One week on Gold Coast

Old Sep 17th 2007, 3:14 pm
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Default One week on Gold Coast

Well, after all the waiting and the drama, we finally made it. There's me, OH and two kids 10 and under. I'm a psych nurse and got a job and sponsorship with Queensland Health. We flew out on the 9th Sept with Singapore airlines. It was definitely one of the better flights I've done. The staff were faultless, food was great and the on board entertainment kept both kids so happy they didn't even move other than to go to the loo! We used an online booking with Con X tions to transfer from Brisbane airport to the Gold Coast which was about 45 mins and cost $97. No problems. We're staying for a month in Burleigh in an apartment over the road from the beach. The place is immaculate and has everything we need. The owners have fallen over backwards to help with anything and everything.

We spent 2 days doing nothing really cos we were so tired. On day 3 we hired a car...a little Toyota Echo from a company in Surfers for $42 a day and that includes bringing the excess down to a couple of hundred dollars.We found that most companies advertise at $29 a day but the excess is 3 grand so that's not strictly true. Anyway, spent 2 days doing drive by's of properties to rent which I had found in our price range on realestate.com. Also went in real estate offices in every area we went to and picked up the latest lists and application forms. Agents presented problems for us as we had previously rented from the council for 12 years so didn't have an actual reference which they didn't seem to like. Anyway, we found it good just driving round and getting a flavour of areas. We did Palm Beach to Labrador and loads in between. Palm Beach was a hit with everyone as it is close to the beach and slighly cheaper than even Burleigh which is 5 minutes up the road. There were only 2 areas I didn't get a good feeling about out of the lot. They were Surfers and Labrador. That's just personal to us though. Surfers is too busy and built up and Labrador was just a bit depressing and grim.

Anyway, after 2 days of drive by's and two very irritable kids in the back of the car, we thought we'd and have a look at where I'd be working (Robina)
It's funny but you can look on the internet all you want (and boy did I) but you really can't decide till you see somewhere. I had looked on seqrents.com and emailed every complex on the Robina list and some were more helpful than others. Anyway, Varsity Lakes and Robina when we first drove round it was like a big maze of overdeveloped estates and a sries of roundabout every 2 seconds. I came away very disappointed and felt a bit lost really.

Took a day off from house finding and went looking for a car on friday. We drove up to Southport which had been recommended by several people. We were pleasantly surprised to find that the cars were actually more affordable than we had been led to believe. We sold our car in the Uk for just under 4 grand so that is our car budget here and we found decent motors starting at $7 grand. OH wants a 4x4 and I have my eye on a nice little Audi. Ha ha. Shame the money's not in the bank yet!!

So, onto the boring stuff....based on research done on BE I had a list of stuff I knew we had to do to get it out of the way. Open a bank account..we went with the Commonwealth Bank for no particular reason. From the minute we walked in they were exceptional in terms of customer service and set us up a current and savings account, info for telephone and internet banking. Great bank, great service, nothing too much trouble. and what makes me giggle is that everything that happens is recorded by the person you speak to so for example, we went in today for a car insurance quote and the woman we spoke to knew exactly what had been done for us and said to us instead of (like in UK)you standing there trying to remember when you spoke to someone and then the bank denying any record of it cos you don't have anyone's names.

Went back round Robina and Varsity. Can't remember what for but anyway, we saw a sign outside an estate off the main drag saying they had rentals. Just thought we'd pop in and ask, like you do and lo and behold, we were shown round there and then and given an application form. Well, the house was absolutely gorgeous and despite all my reservations about living in a matchbox house in suburbia, the kids actually showed an interest...OK, they begged. OH was smiling and after all it does have an en suite and a walk in wardrobe for god's sake which I think you can dismiss as cosmetic/fickle only if you haven't lived in a council house for 12 years!!! So we sat by the on site pool, filled the form in and gave him everything we had on us in cash which was just short of a weeks rent.

****at this point I feel it necessary to just give my one and only bit of advice...get all the paperwork you can together and keep it with you at all times. I had in a bag....all passports, both driving licenses, previous tenancy agreement and rent statement, council tax bill and couple of old utilities bills. Also, contract for new job in Oz, copies of all E Visas and a receipt for payment of holiday let including full address and phone numbers. Also got new Oz sim cards for PAYG mobiles so we had a contact number and so far nobody at all has had a problem with it being a mobile cos it's still an Australian number. Also in bag was stuff for kids school enrollment which is 2 proofs of current address in Oz, birth certs and reports for both kids.******

We called up to Varsity College today and asked about enrolling the kids and we have an interview with the head on wednesday. The manager of the estate we're renting on has kindly printed out a rental contract even though we're not moving in till 8th October as he said the school wouldn't accept anything less and yes, he was right. You have to have that proof of address now or you don't even get to see the head!! The school looks great and thkids are actually excited about starting. Unfortunately the end of term is friday for two weeks so by the time they start they will have been off for a grand total of 11 weeks...think they're going to be feral by then so the school might just take one look at them clawing the walls and laugh!!!

Been to the medicare office, no problems, gave them the passports and a copy of the visa confirmation and she printed us a temporary number and said the cards would arrive in 2-3 weeks. Applied online for a tax file number, also no problems and same time frame. Just got to get the passports stamped tomorrow and see if the money has been transferred and we can go and buy a car.

All in all, the last 8 days has been busy but pretty simple really. Everyone we've spoken to has been really friendly and helpful and very positive. Even though we've had both kids with us and they've had naff all to do, we've stuck together, got our heads down and got it done. After tomorrow we can kick back and relax and start to explore a bit and enjoy where we are and appreciate why we're here. I love this place because it's how we want to live. I have loved exploring new things in shops, putting washing out on the balcony and bringing it in after two hours, people greeting you with a smile, seeing the OH enjoy doing U turns cos he can and really enjoying driving and actually being relaxed about it. I'm sure there is a degree of rose tintedness going on but I have no doubts whatsoever that we've done the right thing. I believe in going with your gut and this just feels right.
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Old Sep 17th 2007, 3:28 pm
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Default Re: One week on Gold Coast

great post very informative. Good luck to you and your family in your new life
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Old Sep 17th 2007, 6:46 pm
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Default Re: One week on Gold Coast

Mooncat, What a great and informative post. We still don't know when we will be out on the GC but its nice to read about other people doing it and enjoying it. Hope it all works out well for you.
Clare
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Old Sep 17th 2007, 7:05 pm
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Default Re: One week on Gold Coast

Sounds excellent as a said, soooooo jealous cant wait to get over!!!

Also sounds like it's all been releatively easy n straight forward too no hassles n stresses.

Would be interested to hear more about your new rental home once your living there. I'm assuming its one of the gated complexes n there seems to be loads of these.

I think it could be quite good for a short term rental anyway, chance to meet people, Hubbie has concerns. i.e. why the need for gated cctv estates?!!

Please keep us informed n hope you enjoy some chill time n proper sleep patterns before you start working!!!

Mandy

Cheers for the info
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Old Sep 17th 2007, 11:56 pm
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Default Re: One week on Gold Coast

Congratulations on your move, you have done really well in such a short time

Hope everything continues to go so well for you.

Good luck with the job too.
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Old Sep 18th 2007, 6:12 am
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Default Re: One week on Gold Coast

welcome to the gold coast mooncat

how old are the chidlers ???

i ask as my daughter terri ( 14 ) attends varsity ( yr 10 )

regards steve
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Old Sep 18th 2007, 8:17 am
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Smile Re: One week on Gold Coast

Congrats on your move mooncat

Am planning on the same area as you, and got a job at the Gold Coast Hosp. Not going til March thou.

What reference did the renting agent want, did you mean like mortgage statements or something?

Tracey
x
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Old Sep 18th 2007, 9:10 am
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Default Re: One week on Gold Coast

Welcome to paradise. Hope it carrys on going well for you. Good timing on the weather front, just in time for sun sun and more sun. Good luck.
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Old Sep 18th 2007, 9:24 am
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Default Re: One week on Gold Coast

THANKYOU FOR A REALY POSITIVE POST
hoping to move realy soon..good luck to you and your family by the sound of it youve definately made the right decision
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Old Sep 18th 2007, 9:42 am
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Default Re: One week on Gold Coast

Looks like you have made good progress, well done !
Glad your liking it.

Dave
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Old Sep 18th 2007, 12:08 pm
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Default Re: One week on Gold Coast

Originally Posted by mandyp View Post
Sounds excellent as a said, soooooo jealous cant wait to get over!!!

Also sounds like it's all been releatively easy n straight forward too no hassles n stresses.

Would be interested to hear more about your new rental home once your living there. I'm assuming its one of the gated complexes n there seems to be loads of these.

I think it could be quite good for a short term rental anyway, chance to meet people, Hubbie has concerns. i.e. why the need for gated cctv estates?!!

Please keep us informed n hope you enjoy some chill time n proper sleep patterns before you start working!!!

Mandy

Cheers for the info
Hi Mandy,
Will update after each big change. Yes the new rental is on a gated complex. All looks gorgeous. Think the UK estate agent speak is compact ha ha. Will let you know what it's like actually living there after the move. x
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Old Sep 18th 2007, 12:12 pm
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Default Re: One week on Gold Coast

[QUOTE=steve`o;5324038]welcome to the gold coast mooncat

how old are the chidlers ???

i ask as my daughter terri ( 14 ) attends varsity ( yr 10 )

regards steve[/

Hi Steve,

Caitlin is 10 (11 in april) and Connor is 9 on sunday. Can't wait to get them in school. Varsity looks a great place. Going in to see the head in the morning Headmasters...ooh....won't go there lol
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Old Sep 18th 2007, 12:19 pm
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Default Re: One week on Gold Coast

Originally Posted by mooncat View Post
Hi Mandy,
Will update after each big change. Yes the new rental is on a gated complex. All looks gorgeous. Think the UK estate agent speak is compact ha ha. Will let you know what it's like actually living there after the move. x
Hee hee,

Am used to a two bed ex council flat 'compact' house sounds good to me!!!!
We'd so love even a wee toatie garden, hate the kiddiewinks bein stuck in the flat specially with all this rain!!!

I had to scrape fine ice off ma car this mornin after ma shift!!! I need the sun!!!!

Mandy
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Old Sep 18th 2007, 12:26 pm
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Default Re: One week on Gold Coast

Originally Posted by spaceys View Post
Congrats on your move mooncat

Am planning on the same area as you, and got a job at the Gold Coast Hosp. Not going til March thou.

What reference did the renting agent want, did you mean like mortgage statements or something?

Tracey
x
Hi Tracey,

Well officially they ask for two personal (non family) references and two emergency (family) contacts but also want a reference from the last place you lived. This was a problem for us as we've rented from the council for 12 years and I totally forgot to ask them for a reference before we left ha ha
No seriously, we found this was a problem with real estate agents really. The managers of complexes on the whole seem a lot more relaxed. I showed him my original tenancy agreement, a council tax bill and a British gas bill, all of which were in both names. He seemed happy with that and really was far more interested in the written contract I had from Queensland Health which stated I had a permanent job. He actually said they're pretty relaxed and just want to know that I can afford to pay the rent at the end of the day which is fair enough.

Another good thing I forgot to put in....we're only paying the rent, electric and phone/internet. That's it!! No water, gas, council tax etc Oh and when you leave ( and something I've never heard before) you have to shellout for a professional clean and spray of the house which is the equivalent of a weeks rent. I was shocked initially but after thinking about it...what a great idea..at least you know the place isn't going to throw up other people's hair balls and that everything is fresh and clean when you go in. (I'm a bit anal about other people's skin flakes and general grime!!!)
Sorry, slightly off the subject ha ha must be excited!!
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Old Sep 19th 2007, 12:51 am
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Default Re: One week on Gold Coast

Originally Posted by mooncat View Post
Hi Tracey,

Well officially they ask for two personal (non family) references and two emergency (family) contacts but also want a reference from the last place you lived. This was a problem for us as we've rented from the council for 12 years and I totally forgot to ask them for a reference before we left ha ha
No seriously, we found this was a problem with real estate agents really. The managers of complexes on the whole seem a lot more relaxed. I showed him my original tenancy agreement, a council tax bill and a British gas bill, all of which were in both names. He seemed happy with that and really was far more interested in the written contract I had from Queensland Health which stated I had a permanent job. He actually said they're pretty relaxed and just want to know that I can afford to pay the rent at the end of the day which is fair enough.

Another good thing I forgot to put in....we're only paying the rent, electric and phone/internet. That's it!! No water, gas, council tax etc Oh and when you leave ( and something I've never heard before) you have to shellout for a professional clean and spray of the house which is the equivalent of a weeks rent. I was shocked initially but after thinking about it...what a great idea..at least you know the place isn't going to throw up other people's hair balls and that everything is fresh and clean when you go in. (I'm a bit anal about other people's skin flakes and general grime!!!)
Sorry, slightly off the subject ha ha must be excited!!
Welcome to the Gold Coast and well done sorting everything out so well. We've been renting in Robina for a while and moving to Mudgeeraba soon. All the best. Michelle and family
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