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llessur

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Everything posted by llessur

  1. 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?
  2. llessur

    Hairdresser

    Archie & Co on Carrington Street in the City are very good, plus they do great coffee.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. 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.
  6. 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.
  7. 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.
  8. 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...
  9. llessur

    Driving

    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.
  10. 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.
  11. 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!
  12. llessur

    Where to live?

    Awesome, where did you end up? Enjoy the new pad!
  13. 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.
  14. llessur

    Where to live?

    What sort of place are you looking for? A house or apartment?
  15. 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.
  16. 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.
  17. llessur

    House prices

    Good call on the stamp duty! Here's the link to the suburb reports I mentioned earlier: http://www.residex.com.au/free-report They're OK for overview purposes but are only really a snapshot with a few recent sales documented - real estate agents will usually quite happily email you a comprehensive list of recent sales data for a suburb if you ask them. Here's the link to realestate's sold search option: https://www.realestate.com.au/sold Most of what sells will be updated within a few weeks with the sold price. Some never do though. The real estate agents' lists should list these too. Henley Beach will be quite expensive - it's one of the more sought after beachside suburbs. If you want good beach access then most of the western suburbs will have very easy access via car (the CBD's only 10-15 minute drive from the coast depending on traffic). Best of luck with the move!
  18. llessur

    House prices

    When we were looking to buy we just used realestate.com.au - it generally has three options for how you want to search: Buy, Rent or Sold. Switch over to the Sold mode and plug in the search details for the area and house style you're looking for - it'll give you sold prices going back years (take that into account though as process have risen in Adelaide recently). Another option is to get suburb reports from RPData or whoever provides them now (Google suburb property reports Adelaide or similar). They're free so don't be fooled into paying for one. They'll give you median prices and rents, recent sales, area demographics etc. As per above, you can always make contact with some agents as they will be able to give you lists of recent sold prices and probably email you the aforementioned suburb reports too. They're generally friendly and approachable. I'd add Toop & Toop and Harris Real Estate to the list too.
  19. llessur

    North Adelaide, Croydon or somewhere else?

    Also, if you don't drive at all then it's also good to bear in mind that not all suburbs here have much in the way of a 'centre' - in many you might get a supermarket, a chicken shop and that's about it. Some are great and have their own centres - Dulwich has a great little village atmosphere, Norwood, Goodwood and Unley are like a large British village with a longish shopping and eating strips, Glenelg's very busy but slightly more on the touristy side - still a great place to live, Croydon has a nice little village centre with shops, cafes etc and then of course the City and North Adelaide would be the holy grail of having convenience within walking distance. However, the City doesn't have much in the way of residential properties other than apartments, small but cute historic workers' cottages and some modern townhouses. North Adelaide, despite its proximity to the CBD, is more like a separate suburb - with a size and feeling a bit like a smallish British town. There are some amazing historic properties - but have a price tag to match. I've never lived there but it has a reputation for being a bit posh and stuffy. Great location though and would work much better for your other half's commute if he's heading north (I'd be inclined to avoid anywhere too far south of the CBD if this likely to be a long term job).
  20. llessur

    North Adelaide, Croydon or somewhere else?

    To be honest, buses in Adelaide aren’t too bad in the grand scheme of things but, as per the UK, they’re probably the least desirable form of public transport for most people if given the choice. Whilst there is being some work done on giving buses priority at intersections, in peak hour the crawl into the CBD along some of the major arteries (e.g. ANZAC Highway, Port Road etc) can be a bit frustrating. If you’re going to be truly dependent on public transport then I’d highly recommend finding somewhere along a train or a tram route. It’s worth bearing in mind that on a 40 degree day then your idea of walking distance might be reduced considerably from what you are used to in the UK. I’ve attached a crude map of the train, tram and O-Bahn lines as they leave the city – I’ve only included a fairly small radius from the CBD at this stage as Google Maps removes most of the suburb name labels if I zoom out any further (rail/o-bahn should be no more than 15 mins from the edge of this map, tram will be 15-25 mins depending on time of day). You should be able to follow the lines out further from here on Google Maps if you are interested in living further afield. Red is the tram line (the dotted bits are the North Terrace/KWS extensions which will be finished by the end of the year – don’t rely too much on any of the other planned extensions you may read about appearing in the immediate future – especially if the Libs win the state election in March), blue are the rail lines (the Outer Harbor and Grange lines to the north-west, the Gawler line to the north and the Seaford/Tonsley and Belair lines to the south). Google maps should give you some approximate journey times if you plug the start/end destinations into the directions tool. Bear in mind that the trains run largely to schedule any time of the day but the trams will get slower in peak hours as more stops will be required (a peak hour trip into the CBD from Glenelg can take 45 minutes but only 20 minutes off-peak). The green line is the O-Bahn – Adelaide’s guided busway. Think of it as a train line and not as a bus – it works really well and by the end of the year will feed directly into the heart of the CBD via a tunnel making it even quicker. As mentioned before, the buses are fine but can be frustrating if they get caught up in traffic and therefore turn up late. You’ll also find that as far as public transport’s concerned, all roads lead to Rome – you can get into or out of the CBD from most suburbs pretty easily, but try going from suburb to suburb and you’ll most likely end up having to change in the CBD, meaning that even short inter-suburb trips can be made painfully long by PT. With this in mind, North Adelaide would be a great place to live and will give you good access to the CBD by bus, uber or a 15-30 min walk depending on where you start and finish. Croydon is also great – but then I’m biased because I live there. Some of the suburbs along the tram line are also nice – Goodwood, Forestville, Black Forest for example. Glenelg and Glengowrie are safe bets too – but further out. The hills are beautiful and are serviced by the Belair rail line – about 35 mins from the CBD from Blackwood/Glenalta. I’m not sure about the areas in-between Goodwood and the foothills (e.g. Mitcham) – it’s not my neck of the woods so someone else might have to chip in here. Likewise, I’m not sure about the suburbs to the northeast along the O-Bahn, but I’m sure someone else can advise. Cost of rentals will also vary by area - with North Adelaide being particularly pricey I think. Check out realestate.com.au for some examples.
  21. llessur

    iPhone Repair

    There's a phone repair place in the basement (food court) of the Myer Centre. No idea what their prices are like though...
  22. llessur

    Feeling overwhelmed!

    Also important to note that, unlike the UK, the 'city centre' ends abruptly at the boundary of the CBD with immediate transition into the suburbs, many of which consist only of housing with very few shops, cafes etc (although most will have a supermarket with attached shopping centre - pharmacy etc). Moving further from the CBD can in many cases mean moving further from leisure, commercial etc opportunities - although this obviously depends on what sort of lifestyle you are looking for.
  23. llessur

    Feeling overwhelmed!

    Plenty of beachside suburbs to choose from so if you want to keep your commute down then probably best to wait until you know where you'll be working before finding a place. At least if you're renting to start off with then if it doesn't work out then you can try somewhere else. The suburbs do differ so it's a good idea to base yourself somewhere central when you first arrive and then explore to see what feels right for you. Some suburbs are purely housing and to me feel a bit like the Truman Show, others have more going on in the way of shops, restaurants etc. Take a look at Google maps - as an example of distance you can drive from the beachside suburb of Glenelg to the City in about 30 mins peak (but on heavy traffic days it can take longer, outside of peak it's more like 15 mins). The tram from Glenelg takes about 35-45 mins peak to the CBD. But I guess as a paramedic you'll be unlikely to be stationed in the CBD anyway. Presume you've checked out realestate.com.au for properties? If nothing more then it'll give you an idea of what you can afford for both renting and buying.
  24. llessur

    Feeling overwhelmed!

    Welcome to the forum! What sort of area are you looking to move to? Do you desperately want to be by the beach, do you want to be in or near the city centre, do you want to be up in the hills with the gum trees and wildlife? Will you look to buy straight away, or rent for a bit first? Where abouts will you be based as a paramedic? That'll probably narrow down your search area a bit (unless you're genuinely not fussed about a commute). Not sure about the finance thing - although I would imagine you should be alright after being in work for a couple of months of you can last until then (unless you can borrow an ambulance for the weekends?).
  25. llessur

    Recommendations for bank account

    I second that. If you go with a smaller institution then you'll be paying $2 pretty much every time you want to withdraw cash.
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