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Completely new and would love honest advice!

Completely new and would love honest advice!

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Old Sep 2nd 2018, 10:50 pm
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Default Completely new and would love honest advice!

Hello! I’ve just spent the evening reading numerous posts on the site and was encouraged to write my own post based upon the kindness and support I’d seen.

weve just spent 6 months travelling the world as a young family and we absolutely loved our time in New Zealand and have decided we would like to explore the possibility of moving there.

While we appreciate holidaying somewhere is very different to living somewhere, we would love peoples insights into Tauranga as we particularly loved this area. We understand the pay is much greater in Auckland, however, is it possible to live somewhere else nearby and not experience a horrendous commute?

We have 2 young children so would be particularly interested in hearing from families and their opinions. Most importantly, we want to be somewhere friendly, somewhere people would happily welcome us and are sociable for us and our children.

i would greatly appreciate it if people wouldn’t mind taking the time to share their experiences to help guide us on making the big decision to move from the U.K. or not.

(Husband is a chartered accountant and I am a primary school teacher although I wouldn’t be looking for work initially due to my youngest daughter not being School age).

Thanks in advance!
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Old Sep 2nd 2018, 11:08 pm
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Default Re: Completely new and would love honest advice!

Morning to you from New Zealand and welcome to British Expats.

Tauranga would be a great choice for a young family. & I am sure a couple of those living up there will be along shortly.

Issue will be to go where the work/job offer is initially - and hopefully not Auckland.
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Old Sep 2nd 2018, 11:24 pm
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Default Re: Completely new and would love honest advice!

Thanks for your reply. Yes my husband’s work will dictate where we settle and ‘the dream’ is around Tauranga area.

If I’m honest, we’ve been a little bombarded with negatives recently so we are really hoping for more positivity.

We know that potentially my husband will have to take a reduction in his salary, that we will have to buy a smaller house and cheaper cars however, our recent world trip and travels have made us realise those things do not matter so much. Our main priority is to have more time as a family and more time outdoors (whatever the weather may be). We are also hoping to make new friends. Obviously moving this far can be very isolating so we would love to hear that other families are welcoming and sociable so we can throw ourselves into that.
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Old Sep 3rd 2018, 2:49 am
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Default Re: Completely new and would love honest advice!

Hello to you time_to_explore,
So what do you wanna know about Tauranga specifically ?
It is a pretty awesome place to live. Great climate/weather, no matter where you live you won't be too far from the sea, not too many people (yet), traffic generally fine (apart from a couple hours peak time am and pm), very little serious crime and not a huge amount of petty crime. There are a few downsides but everywhere has them. Nowhere is perfect.

It has had a nickname of $10 Tauranga for years so as you'd expect wages here aren't the best in the country but you've just gotta weigh up if the lifestyle here outweighs the slight loss of dollars. I don't work in Tauranga. I work for a national state owned enterprise company, owned by the government. We have offices all across NZ and the wages are dictated by the level of the role and where on the pay scale it has been set. That same role commands the same pay across the company, no matter where your job is based. Currently my office is on the outskirts of Hamilton so my commute is around 214 Km return but I work shifts so rarely see any major traffic and I'm 4 on, 4 off but only commute 3 x return trips every 8 days. Whenever I'm not on shift and doing project work I have an office set up at home so can work remotely. The Mrs works in Tauranga as a practice nurse. Once again she is paid via a national health practitioner contract so no matter where she would work the salary is the same. Her only struggle was finding permanent hours. Took her a couple of years before she was offered any here.
There's a few biker gangs knocking about here but that's no different than any other city in NZ. We've been here nearly 4 years and have only ever come to be within close proximity once on a sunny day out at the park where they were also there with their families, having a BBQ and a few scoops in the sun. Didn't cause any trouble. Generally those types live in the lower socio-economic areas of Tauranga which also has a stigma attached for drugs - the likes of P etc so we tend to just steer clear - lower socio-economic areas Merivale, Parkvale, Gate Pa, a bit of lower Welcome Bay. I must admit though, the worst places here are like Beverley Hills compared to some inner city suburbs in the UK.

Tauranga is an awesome place to bring up a family. Heaps of things to do from Spring through to end of Autumn, especially when the weather is dry. Not as much to do when it is raining, although if you don't mind getting wet then all is fine otherwise there are a few options for indoor play and there's a few cafe's with indoor play areas if you just need to get out of the house. Not too bad for us as we have a big garden and the kids just love getting wet.
During summer the best place by far is Mount Maunganui which is the best beach resort in NZ. We go quite often as it's only a 20 min drive and has two major beaches and of course The Mount for walking. Lots of cafe's, shops, restaurants, ice cream, watersports and boat trips etc etc.

In general schools are great here. Heard very little bad press about any of them. You do have to pay fees no matter which school you choose. Like the UK, schools are generally zoned so something to think about when choosing a place to live. To guarantee a place in a particular school you must live within the zone. You can apply for an out of zone place but there is zero guarantee that it'll be approved.

Cost of living here is high. Property rates are around the highest in the country. Property rental prices and purchase prices are around the highest in the country. Fuel is a little bit lower and from what I can gather utilities so the likes of electricity, water and gas (if you have gas) are slightly lower cost that the major cities Auckland/Wellington.
I'd highly recommend you looking at expected salary and working out affordability. I can give you an idea of what we pay for things as we are also a 2 adult, 2 young children family (7 and 2).

Please just ask if there's anything specific you want to know, either on the open forum or via PM.

Cheers and good luck.
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Old Sep 3rd 2018, 5:21 am
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Default Re: Completely new and would love honest advice!

Welcome to our our wee but perfectly formed forum time_to_explore. I can't help you with Tauranga or friendly places. Thankfully the very knowledgeable and helpful escapedtonz has already provided you with useful info.

My opinion is that with young children in tow it's much easier to make friends here. We have made some good friends here but most of our closest friends have since moved on to other places in NZ or another country. We don't have the close friendships we had in the UK, were neighbours/friends pop round on a whim. I think we both miss that. So on the whole we are quite lonely, most of our good friends live a wee way away, so we don't see each other as often as we'd like. I think this is less likely to be an issue for you guys.

Firstly though it's a question of can you get a visa to live and work here before you decide on where to live. After nearly 12 years here, we are ready to call it a day. We are over the high cost of living, the isolation and the parochial nature of NZ but that's just us. Others love it here and wouldn't leave. We all have to make our own journeys in life which may involve some wrong turns but how do we know if we don't try.

So I wish you good luck with your plans. Come back with any more questions you may have
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Old Sep 3rd 2018, 5:31 am
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Default Re: Completely new and would love honest advice!

Wow thank you so much escapedtonz! I was somewhat vague in my initial query in the hope somebody like you might come along - such a thorough and detailed response! Thank you for taking the time to reply! I’m going to try PM you some further questions.
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Old Sep 3rd 2018, 5:39 am
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Default Re: Completely new and would love honest advice!

Originally Posted by Vitalstatistix View Post
Welcome to our our wee but perfectly formed forum time_to_explore. I can't help you with Tauranga or friendly places. Thankfully the very knowledgeable and helpful escapedtonz has already provided you with useful info.

My opinion is that with young children in tow it's much easier to make friends here. We have made some good friends here but most of our closest friends have since moved on to other places in NZ or another country. We don't have the close friendships we had in the UK, were neighbours/friends pop round on a whim. I think we both miss that. So on the whole we are quite lonely, most of our good friends live a wee way away, so we don't see each other as often as we'd like. I think this is less likely to be an issue for you guys.

Firstly though it's a question of can you get a visa to live and work here before you decide on where to live. After nearly 12 years here, we are ready to call it a day. We are over the high cost of living, the isolation and the parochial nature of NZ but that's just us. Others love it here and wouldn't leave. We all have to make our own journeys in life which may involve some wrong turns but how do we know if we don't try.

So I wish you good luck with your plans. Come back with any more questions you may have
Thank you for taking the time to reply. I appreciate your insight to neighbours and friends. We’ve never really had that where we live in England and it is something we are hopeful for in NZ; therefore, I can see why you’re returning if that is something you miss. Like you said, we are hoping the children will help put us out there!
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Old Sep 7th 2018, 11:04 am
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Default Re: Completely new and would love honest advice!

Yeah, kids makes it so much easier to meet folk. We came out with a 2 and 3 year old. auckland is fine if you can find the right spot - e.g. live close to work or can grab a ferry to work. Tauranga is great too. There are good things bad things about NZ, and I guess everyone is different in terms of what you are looking for and what you will miss...
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Old Sep 8th 2018, 1:17 pm
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Default Re: Completely new and would love honest advice!

I know a few people who relocated to Tauranga and are quite happy there.

HOWEVER the #1 priority with a bullet is getting a visa and a job offer. Everything else is putting the cart before the horse.

Visa talk is not as flash and exciting as figuring out what kindy to put the kids into. But you risk building yourself up for a crashing disappointment if you find you can't get a visa, and also lathering up your relatives over nothing. It's a mistake many newbies to immigration make.

So, start there - the visa - then figure out the town, the kindy, and the real estate agent once you actually have the visa.
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Old Sep 28th 2018, 11:27 pm
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Default Re: Completely new and would love honest advice!

Hi,
I am from the UK, I now live in Auckland. I am married with 3 children. Most people in England when I arrived home recently for a 3 month holiday, commented and a typical one was
"You live in New Zealand and you have come to England for a holiday, you must be our of your mind" well I did not concur with that sentiment. My late father who also moved to NZ said , the scenery is one thing but one cannot eat a view, and novelties are known to soon wear off.
In my view things are much slower here and when one does get the 'Blues' all the scenery in the world is cold comfort. The plus side is that having a stable happy family, makes living in NZ a good experience and it helps to get over the inevitable homesickness. Seeing as you are professionals you ought to be able to settle here without much difficulty. The outdoor life is good Remember always to take the sun block with you I spent June July and part of August 2018 in the heat in the UK and didn't even get pink. Over here an hour mowing my garden can make my nose and ears red raw, ( literally). Making friends is easy in my experience but when you have life long friends and confidante's in the UK be patient in finding new ones here in NZ. I don't know if you mentioned your ages but I came in my 30s and have been here 30 years, I would go home tomorrow if my family would agree, but then I like it here, the things I miss are football and the busyness of the streets. But there are so many lovely places here that more than compensate.
I wish you all the luck in the world in making your decisions.
John
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Old Sep 29th 2018, 2:19 am
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Default Re: Completely new and would love honest advice!

@ wigan - Assuming you're a fellow Wiganer
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Old Sep 29th 2018, 5:46 am
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Old Sep 29th 2018, 8:49 pm
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Originally Posted by wigan View Post
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is that wigan for summat
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Old Sep 30th 2018, 1:06 am
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Default Re: Completely new and would love honest advice!

Originally Posted by wigan View Post
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Originally Posted by escapedtonz View Post
is that wigan for summat
It's a dance move.
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Old Sep 30th 2018, 9:26 pm
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