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Sol Survivor

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  1. Sol Survivor

    Equivalent of Citizens Advice Bureau?

    Thanks to everyone for replying but I think your answer has got me on the right route. I googled Community Legal Service Centres, and there is indeed one near me where i am in Melbourne. They offer phone consultation but also do face to face 30 minute appointments where they come to your area and base themselves in one place and book you in to come and see them. So I'm booked in to see them in 8 days time when they visit my suburb. I'll post again after my meeting to let people know if it's the help I was after. Thanks again
  2. Sol Survivor

    Equivalent of Citizens Advice Bureau?

    I don't think it's so much word against word. I think it's just a rather sloppy transcript that I'm wondering if I should draw their attention to, or if I'll make them look a bit stupid when I bring it up in court.
  3. Sol Survivor

    Equivalent of Citizens Advice Bureau?

    According to the transcript I didn't transgress past "yes" "No" lol. Never mind any physical elements. No this is very trivial as I've mentioned.
  4. Sol Survivor

    Equivalent of Citizens Advice Bureau?

    Hi everyone, did a quick search on this and could only find people making suggestions to complaints about dodgy builders etc. which is not the case. I need to know if there's any organisation in Victoria that can offer some basic advice relating to the following; I've decided to push the Department of Transport on something all the way to court. It's very small, and thus doesn't require legal representation, but it's so frivolous and ridiculous that I'm going to fight it all the way. I have to be in court in April. I was sent the Charge Sheet and Summons, which supposedly has the transcript of my dialogue with the Officer for Department of Transport. But the version of me on this document is a yes and no robot! When it gets to the part where the officer says to me, "what are your reasons for.........", there is no response from me according to the transcript. This document fails to mention that when the officer approached me I was on the phone having a very stressful conversation, and he promised to file this in his report. He hasn't done so nor as mentioned does the report make it look like I said anything! The advice I therefore need ideally from a Citizens advice bureau, or something of that ilk, is do I just go to court and potentially make them look stupid with their very poor transcript of events? Or is it in my best interests to contact them and make them aware that what they've sent me is massively incomplete, and omits a key event that lead to the incident? Thanks.
  5. Hi, post on behalf of my wife. Are there any ex Pat Mum's groups of 1-2 year olds around the Mordialloc to Bonbeach areas? Thanks.
  6. Sol Survivor

    Family friendly suburbs in and around Melbourne

    Depends where you are working. Eg if you worked in Camberwell it would be silly to live in the western suburbs. Also when it comes to the east bear in mind that if you need to use the east link every day it will cost you a fortune in tolls! My main bit of advice which my wife has unfortunately learnt the hard way, is don't mix tram & train commutes if you live a fair few km's from the city. We're finding the travel planner 1 hour commute time is a rare occurrence in reality & can sometimes be double that. Generally where tram routes share the road with cars.
  7. Sol Survivor

    Don't come without a job, Australia is not working!!!!!

    No one disputes the OP's right to tell their story but the criticism / counter arguments that have come off the back of it were in light of the sensationalistic manner with which it was written. The posting was a generalised dismissal of moving to Aus off the back of one persons experiences. Unless I've missed a reply from someone who has been callously unsympathetic in telling their "good version" of emmigrating, then every reply has been perfectly acceptable. If someone has posted a reply which talks up their good times, then why not, as it was necessary for people to do that to redress the understandably negative first post, which resulted in at least one panic response from people looking to make this move. As opposed to serving as a warning to be more diligent in your preparation and not "presume" the grass is greener. It pretty much just said, "don't come"! Which is not helpful, supportive or encouraging........
  8. Sol Survivor

    Don't come without a job, Australia is not working!!!!!

    Wow that's sensationalism at it's best, don't come to Australia, batton down the hatches, blimey! I think that's a bit of a personalised interpretation of Aus's job market! For those tearing up their visa application forms, or exploring alternative countries to emmigrate to; hold your horses....... My wife and I moved out to Aus in August 2011, both had jobs in London, decently enough paid. Gave them up as it felt like the UK had gone to the dogs, and came out here and within 3 months (it only took her 1 1/2 months) both had not just jobs, but good well paid jobs. 1 1/2 years later, we've got some decent savings, live 1 minute 42 seconds from the beach, and when I look outside the grass seems that much greener (I speak metaphorically of course in this weather!):biggrin: So although I sympathise with those that have found this move tough, it's important to make it clear that for every bad story there's a good one. Is it smart to come out without jobs, possibly not, does that mean you shouldn't do it, no not at all. Each to their own. The only caveat I would add to that, is obviously if you have dependants, then no you don't come out without jobs....
  9. Sol Survivor

    Nightmare property management (UK)

    I'm confused. How can you have not looked at the Tenancy Agreement to check it said that it was a 6 month contract as opposed to a 12 month contract anyway before signing it? Secondly you shouldn't be doing all this correspondance by phone as you have no record of contact made. Always put things in writing so there is a chain. Even if it's an email immediately after the conversation just saying, "just further to our conversation to confirm...." Another point to mention is, do you have a copy of the terms and conditions between you and the agent? And does it state that there's a 3 month notice period to ending their management? And is there anything else in there that you could reference that they promise they do for you the client, that they're clearly not delivering on? Last but not least, is this agent an ARLA member? (Association of Residential Lettings Agents), as you could go to them with this and request advice, although based on the description you've given of this agent I doubt they're an ARLA member, but then that's a lesson learnt. Although by no means a cast iron guarantee of everything being ok, you minimise the potential for disaster by employing the service of an ARLA registered Letting Agent.
  10. Sol Survivor

    Accommodation needed in Melbourne ASAP!

    Don't use Domain it's crud. Use either realestate.com.au or realestateview.com.au
  11. Sol Survivor

    Renting out my property in UK

    Where in London? I'm an ex Agent and worked in London, so although I can't profess to knowing every suburb, in my time there I worked in 5 different suburbs so chances are I may know who the best agent for Property Management is in your area.
  12. Sol Survivor

    Social Worker

    I personally don't think it's necessary to go through a migration agent and certainly not for the AASW side of things. I'm not even a Social Worker, but still managed to complete their forms for my wife without anything more than a bit of a sigh and a moan. I'm not saying it's easy, but if I can do it working in a completely different industry, then you should be able to. And the same with the visa process as a whole, if you've got your head screwed on properly you can do it yourself......
  13. Sol Survivor

    Stamp duty-first time buyers Victoria

    Thanks. I just rang the state revenue office actually just to get a better understanding, and it seems that in Victoria the only way you technically don't pay stamp duty (or more accurately get it back as you still have to put the money down), is by tallying together the various first time buyer bonuses but this is only if you buy a NON established property (ie something that has never been lived in before). So really unless you're buying a new build property which gives you $7k and $13k respectively, you still pay stamp duty. And of course where you're buying house and land packages and thus only paying stamp duty on the land value. Very complicated really.
  14. Sol Survivor

    Social Worker

    Thought I'd share what I know as I'm married to a social worker who went through the 176 visa process for Victoria, but it was actually me that did all the paperwork lol and that includes the AASW bit. -Ok so first off certainly in Vic, if you want to apply for the 176 under social worker, then you need to get the AASW to assess your qualifications. -Don't get too het up about the lack of adequate academic time spent studying social work. Their course equivalents over here are longer so UK social workers nearly always fall short on this, but as long as you've been practicing for the x amount of time on their guidance notes (sorry it escapes me how long it was), this will over ride any shortfall on time spent studying Social Work -The AASW aren't on the same level as the GSCC so once you've got your qualifications assessed that'll be the last you hear of them as you can practice social work without being a member. -Practicality wise, first off if you can get a job via skype without coming out here, then the job will be horrendous. So be weary of these Child Protection jobs that recruit UK social workers from overseas. If they accept UK social workers like this, it's because the Aus social workers ran a mile. -Being a Child Protection Social Worker in Aus is in most cases worse than being one in the UK. -Salaries for Child Protection Social Workers are very poor and undervalued. You're looking at anything from $45-55k per annum although a lot of these roles will have salary packaging which will make them a bit better. If the salary is higher than this (and I'm sure you'll see these roles in WA and NT, then they're going to be pretty horrendous.) -Out here Welfare or Support Workers as they're called, despite not being qualified social workers often get paid just as much as qualified social workers. No idea why. -The recruiters we came across in Melbourne were not great to be honest. They tended to devalue my wife's experience (5 years post qualified in a Disabled Childrens Team doing a lot of child protection for a London Borough), and make out that she wasn't as qualified as she clearly was. They tried to push her towards the child protection roles that no one else would touch. -The creme de la creme of Social Work roles out here are hospital social workers, but really tough to get as this is the role that all the Aussie social workers want. -From a Melbourne perspective, the best place to look for work was the Age in it's job section on Saturday, and to a lesser extent Seek -Just on recruiters in fact, HCL don't have the presence over here that they have in the UK, so they're not bad here, but not as prominent as their UK version. Off the top of my head that's the majority of what comes to mind. I don't know how any of you do the job. It's supposed to be rewarding, or certainly that's the ideal that I know you all set out to achieve, but sadly you're undervalued, stressed, poorly paid, and miss represented in the media. (Social workers on Corrie and Eastenders just make us cringe, they're so unrealistic!). And the days where you feel rewarded are few and far between. A lot of respect comes from my way......
  15. Does anyone know the answer to this? In Victoria as opposed to getting a full rebate on stamp duty, do you just get a small percentage of it back? Been looking at some websites and there's something called a First Home Grant where you get $7k under a certain property value, plus another $13k if it's a new build, but I didn't really understand what the website was saying about stamp duty. Also I keep seeing June 30th as a cut off date, is that just before they revise it for a new tax year? Or is the pot literally empty at that point?