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Two weeks in Melbourne...

Two weeks in Melbourne...

Old Feb 10th 2008, 10:34 pm
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Default Two weeks in Melbourne...

Well, it's been a manic first 2 weeks trying to finalise the purchase of a house before the doggies come out of prison but we've done it!

We flew Qantas and touched down 9.30 at night on Jan 28th having booked a room at the airport Hilton. Collapsing into the lovely fresh sheets took a little longer than expected as they had lost our reservation (bizarrely enough the same thing had happened the night before we flew at the Heathow Hilton even though we had emailed confirmations for both ).

The next morning, after a big fat breakie we cabbed it to Crystal Brook holiday centre in East Doncaster (lovely place-surrounded by nature, well equipped, comfortable). We had originally booked to stay here as it's so close to Eltham where we were initially planning on buying. A quick whizz around the local realtors showed us that the market had gone up significantly here in the last 6 months (25% said one agent). With this in mind we decided to check out bayside areas.

Second day we took the bus down to the Ringwood Holden dealership and within an hour were the proud owners of a fully insured, brand spanking new, bright blue Holden Barina (OH still thinking longingly of his ball busting black Jeep Cherokee left behind in London-I pointed out the saving in petrol-about £200 per month and he cheered up a bit!0

Heading off down the Nepean highway we had a sniff around Seaford which we decided was too 'elderly' for us-the shopping strip abounded with a selection of closed down stores, diabetes clinics and a mobility scooter shop. Also, although I had read that the area was 'up & coming' it has, according to agents, already up & come and reached its peak. Mornington, which looks great has no train station so (as we are only to have one car), no good for me.

Driving back towards the city a little way we stumbled upon Bonbeach-very pleasant, wide, tree-lined residential streets, the all important train station, a small strip of shops with a decent Safeway & a funky bar/brasserie in nearby Chelsea and only a hop & a skip to a gorgeous white sandy beach.

Two agents & 3 hours later we had made an asking price offer on a 3 bed place-they call it a unit but it's a small detached house with a reasonable sized (40' x 12) patio garden out the back and SLUG (single garage). 2 days later we heard back from the agent-our offer had been accepted -how excited were we! We are set to move in mid March and cant wait-it will be wonderful to have our own space and all our belongings back again.

In the midst of all this we have been visiting our doggies in Spotswood quarantine twice a week . The staff there are excellent. Buster had a small seizure in the first week which terrified me but they were super-professional-even taking him and Alfie into doggie hospital for over night monitoring. No more problems since then-they have settled in well and we take in a picnic for them each time we go.

For the first few days after arrival I was laid low by a hideous stomach virus but am feeling great now-it feels like we've been here a lifetime even though its only 2 weeks. Have set up Medicare accounts at the shopping mall in Doncaster, applied for TFN's and ABN's, are fully equipped with bank cards etc etc.

As for Melbourne our first impressions are all positive-we have already found a couple of places which will become regular haunts, there are some interesting shops, we love South Yarra & St Kilda for a lazy Sunday outing, were very impressed by the Dandenongs and of course the beaches are beautiful.

Anyway, must get out of my lazy bed now as off to visit the woofs shortly.

Jools
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Old Feb 10th 2008, 11:25 pm
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Default Re: Two weeks in Melbourne...

Originally Posted by JoolsB View Post
Well, it's been a manic first 2 weeks trying to finalise the purchase of a house before the doggies come out of prison but we've done it!

We flew Qantas and touched down 9.30 at night on Jan 28th having booked a room at the airport Hilton. Collapsing into the lovely fresh sheets took a little longer than expected as they had lost our reservation (bizarrely enough the same thing had happened the night before we flew at the Heathow Hilton even though we had emailed confirmations for both ).

The next morning, after a big fat breakie we cabbed it to Crystal Brook holiday centre in East Doncaster (lovely place-surrounded by nature, well equipped, comfortable). We had originally booked to stay here as it's so close to Eltham where we were initially planning on buying. A quick whizz around the local realtors showed us that the market had gone up significantly here in the last 6 months (25% said one agent). With this in mind we decided to check out bayside areas.

Second day we took the bus down to the Ringwood Holden dealership and within an hour were the proud owners of a fully insured, brand spanking new, bright blue Holden Barina (OH still thinking longingly of his ball busting black Jeep Cherokee left behind in London-I pointed out the saving in petrol-about £200 per month and he cheered up a bit!0

Heading off down the Nepean highway we had a sniff around Seaford which we decided was too 'elderly' for us-the shopping strip abounded with a selection of closed down stores, diabetes clinics and a mobility scooter shop. Also, although I had read that the area was 'up & coming' it has, according to agents, already up & come and reached its peak. Mornington, which looks great has no train station so (as we are only to have one car), no good for me.

Driving back towards the city a little way we stumbled upon Bonbeach-very pleasant, wide, tree-lined residential streets, the all important train station, a small strip of shops with a decent Safeway & a funky bar/brasserie in nearby Chelsea and only a hop & a skip to a gorgeous white sandy beach.

Two agents & 3 hours later we had made an asking price offer on a 3 bed place-they call it a unit but it's a small detached house with a reasonable sized (40' x 12) patio garden out the back and SLUG (single garage). 2 days later we heard back from the agent-our offer had been accepted -how excited were we! We are set to move in mid March and cant wait-it will be wonderful to have our own space and all our belongings back again.

In the midst of all this we have been visiting our doggies in Spotswood quarantine twice a week . The staff there are excellent. Buster had a small seizure in the first week which terrified me but they were super-professional-even taking him and Alfie into doggie hospital for over night monitoring. No more problems since then-they have settled in well and we take in a picnic for them each time we go.

For the first few days after arrival I was laid low by a hideous stomach virus but am feeling great now-it feels like we've been here a lifetime even though its only 2 weeks. Have set up Medicare accounts at the shopping mall in Doncaster, applied for TFN's and ABN's, are fully equipped with bank cards etc etc.

As for Melbourne our first impressions are all positive-we have already found a couple of places which will become regular haunts, there are some interesting shops, we love South Yarra & St Kilda for a lazy Sunday outing, were very impressed by the Dandenongs and of course the beaches are beautiful.

Anyway, must get out of my lazy bed now as off to visit the woofs shortly.

Jools
Hi, It was good to read your update,, did you use to post on the spouse visa circle?
It sounds like everything has fallen into place for you.
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Old Feb 11th 2008, 12:01 pm
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Default Re: Two weeks in Melbourne...

Thanks for the update.. very good to hear everything is going well (minus the hotels!) Gives hope to those of us arriving in June!
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Old Feb 11th 2008, 2:14 pm
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Default Re: Two weeks in Melbourne...

Fab Update Jools, we arrive (well hubby definitley at the beginning of April) I have to sell the house We had Seaford and Eltham on our list of possible places to live, may have to re-consider.

Glad your dogs are doing OK too, our Buster (Springer Spaniel) will be coming with us too

Tracy & Jason
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Old Feb 11th 2008, 3:11 pm
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Default Re: Two weeks in Melbourne...

Hi Jools,

Great to read your update.

Eltham is also on our list (was it just price that put you off?), although we're likely to head a bit further North towards Doreen.

I was wondering if you could give me a bit more info on exporting your dogs. We have two Border Collies and have had a quote from Air Pets. They seem to get great reviews on here but we're wondering if we can do a bit of the process ourselves to bring the cost down. Did you use an agent for the whole process or did you manage some of it yourselves?

Great to hear such good things about Spotswood as well - we're also planning on visiting twice a week - that's the limit isn't it?

Good luck and I look forward to more updates.

Colin
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Old Feb 11th 2008, 10:06 pm
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Default Re: Two weeks in Melbourne...

Thanks guys

Colin-Eltham is lovely-very pretty with a decent shopping strip of small stores. It was mainly the prices that turned our heads but also as soon as we saw the bayside coastline-I've always wanted to live near the sea and to be able to afford a place within 5 mins walking distance but still only 40 mins to CBD did it for me (I know born and bred Melburnians would think this a bit of a trek but it used to take us longer than that to get halfway across London so no big deal.)

Exporting the dogs was the most worrying part of the entire migration process for us. I feel Airpets are well worth the cost for the peace of mind you get-the only bit we did ourselves was to apply for the import permits-but we didnt really save much by doing that-only a nominal amount. If you do anything wrong it can result in your beloved pets being left behind so I would say if you can afford to leave it to the professionals.

Best of luck to you all for the trip over


ps yes I did use to post a bit in the spouse visa circle
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Old Feb 11th 2008, 10:06 pm
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Default Re: Two weeks in Melbourne...

Hi Jools we live near Bonbeach in Mordialloc, it is a lovely part of the world. Welcome to Bayside.

Buzzy
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Old Feb 11th 2008, 10:14 pm
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Default Re: Two weeks in Melbourne...

Originally Posted by Jasonmb View Post
Fab Update Jools, we arrive (well hubby definitley at the beginning of April) I have to sell the house We had Seaford and Eltham on our list of possible places to live, may have to re-consider.

Glad your dogs are doing OK too, our Buster (Springer Spaniel) will be coming with us too

Tracy & Jason
Good luck with selling Tracy-Im sure you'll be out here in no time

If you were thinking of Eltham then maybe have a look at Greensborough instead-not too far away and I believe there's a flashy new shopping development planned. As for Seaford-for a younger vibe check out (as we did) a little further up the coast towards town.

Will Buster be going ahead with your OH whilst you sell up?
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Old Feb 11th 2008, 10:17 pm
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Default Re: Two weeks in Melbourne...

Originally Posted by Buzzy--Bee View Post
Hi Jools we live near Bonbeach in Mordialloc, it is a lovely part of the world. Welcome to Bayside.

Buzzy
Thanks Buzzy-it is indeed! I loved Mordialloc when we passed through
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Old Feb 12th 2008, 6:11 am
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Default Re: Two weeks in Melbourne...

Welcome Jools, it's a gorgeous area. I grew up in Mentone and now have a place in Parkdale. Nice and close to everything - congrats on your new place!
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Old Feb 12th 2008, 3:44 pm
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Default Re: Two weeks in Melbourne...

Originally Posted by JoolsB View Post
Good luck with selling Tracy-Im sure you'll be out here in no time

If you were thinking of Eltham then maybe have a look at Greensborough instead-not too far away and I believe there's a flashy new shopping development planned. As for Seaford-for a younger vibe check out (as we did) a little further up the coast towards town.

Will Buster be going ahead with your OH whilst you sell up?
Hi Jools

Thanks for the luck, think we need a miracle though

Will have a look at Greensborough, it may already be on my list which is quite large, with the children and dog we need somewhere suitable for us all.

Buster will fly a couple of days before the children and I once the house has been sold, I think Jason will have enough to do once he arrives without worrying about the dog too.

Tracy
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Old Feb 21st 2008, 8:37 am
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Default Re: Two weeks in Melbourne...

Hi All

I live in Eltham and have commented a few times on the rising property prices in the area. We have seen a substantial lift in prices since we arrived in Feb 07.
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Old Feb 21st 2008, 8:50 am
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Default Re: Two weeks in Melbourne...

Originally Posted by busterboy View Post
Hi All

I live in Eltham and have commented a few times on the rising property prices in the area. We have seen a substantial lift in prices since we arrived in Feb 07.

We had noticed that in the 12 months that we have been looking on realestate, ohh well just means I won't be able to walk to the beach now and will have to drive instead

Can you recommend Eltham, it is on my large list of places to look at when we arrive?

Many Thanks
Tracy
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Old Feb 21st 2008, 9:03 am
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Default Re: Two weeks in Melbourne...

Originally Posted by Jasonmb View Post
We had noticed that in the 12 months that we have been looking on realestate, ohh well just means I won't be able to walk to the beach now and will have to drive instead

Can you recommend Eltham, it is on my large list of places to look at when we arrive?

Many Thanks
Tracy
Eltham is a great place but a long way from the beach! It takes a while to appreciate being this far into the North-East. You really do feel sometimes that you are on the end of the line and somewhat isolated from things especially in winter. Taxis cost a lot, many jobs in the CBD...bit of a trek everyday.

On the upside...Eltham is a delightful, laid back community of professional types and mid-income professional type families. Although this can become a pain in the arse fast with women driving their kids to school, too fast in enormous 4WDs! Kids can bored in their teens.

There's quite a few restaurants, a few pubs and although there are many Brits here, it can be better to have a mix of Brit and Aussie friends. If you look for it, there can be quite a social scene and lots of people are welcoming.

Leafy, lovely Eltham, on the edge of Warradyte, the Yarra Valley and as many reserves and nature trails as you can count. I am not so fond of Eltham North as it is a bit new estate-y for me.

Houses in Eltham North $400-600k
Eltham $500-$900k
Greensborough (rougher now but up and coming) $380k-600k

Depends on exactly where you look, the house etc. Houses on realestate.com often have the magic camera effect and look nothing like the photos in real life. Also realestate.com, doesn't highlight the multiple occupancy, the rented to drifters, the fact you are right next door to Safeways etc.
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Old Feb 21st 2008, 9:04 am
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Default Re: Two weeks in Melbourne...

JoolsB glad you have found the place for you!
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