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Thread: Big decision ! Make the move or not ?

  1. #1
    darren is offline Junior Member
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    Default Big decision ! Make the move or not ?

    Visa approved and great job in Christchurch. Why I am having serious doubts about making the leap from the UK to NZ. I here bad things about crime rising and jobs for New Zealanders only, Rental accomodation being cold and damp, high cost of living etc. This has been our dream for years but wondering if staying in UK may be the safer option. Any advice either way would be much appreciated.

  2. #2
    MotherBear's Avatar
    MotherBear is offline The missing link
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    Default

    Hi Darren and welcome aboard.

    Well, yes indeed, NZ does have its problems, but then so do many other countries. I am originally from the UK, but have lived abroad for quite a long time due to my hubby's job. We have heard so much bad press about the UK that we have decided never to return to live there, instead opting to settle in NZ. So, that's the other side of the coin .

    NZ does have SOME damp, cold housing, but that doesn't mean you have to rent/buy a cold, damp house. There are many beautiful, dry and warm houses if you choose carefully and do your research beforehand. Kiwis tend to be hardy types and, until recent times, have shunned the need for central heating which is only creeping in over the last decade or so. There are things to look for e.g. make sure the house gets a lot of sun during the day and isn't hidden from the sun in a valley or on the wrong side of a mountain. Usually north-facing houses get the best sun. Check out that the property has a good level of insulation. Do the 'sniff' test when you enter a property i.e. smell out if there is damp and check around the walls for visual evidence of it. If you spot a likely house on, say, the Internet, ALWAYS check it out in person. Don't be tempted to take it on without seeing it first. Simple precautions but they pay off in the end.

    Jobs for NZers only. This did creep in a bit when the recession hit and a lot of kiwis returned home after losing their jobs abroad. There was a tendency to offer available jobs to kiwis first, but I wouldn't like to say this is still going on because I read many kiwis are now going back overseas again.

    There is crime in NZ, like anywhere else, but I don't know that anyone could state that things are worse there than in other country. Drink and drugs are the bane of many a police force these days, both in NZ and elsewhere in the world. Crime is often reported in the NZ press and this could possibly be because there isn't always a lot of other news to print.

    It's not cheap to live in NZ, but there are ways to keep costs down e.g. buying food that hasn't been imported and is cheaper, buying fruit and veg that is in season and generally being sensible about spending. Some things are cheaper there, others are more expensive. Rumour has it, it's very expensive to live in the UK now so, who knows, you may find it cheaper in NZ.

    One thing I would mention, from my own personal experience, the people in NZ (not all, but many of them) are much friendlier and helpful than Brits. It's a pleasure to go shopping and have strangers greet us and the staff manning the checkouts passing the time of day. In the UK we were lucky to get a grunt out of most of them. If you are prepared to be cheery to them, they will usually reciprocate. It's so nice to be noticed instead of being ignored.

    From what I've heard of the UK, I couldn't honestly say you would be worse off in NZ than if you stayed where you are. Do your research well and be selective about which area you settle in and you should, hopefully, be fine (if not much better than if you stay put). If you focus only on the negative aspects of NZ instead of weighing them up against the positives, you may opt to stay put in old Blighty and always be wondering if you'd made the right choice. It would be very sad to find out later on that you had chosen wrongly.
    Mother Bear

    Try to bloom wherever you are planted.

  3. #3
    darren is offline Junior Member
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    Default The big decision

    Thanks for replying. Believe me, I really appreciate your knowledge and experience. I spent 3 weeks in NZ in 2004 to check out the place with a view to moving there in 2007. The job I had fell through and I kind of resigned myself to a life in the UK. The company that turned me down have come back and offered me an excellent contract but I cant help feeling from all the threads that this have changed so much in NZ since I was there. I have a great family who are very keen on a fresh start after a traumatic experience last year but I have such nagging feelings that this is a huge gamble with our future. Basically stay in the UK and probably have secure finacial but boring future or gamble on a risky venture which may be the making of us.

    My starting pay would be 79000 which after research appears a comfortable salary in NZ. As for cold damp houses, thats no excuse really as I was brought up in a very cold and damp council house in North Wales. Just being a wimp over that.

    The job is a gamble as it is probationary for 9 months but I do have vast experience in the trade so should be fine.

    Objectively, what do you think are the bad points of NZ. My daughter is in remission and no matter how much research I do, we have no real way of knowing how good the post cancer support is out there. This worries me as I think the UK NHS is outstanding. We will be settling in Christchurch which I thought was a great place when I was there. We also have distant friends living in CH.

    Did you you have big doubts before you made the leap. I think we are good people and have moved a lot so we probably would be able to make friends and settle.

    We shouldn't have to make big decisions, someone should just order me what to do.

    An indesicive Welshman who is going round in circles.

  4. #4
    alan&moyra's Avatar
    alan&moyra is offline Senior Member
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    Default Yes its worth it (IMO)

    Hi

    As far as saying whether or not it is a good idea to make the move to the other side of the world, only really you can make that call.

    We moved here in 2007 having never actually been to Christchurch so that too was a big jump for us, but we decided that the move would be one of those ones down the years if you didnít do it would you look back with the ď if only I had done thatĒ yes itís a big scary move, yes its stressful but is it worth it??

    For us yes, we moved for lifestyle, we were sick of Glasgow, loved the friends and the house we lived in but just decided that it was not the place to bring up a young child, as pointed out by MB everywhere has its problems but when we look at it here, even the worst place in Chch does not come close to the worst place in Glasgow.

    As far as damp cold houses go, yes there are some but there are also lots and lots of good ones out there too. So having been here for 3 years we have no intention of going back to the uk unless its for a holiday

    So any info on Chch I can help with im more than happy to throw pointers at you and suggestions
    EOI Submitted 10/04/2007
    EOI Selected 21/04/2007
    ITA Received 20/07/2007
    ITA Sent Lodged 31/08/2007
    Medicals booked 01/08/2007
    Flights booked 22/10/2007
    Visa granted 17/10/2007
    Arrived in NZ 27/10/2007



  5. #5
    alan&moyra's Avatar
    alan&moyra is offline Senior Member
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    Default

    Oops forgot to say, when we first came over my OH worked in the bone marrow unit at Chch public so any questions on that side i might ask her for info on it.

    79k is a pretty good salary here to be honest, anything i can help with give me a shout
    EOI Submitted 10/04/2007
    EOI Selected 21/04/2007
    ITA Received 20/07/2007
    ITA Sent Lodged 31/08/2007
    Medicals booked 01/08/2007
    Flights booked 22/10/2007
    Visa granted 17/10/2007
    Arrived in NZ 27/10/2007



  6. #6
    darren is offline Junior Member
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    Default Big decision

    alan&moyra thanks for replying. Sometimes I think I am scared of change which is daft as our present situation is desperate for change. Do you expats have clubs where u meet up and have BBQs or coffees etc. There seems so many expats that I would be very surprised if there were no support groups in CH. Reference the cancer support side of things, would really appreciate any info on the quality of care in this field. From what I can tell, the NZ NHS sounds pretty professional but understaffed and underfunded, sounds familiar to be honest.

    My partner really wants to jump but my dithering is starting to put her off so I need to decide ASAP.

    Darren

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