help please!!

Thanks for all your help guys we are now looking at Point Cook/Williamstown which do seem to be quite established areas with what appears to be good schools, parks, shops etc. With the schooling Valespark I was hoping to look into that after we arrived or would you suggest doing this before I left the UK?? I was hoping to take my son along with me so that he could look at a few and make the decision himself if this is at all possible as obviously this is a huge step for him and we want to make him feel like he has some choices in the matter.

Does anyone have advice on school fees and if it is worth looking at them prior to moving?? Any advice would be appreciated!!!
We have also just found out that if our visa is through within the next four weeks then our dog will have to remain in the UK for another month before he is permitted to fly to Australia, we are devasted and as previously metioned this was not planned and we had no idea quarantine was 6 months!!! Not sure my dog would cope without us for that long, he is such a baby!! Has anyone else had to leave their dog for that amount of time???

Thanks again guys for all your help!!!
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Old May 23rd 2013, 3:49 am
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Default Re: Possible move to Melbourne! Advice/help please!!

Hi Claireabelle,

As far as I am aware, you do not have to pay the higher school fees on a 457 in Victoria for state schools. You will have to pay what everyone pays which is generally around $400 per year. Private schools will of course be much higher. I would agree with waiting until you get here to look at schools. The info on the rating websites online doesn't really give you a feel for the culture of the school which IMO is more important to figure out whether your child will settle in that school. with

I've never lived in Williamstown or Point Cook areas, but I know there are some members on here that have, so hopefully they might give you some pointers school-wise.
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Old May 23rd 2013, 4:08 am
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Default Re: Possible move to Melbourne! Advice/help please!!

Originally Posted by Claireabelle View Post
Thanks for all your help guys we are now looking at Point Cook/Williamstown which do seem to be quite established areas with what appears to be good schools, parks, shops etc.
Would tend to say that your requirements (garden/cost) would be easier to meet Point Cook way rather than Williamstown. As you may have noticed, Australian rarely seem to go in for big gardens, and developers get more money they more houses they squeeze in.

One thing I would say, you are likely to see some noticeable difference between the 'Point Cook' and 'Sanctuary Lakes' sides of the area - check realestate and google streetview.

Can't give you any great pointers schoolwise, except they all seem to be uniformed and reasonably well behaved come kicking out time in the Point Cook area, not so sure about Werribee or Altona.

You'll find that various estates have estate owned facilities (like pools) in Point Cook, something to bear in mind. No shortage of sports grounds, although there is a fair amount of aussie rules going on.
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Old May 23rd 2013, 7:10 am
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Default Re: Possible move to Melbourne! Advice/help please!!

We live out to the west Claireabelle.
It is lovely and you will fine some lovely places in which you will want to rent.
We arrived last November on a 457, it was also a very rushed proccess os know how you must be feeling.
Feel free to PM me anytime
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Old May 23rd 2013, 7:41 am
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Hey, I arrived in Melbourne and had a rental sorted within a week, suppose it depends on how fussy you are but it can be done very quickly, just sorted a car out too so all within 2-3 weeks, Dan.
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Old May 23rd 2013, 7:44 am
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Default Re: Possible move to Melbourne! Advice/help please!!

No school fees (other than the normal 'voluntary' contribution and stationery costs and uniform costs and...) apply in Victoria for 457 visa holders.
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Old May 23rd 2013, 8:53 am
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Default Re: Possible move to Melbourne! Advice/help please!!

Originally Posted by GarryP View Post
Would tend to say that your requirements (garden/cost) would be easier to meet Point Cook way rather than Williamstown. As you may have noticed, Australian rarely seem to go in for big gardens, and developers get more money they more houses they squeeze in.

One thing I would say, you are likely to see some noticeable difference between the 'Point Cook' and 'Sanctuary Lakes' sides of the area - check realestate and google streetview.

Can't give you any great pointers schoolwise, except they all seem to be uniformed and reasonably well behaved come kicking out time in the Point Cook area, not so sure about Werribee or Altona.

You'll find that various estates have estate owned facilities (like pools) in Point Cook, something to bear in mind. No shortage of sports grounds, although there is a fair amount of aussie rules going on.
Used to go in for big frontages (why does Melbourne extend for over 30 miles in some directions?) so perversely you can often get a bigger garden in an older house. Williamstown for example has the modern Range estate which will give you a huge house on a small block and the older main area which can often give you a place with a decent sized garden but admittedly rental will be high for such usually.

If private schools of interest there's Westbourne Grammar which has a junior campus on the Strand waterfront at Williamstown and a secondary campus in Sayers Rd Truganina at the back of Hoppers Crossing/Laverton area. It is highly regarded but there are fees to pay of course.

http://www.westbournegrammar.com/page/home.htm
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