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Relocating to the Melbourne Region with Teenagers: Pros and Cons

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(@shadowwhisperer)
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Hey everyone,

My husband has recently received an attractive job offer in Melbourne.

At least, I believe it's a good offer. The starting salary would be AUD 200,000 per year.

As a family of five, with two teenagers and a 5-year-old, would we be able to live comfortably on that initial income?

If he were to accept the position, we would prefer to reside as rurally as possible, within an hour's drive of Melbourne, as he would need to commute. Geelong's distance would be ideal, but it's far too large of a city for our preferences.

I've also heard rumors about a significant number of drug users in the area, and now I'm unsure if the situation has deteriorated to the point where it wouldn't be wise to raise teenagers there.

I'd appreciate some local insight, as we understand that all cities have drug issues, but from what we've heard, there's apparently an ice epidemic.

We would be relocating from rural Ireland, although I personally grew up in Berlin.

Additionally, regarding schools for teenagers, is it true that they now teach about 82 genders, or is the situation not as severe as it appears from a distance?

Thank you,

Jessi


   
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(@violetskies9)
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Posted by: @shadowwhisperer

As a family of five, with two teenagers and a 5-year-old, would we be able to live comfortably on that initial income?

The answer to your question is as subjective as asking, "How long is a piece of string?" Your lifestyle will largely determine whether that income is sufficient. For some, $200k would provide a luxurious lifestyle, while for others, it might barely suffice. Personally, I think it's a fairly substantial figure.

One challenge you might face is finding something "rural" within an hour's drive of Melbourne, especially if you're considering that as a commuting time during peak hours. When I lived in Caulfield South, it would often take 50 minutes to drive into the CBD at 7 am, while at 7 pm, it would take less than 15 minutes.

You might want to explore areas like Lilydale and other Eastern Suburbs if you're looking for a more countryside setting, but it won't be truly rural.

Last I checked, they were only teaching 71 genders. 😉

As for drugs, you'll encounter similar problems all over the world. The western suburbs can be particularly susceptible to substances like ice, but you also have to consider the cocaine users in Brighton.


   
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(@redflute)
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Posted by: @shadowwhisperer

My husband has recently received an attractive job offer in Melbourne.

At least, I believe it's a good offer. The starting salary would be AUD 200,000 per year.

As a family of five, with two teenagers and a 5-year-old, would we be able to live comfortably on that initial income?

If he were to accept the position, we would prefer to reside as rurally as possible, within an hour's drive of Melbourne, as he would need to commute. Geelong's distance would be ideal, but it's far too large of a city for our preferences.

There's plenty of countryside within the same distance as Geelong. Consider looking at the stops along the Ballarat or Bendigo railway lines. Alternatively, you could explore the Dandenong mountains (not to be confused with the suburb of Dandenong).

However, as VioletSkies mentioned, if by "an hour's drive from the center of Melbourne at peak hour," you mean there's nowhere rural within that area. You'd still be within the Melbourne suburbs. Melbourne is a sprawling city. Your husband could certainly travel from Geelong to Melbourne in about an hour by train, but driving during rush hour could easily take 2 hours.

If you use Google Maps, you can check driving distances at different times of the day by selecting "directions" and choosing the specific day and time you want to travel.

This post was modified 1 month ago by redflute

   
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(@violetskies9)
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Personally, I'd suggest somewhere like Sunbury or its outskirts. You could probably find a property that's a bit more secluded but still less than a 15-minute drive to Tullamarine or a short trip to the station to reach Southern Cross.


   
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(@indigoirisdreams)
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With teenagers, how old are they? I ask because of the Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE). You wouldn't want to move a child who is 16 or older, as it would be challenging to enroll them in a senior school program that would provide them with a good University Entrance Score. Just as an aside, you'd need to carefully consider the educational implications.

You could do much worse than Ballarat. I believe the train service is now quite good – no longer the old bone-shakers they used to have. If you were commuting into Melbourne, you'd really want to consider the train. Driving in would be a nightmare, and although it might take an hour to reach the Tullamarine turnoff, it could be another hour to get into the city center. There are some excellent private schools in Ballarat as well (though I'm not sure how many genders are currently de rigueur). You could look at stops along that rail route to see what else looks suitable.

My in-laws reside in Lara, a town just outside Geelong, and they are very content there. Our nephew commuted daily by train from Lara to Carlton in Melbourne and found it to be fine. Prior to that, he attended school in Geelong.


   
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(@violetskies9)
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Posted by: @indigoirisdreams

You could do much worse than Ballarat.

Although, maybe give it a miss if you enjoy going for walks or jogging. 😉


   
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(@indigoirisdreams)
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Posted by: @violetskies9

Although, maybe give it a miss if you enjoy going for walks or jogging. 😉

Yup, getting a bit of a bad rap at the moment LOL

 

   
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(@sunsetsaffron3)
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From an Australian perspective, Geelong certainly has its share of drug problems, but if you compare it to the UK/Ireland, it's an absolute haven of purity.

One thing to consider (given your comment about teaching 82 genders being bad) is that Melbourne (and Victoria) as a whole is – to use modern vernacular – quite possibly the "wokest" city in the world (which I see as a good thing). However, if this is a potential issue for you, the openness and anything-goes nature of Melbourne might be difficult to overcome.

Keep in mind that Melbourne, as a city, has a population of 5 million, while Ireland, as a country, only has 6.4 million. So, it's going to feel big. (Geelong is basically the size of Cork).

As everyone else has mentioned, what you consider rural is likely more than an hour's rush-hour drive from Melbourne's city center.

A salary of $200k equates to approximately $10,500 per month after taxes and other deductions.

So, the answer to whether this is livable depends on your needs. If you're renting, you can expect to pay around $3,000 per month for a 3-bedroom house in most places. Buying is expensive, and unless you can purchase with cash, you'll generally need to complete your probationary period before being approved for a mortgage.


   
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(@redflute)
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@ShadowWhisperer Check realestate.com.au for house prices, and be aware that real estate agents here are crooks – they shamelessly photoshop the images they post online, so always assume that the photos look better/bigger than the real thing. Also, keep in mind that there are good areas and bad areas in every town and city, so if you see something that's unusually cheap, it's because it's in a bad suburb. Homely.com.au can help you check that out with their suburb reviews: https://www.homely.com.au/find-places


   
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