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Over 3 Years and still in Scotland

Over 3 Years and still in Scotland

Old Dec 31st 2008, 1:13 pm
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Default Over 3 Years and still in Scotland

I was hoping that this would've been my first update from Brisbane as we head into the new year but alas I am writing this from Scotland on the last day of 2008.

We started the process of immigration back in August 2005 with a consultation at OE Visas in Edinburgh who assessed our options and confirmed that we were good candidates for the 136 Skilled PR visa so we set the ball rolling and began the application process that many have been through / are going through beginning with the TRA stage which after mountains of paperwork due to my self employment was granted in March 2006 and the first hurdle was cleared. I am a Joiner to trade and have had my own business for most of my working life and my wife is a hairdresser.

The next stage the visa application began to pick up pace around August 2006 for us as we sort of went into a lull following the TRA when other things took on more of an importance in my business and as a result we lost a bit of momentum with our application, however, after supplying other bits and pieces required by our agents our application was off to DIMIA in October 2006. We celebrated Xmas and New Year with all family at our house for Xmas as we thought that this might be our last Xmas in Scotland as we began the countdown for moving to Australia.

The year 2007 started and my workload doubled as we waited on news of our visa application and the first we heard from our agents was in February to get medicals and police checks carried out. These done, a case officer was appointed in March and we got the good news that our Visa was granted on 3rd April 2007 the day before my birthday. After much celebrating we then had to sit down and finalise our move in detail and plan ahead. Due to my business commitments and a few things needing tidied up on our house before going on the market we decided on a recce to Brisbane which would double as a validation of our visas in October 2007 with our planned move in the Spring of 2008.

We had a great time in Brisbane and made new friends, checked out jobs, property, suburbs, schools etc and returned very excited about moving in 2008. We had Xmas and New Year again and treated this one as our last in Scotland and set about organising shippers, clearing out lofts, prparing the house for market and generally winding things up in the first few months of 2008.We have packed away loads of things in boxes that have been in our garage awaiting the shippers, we gave up our season tickets at Ibrox at the end of the season (no bad thing some of you are thinking), I did though get to the UEFA Cup final in Manchester and maybe would've missed out had we been in Australia and one of my boys gave up the football team that he plays for thinking we would be away soon whilst my youngest is being tracked by a few SPL clubs with a view to signing Pro-Youth forms!

Our house went on the market in May 2008 and is still on the market with no imminent sign of selling so hence my update is being written on Hogmany in dear old Scotland. Whilst we have carried on as normally as has been possible you do tend to feel that you are in your sub concious living temporarily in your own home and things that we would've replaced or renewed by now have been put on hold such as a new van for my work, new TV etc for the house. I have rejected a lot of longer term work as I don't wish to let anyone down if the house sells and equally do not want to sell the house only for unfinished business to keep us here longer! It is a bit of a dilemma but we are carrying on here as normal although I must admit to getting pissed off everytime someone asks 'Are you still here?' or 'You still not sold your house yet?'

So here's to 2009 and hope everyone gets what they hope for in the New Year. It is great to read all your updates, trials and tribulations about your lives in Australia and it only makes us more determined to get out there with you all. My next update will be from Australia and here's hoping it will be in 2009!

John & Stella
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Old Dec 31st 2008, 2:11 pm
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Default Re: Over 3 Years and still in Scotland

Hi Lone ranger


We are in the same boat as you, just hope things get better in the NEW YEAR

Paula
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Old Dec 31st 2008, 2:36 pm
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Default Re: Over 3 Years and still in Scotland

Gosh, you're a patient man.

We have been through a similar process. Started the visa ball rolling in Feb 2007. Marketed house immediately as we. intended to move into rented to save money. After 3 failed sales we have now just exchanged on a sale. During this time, I have been to the depths of despair - I really admire you for your patience. As you say it is a sort of limbo, you can't make plans at all. We haven't had a holiday since we started the application as we always thought we would have to drop everything to move out quickly.

I hope that you can have the same luck that we did and find a buyer. My top tips would be to reduce the price as much as you can afford and market the house as much as you can. We sold to someone I approached - thus avoiding EA fees too. (Before I get slagged off, the EAs contract allowed for a private sale after a certain time had elapsed.)

Fingers crossed for 2009 to be your year.
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Old Dec 31st 2008, 3:58 pm
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Default Re: Over 3 Years and still in Scotland

[QUOTE=Fly Away;7114656]Gosh, you're a patient man.

We have been through a similar process. Started the visa ball rolling in Feb 2007. Marketed house immediately as we. intended to move into rented to save money. After 3 failed sales we have now just exchanged on a sale. During this time, I have been to the depths of despair - I really admire you for your patience. As you say it is a sort of limbo, you can't make plans at all. We haven't had a holiday since we started the application as we always thought we would have to drop everything to move out quickly.

I hope that you can have the same luck that we did and find a buyer. My top tips would be to reduce the price as much as you can afford and market the house as much as you can. We sold to someone I approached - thus avoiding EA fees too. (Before I get slagged off, the EAs contract allowed for a private sale after a certain time had elapsed.)

I am not normally a man of patience, however, I think the fact that I have been relatively busy in my business throughout the process and have a great family life, superb wife and 3 boys to keep me busy have helped!

Whilst anxious to get there I have always held the opinion that we will get there when we're meant to get there! Sounds good if you say it like that!

I'm glad that you have sold your home, when are you heading to Oz? I know what you mean regarding holidays etc,we could be doing with one right now as well as a few other things that we would like. We have decided to take on work as normal and cross the bridge when we come to it if our house sells and I have unfinished work to complete as we can't continue waiting for things to happen, you've just got to get on with it!

Whilst viewing life in Scotland as short term at the minute we are optimistic that things will improve in the property market come the spring. We have already reduced the price of the house and will look at it again in the first few months of 2009 although I would hope we don't have to drop it further.
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Old Jan 2nd 2009, 11:15 pm
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Default Re: Over 3 Years and still in Scotland

Hi John
From a fellow Scot.
We put our house on the market in March '08. Without going into detail, we took it back off in May '08.
When we put it back on the market in September, we sold in 3 days. As the EA said at the time, this was unheard of for a long time in that area, but my thoughts were pricing it right for the market conditions and personal circumstance.
One of the problems with our house was it was valued just above the stamp duty threshhold of 3%, so viewers were reluctant to offer over the threshhold because of the step up in stamp duty fees (this was the feedback we were getting at the time amongst other things, such as where the market was going).
Even though houses in our area had sold for more than the threshhold, all those houses had been marketed for a long time and so, if you think about it, did the owners really gain from it? Unless they didn't have much equity in the property, i don't think so.
You see, while the house is still on the market, you're still paying the mortgage and other associated utility bills etc with it. In our case we were paying somewhere in the region of £1500/month. If our house had been on the market for say 6 months, we'd still have paid out £9000 just for living there, so we reduced the price to hopefully get a quicker sale so we could move on with our plans.
Don't get me wrong, it doesn't feel good knowing you're selling your house for less than what you *think* it's worth (going by previous sales in the area), but the harsh reality is your house is only worth what the market deems it to be worth. In the same tone, a lot of people (not a criticism, just an observation) spend a lot of money doing their houses up to sell. Why? You're as best to save your money cause 9 times out of 10, you'll never get it back what with the house price, EA fees, solicitor fees etc etc.

Best of luck for your move when it comes.
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Old Jan 3rd 2009, 3:18 am
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Default Re: Over 3 Years and still in Scotland

Originally Posted by LoneRanger View Post
I was hoping that this would've been my first update from Brisbane as we head into the new year but alas I am writing this from Scotland on the last day of 2008.

We started the process of immigration back in August 2005 with a consultation at OE Visas in Edinburgh who assessed our options and confirmed that we were good candidates for the 136 Skilled PR visa so we set the ball rolling and began the application process that many have been through / are going through beginning with the TRA stage which after mountains of paperwork due to my self employment was granted in March 2006 and the first hurdle was cleared. I am a Joiner to trade and have had my own business for most of my working life and my wife is a hairdresser.

The next stage the visa application began to pick up pace around August 2006 for us as we sort of went into a lull following the TRA when other things took on more of an importance in my business and as a result we lost a bit of momentum with our application, however, after supplying other bits and pieces required by our agents our application was off to DIMIA in October 2006. We celebrated Xmas and New Year with all family at our house for Xmas as we thought that this might be our last Xmas in Scotland as we began the countdown for moving to Australia.

The year 2007 started and my workload doubled as we waited on news of our visa application and the first we heard from our agents was in February to get medicals and police checks carried out. These done, a case officer was appointed in March and we got the good news that our Visa was granted on 3rd April 2007 the day before my birthday. After much celebrating we then had to sit down and finalise our move in detail and plan ahead. Due to my business commitments and a few things needing tidied up on our house before going on the market we decided on a recce to Brisbane which would double as a validation of our visas in October 2007 with our planned move in the Spring of 2008.

We had a great time in Brisbane and made new friends, checked out jobs, property, suburbs, schools etc and returned very excited about moving in 2008. We had Xmas and New Year again and treated this one as our last in Scotland and set about organising shippers, clearing out lofts, prparing the house for market and generally winding things up in the first few months of 2008.We have packed away loads of things in boxes that have been in our garage awaiting the shippers, we gave up our season tickets at Ibrox at the end of the season (no bad thing some of you are thinking), I did though get to the UEFA Cup final in Manchester and maybe would've missed out had we been in Australia and one of my boys gave up the football team that he plays for thinking we would be away soon whilst my youngest is being tracked by a few SPL clubs with a view to signing Pro-Youth forms!

Our house went on the market in May 2008 and is still on the market with no imminent sign of selling so hence my update is being written on Hogmany in dear old Scotland. Whilst we have carried on as normally as has been possible you do tend to feel that you are in your sub concious living temporarily in your own home and things that we would've replaced or renewed by now have been put on hold such as a new van for my work, new TV etc for the house. I have rejected a lot of longer term work as I don't wish to let anyone down if the house sells and equally do not want to sell the house only for unfinished business to keep us here longer! It is a bit of a dilemma but we are carrying on here as normal although I must admit to getting pissed off everytime someone asks 'Are you still here?' or 'You still not sold your house yet?'

So here's to 2009 and hope everyone gets what they hope for in the New Year. It is great to read all your updates, trials and tribulations about your lives in Australia and it only makes us more determined to get out there with you all. My next update will be from Australia and here's hoping it will be in 2009!

John & Stella
Hey John

Could it be an idea you could rent your house out and go on to Australia for 2 reasons???:

1. It would give you an idea of whether you like Australia or not, and if you find things do not work out, you still have something to come back to?

2. You cannot and do not wish to wait too long to validate your visa.

Just a thought, and I know people who have done that, given Australia a one year trial, and seen how they felt, then sold up if both partners seemed settled in Australia.

It's just that despite what we all say on the forums for good or not so good about Australia, the whole thing is a very personal thing to people, and what you think in Scotland, or on a holiday to Australia, could turn out to be very different from living there long term.

I am from Scotland originally before I moved, back for the moment working in London, but there is an attitude from some of my Scottish family (and I think this is a Scottish thing) that I was abandoning my roots and not interested in them, all because I was off to Australia. Weird, but it does happen I suppose. They never talk or ask about it - perhaps jealous?. Do relatives get jealous?. Not a nice thing to think about your own reli's!

Cheers and good luck.
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Old Jan 3rd 2009, 2:53 pm
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Default Re: Over 3 Years and still in Scotland

Originally Posted by Gordo Marshall View Post
Hey John

Could it be an idea you could rent your house out and go on to Australia for 2 reasons???:

1. It would give you an idea of whether you like Australia or not, and if you find things do not work out, you still have something to come back to?

2. You cannot and do not wish to wait too long to validate your visa.

Just a thought, and I know people who have done that, given Australia a one year trial, and seen how they felt, then sold up if both partners seemed settled in Australia.

It's just that despite what we all say on the forums for good or not so good about Australia, the whole thing is a very personal thing to people, and what you think in Scotland, or on a holiday to Australia, could turn out to be very different from living there long term.

I am from Scotland originally before I moved, back for the moment working in London, but there is an attitude from some of my Scottish family (and I think this is a Scottish thing) that I was abandoning my roots and not interested in them, all because I was off to Australia. Weird, but it does happen I suppose. They never talk or ask about it - perhaps jealous?. Do relatives get jealous?. Not a nice thing to think about your own reli's!

Cheers and good luck.
Good advise.We assumed that Australia would be where we would settle.One year later we can't wait to leave.I'm glad my wife decided to keep our house in Scotland.
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Old Jan 3rd 2009, 7:45 pm
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Default Re: Over 3 Years and still in Scotland

Originally Posted by rightruccus View Post
Hi John
From a fellow Scot.
We put our house on the market in March '08. Without going into detail, we took it back off in May '08.
When we put it back on the market in September, we sold in 3 days. As the EA said at the time, this was unheard of for a long time in that area, but my thoughts were pricing it right for the market conditions and personal circumstance.
One of the problems with our house was it was valued just above the stamp duty threshhold of 3%, so viewers were reluctant to offer over the threshhold because of the step up in stamp duty fees (this was the feedback we were getting at the time amongst other things, such as where the market was going).
Even though houses in our area had sold for more than the threshhold, all those houses had been marketed for a long time and so, if you think about it, did the owners really gain from it? Unless they didn't have much equity in the property, i don't think so.
You see, while the house is still on the market, you're still paying the mortgage and other associated utility bills etc with it. In our case we were paying somewhere in the region of £1500/month. If our house had been on the market for say 6 months, we'd still have paid out £9000 just for living there, so we reduced the price to hopefully get a quicker sale so we could move on with our plans.
Don't get me wrong, it doesn't feel good knowing you're selling your house for less than what you *think* it's worth (going by previous sales in the area), but the harsh reality is your house is only worth what the market deems it to be worth. In the same tone, a lot of people (not a criticism, just an observation) spend a lot of money doing their houses up to sell. Why? You're as best to save your money cause 9 times out of 10, you'll never get it back what with the house price, EA fees, solicitor fees etc etc.

Best of luck for your move when it comes.
Hi mate

Everything you've said makes sense as we've thought about all those things ie. what say 6 months mortgage would cost etc and we have reduced our house in accordance with same. Our house is at a good price and we are open to further negotiation its just that no one is giving out mortgages in the UK at present and the whole market is stagnant, believe me we are realistaclly priced and as we have validated our visas there is no panic although the quicker we are out there the better

Lone Ranger
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Old Jan 4th 2009, 1:22 am
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Default Re: Over 3 Years and still in Scotland

Originally Posted by Gordo Marshall View Post
Hey John

Could it be an idea you could rent your house out and go on to Australia for 2 reasons???:

1. It would give you an idea of whether you like Australia or not, and if you find things do not work out, you still have something to come back to?

2. You cannot and do not wish to wait too long to validate your visa.

Just a thought, and I know people who have done that, given Australia a one year trial, and seen how they felt, then sold up if both partners seemed settled in Australia.

It's just that despite what we all say on the forums for good or not so good about Australia, the whole thing is a very personal thing to people, and what you think in Scotland, or on a holiday to Australia, could turn out to be very different from living there long term.

I am from Scotland originally before I moved, back for the moment working in London, but there is an attitude from some of my Scottish family (and I think this is a Scottish thing) that I was abandoning my roots and not interested in them, all because I was off to Australia. Weird, but it does happen I suppose. They never talk or ask about it - perhaps jealous?. Do relatives get jealous?. Not a nice thing to think about your own reli's!

Cheers and good luck.
We've thought about renting out our house, however, I would much prefer to go with no ties back here ie. first bout of homesickness and hey lets pack up and go back 'cos we still have our house to go back to in Scotland!

As for the visa we've already validated last October 2007 so we've no need to panic about that. And yes there is a huge amount of jealousy on the part of friends and relatives which I detected in the early stages of applying for the visa and which has increased since we've got the visa and oh how these folk love the fact that we've still not made the move to Australia and the longer we're still here the more they think we won't go! These people and I'm sure a lot of you will relate to this are only jealous that we have all had the balls to go for the visa and then go abroad and if truth be told we have only gone and done what they would've liked to have done but they don't have the guts and that is the sad fact for most of them!

Its not a nice thing when relatives and friends act like this but each to their own and at the end of the day where would we all be if we set out to please people who do not have any ambition in them to try the move?

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Old Jan 4th 2009, 1:26 am
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Default Re: Over 3 Years and still in Scotland

Originally Posted by kevin747 View Post
Good advise.We assumed that Australia would be where we would settle.One year later we can't wait to leave.I'm glad my wife decided to keep our house in Scotland.
Sorry it hasn't worked out for you in Australia and best wishes for whatever you do in the future. You at least had the guts to try it and you will be consoled by the fact that you can get on with your life without wondering 'What if ?'.

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Old Jan 4th 2009, 3:07 am
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Default Re: Over 3 Years and still in Scotland

Is it "perceived" jealousy or actual jealousy though?

Everbodies life experiences are different and based on those experiences we make our judgements.
In our case, in terms of friends and relatives, those that were jealous, said so! but in a nice way. In others, the perceived jealousy turned out to be the fact that they were going to miss your company.
One or two have them had the same dreams and ambitions as we had and went through the processes such things require, but ended up not doing it due to peer pressure at that time. A strong reason which they later regretted for not going ahead with the dream.
Of those that gave a "perceived" disapproval of our plans, it's turned out as i said that it comes down to going to be missed when we're away, but in this day and age what with Skype and webcams etc, being missed is not so much of an issue, cause you are "live" in terms of communication as opposed to typed words on a keyboard or letter.
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Old Jan 4th 2009, 9:47 am
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Default Re: Over 3 Years and still in Scotland

I think you're spot on with the jealousy thing although like I said most folk would love to have the courage to do it but each to their own. I agree that you being missed is probably more of the truth and we can all be a bit selfish in that respect, however, there are those that stand still and live in the comfort zone and those that want to find out what's out there in the big bad world and that will never change.

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Old Jan 4th 2009, 10:55 am
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Default Re: Over 3 Years and still in Scotland

I was in the comfort zone for 26 years! before i got up off my backside and decided there must be more to life than this!
Talk about leaving it late in the day to make a start on new adventures.... lol
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Old Jan 5th 2009, 5:54 am
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Default Re: Over 3 Years and still in Scotland

You poor thing Lone Ranger, I really feel for you. We started our visa process on a 136 in October 2005, so just a couple of months after you, and come March we will have been in Australia 3 years. I'm not saying this to rub salt into the wounds, just a sort of irony of the way things have turned out. I truly wish your house sells soon :crossfingers:
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Old Jan 5th 2009, 6:23 am
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Default Re: Over 3 Years and still in Scotland

Originally Posted by sunbather View Post
You poor thing Lone Ranger, I really feel for you. We started our visa process on a 136 in October 2005, so just a couple of months after you, and come March we will have been in Australia 3 years. I'm not saying this to rub salt into the wounds, just a sort of irony of the way things have turned out. I truly wish your house sells soon :crossfingers:
Its just a tad frustrating that when we were ready to go the world goes into financial meltdown, however, we have validated our visas and I can think of much worse scenarios. I hope you have found your new surroundings to be all that you hoped for and wish you every success in Australia.

We know a lot of people who are in Australia and who were going through the visa process at the same time as ourselves, everyone has a different tale to tell, different circumstances and with hindsight this thread may have been done with a different slant. We are positive about everything and will hopefully be in Australia this year. You have not rubbed salt in to any wounds as we are not people to be bitter about anything, we take a lot of strength from people like youselves who have gone on to the next phase and we look forward to joining you.

Best Wishes

John & Stella
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