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Moving to NZ - advice needed

Moving to NZ - advice needed

Old Dec 28th 2015, 9:49 am
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Default Moving to NZ - advice needed

Hi, myself and my NZ partner are planning on moving to Auckland in March 2016. I wouldn't say I'm having cold feet, more just questioning if this is definitely right/what happens if our relationship breaks down and I need to return to the UK (I have a residency partner visa).

About us; we're both 25 with good careers aiming to settle down with house and children when we're around 30, his family is in NZ, mine in the UK. The main reason for moving is for my partner to return home but also a better quality of life, more disposable income, larger property etc (we currently live in a tiny flat in London). Is anyone on here making a move in similar circumstances? Or can anyone offer any advice on taking the plunge with my partner or playing it safe and he goes back on his own and I stay in the UK. A key concern is me feeling isolated while he has his friends and family and also the prospect of us not being able to decide whether to settle down in NZ or UK (partner does not want to come back to UK) and then us moving together is a waste of time if we won't stay together after a few years of NZ.

Any advice would be great.
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Old Dec 28th 2015, 3:35 pm
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Default Re: Moving to NZ - advice needed

my initial concern about your post is that you are already speaking about a possible break up and he going over and you not. Its a very expensive country to live in and Auckland is the most expensive. You just need to look at the cost of housing in Auckland to see that, so to have the dream of buying and larger property and more disposal income will possibly just remain that, a dream.
I meet a lovely lady last week who came over from Sidcup, married to a Kiwi for 7 years, been here 9mths and they have now split, she fortunately had a good job of her own and had the skills that are required in NZ, I am not sure what would happen if you did split from your partner and not be in a position to afford to stay, or even if you could as your circumstances would of changed for the visa you came over on. Maybe worth looking into.
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Old Dec 28th 2015, 5:15 pm
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Default Re: Moving to NZ - advice needed

Hi. If your relationship breaks down and you need to return to the UK, whats stopping you from doing so? You will then be single and free to leave if you want?? Also, have you looked into jobs yet in Auckland? What field of employment are you in and what are the Auckland pay scales? How do they compare to your current pay? Theres no way of us advising whether your dream can become reality without knowing how much money you will be on. Some people here do very nicely financially, and therefor able to afford a house, while others struggle. Also some people feel they have a better quality of life while others not. I think its impossible to tell what it will be for you from what you have written. I think you should think about the worst case scenarios. I guess the worst is if your partner wants to stay in Auckland and you dont. I think this depends on your relationship. For myself, if my partner didnt want to live here, then I would do anything to make him happier, including moving. But thats just me. What has your partner said about what would happen in this case?
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Old Dec 28th 2015, 5:50 pm
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Default Re: Moving to NZ - advice needed

My opinion from what you write. Please note this is not advice. No-one can advise what you do for your life.

My opinion & concern.

You have not written from the standpoint of a long lasting secure partnership. Rather you write with a background thought of a possible split.

To emigrate to any new country, let alone one so very far away from the UK, one needs a good solid relationship AND you must both wish to do this.

You already know that in the event you cannot settle , your partner will not look to another country with you for the sake of the relationship. This is something for you to talk about further.

If you have a child whilst in NZ , then that will tie you to Nz even if you feel unsettled and wish to move back to the UK to be close with your own family.

In an even handed relationship you are considerate of each other. If you didn't wish to move to Nz , would he stay with you out of love?

To travel to a far flung country for a holiday or a travel experience is one thing. To move to another country far away is a whole other ball game , It may not be so easy for you to pick up your bags and leave , if that is your heart desire, once you have work, mortgage and responsibilities.

I'm not so sure about all this talk of larger house . Better lifestyle and the like. Is that from your Kiwi partner? Or something you felt on a visit here.

Last edited by BEVS; Dec 28th 2015 at 5:53 pm.
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Old Dec 28th 2015, 5:55 pm
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Default Re: Moving to NZ - advice needed

You do make a good point about if your partner has good friends here already then you may feel isolated. On the flip side, those friends are bound to have wives or girlfriends and, who knows, maybe become your friends. It may work in your favour in terms of meeting people? I wish you the best of luck and hope it all works out.
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Old Dec 28th 2015, 6:31 pm
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Default Re: Moving to NZ - advice needed

Originally Posted by Hayley12345 View Post
I wouldn't say I'm having cold feet...

I would.

Do what's right for you.
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Old Dec 28th 2015, 10:59 pm
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Default Re: Moving to NZ - advice needed

Hi Hayley - leaving friends and family is really hard. There has been a massive explosion in the housing market over here and very difficult to get on the property ladder now, there's not much in the Auckland region below half a Million Dollars. You would probably need to have bank accounts and secure jobs for at least 12 months here before you would be considered for a mortgage. Renting is not cheap either and there isn't that many rentals available. You will need to consider this: although NZ Summers are warm and long (not guaranteed but more so than the UK), Winters are long too and damp. Whilst Winters are considered mild, I found (I'm British, lived here for around 14 years) the general housing to be very inadequate in keeping you warm. It is getting better but do check on insulation, forms of heating and double glazing (double glazing relatively new and only required in new builds). You don't really find central heating in houses. Insulation is sketchy. If you arrive here in the Summer don't be fooled by a lovely warm airy house, it can be a different place altogether once Winter sets in, check all forms of heating in the Summer months.

Public transport is not like the UK so you may need 2 vehicles to get you both to jobs or you need to move somewhere near to bus/train stations.

You will make friends easily and quickly as people are generally very friendly.

Food costs are high.

Yes, the lifestyle is better than the UK, there are less people, less queues (although Auckland City itself is densely populated). Houses are bigger and on bigger pieces of land.

You are young and your friends and family will still be in UK if it doesn't work out for you. It will be a good life experience whatever the outcome.

If you do decide to stay/settle just remember that if you have a family you may find it very hard without family around. I had two children here, without any family members on either side, it was tough, it still is tough. I feel guilt that my family did not get to share my children. I am sad my family miss out on these lovely children and their/our experiences. Yes, my children have a much better life and better opportunities than they would have in the UK but it wasn't and hasn't been a walk in the park. If your parents are young and healthy and willing and able (financially, it costs a bomb) to travel overseas regularly then you may be fine with this. You will not want to travel long haul with young children so remember there may be some years where you will not be willing to go back. If you marry, have children and then split, remember you probably still will not be able to return to the UK as you won't want to leave your children behind.

I know all this seems incredibly negative but they are all the things I faced (still am facing) and nobody told me any of these things before I moved here. I wished they had. Having said all that, I have friends here who are ex-Pats too and think it is the best move they ever made. It is a great Country, it is also a long way away from the UK but, at 25, with no children it is a great time to have a life experience.

All the very best. :-)
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Old Dec 29th 2015, 2:00 am
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Default Re: Moving to NZ - advice needed

Hayley12345 how long have you been partnered with your other half ? Long enough to fit the criteria for being a, 'genuine and stable relationship' for NZIS obviously. (Please don't take that the wrong way, no criticism intended)

I was just wondering how much time and emotion you have invested in your relationship ? Are you engaged ? If you got married, would the wedding venue be New Zealand or Britain ? That question might be meaningless if you have it in mind to marry where your honeymoon will be.

I'm married to a New Zealander. He comes from Auckland. His married with children sister lives there. So does his widowed eighty year old mother. He arrived in Auckland back in the 1960's as a little boy with his parents when they emigrated from Britain. His sister was born in NZ a few years later.

He's got a friend of long standing that lives near Auckland, but they seem to be more like acquaintances these days.

We came to NZ in 2011, we got married in Britain in 1994, we are middle aged now. We married 2 years after meeting in London. He had arrived in London on his late start OE in 1990.

We don't have kids, never wanted any. I have a family category visa which is how I got Permanent Residency. Next year I can apply for NZ citizenship.

This move to NZ has been good for my husband to catch up with his relatives. His idea of buying a house outright, living mortgage free, both getting jobs and having more disposable income hasn't really happened. We live in a small town on the west coast of the central north island of NZ. We came to this small town on the strength of his job offer. Neither Auckland or Christchurch worked out for us. There is also to much, 'emotional baggage' connected with Auckland for either of us to be comfortable with living there. It's also overcrowded and expensive. It has the infrastructure problems of a much larger city, so Auckland's done really well there.

I struggle to find work here. Neither of us has made any friends. Acquaintances, but no friends. We have to live on one income because I can't find paid employment despite constantly looking. The house is mortgaged.

Yes, I realise the easy answer is, 'move to another town and/or a larger town' but that's easier said than done.

I basically agreed to come to NZ to give him a dose of reality i.e. what NZ is like in the here and now. Not some daydream version of NZ circa 1989 when he was a single man, Auckland University student, living at home.

He was all full of excitement when he told me in summer 2006 of his plans for us to move to NZ. My mum had died in September 2005. I was still mourning for her loss and coming to terms with my own grief. I mostly agreed to come to NZ to close the question down so I could get back to my grief.

It's rather telling both then and now that I didn't have the courage to say to him, 'can we just give it a few years to see how we go along rather than saying from the beginning that it's forever.'

There were things that he didn't want to hear me say whilst we were in Britain. No worries, he heard me better in NZ. Not least me asking him if he would claim his unemployment benefit in NZ whilst we were looking for work as he could refer to the income tax that he paid whilst working in NZ. He declined to answer that on both the first and second time I asked him.

As your partner is returning to NZ for life, in his view. Do you think he's kind of saying to you in not so many words, 'I'm going back to New Zealand, you can come with me if you like.'

Ask him where he wants his children to go to school. It's blindingly obvious the answer will be New Zealand, but ask him anyway. If you feel like it.

On reading your opening post, OP, you have answered quite a lot of your own questions. Your remark, 'playing it safe and stay in the UK' or words to that effect says it all to me.

He will be happy to re-acquaint himself with NZ and friends and the things he remembers, things he's fond of, things he can reminisce about and be sentimental. He might not have a great deal of patience with you because it's all new to you and frankly doesn't mean anything to you.

He's picked New Zealand over you and that's hard to take.

Last edited by Snap Shot; Dec 29th 2015 at 3:00 am. Reason: emboldened the OP's name, thought of something else and sorted the formatting
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Old Dec 30th 2015, 12:02 am
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Default Re: Moving to NZ - advice needed

Originally Posted by Hayley12345 View Post
we're both 25 with good careers aiming to settle down with house and children when we're around 30, his family is in NZ, mine in the UK.
Your "good careers" will probably just count as work experience when you arrive unless you are very lucky, normality is to have to take a step backwards to get on the career ladder here and work from there.

Currently you will need a 20% deposit to get a mortgage (with some exceptions), so "settling down" requires a bit more planning (which you may already have in hand).

Most of the issues you foresee, he has already overcome when he came to the UK, friends etc etc, guys tend to value a close circle of friends less than girls, bear that in mind.

If you were my daughter (and I have 4 inc your age...), I'd advise you to treat it on its own merits for you and work from there, anything else becomes a bonus or makes it easier to achieve. Either way you want your location firmly (as far as it can be), decided before children. The Hague convention will ensure children, by and large, stay in their country of residence where the parents split.

Short term you will see a comfort and power shift in the relationship towards your partner, he is likely (as a Kiwi), to make friends, feel more comfortable and earn more and quicker than you so be prepared for that and decide whether you are comfortable with that and how you will manage it.

If you are a solid and fully-functional team I'd suggest you move one at a time to preserve income and options, only you can decide whether you are.

Good luck.
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Old Dec 30th 2015, 1:46 am
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Default Re: Moving to NZ - advice needed

Hi Hayley,

My advice to you would be come out to NZ and treat it like an adventure for the time-being. At the age you are now, no kids and no other important ties to the UK (from what I can gather from your original post) it seems like a good time to at least try. Apart from family and friends of course it seems that this could be the perfect opportunity in your life to have an adventure, travel around, be young and free! If you're still here with your partner when you're more around the age 30 mark and ready to settle, then start thinking seriously about what you want. If you feel that returning to the UK might be a possibility due to a breakdown in relationship before this, then perhaps have some savings in an account for a ticket home.

As for bigger house, more money, better career etc I'm not overly sure this is wise thinking in Auckland. Definitely possible in other parts of NZ, but unless you are both in very high earning jobs, Auckland is awfully expensive to buy and rent in comparison to wages. And then that begs the question - will you really have a better quality of life if you are a slave to a huge mortgage (providing you can get one in the first place!) and little funds to actually enjoy yourself with. I'm not trying to put a downer on the situation but this is the harsh reality.

My partner I and went travelling at the age of 25 and 28 respectively. It was a fantastic experience and one that I would always recommend to anyone who has the feasibility to be able to do so. We are now 30 and 33 and moving to NZ was another good decision for us. Our situation is different to yours in that we are both British and both 100% on board with moving to NZ. I genuinely feel our lifestyle here is one that we could not mimic in the UK mainly due to the demand for our jobs out here and the opportunities that brings us. I recognise this may not be the case for everyone, but at the age of 25 and your situation why not give it a go and see where the adventure takes you?

Last edited by Pom_Chch; Dec 30th 2015 at 1:53 am.
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Old Dec 30th 2015, 4:37 am
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Default Re: Moving to NZ - advice needed

Emigrating is incredibly stressful and testing on any relationship. Moving to another country and being rootless for a period of time is horrible. When we moved to NZ I had a job but that was it. We had no where permanent to live, no friends, hardly any belongings etc and we had to rely on each other.... In my humble opinion even a rock solid relationship is going to be effected. You definitely need to be a team. Good luck!
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