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Thinking about a New Zealand move

Thinking about a New Zealand move

Old Sep 11th 2019, 10:05 am
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Default Thinking about a New Zealand move

hello, I currently live in the UK with my husband, 14 yo daughter and 7 yo son. Having grown dissatisfied with the quality of life we have here we are considering a move abroad. New Zealand has always seems to factor on our list but we are undecided, can anyone give some experiences that they wouldn’t mind sharing? Pro’s and Con’s?
We’d be glad to hear anything you’d like to share!
Thank you

Last edited by srsmithers; Sep 11th 2019 at 10:28 am.
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Old Sep 11th 2019, 10:52 am
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Default re: Thinking about a New Zealand move

Welcome to BE.

We ask all new members to have a quick read of the site rules..https://britishexpats.com/site-rules/ and should you have any site related problems please contact one of the moderators, names oin bold at the bottom right of eah forum page.

As theis forum is for introductions only I have asked a moderator to move it to the New Zealand forum where you will get better answers to your question.
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Old Sep 11th 2019, 11:15 am
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Default re: Thinking about a New Zealand move

Okay thank you
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Old Sep 11th 2019, 10:06 pm
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Default Re: Thinking about a New Zealand kove

Originally Posted by srsmithers View Post
Okay thank you
Morning from New Zealand.

I think the first thing to consider is if you will be eligible for a visa and residency. Apologies if you have already explored that & know under which policy you might emigrate.

Much really depends on what you come from . What the pull to emigrate to a country is. What the push might be. How you are set up where you come from and what you can invest once immigrated. Your lifestyle.

Everyone's mileage differs and so everyone's points of view as to what is a pro or a con will also differ. All are valid whether they might be what one expects or not.



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Old Sep 13th 2019, 11:15 pm
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Default Re: Thinking about a New Zealand move

Welcome! We moved over last year: we're a couple in our mid 30s with no children. Our experiences. Your experience will obvious vary depending on your interests and current standard of living.

There are a few great things about New Zealand

Lifestyle
I love wildlife and New Zealand is great for that. I also think the hiking is some of the best and most varied that I've experienced, but these hikes do not really make up for the coverage and accessibility of walks that you have in the UK. Outdoor activities are plentiful but realistically if you're not naturally outdoorsy will probably be an occassional event than regular. Kiwis love the beach and their beaches are long and fairly quiet, but i'm less bothered and there are many areas where you wouldnt want to swim (lakes /rivers included) due to water quality. Fresh produce here is pretty amazing, especially if in season and you can grow some pretty amazing things here if you like gardening, while their native plants are beautiful in their own right. The wine is delicious but the beer is less so. Work life balance has been much, much better for us (healthcare). Lifestyle is the main pro about NZ and it has it in spades mostly.
The weather is great as it's very changeable unlike the UK, so even if it's raining in the morning it's more than possible to be warm and sunny in a couple of hours. The downside is that the sun is very intense and damage to the skin throughout the year is very easy, so either you'll learn to slislapslop and cover up throughout the year or prepare to look like a frazzled Kiwi in no time.

However, culturally speaking NZ is very dull and I don't mean that with any disrespect it's just obviously not as vibrant than other places. Making friends outside work and child-rearing is hard as Kiwi's while polite and friendly aren't really that outgoing socially and often have established circles. Driving instruction here is far less rigourous than in the UK, which means driving is bloody awful. Oh and sandflies (turbo-charged mosquitos but without the disease) will hunt you down during the summer.

Housing
With the new residency requirements I'd think carefully before choosing NZ. Visas do not entitle you to buy a house in NZ. The "direct" route to residency now requires you to express interest in becoming a resident when you've arrived, which is somewhat of a lotto as a number of names are drawn every two weeks. Once your name has been drawn you are then eligble to apply to become a resident, which can then take 8-12 months. So in a best case scenario you're looking at about 1-1.5 years of renting before you are legally able to own in NZ. The other option is the skilled migrant work to residency visa, which takes 6 months to be granted but requires 2 years on the visa before being granted residency, which at that point requires another application. A spouse cannot be sponsored on this visa.

If renting wasn't such a massive ballache as it is here then these interim visas wouldnt be such a problem and sensible, but the rental housing stock is generally (and i can't emphasise this enough) poor, scarce and pretty overpriced. Expect houses that are cold and prone to condensation. Once you can buy affordability varies depending on your capital and where you need to live for work. Some places are still fairly reasonable, while others are far less so and considered overly exposed to any downturn (but demand and house building is even less aligned than in the UK so this seems unlikely in my view).

Cost of living
New Zealand is more expensive than the UK. People will arguably that it's on parity when you take into account earnings, but the high costs associated with rent and food eat away at any perceived increase in earnings easily in my opinion. Petrol is cheaper and many utilities are also but you will be spending a lot more on heating during the colder months.

Healthcare
Dental costs are also very high, even compared to private dental care in the UK. You pay to see a GP but prescriptions are cheaper but there are far less range of drugs available and covered by Pharmac. Working in healthcare, I personally wouldn't want to grow old or ill in NZ. While access is good and waiting times vary, access to specialists is even longer than the UK and due diligence and range of expertise lacking.

After a year here we are waiting on residency but we are also debating moving on but not back to the UK.

Last edited by Verdant; Sep 14th 2019 at 12:17 am.
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Old Sep 14th 2019, 9:51 am
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Default Re: Thinking about a New Zealand move

Just to offer another opinion on the health care subject. In my 11 years here I've never had to wait more than 24 hours for a Drs appointment.
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Old Sep 14th 2019, 9:08 pm
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Default Re: Thinking about a New Zealand move

Originally Posted by Verdant View Post
Welcome! We moved over last year: we're a couple in our mid 30s with no children. Our experiences. Your experience will obvious vary depending on your interests and current standard of living.

There are a few great things about New Zealand

Lifestyle
I love wildlife and New Zealand is great for that. I also think the hiking is some of the best and most varied that I've experienced, but these hikes do not really make up for the coverage and accessibility of walks that you have in the UK. Outdoor activities are plentiful but realistically if you're not naturally outdoorsy will probably be an occassional event than regular. Kiwis love the beach and their beaches are long and fairly quiet, but i'm less bothered and there are many areas where you wouldnt want to swim (lakes /rivers included) due to water quality. Fresh produce here is pretty amazing, especially if in season and you can grow some pretty amazing things here if you like gardening, while their native plants are beautiful in their own right. The wine is delicious but the beer is less so. Work life balance has been much, much better for us (healthcare). Lifestyle is the main pro about NZ and it has it in spades mostly.
The weather is great as it's very changeable unlike the UK, so even if it's raining in the morning it's more than possible to be warm and sunny in a couple of hours. The downside is that the sun is very intense and damage to the skin throughout the year is very easy, so either you'll learn to slislapslop and cover up throughout the year or prepare to look like a frazzled Kiwi in no time.

However, culturally speaking NZ is very dull and I don't mean that with any disrespect it's just obviously not as vibrant than other places. Making friends outside work and child-rearing is hard as Kiwi's while polite and friendly aren't really that outgoing socially and often have established circles. Driving instruction here is far less rigourous than in the UK, which means driving is bloody awful. Oh and sandflies (turbo-charged mosquitos but without the disease) will hunt you down during the summer.

Housing
With the new residency requirements I'd think carefully before choosing NZ. Visas do not entitle you to buy a house in NZ. The "direct" route to residency now requires you to express interest in becoming a resident when you've arrived, which is somewhat of a lotto as a number of names are drawn every two weeks. Once your name has been drawn you are then eligble to apply to become a resident, which can then take 8-12 months. So in a best case scenario you're looking at about 1-1.5 years of renting before you are legally able to own in NZ. The other option is the skilled migrant work to residency visa, which takes 6 months to be granted but requires 2 years on the visa before being granted residency, which at that point requires another application. A spouse cannot be sponsored on this visa.

If renting wasn't such a massive ballache as it is here then these interim visas wouldnt be such a problem and sensible, but the rental housing stock is generally (and i can't emphasise this enough) poor, scarce and pretty overpriced. Expect houses that are cold and prone to condensation. Once you can buy affordability varies depending on your capital and where you need to live for work. Some places are still fairly reasonable, while others are far less so and considered overly exposed to any downturn (but demand and house building is even less aligned than in the UK so this seems unlikely in my view).

Cost of living
New Zealand is more expensive than the UK. People will arguably that it's on parity when you take into account earnings, but the high costs associated with rent and food eat away at any perceived increase in earnings easily in my opinion. Petrol is cheaper and many utilities are also but you will be spending a lot more on heating during the colder months.

Healthcare
Dental costs are also very high, even compared to private dental care in the UK. You pay to see a GP but prescriptions are cheaper but there are far less range of drugs available and covered by Pharmac. Working in healthcare, I personally wouldn't want to grow old or ill in NZ. While access is good and waiting times vary, access to specialists is even longer than the UK and due diligence and range of expertise lacking.

After a year here we are waiting on residency but we are also debating moving on but not back to the UK.
I like this post - it has a balance of the good things and also the not-so-good things and both sides will feature in any move here.

For me, in New Zealand I get to live in a bigger house than the tiny flats that I used to live in in London. But I earn a fraction of the money I used to earn in London and have much less money to spend on leisure (my earnings here are considered 'above average in New Zealand' so I do feel guilty complaining about them, but they still don't go very far. When I arrived I had some cash to bring and that made the difference between sink-or-swim so I feel sorry for the young people starting out here with nothing).
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Old Sep 15th 2019, 3:36 am
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Default Re: Thinking about a New Zealand move

My first post...so treat me gently

I left the UK 8 years ago, spent the first 4 working in Sydney and the last 4 working in Thailand. Only moved to NZ a few months ago, and I absolutely love it.

People are very friendly, salaries are decent (well mine is), and the pace of life suits me fine.

Rent levels are high, but overall the cost of living is on par with the UK. With the amazing strength of the Thai Baht currently, the cost of living in NZ is also just about on par with NZ,

So far so good...I’m really enjoying life in NZ
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Old Sep 15th 2019, 4:55 am
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Default Re: Thinking about a New Zealand move

Originally Posted by Don Draper View Post
My first post...so treat me gently

I left the UK 8 years ago, spent the first 4 working in Sydney and the last 4 working in Thailand. Only moved to NZ a few months ago, and I absolutely love it.

People are very friendly, salaries are decent (well mine is), and the pace of life suits me fine.

Rent levels are high, but overall the cost of living is on par with the UK. With the amazing strength of the Thai Baht currently, the cost of living in NZ is also just about on par with NZ,

So far so good...I’m really enjoying life in NZ
That's good to know you are enjoying it! I'm from Sydney and this is my second time living in Nz, I love it and have no intentions of moving back to Australia.
All of our experiences are different which is what makes life interesting 😊
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Old Sep 15th 2019, 5:34 am
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Default Re: Thinking about a New Zealand move

Finances will make or break any potential move, not "lifestyle."

What is your income now in the UK, and what would it be in NZ? Do not assume that you will automatically be on more-or-less the same income as in the UK.

You cannot have "lifestyle" without the money to back it up.

But all of this is moot without an airtight visa plan, which needs to be your first consideration before you start daydreaming about what school to put the kids in.

Last edited by carcajou; Sep 15th 2019 at 5:37 am.
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Old Sep 15th 2019, 5:40 am
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Thumbs up Re: Thinking about a New Zealand move

Originally Posted by Mishclark View Post
That's good to know you are enjoying it! I'm from Sydney and this is my second time living in Nz, I love it and have no intentions of moving back to Australia.
All of our experiences are different which is what makes life interesting 😊
I enjoyed my time in Sydney, commuted daily on the ferry down the Paramatta river to Circular Quay...is there a more spectacular trip to work in the world?

Loving NZ...really nice folks and a good lifestyle.
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Old Sep 15th 2019, 8:37 am
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Default Re: Thinking about a New Zealand move

Originally Posted by carcajou View Post
Finances will make or break any potential move, not "lifestyle."
.
Rubbish, absolute rubbish.

You don't need anything more than an average wage and the right frame of mind to enjoy a lifestyle in NZ.

Of course it will depend on what your interpretation of "lifestyle" is.

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Old Sep 15th 2019, 9:54 am
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Default Re: Thinking about a New Zealand move

Originally Posted by Don Draper View Post


I enjoyed my time in Sydney, commuted daily on the ferry down the Paramatta river to Circular Quay...is there a more spectacular trip to work in the world?

Loving NZ...really nice folks and a good lifestyle.
​​​​ Yes, the harbour and city are spectacular. I haven't lived in Sydney for 5 years, I spent 3 on the Central coast and 2 in Qld.
It's just me and my 18 year old daughter, ironically it's cheaper for me to live in Christchurch than it is in Sydney!
I love the people and am lucky made lovely Kiwi and expat friends when we lived in Chch, went back to Oz in 2010 and still kept in touch with these friends and caught up each time I returned for a visit.
​​​
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Old Sep 15th 2019, 7:24 pm
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Default Re: Thinking about a New Zealand move

Originally Posted by Don Draper View Post


I enjoyed my time in Sydney, commuted daily on the ferry down the Paramatta river to Circular Quay...is there a more spectacular trip to work in the world?

Loving NZ...really nice folks and a good lifestyle.
When living in Bermuda, my trip to work was on a scooter, short sleeve shirt, with about a half hour ride along either of two roads that ran along the beaches , parking directly outside my office.
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Old Feb 12th 2020, 9:49 am
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Default Re: Thinking about a New Zealand move

Originally Posted by Verdant View Post
Welcome! We moved over last year: we're a couple in our mid 30s with no children. Our experiences. Your experience will obvious vary depending on your interests and current standard of living.

There are a few great things about New Zealand

Lifestyle
I love wildlife and New Zealand is great for that. I also think the hiking is some of the best and most varied that I've experienced, but these hikes do not really make up for the coverage and accessibility of walks that you have in the UK. Outdoor activities are plentiful but realistically if you're not naturally outdoorsy will probably be an occassional event than regular. Kiwis love the beach and their beaches are long and fairly quiet, but i'm less bothered and there are many areas where you wouldnt want to swim (lakes /rivers included) due to water quality. Fresh produce here is pretty amazing, especially if in season and you can grow some pretty amazing things here if you like gardening, while their native plants are beautiful in their own right. The wine is delicious but the beer is less so. Work life balance has been much, much better for us (healthcare). Lifestyle is the main pro about NZ and it has it in spades mostly.
The weather is great as it's very changeable unlike the UK, so even if it's raining in the morning it's more than possible to be warm and sunny in a couple of hours. The downside is that the sun is very intense and damage to the skin throughout the year is very easy, so either you'll learn to slislapslop and cover up throughout the year or prepare to look like a frazzled Kiwi in no time.

However, culturally speaking NZ is very dull and I don't mean that with any disrespect it's just obviously not as vibrant than other places. Making friends outside work and child-rearing is hard as Kiwi's while polite and friendly aren't really that outgoing socially and often have established circles. Driving instruction here is far less rigourous than in the UK, which means driving is bloody awful. Oh and sandflies (turbo-charged mosquitos but without the disease) will hunt you down during the summer.

Housing
With the new residency requirements I'd think carefully before choosing NZ. Visas do not entitle you to buy a house in NZ. The "direct" route to residency now requires you to express interest in becoming a resident when you've arrived, which is somewhat of a lotto as a number of names are drawn every two weeks. Once your name has been drawn you are then eligble to apply to become a resident, which can then take 8-12 months. So in a best case scenario you're looking at about 1-1.5 years of renting before you are legally able to own in NZ. The other option is the skilled migrant work to residency visa, which takes 6 months to be granted but requires 2 years on the visa before being granted residency, which at that point requires another application. A spouse cannot be sponsored on this visa.

If renting wasn't such a massive ballache as it is here then these interim visas wouldnt be such a problem and sensible, but the rental housing stock is generally (and i can't emphasise this enough) poor, scarce and pretty overpriced. Expect houses that are cold and prone to condensation. Once you can buy affordability varies depending on your capital and where you need to live for work. Some places are still fairly reasonable, while others are far less so and considered overly exposed to any downturn (but demand and house building is even less aligned than in the UK so this seems unlikely in my view).

Cost of living
New Zealand is more expensive than the UK. People will arguably that it's on parity when you take into account earnings, but the high costs associated with rent and food eat away at any perceived increase in earnings easily in my opinion. Petrol is cheaper and many utilities are also but you will be spending a lot more on heating during the colder months.

Healthcare
Dental costs are also very high, even compared to private dental care in the UK. You pay to see a GP but prescriptions are cheaper but there are far less range of drugs available and covered by Pharmac. Working in healthcare, I personally wouldn't want to grow old or ill in NZ. While access is good and waiting times vary, access to specialists is even longer than the UK and due diligence and range of expertise lacking.

After a year here we are waiting on residency but we are also debating moving on but not back to the UK.
Hi could you please clarify a bit more about the skilled migrant visa . I am planning to sponsor my partner in my skilled Migrant visa . What do you mean that spouse cannot be sponsored in this visa . This is so confusing , any insight will be greatly appreciated
thanks
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