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AltyMatt

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About AltyMatt

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  1. AltyMatt

    Last minute nerves and stress

    Relocating with work will make the move a lot smoother. I did the same, and decided the worst that could happen is I get to spend my free time exploring Australia. That was 15 years ago. I know some people who moved here, decided it wasn't for them and returned home, but plenty of others have come out and settled. Either way I hope you enjoy the experience.
  2. AltyMatt

    UK NATIONAL INSURANCE CONTRIBUTIONS

    Thanks Whey aye, the difference between Class 1 and 2 is pretty big. The gov.uk site must have assumed I pay class 1, but as I'm employed I hope I just pay class 2.Thanks!
  3. AltyMatt

    North shore schools and houses

    Maybe consider somewhere around Crows Nest. Lots of good dining options and a villagey feel along Willoughby Road. Good schools and a few hospitals nearby - North Shore public and private, Chatswood etc. Easy commute to the city too. Rentals are expensive but you should be able to find something for 1000 / week
  4. AltyMatt

    UK NATIONAL INSURANCE CONTRIBUTIONS

    Thanks. I am eligible for approx 30% of max pension at moment, but looks like if I start making contributions now I will receive about 95% of max pension on retirement and my contributions will have paid for themselves within 3 years. But if I make the back payments I can get to 100% but will take approx 10 years to pay for themselves. The numbers seem a bit inconsistent so I'll look into it further. thanks.
  5. AltyMatt

    UK NATIONAL INSURANCE CONTRIBUTIONS

    Thank you for this info. I only have 10 years of UK NI contributions. It looks likeI can pay contributions going forward to bring estimate up quite close to the max pension. But to reach the max pension I would have to make several years of back-dated contributions for little perceived benefit. I guess I should confirm with a financial advisor
  6. AltyMatt

    How do you all find where you want to move??

    Job or visa would probably be the main influences on where you move to...if you can persuade your other half to move. Some visas require you to live in a certain state or regional area, others are unrestricted. I came here on an employee sponsored visa & transferred from UK office to Sydney office so obviously had no choice, and only once I got Perm Residency was I free from my employer's visa and able to move around. I would suggest you research your current job/s and see whether they are in demand: https://www.immi.gov.au/Work/Pages/skilled-occupations-lists/skilled-occupations-lists.aspx Then perhaps come over for a look around (not just a holiday) in the areas you are interested in.
  7. AltyMatt

    The IT field Thread

    I'll be working in Sydney. I have heard that overtime is recorded as time in lieu automatically for perm staff. As a contractor I don't expect to be required to work too much more than the contracted hours. Politics & grudges were common in investment banking too, so I've learnt to be careful about what you say & to whom Hope it isn't too cruisey as don't want to become bored.
  8. AltyMatt

    The IT field Thread

    Does anyone have experience working in the public sector? I have been offered a contract paying similar rate to what I was offered at a big4 bank, so money seems competitive & inline with the Robert Walters survey. The opportunity to work flexible hours is a big plus (although wondering how flexible they will be in practice). Coming from an investment bank where you are expected to work all hours and management were frantic & headless I'm hoping for a more consistent workload & better work-life balance.
  9. AltyMatt

    Great Locations for Pennant Hills

    Once you get past Hornsby you aren't really in Sydney any more. You would be looking at around an hour commute Gosford to Pennant Hills in car in rush hour & a bit more by train. I guess it depends on what sort of lifestyle you want. Central Coast is more laid back, accommodation is cheaper, lots of beaches, beautiful national parks etc, but if your family are planning the move with a 'Sydney lifestyle' in mind then you might want to limit northern tip of your search to Hornsby.
  10. AltyMatt

    Great Locations for Pennant Hills

    Try Castle Hill, Thornleigh (v close), Cherrybrook, maybe Kellyville
  11. AltyMatt

    I dislike living in Sydney...

    Well it least you tried have tried Sydney first hand rather than just talk the talk & perhaps wonder if you missed out later in life. Out of interest what was the reason to move to Sydney? were you in a position to consider other cities in Aus or was location determined by a job?
  12. AltyMatt

    Relocation package offered by employers

    10 years ago I think I could claim (with receipts) approximately $6K for return flights, temporary accommodation in Aus and shipping items from UK. I guess the package varies wildly depending on employer and role. I know some people who receive a payment on top for the inconvenience of relocating, financial advice, free access etc.
  13. AltyMatt

    The IT field Thread

    Hi Dan Just pm'ed you a recruitment contact who helped an old colleague in a similar situation.
  14. AltyMatt

    How do you sound?

    I have a pretty soft Cheshire / northern accent that has softened further since being here 10 years. Friends & family in UK say I sound a bit Aussie, but Aussies say I sound English. However English accent gets stronger when I have had too much to drink
  15. AltyMatt

    What's your Top 5 things.............

    1. Book short-term accommodation in advance. I arrived in Sydney with nowhere to stay & assumed I could just book a hotel in the city. Unfortunately a couple were fully booked and it was no fun traipsing around with my suitcase til I found a room. 2. Thoroughly research the suburbs to live in medium/long term. I made a half-hearted attempt to check out places to live before leaving & probably would have skipped my initial choice had I researched more. 3. Consider a houseshare for first rental if single. As a single guy I opted to rent a 1 bed place that worked out quite expensive (although did receive Living Away From Home Allowance) & tied me to a contract for 6 months. A houseshare would have allowed a bit more freedom to trial a few locations before settling down. 4. Make use of resources on Poms In Oz. There is a wealth of info here that would have been very handy if I had checked when I moved. 5. Sort out finances before leaving. I was sat next to an Italian girl on the flight who was coming over for a recce. She was considering transferring to Aus with her employer & had a work colleague pick her up from the airport, a place to stay & an itinerary. While chatting to her it dawned on me how crap my preparation was
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