I would like to share some info on one of the most important but equally challenging issue of looking for accommodation when you first arrive in OZ.
Some of the major considerations when looking for a living space when you arrive in OZ will be:
1) Cost of accommodation – (Big City s Small City. CBD vs Outer suburbs. Short Term Rentals vs Shared Rentals)
2) Job availability and distance from work place – Assuming you don’t have a job yet you will not really know which suburb or city you may get a job in, so it would be quite difficult to decide at the onset as to which suburb you will eventually live in.Besides whilst job hunting you may prefer to live close to CBD where most of the offices are in order to save on transport costs.
3) Support system – If you have friends or family, it is but natural that you will (at least initially) live in the vicinity of this support group.
4) Means of Travel – Bg cities have excellent public transport but if you were to move to a regional city like Townsville it becomes quite challenging without a car. Which also means that you need to apply for a licence within the first few months of landing.
5) Size of family and amount of luggage– Some may arrive singly and with just a suitcase whereas others will arrive as a family and be bringing all the house hold goods when arriving.
The biggest challenge by far when you are looking for your first rental will be that you do not have any rental history in Australia. Additionally you may not have ample proof or residence (Australian Driver’s Licence, Electricity Bill etc.) to meet the 100 point test.
Here is my suggestion:
MOVE IN TO SHORT TERM RENTAL ACCOMMODATION
In most cases when you first arrive you will have to live in some form of temporary accommodation until you figure your next move or at least until you get some kind of short term rental (Unless you are lucky to be put up be a friend or a family member). So here are few recommendations for short term rentals when you first arrive.
1) Apartment rental sites – like AirBnB. If you have not tried this yet now would be a good time to do so. AirBnB is an online community which rent out their entire homes (or part of it) for a fee as decided by the owner of the property. The great part of this arrangement is that you deal directly with the owner, in most cases have a kitchen where you can cook your own meals (and hence save quite a bit!) and offers cheaper rates the longer you stay.
NOTE– Being a community which goes a lot on trust, the hosts generally select guests who have had a reference from earlier hosts or with reference from existing AirBnB members. Hence it is recommended that you become a member and try out this concept the next time you go on a holiday. Not only will you get an idea of the concept and decide if this concept is for you but you also get references from the hosts which will help future hosts accept your guest request.
Other similar sites are:
2) Service apartments – This is the more expensive but easier option. Bookings can be made before you even arrive. When deciding on location, it is recommended that you select a place close to public transport and as close to city as possible to save on daily commuting costs to city.
3) Shared accommodation – A cheaper alternative, especially for single or couple migrants.
Depending on your circumstances, you might find it easier to apply to share accommodation, rather than renting a house or apartment on your own. Check out following websites: Flatmates & Flatmate Finders