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Everything posted by llessur

  1. llessur

    Port Adelaide

    I thought I would start a suburb guide thread about Port Adelaide, mainly due to the large amount of residential construction that is due to start on the dockfront area over the coming months. Port Adelaide (or 'the Port') is an interesting one - once the bustling main port for the City of Adelaide, in recent decades industrial activity and therefore the population has dropped dramatically. Teeming with heritage colonial-era buildings (which luckily avoided the wrecking ball that devastated many of the CBD's heritage buildings during the 1960s-1980s due to the lack of economic progress in the area) the Port has great potential for a Fremantle-style regeneration and there are now signs that this process has finally started. Back in 2016 the State Government sold off 40 hectares of what was described as "the last undeveloped waterfront land in Australia" to a number of different housing developers. Whilst there is a common masterplan for the area governing building heights etc, each developer is free to develop their parcel of land largely as they see fit - be this through apartments, town houses or a combination of the two. Whilst I don't think the Port would be the first choice for a prospective migrant to consider for accommodation at this stage (as these are still very early days in its revival), it is worth keeping an eye on the suburb as the next few years will be pivotal in the regeneration of the area (especially to any migrants who may be looking to come over as part of the ship/sub building boom). I'll try to keep this thread updated with news about the development(s) and the area in general. Here is an article from the Adelaide Advertiser today:
  2. llessur

    Port Adelaide

    Yeah it will be interesting to see how things pan out over the next 5-10 years. It's got such beautiful bones with its intact heritage buildings - it just needs the population and investment to bring it back to life. Apparently Fremantle was in a similar condition until the late 80s when the America's Cup came to town and spurred on some development. Hopefully the same will happen for Port Adelaide with the anticipated ship/sub building boom.
  3. llessur

    Where to rent

    Best of luck with the move!
  4. llessur

    6 Month visa

    You might get more of a response posting this on the Poms in Oz sister site: https://www.pomsinoz.com/ This one's more Adelaide-specific.
  5. llessur

    NSW 489 moving to adelaide

    Do you mean safe as in personal safety or with regards to your visa? If it's the former then you'll likely have no problems as Adelaide is a very safe city (a handful of areas excepted, but you'll get that in any city). If it's the latter then I'll leave that for someone more knowledgeable to comment.
  6. llessur

    Where to rent

    I've got family in Blackwood and it's a lovely part of the world. Feels like you're in the hills but as you're only just in the hills it's much closer to the city and the beach etc than, for example, Stirling. Great in the winter as everyone has log fires burning but it's also worth remembering that it's a couple of degrees cooler in winter up there, and there'll be a bit more rain, frost etc. There's also a small but real risk of bushfire in the summer. Blackwood's has a nice little centre, a bit like a British high street with shops, supermarkets, cafes etc. It's really close to the Belair National Park and there's also a train station which is very useful if you want to commute to the CBD (it's about a half hour trip with some great views). There are some lovely houses, many nestled right in amongst the trees - including lots of interesting mid-century and A-frame type houses if that's your cup of tea. You'll probably have a few local koalas you'll become familar with. Such a nice environment for kicking back with a glass of red. Flinders University is just down the road (they have a fairly good reputation for nursing and social sciences) and the beach is around 15-20 minute drive away. The wife and I have spoken about moving there a lot. We probably will one day...
  7. llessur


    Childcare tends to cost around $100 per day (in Adelaide at least), with a subsidy being provided by Centrelink if you are eligible. The subsidy will be between 20% and 85% and is related to your family income as per this link: https://www.education.gov.au/child-care-subsidy-combined-annual-family-income
  8. llessur

    Pregnancy in the UK vs Aus

    Having had our first just over a year ago I can report that our public hospital experience was absolutely brilliant. The care we received at the Women's and Children's Hospital in Adelaide was first class. Some of our friends went private and received a few extra benefits like beds for their partners in their hospital rooms (I must admit that would have been nice having slept for the night in a chair), nicer meals etc - but then again they also left with bills of $1000-$3000 on top of the health insurance premiums that they had already paid (private health generally doesn't cover certain things when you're in hospital - e.g. dressings, 'sundries' etc which all add up). We're planning another one in the near future and will have no qualms about going public again. In terms of the heat, it can be a little inconvenient and, depending on timing, you can guarantee at some point during the pregnancy or early months with the little one will be hot. Being a January birth the height of summer arrived when my wife was heavily pregnant and stayed around for the first couple of months after our little one was born. Not the best timing but we made do (very glad we had good AC at home). If summer had come earlier in the pregnancy or later after birth then it would have been easier but babies tend to run to their own schedule as I have rapidly been finding out
  9. llessur

    Best places to live near Edinburgh region

    Bit of a late reply to this one but if you're going to be working around Edinburgh and want to live near the beach then you'd probably be better off looking at the stretch of coast between, say, Largs in the north and Glenelg in the south. Some areas around Largs can be a bit touch and go (whilst others are nice) but generally things are good from Semaphore south (including Henley, Grange, West Beach etc). Commuting would be much easier if you don't go too far south otherwise you'll get caught up in all of the city-bound traffic in the mornings. With regards to being close to the beach, most suburbs in the metro area are an easy (10-20 minute drive). Stick to the west of the city and you'll be within 10 mins. Are you thinking private or public schools? Brighton High (public - just south of Glenelg) has a very good reputation but you'll need to make sure you're in the catchment area, as have Adelaide High and the brand new Botanic High (both public - and the same caveat applies re: catchments). There are good private schools all over the place if you're willing to pay.
  10. llessur

    Best places to live near Edinburgh region

    It depends on what you want from a suburb. To be honest some of the areas immediately around Edinburgh haven't got the best reputation - Elizabeth etc so you'd certainly want to visit before securing a rental etc. I don't know a huge amount about that area and whether there are some nicer parts but I'm sure some others on the forum might. What sort of distance would you be prepared to commute?
  11. llessur


    Archie & Co on Carrington Street in the City are very good, plus they do great coffee.
  12. llessur

    Croydon and West Croydon

    Croydon (together with adjoining West Croydon) is an inner north-western suburb of Adelaide, situated approximately 3-5km from the western edge of the CBD. It is located within the City of Charles Sturt. History The Village of Croydon was laid out in 1855, comprising the 40 acre Croydon Farm and was most likely named after Croydon, England based on the birthplace of one of the original land owners, Philip Levi. Demographic Historically, the area has been populated by Greek and Italian migrants, however in recent years the suburb has grown considerably in popularity and is undergoing a period of change where younger couples and families are buying and renovating properties in the area. According to the previous ABS census data, the suburb comprised 65% native-born Australians and 15% European-born residents (this is reflected in figures showing that 6% of residents speak Italian and 8% speak Greek). The majority (75%) of houses are owner occupied, with 25% being rented. Detached dwellings form 83% of housing stock, semi-detached 6% and units only 3%. Housing Croydon and West Croydon are predominantly heritage suburbs with only a few new dwellings. The most common house styles are late 1800s-early 1900s Federation cottages and 1920s-1930s bungalows (a particular housing style in SA, not to be confused with the generic UK term for a single-storey house). Some particularly grand examples exist along the railway corridor of Euston Terrace/Day Terrace. A 1900s Federation-style house A 1920s/30s bungalow To the west of Rosetta Street (i.e. the western side of West Croydon), more 1940s and 1950s dwellings exist, many in the Spanish Mission or Art Deco styles. The median house price as of April 2017 is $559,000 and the median weekly rent is $420. The majority of houses in the area are set on large (700sqm) blocks, with good-sized back yards. The area has commonly been known for its ‘market gardens’ so fruit trees, veggie patches and backyard chooks are very common. The area is rapidly gentrifying and many houses have been renovated, although period features and frontages are usually retained (many properties are local heritage-listed). Large rear extensions with open plan living and outdoor entertaining areas are quite common, as people take advantage of the block sizes in order to extend. There are still a few ‘fixer-uppers’ to be found if you fancy a project. Shopping, & eating Unlike many suburbs, Croydon has a bustling ‘village centre’ - the Queen Street/Elizabeth Street area. This popular shopping and eating precinct boasts: Red Door Bakery – award winning pies, cakes and all manner of baked goods. Coffees, teas, croissants - the works. http://www.reddoorbakery.com.au/ La Lorientaise Crêperie – by far the best crêpes (sweet and savory) I have ever tasted. https://www.facebook.com/LaLorientaiseCreperie/ http://citymag.indaily.com.au/habits/plate-and-cup/introducing-la-lorientaise-creperie/ Croydon Social – family friendly dining where everything is cooked in a wood-fired oven. Fantastic pizzas and always a great range of craft beers. https://www.facebook.com/CroydonSocial2016/ http://citymag.indaily.com.au/habits/plate-and-cup/first-look-croydon-social/ Queen Street Café – friendly and popular café for breakfasts and lunches https://www.broadsheet.com.au/adelaide/cafes/queen-street-cafe Hype and Seek – vintage, industrial and mid-century furniture and clothing store http://www.hypeandseek.com.au/ Plus… Azalia Boutique – women’s clothing store One Small Room –mid-century furniture plus jewellery, cards and books. Oscar and Willow - homewares Queen St Pilates Studio Curious Orange Hairdressers Palladeum Hair Brooklan Tree Organic Skin and Beauty West Croydon also has a growing shopping and eating precinct on Rosetta Street - currently featuring The Bruncherie Cafe, two hairdressers and Pineapple Vintage retro clothing store - https://www.facebook.com/pineapplevintageretro/. For the big weekly shop, Welland Plaza is within easy walking distance just across Port Road. Here you’ll find a mid-sized Coles, a Post Office, Sushi Train, Dan Murphy’s liquor store, a great independent fruit and veg shop, pharmacy, café, two bakeries, butchers, newsagents, book shop, noodle bar and even a DVD rental place. A 5 minute drive along South Road is the new Brickworks shopping centre. Here there’s a mammoth new Woolworths supermarket as well as a Big W, another fruit and veg place, an EB Games and various other stores and cafes. Parks and Schools In the heart of Croydon, next to the Queen Street shops and cafes is a ‘village green’ complete with grassed and landscaped park area, toilets, basketball court, BBQ and picnic area and a very cute train-themed kiddies playground. Grab a cup of coffee from Queen Street and join the other families in the park area, whilst the little ones play on the equipment and wave at trains as they pull into the adjacent station. As well as this, there are various parks dotted throughout the suburb, most with play equipment – you’re not going to be more than a 5 minute walk from a park wherever in Croydon/West Croydon you live. Additionally, the whole suburb is zoned 40km/h, making it very family-friendly. Kilkenny Primary School is located in West Croydon (http://www.kilkennyc7.sa.edu.au/) whilst several other unzoned primary schools exist in nearby suburbs. The suburb is zoned for Woodville High School (http://www.woodvillehigh.sa.edu.au/) - two train stops west from West Croydon station. Transport The suburb has great transport links including: Trains: The suburbs are serviced by two train stations only 1.6km apart. Trains to the CBD run every 15 minutes and journey times are 7 minutes and 8 minutes from Croydon and West Croydon stations respectively. Trains home from the CBD run until after midnight. Due to the short distance, trips between Croydon Station and the CBD are approximately half the price of a standard ticket ($1.92 as of April 2017). In the opposite direction, trains run to the cruise ship terminal at Outer Harbor, via the historic city of Port Adelaide and the bustling beach-side town of Semaphore, or via a spur to Grange with its quiet beach and pleasant 2km walk to the busier Henley beach. Trams: The nearest tram stop is at the Adelaide Entertainment Centre, a 10-15 minute walk along Port Road from Queen Street in Croydon. The tram line runs past the new Royal Adelaide Hospital, the UniSA City West Campus and the footbridge to Adelaide Oval. Trams are free all the way to the southern edge of the CBD, but continue on to the beach-side suburb of Glenelg thereafter. Due to be completed by 2018, the North Terrace tram line extension will add an additional spur to the free service – this will run past the University of Adelaide campus to the old Royal Adelaide Hospital site and the Botanic Gardens. Frequency of trams is approximately every 10 minutes in peak hour. Buses: Multiple and regular buses run along Port Road and Torrens Road, providing direct access to the CBD. Cycling: The suburb is perfectly placed for commuting to the CBD by bike – a trip takes approximately 15-20 minutes at an average pace, with the route predominantly on cycle paths through the Parklands and along the River Torrens. A dedicated cycle path between Queen Street in Croydon and the Parklands on the edge of the CBD is currently under construction with the first phase due for completion in mid-2017 and the second phase by the end of 2018. Once completed, it will be possible to cycle between Croydon and the CBD, through the parklands without riding on a road. The cycle path will also provide a direct 5-10 minute connection to the expanding community of Bowden with its bars, eateries, markets and shops. In the opposite direction, a cycling greenway (a route through quiet back streets) runs all the way to Outer Harbor. Driving: The CBD is a 10-20 minute (traffic depending) trip by car along Port Road. The beaches at Grange/Henley Beach are a 15 minute drive by car. From Port Road, access to the north-south freeway (current stage to be completed by the end of 2018) will provide very easy access to the Barossa Valley wine region to the north. Once the southern stages are completed at a later date, access to McLaren Vale in the south will be equally easy. Community Croydon/West Croydon has a great, slightly arty community atmosphere. This is not only evident through the number of families seen walking and cycling through the suburb but in the many painted stobie poles (power line poles), mosaic pots and benches and other street art that adorns the area. Very active community groups looks after the gardens at Croydon and West Croydon stations and various artworks such as knitted flowers and home-made butterflies often grace the fences at Croydon Station. On several occasions in recent years, Queen Street/Elizabeth street has been closed for community street parties and events. Due to the high number of productive gardens in the area, there are regular fruit and veg swap meetings where apples can be traded for peaches and so forth. The West Croydon & Kilkenny RSL on Rosetta Street is open to the public every day and hosts a well-attended ANZAC Day dawn ceremony annually. In summer the RSL runs a weekly ‘night owls’ lawn bowls evening, beginners are welcome. All in all I’ve loved living in Croydon for the past two years. It has the type of ‘village’ feel that can sometimes be missing from Australian suburbs, and is immensely walkable. If there was a suburb in Adelaide in which you could live quite happily without being dependent on a car, this is it. Worth a look if this sounds like what you are looking for.
  13. llessur

    Croydon and West Croydon

    It's been a while since I wrote this so I thought I'd add a couple of updates about Croydon - there has been a lot going on in the area lately. Croydon Railway Station has now been completely rebuilt and is fully DDA (Disability Discrimination Act) compliant. Ramps are now at a much shallower grade and the platforms have been raised to be level with the height of train floors. Very useful for pram or wheelchair users. There's been some great new artwork incorporated into the station area, worth checking out if you're ever passing by. The adjacent kiddies park is in the process of being re-landscaped and will look lovely in a couple of years once the new plantings have matured a bit. There has also been a couple of changes to the retailers on Queen Street : One Small Room has now been replaced by a new smaller homewares store called Her Name Was Nola (https://www.facebook.com/hernamewasnola/) and a coffee roastery (both due to open in the next couple of weeks). Oscar and Willow has been replaced by the Soul Healing Space ( http://www.soulhealingspace.com.au/index.php.). An interesting shop selling crystals and incense - not my cup of tea but they're very friendly and it smells amazing ? The bicycle path to the City has now opened so (with the exception of a small road detour still required around one still-to-be-finished section) it is now possible to cycle from Queen Street through the parklands and into the heart of the CBD without travelling on a road. In the other direction, popular craft brewer Pirate Life have announced they will be opening a new brewery in the historic woolstores at Port Adelaide - think something along the lines of Little Creatures in Fremantle. When the new train spur to the heart of Port Adelaide opens next year it means that there will be a magnificent brewery a mere 12-14 minute train ride from Croydon. That would swing it for me ? Median house prices are creeping up a little - as at 30th June 2018 Croydon stands at $600,000 and West Croydon at $543,000.
  14. llessur

    Cost of Utilities

    Difficult one to answer really, as stated above it will depend on a number of factors such as your usage and the companies you sign up with. However, as a very approximate guide, we’re a family of 3 (two adults, one baby) in a 3 bedroom house with modern reverse cycle split system a/c units in most rooms for cooling & heating (a fairly unusual setup but it’s what we ended up with for a couple of reasons), full garden irrigation with 100m2 of lawn (all gets watered every 3 days during summer, plus a little extra on really hot days), gas hot water and hob, electric oven, extra beer fridge in the garage (always on, of course), no solar, no pool, double brick house with standard glass fibre roof insulation. We pay approximately per quarter: Council Rates: $275 Gas: $125 Electricity: $300 (winter) - $450 (summer) Water: $225 (winter) - $350 (summer) Internet is $60 per month with unlimited data, includes landline (but no call credit). Then there’s car insurance and rego, home and contents insurance, ambo cover (and health insurance if you don’t believe it’s a massive scam) etc. In all, we’ve found cost of living to be a little higher than back in the UK but we also found that the increase in wages for comparative jobs here compared to the UK by far outweighed that cost. We may have been lucky of course. Our electricity bill has gone up significantly since we had a baby, mainly because we now have a/c running in multiple rooms – when it was just the wife and I we’d just do one room at a time. Quite easy to keep costs down that way. You could easily save on your water bill compared to mine if you’re not obsessed with keeping your lawn green and your fruit trees irrigated. On the flip side, expect to pay more if you’ve got a pool. I presume the bills will rise a bit more as our little one grows up but I wouldn’t expect too much difference – I know the bulk of my water bill is from the garden irrigation for example.
  15. llessur

    Prescription charges

    I was on daily meds for a couple of years - I usually got my prescription from Chemist Warehouse as it's close to my work, it cost me around $20 for a three month supply. Not bad. I had to renew my prescription over a weekend at one point so went to a smaller chemist in Glenelg (the one by the IGA on Diagonal Road) - the same three month supply of a generic-branded drug cost me nearly $70! Moral of the story is that prescription charges can vary wildly from chemist to chemist and if you're picking up your script from a chemist you don't normally use them always ask the price before getting them to dispense it. In my case it had already been dispensed and because of the British inside of me I just paid for it and left... I'd always try Chemist Warehouse first - they're usually cheaper for a lot of things.
  16. llessur

    Feeling overwhelmed!

    True - but only if you want to be heavily reliant on a car which many people from the UK will not be. If you're used to getting around even partially by public transport and walking back home then you should research quite carefully where you want to live in Adelaide unless you're happy to convert to a high level of car usage. Public transport, where it exists, is pretty good but if you find yourself away from a tram or train line and without significant local amenities within walking distance (which is the case in quite a few Adelaide suburbs) then you might find yourself having to drive pretty much wherever you go - even if it's just popping to the shop. Fully agree that the area between Grange and Semaphore would be a great choice for beachside living - at a slightly cheaper price than you'd get further south of Grange. The train runs to the city every half an hour from Grange (about 20 minutes away) which will be great for shopping, the footy & cricket etc. Semaphore's a good beachside shopping and eating strip and, in my opinion, slightly nicer and more interesting than Glenelg.
  17. llessur

    house prices in adelaide

    You'll probably need to be more specific i.e. which suburbs are you interested in? What type of house? In general house prices are rising in Adelaide but not as quickly as the eastern states - they are certainly more reasonable in terms of average wages etc. Some suburbs perform better than others, past performance is not necessarily an indicator of future performance etc...
  18. llessur


    The road rules here don't require you to keep left unless the speed limit is 80 or over so, whilst annoying by UK standards, driving (and over/undertaking) in any lane on most two or three lane roads is perfectly acceptable. It annoyed the hell out of me for the first couple of years when we came over but am used to it now. What still really irks me is the inability of many Adelaide drivers to merge, or allow other people to merge. I've never seen anyone need to stop in a slip road back in the UK, but over here it is often necessary as people already on the road won't move over to let you in.
  19. llessur

    Suburbs where to live

    I'd look for an apartment to rent in either Bowden or in the CBD itself. Bowden is a few minutes from the city by tram or train and still close to bars, parklands and a short drive or train to the beach. Where will you be studying? If it's Flinders University you might want to look for a place closer to there, if it's UniSA or Adelaide Uni then you should be fine.
  20. llessur

    Where to live?

    Welcome to Adelaide, it's a lovely city. The new place looks great and am very jealous of that view! Best of luck in the new jobs too!
  21. llessur

    Where to live?

    Awesome, where did you end up? Enjoy the new pad!
  22. llessur

    Article on shortage of pet friendly rentals

    Depends on the level of damage really - dog or cat urine can permanently stain wooden floors well beyond the depth that sanding could resolve. There is no way a rental bond would be anywhere near enough to cover replacing all floorboards in a house plus sanding and finishing. Also, not all rentals are investment properties, some will be much-loved family homes that are being rented out for a few years whilst the owner is overseas etc. The owners might not want to have their family home ruined by pets - some original heritage features such as doors, floorboards, skirtings etc just can't be replaced with anything other than poor quality reproductions or really expensive reclaimed items. Despite being very sceptical of the buy to let market I think that landlords are well within their rights to refuse pets in their houses.
  23. llessur

    Where to live?

    What sort of place are you looking for? A house or apartment?
  24. llessur

    Croydon and West Croydon

    Good old Croydon featured in Real Living Magazine last month. Technically I think the article coveres the whole Croydon area (including Croydon park etc) but it gives a good overview of the area from a resident's perspective.
  25. llessur

    Where to rent - North, South, East, West?

    Would highly recommend Bowden, Croydon or possibly Woodville etc along the Outer Harbor rail line. 15 mins by bike, 7 mins by train from Croydon - less from Bowden, slightly more from Woodville. Really easy access until the CBD by any mode of transport, off-road cycle path from Croydon all the way into the heart of the city. I've put suburb guides on here for Bowden & Croydon.

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