Vickerstaff Family Wanted Down Under


Vickerstaff Family

Families consider relocating down under. Can Dave convince wife Becky to start a brand new life in Australia, where most of his extended family live?


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Transcript


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If you long to be reunited with your family in Australia,

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you might contemplate throwing caution to the wind

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and making the move, but what if your partner isn't prepared

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to say goodbye to their family in the UK,

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to be closer to yours on the other side of the world?

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For most of his life, Dave Vickerstaff has dreamt of moving to Australia.

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You could call it an obsession, it's part of who makes me "me".

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With almost all his relatives now living there,

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he's certain it's right for his young family.

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Over here, I could call my brother and we could have Charlie playing

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with his cousins and that is one of the things that I really want for him.

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But will a trial week down under

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convince wife Becky to make the move?

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I don't see that as being too far out of reach, at all.

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I would stop shopping forever to have this house, I love it.

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Or put the brakes on Dave's dream for good?

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I haven't got my family around.

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There is that in the back of my mind, as well.

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Lying in the southern hemisphere,

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Australia is around 30 times larger than the UK,

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but with just over a third of the population.

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With room to roam, a buoyant economy and chilled-out lifestyle,

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it's no wonder it's been the number one destination for Brits

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on the move for the past 20 years.

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For as long as he can remember, Dave Vickerstaff has wanted

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to make Australia his home,

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and with most of his extended family now living there,

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he's more desperate than ever to make the move.

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But, with wife Becky reluctant to cut close ties with her family

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in the UK, getting the life he wants

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is proving easier said than done.

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Ahead of Dave lies a week that will make or break his dream forever,

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as he takes a final shot at showing Becky the merits

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of a future down under.

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The Vickerstaffs fly from London to Australia via Kuala Lumpur.

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When they touch down in Perth, after 20 hours on the move,

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someone's surprisingly energetic.

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Charlie struggled to sleep on the first flight,

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he was a bit overexcited.

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I watched television at night-time.

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You watched TV at night-time, didn't you?

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Yes, so...

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Mum Becky, on the other hand, is exhausted.

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It's a lot easier when you do this flight on your own.

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It's a whole kettle of fish when you do it with a four-year-old.

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Dave's just relieved to be back down under.

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I'm glad we're finally here

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and I get the opportunity to show Becky what Australia is all about.

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I know she's seen it before,

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but I get a chance to hopefully persuade her it's the right option.

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Becky knows the week ahead will be far from a holiday.

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I'm a bit nervous

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and just hoping that we get the kind of answers that we need.

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After years of discussion,

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the next seven days will determine where the family's future lies.

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Meet the Vickerstaffs from Plymouth, in the south-west of England.

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They're dad Dave, mum Becky and four-year-old Charlie.

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This one's about to win, because it's going so fast.

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Stop, I need another one.

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Life for the family is good,

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if it wasn't for the fact Dave's heart lies in a country halfway across the world.

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Dave pretty much eats, sleeps and breathes Australia,

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'to be honest.'

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You're very good at building Lego, Charlie.

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You could call it an obsession, but it's part of who makes me "me".

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Dave's connection to the country runs deep.

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It's a complicated story,

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but essentially my grandad was a £10 Pom.

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He went over in the '60s with my mum.

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This takes pictures of them.

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Ah, it's a speed camera.

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After returning to the UK in her teens,

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Dave's mum married and started a family.

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In the years since, though,

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his parents and younger brother have all emigrated to Australia.

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Sort of one by one, my family's kind of moved back across.

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There you go, Charlie.

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Dave took Becky to visit his parents in Australia ten years ago,

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-hoping she'd see it as somewhere

-they

-could call home, too.

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Ready, steady...

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But she's remained rooted to the UK, much to Dave's dismay.

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It's caused quite a few heated arguments over the last few years.

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It is an obsession for Dave, and, to be honest,

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I think it's one that's getting worse.

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Becoming a dad has strengthened Dave's desire to move.

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I want to be able to take Charlie to somewhere where he will grow up

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in a safe environment.

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I want us to be able to be somewhere where we can spend a lot of time

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together as a family, doing family things.

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And he loves the idea of Charlie getting to know his cousins, too.

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If we lived in the same country, we're going to be close.

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If we lived in the same city,

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then they're going to have that opportunity

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to meet up at the weekends.

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There you go.

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That bigger family background environment

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would really enrich Charlie's life.

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But Becky's far from convinced about starting a new life

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on the other side of the world.

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I've got an incredibly close group of friends in the UK,

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I've got great work colleagues,

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and I'd have to start again from scratch and that really worries me.

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She's also torn at the thought of leaving her mum,

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who suffers from poor health.

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I literally phone my mum about ten times a day,

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so we do have this really close relationship.

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Tricer-sawatops.

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Triceratops!

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I know she wouldn't want to be a burden,

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I know she wants the best for us, but I do have that concern...

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Who would look after her?

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Charlie's close to his granny, too, and Becky struggles with the idea

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of putting thousands of miles between them.

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I like that one, I want to be that one.

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You want to be that one?

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It would be, it would be really difficult, to sort of...

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Sorry...

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Say goodbye.

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I just feel like the world's worst person, but, on the same hand,

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I'm doing it for Charlie, so I can't kind of win.

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-Dave knows his desire to emigrate and be closer to

-his

-family

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presents a genuine dilemma for Becky.

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I feel incredibly guilty.

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I'm putting a massive amount of pressure on her

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by suggesting going to Australia.

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Someone is going to lose out, one way or another,

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whatever we do, and that makes the decision really difficult.

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But the couple agree things can't carry on as they are.

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It's just been constant for a number of years

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and it's got to the point where we need to do something about it.

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We need to make that decision.

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If we come back and it's still undecided,

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I don't think that'll be good enough.

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I think it's got to be a yes or a no.

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OK.

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Let's go find our house, Charlie.

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To find out if they have a future down under,

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the Vickerstaffs are visiting Western Australia's capital city,

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Perth, where most of Dave's family now live permanently.

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Do you think we might be near a beach?

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Their base for the week is in the beach-side suburb of Quinns Rocks,

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25 miles north of the city.

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Home is this three-bedroom rental property opposite a park.

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A posh driveway. Oh, wow.

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Look at that.

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And straightaway, Charlie likes what he sees.

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What is it, is it a bungalow?

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-It is.

-Yes, like granny's house.

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Right.

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What do you think, what do you think of the house so far?

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-Good.

-You like it?

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I like the parkway.

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You like the parkway?

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Wow, let's see what's in here.

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This is the open dining that you wanted, Becks, isn't it?

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Very red furniture.

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-There we go, that's all right.

-Wow.

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Not keen on the colour scheme, Becky asks for Charlie's thoughts.

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Would you like to live here?

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Yes, forever.

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THEY LAUGH

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-Bunk beds!

-Bunk beds.

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-Oh, wow.

-That's quite high, isn't it?

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We haven't got sliding doors, have we?

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No, we haven't got sliding doors.

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They're a strange feature, but it works.

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Have a cup of tea.

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Encouraged by Becky's positivity,

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Dave's feeling more hopeful about the week ahead.

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I think I've already started to convince you, and turn you.

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We'll see.

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We'll see!

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Back in the UK, the family live in a three-bedroom terrace house

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in Plymouth on the South Devon coast,

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and, for Becky, there's no place she'd rather be.

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I know it's only bricks, but it is our first family home.

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I have a real emotional attachment to it.

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So what kind of property would entice her

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to move to the other side of the world?

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I love open plan living,

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that's one of the things that I do find really attractive

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about the Australian house.

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I guess the ideal house would have a little walk-in wardrobe.

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A little or a big walk-in wardrobe?

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Probably a big one for me.

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For Dave, it's all about location.

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I'd want to have a house that was at least close to a beach,

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if not on a beach.

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If they do move,

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the couple's budget for a house in Australia is around £200,000.

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To find out what they might buy,

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today we'll show them three properties,

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the third of which could be their dream home.

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Only after they've viewed each one will they find out what it's worth.

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Their search begins in the much sought-after coastal suburb of Quinns Rocks,

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where the family have been staying.

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This is really lovely, isn't it?

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-It is.

-I love the palm trees.

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You love the palm... I love the big wide roads.

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So, will this four-bedroom house get Dave's dream off to a good start?

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What do you think of this place?

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-This looks pretty good.

-Shall we go and have a look, Charlie?

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I always did want my own driveway, didn't I?

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It's a great start, but appearances can be deceptive.

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Oh, look, it's not actually a garage.

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-Oh... Oh, that's misleading.

-That's weird.

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Inside, things get more confusing.

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It's like a little... I'm guessing it's like a little snug area.

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-I'm not sure quite...

-Is that the main living room, or...?

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I don't know.

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The master bedroom's another mystery for Becky.

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That's really weird, having our bedroom right by the front door.

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Do you like that?

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-Not particularly.

-Not sure.

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Although I have seen one added bonus straightaway.

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SHE LAUGHS

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-CHARLIE:

-A walk-in wardrobe.

-A walk-in wardrobe!

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You can walk in there.

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That's definitely the idea.

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It's not wowing me.

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Dave's not giving up, though.

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This opens up. Oh, OK.

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-Oh, I like this.

-All right.

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This is much better. A nice kitchen.

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It's quite small, but it's nice, isn't it?

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This is what I wanted with an Australian house,

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that it all opens out in front of you.

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But his enthusiasm could be falling on deaf ears.

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It's quite noisy outside because it is really close to the main road.

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Perhaps Dave can get someone else on side.

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Do you want to go and have a look at one of the bedrooms, Charlie?

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I would love to look at my bedroom.

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This is a nice sized room.

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Maybe this room's a little on the small side,

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in comparison to what Charlie's got back at home.

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Charlie doesn't seem to mind, though.

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Is that a comfy bed?

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What do you think?

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A little sleep here.

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Tired house-hunting Charlie is looked after by a childminder

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in the garden, while mum and dad continue the tour.

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So we've got two bedrooms at the back of the house.

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It is a shame that the master bedroom's not situated here, isn't it, really?

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Dave's focusing on the good points.

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It's bigger than our house, in terms of the amount of space.

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Yeah, definitely. I think it would be a good size if, I don't know,

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-say my mum came over to stay...

-Yeah.

-..or someone like that.

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That's more positive.

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And outside...

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There's loads of space out here.

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Er, although that noise...

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-That's the road, isn't it?

-Yeah, I don't like that.

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But this is nice.

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Really, I love the outside space. If it wasn't for the main road,

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this would be perfect.

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The house hasn't ticked every box for Becky,

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but would their budget of £200,000 cover the cost?

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I'd say about maybe 190,000, maybe?

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I think it's worth 210, the amount of space it's got,

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it's got to be worth more.

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All right, shall we do it, then?

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Yeah.

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Oh, there you go.

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That's £15,000 over budget.

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-A little bit more.

-It's doable.

-Yeah.

-We can afford that.

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-We can do that.

-It's a good starting spot, isn't it?

-Yeah.

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The price hasn't put Becky off,

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but she's still far from excited about Aussie living.

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Hopefully, the next house will get a better reaction.

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While Charlie gets looked after,

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Mum and Dad head for the suburb of Clarkson,

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around 30 minutes north of central Perth.

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This is much nicer looking, quieter, isn't it?

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With plenty of local amenities and a major transport hub,

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it's an ideal location for families.

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-Oh, this is it.

-OK.

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But will this three-bedroom home

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impress Becky more than the last property?

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I can't hear the main road from here, so...

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It's really quiet, isn't it?

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Definitely more modern than the last one.

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More modern.

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Into the living space... That's lovely.

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Yeah, this flows much better, doesn't it, this house?

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It's kind of more of what I was expecting, in terms of the layout.

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This is a great space to be in when you've got guests,

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or even just with the family.

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I do quite like the kitchen.

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Dave seizes the moment.

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So, you'd move for this kitchen, then?

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I'd move for the kitchen.

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-See if the rest of the house matches up.

-Yeah.

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Feeling hopeful, they move on to the master bedroom.

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-Oh, that's bigger.

-Oh, wow.

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Wow.

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This is definitely more of a size that I was expecting.

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You've got a fully fitted wardrobe.

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It's not a walk-in wardrobe,

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you know how I love the idea of a walk-in wardrobe.

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We've got an en-suite.

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Nice distraction tactic, Dave.

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-That's really nice.

-For an en-suite, that,

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that's pretty much as big as our bathroom.

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It is, it is.

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-It's a huge shower.

-I really love the en-suite, that's really nice.

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Will the garden be a hit, too?

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It is a little bit smaller than what we've got at home, I think.

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And much smaller than the last property, that's...

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But then, this is Australia

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and are you going to spend all the time at home

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or are you going to be...

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-Outside?

-At the beach, in the park?

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Nice try, Dave, but not sure it's cutting it with Becky.

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It's just the outside space, if it was just that little bit bigger,

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then it would kind of tick all of my boxes, I think.

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OK.

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It doesn't look like this is the property to convince Becky to move,

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but with £200,000 to spend, could the price help change her mind?

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Here's the card.

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What do you think?

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I think you're looking at least £260,000.

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I'd say the same, £250-260,000.

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-Shall I turn it over?

-Yeah, you can turn it over this time.

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-Wow.

-Oh, my God!

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Just under £200,000, wow.

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Genuinely shocked that we can afford this,

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and you don't need so much outside space,

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if you can get out and about to the park and things.

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I got it wrong again.

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-Wow.

-That's really thrown me, totally thrown me.

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So, would you move for that?

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Yeah, I'd move for that, that's crazy.

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Even with the smaller garden,

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Becky's won over and there's still one more place to see.

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I'm really excited in what the third house is going to offer.

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Yeah, I'm really excited, as well.

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Right, let's go check it out.

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Moving on, the couple head to Ridgewood.

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These are massive houses, aren't they?

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A family-friendly suburb around 20 miles from the city centre.

0:17:280:17:32

Cool.

0:17:320:17:34

Will this spacious four-bedroom house

0:17:340:17:36

be the Vickerstaffs' dream home?

0:17:360:17:37

It looks quite big, doesn't it?

0:17:370:17:39

I really love the fact we've got that open space

0:17:390:17:42

at the front there, that's great.

0:17:420:17:43

Right.

0:17:450:17:47

Ooh, wow.

0:17:470:17:49

Oh, wow.

0:17:490:17:51

This is a good space.

0:17:510:17:53

Like a little TV room, you could have a little play area

0:17:530:17:56

over there for Charlie, couldn't you?

0:17:560:17:58

The generous kitchen/living area

0:17:580:18:00

should prove a winner with Becky, too.

0:18:000:18:02

Oh, my little island, I've got an island.

0:18:020:18:05

I can imagine Charlie sitting here in the morning having his breakfast

0:18:050:18:08

before we take him to school

0:18:080:18:09

and sorting out his lunch and everything.

0:18:090:18:12

Sounds like this could be the house to tempt Becky away

0:18:120:18:15

from the home she loves in the UK.

0:18:150:18:18

Oh, my God!

0:18:180:18:19

-It's a walk-in larder.

-Walk-in larder.

0:18:190:18:22

And the excitement doesn't end there.

0:18:220:18:25

This is a big bedroom.

0:18:250:18:27

-Is that...?

-Ahh!

0:18:280:18:29

That's my walk-in wardrobe. Oh, that's amazing.

0:18:290:18:32

Brilliant. Is it big enough?

0:18:320:18:34

Do you know what, that would actually be big enough for both of us,

0:18:340:18:37

-just about, maybe.

-Just about.

0:18:370:18:39

What's going on with the wall?

0:18:390:18:40

There's the en-suite.

0:18:420:18:44

Hopefully the unusual en-suite won't put Becky off.

0:18:440:18:47

-It's just open at the back.

-Can you work with that?

0:18:470:18:49

Not weird me showering in the same room as the bedroom?

0:18:490:18:52

Actually, I quite like that.

0:18:520:18:53

We're not going to be sleeping and showering at the same time.

0:18:530:18:55

With three more bedrooms, too, they're spoilt for choice.

0:18:550:18:59

I wasn't expecting a fourth bedroom.

0:18:590:19:02

This is like a master bedroom.

0:19:020:19:03

You know, if we had any more children, or anything like that,

0:19:030:19:06

you don't even need to upsize, do you?

0:19:060:19:08

-No, it's got room, there is room to grow.

-There is.

0:19:080:19:11

Yeah, I'm absolutely blown away by this place.

0:19:110:19:15

And Dave is, too.

0:19:150:19:18

I want a wet room. It would just make it so much easier.

0:19:180:19:22

Massive shower, as well, it's huge.

0:19:220:19:24

I really like this house, I really like everything it's got.

0:19:240:19:27

But will outside meet with their approval, too?

0:19:290:19:32

This is much more like what I was after.

0:19:340:19:37

-It's a perfect amount of space.

-That is, it's got loads...

0:19:370:19:40

-Look at all the grass.

-There's loads.

-The space.

0:19:400:19:42

Oh, my God and it goes all the way around there, as well.

0:19:420:19:44

You can do so much with this, this space.

0:19:440:19:46

Is it a winner?

0:19:460:19:48

-When can we buy it?

-Is it a winner?

0:19:480:19:50

Definitely, yeah, I love it.

0:19:500:19:52

Before they get too carried away,

0:19:520:19:54

they need to find out if their £200,000 budget will stretch

0:19:540:19:58

to the dream house.

0:19:580:19:59

It literally has everything we're after.

0:19:590:20:02

-Yeah.

-But that's going to come at a cost.

0:20:020:20:04

-That's going to come at a massive cost, isn't it?

-What do you think?

0:20:040:20:08

I think we're looking at about £320,000.

0:20:080:20:12

I'm going to go £300,000.

0:20:120:20:15

You turn it over, I'm too scared!

0:20:150:20:16

All right, ready?

0:20:160:20:18

-Yeah.

-Let's see.

0:20:180:20:20

245,000, wow.

0:20:300:20:33

That's more than £45,000 over budget,

0:20:330:20:36

but neither Dave nor Becky seem concerned.

0:20:360:20:39

That is a lot cheaper than I thought it was going to be.

0:20:390:20:43

-That's crazy.

-That does not look right.

0:20:430:20:46

That can't be right. I don't see that as being too...

0:20:460:20:49

..too far out of reach, at all.

0:20:490:20:53

I would stop shopping forever to have this house, I love it.

0:20:530:20:56

-Yeah?

-I absolutely love this house.

0:20:560:20:58

After a slow start,

0:21:000:21:01

Dave's day has ended better than he could have imagined.

0:21:010:21:05

Over budget and situated next to a busy road,

0:21:060:21:09

property one was a definite no for Becky.

0:21:090:21:11

The spacious interiors of property two impressed,

0:21:130:21:15

but the cramped exterior failed to keep her onside.

0:21:150:21:18

The final house really was the dream home for both Dave and Becky,

0:21:210:21:25

and although over budget, it was something to aspire to.

0:21:250:21:29

So when it comes to choosing between properties in the UK and Australia,

0:21:290:21:33

how will they vote?

0:21:330:21:34

Based on our visits to the houses today, our vote's going to be for...

0:21:340:21:39

-..Australia!

-Australia!

0:21:420:21:44

So, you picked it? Was it all right?

0:21:440:21:46

I absolutely loved the last property.

0:21:460:21:48

Yeah, I couldn't believe the price of that.

0:21:480:21:50

-I'm partway there in convincing you, then?

-You've won this one.

0:21:500:21:53

All right, round one goes to me.

0:21:530:21:54

Yeah, round one goes to you.

0:21:540:21:56

A unanimous vote for Australia

0:22:050:22:07

has got Dave's week off to a great start,

0:22:070:22:10

but for him to keep the dream alive,

0:22:100:22:12

he knows both he and Becky need to be assured

0:22:120:22:15

of good work opportunities down under.

0:22:150:22:17

Back in the UK, Dave's spent the past 14 years working as an architect.

0:22:190:22:24

There's always another problem that you've got to design a solution for

0:22:240:22:27

and come up with a way to get over it and that's what I really enjoy.

0:22:270:22:32

As the main breadwinner,

0:22:320:22:33

his earning potential will be a deciding factor

0:22:330:22:36

when it comes to making the move.

0:22:360:22:38

I'm currently on around 40,000.

0:22:380:22:40

In Australia, I'd need to have a salary that was better than that,

0:22:400:22:45

or equal to that.

0:22:450:22:46

Becky's a part-time learning technologist at Plymouth University.

0:22:460:22:51

I'm quite fortunate, I really enjoy my job.

0:22:510:22:54

I work with a really great group of people.

0:22:540:22:56

We're friends as well as colleagues.

0:22:560:22:58

Having recently obtained a PhD,

0:22:580:23:00

she's confident about a career in the UK

0:23:000:23:03

and walking away from it fills her with fear.

0:23:030:23:06

I feel like I've just got myself established

0:23:060:23:08

and I guess there is that concern that if I go to Australia,

0:23:080:23:10

is it going to be a step back for me?

0:23:100:23:13

While Charlie is looked after by a childminder,

0:23:130:23:16

Dave and Becky head out to explore their work prospects in Perth.

0:23:160:23:20

Dave knows today needs to go well.

0:23:200:23:23

This is a massive part of the process,

0:23:230:23:26

to see if I can convince Becky to move to Australia.

0:23:260:23:29

We've arranged for him to meet with creative director Jimmy Thompson

0:23:310:23:34

at a design studio in downtown Perth.

0:23:340:23:37

-Hello, Dave.

-Hi.

-Jimmy Thompson.

0:23:370:23:38

-Nice to meet you, Jimmy.

-Welcome, come through.

-Thanks.

0:23:380:23:41

Dave's keen to find out

0:23:410:23:43

if his training will be recognised down under.

0:23:430:23:45

You would have to seek registration

0:23:450:23:48

if you wanted to call yourself an architect in Australia.

0:23:480:23:50

-Yeah, OK.

-But that would be pretty simple.

0:23:500:23:53

-It's a simple process?

-Absolutely.

0:23:530:23:55

We are very familiar with employing English people,

0:23:550:23:57

so your qualifications are applicable in Australia.

0:23:570:24:00

It's a good start.

0:24:010:24:03

Currently working in an associate position in the UK,

0:24:030:24:06

Dave wants to know if he could do the same in Perth.

0:24:060:24:08

Would I be expecting to come in at my current level?

0:24:090:24:12

Typically, you wouldn't be able

0:24:120:24:14

to sort of parachute in as an associate.

0:24:140:24:16

You would come in as a senior project architect,

0:24:160:24:19

with the ability to demonstrate your capability.

0:24:190:24:23

That's less encouraging.

0:24:230:24:24

Meanwhile, across town,

0:24:240:24:26

we've arranged for Becky to visit the University of Western Australia

0:24:260:24:30

and she's feeling anxious about what happens next.

0:24:300:24:33

There's quite a lot riding on today.

0:24:330:24:36

The job has to be the perfect job, really, for me to consider moving.

0:24:360:24:39

Senior Learning Technologist Callan Rose gives Becky a warm welcome.

0:24:390:24:45

I've got a copy of your CV here and I was pretty impressed.

0:24:450:24:48

I think with that sort of web background

0:24:480:24:52

and that multimedia background,

0:24:520:24:53

that's really strong, and then obviously you've got the e-learning

0:24:530:24:57

and the education stuff, as well.

0:24:570:24:58

So in terms of career progression, I recently gained a PhD last year.

0:24:580:25:03

How transferable would that be,

0:25:030:25:04

in terms of a learner technologist role

0:25:040:25:07

or more of an educational developer role?

0:25:070:25:09

I suppose if you were interested in moving into that sort

0:25:090:25:12

of management type role, that would be the sort of natural progression.

0:25:120:25:17

Alternatively, you would move into sort of research,

0:25:170:25:20

or something like that, within one of the faculties.

0:25:200:25:22

Becky's skills could see her move up the career ladder in Australia,

0:25:220:25:26

but would her potential work hours fit around family life?

0:25:260:25:30

We work a five-day week, Monday to Friday, and it's a 37.5 hour week.

0:25:300:25:35

Do you have members in the team that are part-time?

0:25:350:25:37

One of my colleagues was working a four-day week

0:25:370:25:40

and I have another colleague, as well,

0:25:400:25:42

who works from home one day a week.

0:25:420:25:43

There's a lot of flexibility, I think, for someone like yourself,

0:25:430:25:46

who's a parent.

0:25:460:25:47

Just what Becky needed to hear.

0:25:470:25:49

So, what could she potentially earn?

0:25:490:25:52

Learning technologists at UWA make between £40,000-48,000.

0:25:520:25:59

I would say that, given what I see in your CV,

0:25:590:26:02

you probably would come in towards the top of that range.

0:26:020:26:05

That's really good to know.

0:26:050:26:07

That's almost double

0:26:070:26:08

what Becky would earn working full-time in the UK.

0:26:080:26:11

How difficult would it be for me to get a job here?

0:26:110:26:14

Someone coming through with your kind of background

0:26:140:26:17

would make you a very strong candidate

0:26:170:26:18

for any position that you went for, for sure.

0:26:180:26:20

That's really good to know.

0:26:200:26:22

It's been a great morning for Becky.

0:26:220:26:24

Back at the design studio,

0:26:240:26:25

Dave's busy discussing potential work hours.

0:26:250:26:28

Typically, people will work between 8.30 and about 6.

0:26:290:26:33

We obviously understand people with families,

0:26:330:26:36

and depending on where people are travelling from, as well,

0:26:360:26:39

we're flexible with those hours.

0:26:390:26:41

Sounds like the job offers a good work/life balance,

0:26:410:26:44

but will the money afford Dave the lifestyle he wants?

0:26:440:26:47

You'd probably be on between 100-120,000 a year,

0:26:470:26:52

plus superannuation, which is 9% in Australia.

0:26:520:26:55

Even in a lower position, Dave could earn almost £20,000 more.

0:26:550:27:00

Are there many opportunities for an architect from the UK

0:27:000:27:03

to come over to Perth and Australia to work?

0:27:030:27:05

Looking through your CV,

0:27:050:27:07

there is definitely opportunities within either our practice

0:27:070:27:11

or in the wider Perth region.

0:27:110:27:13

Take my card and stay in touch with us.

0:27:130:27:16

Yeah, I will, thank you very much.

0:27:160:27:18

It's been encouraging news all round,

0:27:180:27:20

and the couple are in good spirits

0:27:200:27:22

when they meet up to discuss the day.

0:27:220:27:24

-Hiya.

-Hi.

-So, how'd it go?

0:27:240:27:27

Very good, yeah.

0:27:270:27:29

The studio looked great. The wages were good,

0:27:290:27:31

so looking at £50-60,000.

0:27:310:27:35

Oh, wow. OK, that's good.

0:27:350:27:37

I wouldn't start at the same level as I am at the moment.

0:27:370:27:40

I could start as a senior project architect,

0:27:400:27:43

and then as I got more involved in the business, work my way up.

0:27:430:27:47

What about yourself? How was it?

0:27:470:27:49

Yeah, really good, actually, quite surprised.

0:27:490:27:52

Quite similar to what I'm doing at the moment,

0:27:520:27:54

but there is career progression as well, which is what I'm after.

0:27:540:27:58

They kind of have a very flexible approach to working, as well,

0:27:580:28:01

which is really good for Charlie.

0:28:010:28:03

So, given what they've learned,

0:28:030:28:04

will they opt for work in Australia or the UK?

0:28:040:28:08

So, after a day spent looking at job opportunities, our vote goes to...

0:28:090:28:13

-..Australia!

-Australia!

0:28:180:28:19

DAVE CHUCKLES

0:28:190:28:21

Australia?

0:28:210:28:24

-Really?

-Yeah.

-So you're happy with a job over here?

0:28:240:28:27

Yeah, the job's just, you know, it's kind of everything I want.

0:28:270:28:31

-Two to you.

-Yeah, that's two.

0:28:310:28:33

Two to you.

0:28:330:28:34

She's not making any promises,

0:28:420:28:44

but Becky's new-found enthusiasm for Australia

0:28:440:28:47

and excellent job opportunities down under

0:28:470:28:50

mean Dave's dream of emigrating could still get off the ground.

0:28:500:28:54

Encouraged, he's now hopeful the chance to give son Charlie

0:28:540:28:58

a taste of Aussie living will put him another step closer

0:28:580:29:02

to sealing the deal.

0:29:020:29:04

The family start their day with a visit to a nature reserve

0:29:100:29:13

off the south coast of Perth.

0:29:130:29:15

Do you know what lives on Penguin Island?

0:29:150:29:18

-Penguins!

-Lots of penguins.

0:29:180:29:21

They catch a ferry from the city of Rockingham,

0:29:210:29:24

around 45 minutes outside of Perth.

0:29:240:29:26

-Here we go.

-We're about to land.

-We're going to land.

0:29:290:29:32

I think Mummy's more excited than you, Charlie?

0:29:320:29:35

I'm more excited than you.

0:29:350:29:36

I'm more excited than you.

0:29:360:29:39

Thank you.

0:29:390:29:40

After a short crossing over Shoalwater Bay,

0:29:400:29:43

they arrive at the home

0:29:430:29:44

of Australia's largest colony of little penguins.

0:29:440:29:47

Can you do the penguin walk?

0:29:470:29:49

That's your penguin shuffle.

0:29:490:29:51

THEY LAUGH

0:29:510:29:52

At the Discovery Centre,

0:29:520:29:54

Charlie finally gets up close to the island's famous residents.

0:29:540:29:58

We have a good thousand penguins around the island,

0:29:580:30:00

but they can be pretty tricky to spot.

0:30:000:30:03

Kevin is our youngest penguin, he's only 15 weeks old,

0:30:030:30:07

so pretty big for a 15-week-old bird, right?

0:30:070:30:11

He's fully grown.

0:30:110:30:12

-He was rescued when he was only a couple of days old.

-Look.

0:30:120:30:14

You can't see that in Plymouth, can you?

0:30:140:30:17

That must be his girlfriend, Charlie.

0:30:170:30:20

That's his girlfriend.

0:30:200:30:22

After a fun morning,

0:30:220:30:24

the family head to Kings Park in central Perth...

0:30:240:30:26

..where we've arranged a meet-up

0:30:280:30:30

with Dave's brother Andy and his family.

0:30:300:30:32

What do you say?

0:30:340:30:35

Thank you, Logan.

0:30:350:30:37

Over lunch, Becky takes the opportunity to ask Andy's wife

0:30:400:30:44

how she found making the move from the UK.

0:30:440:30:46

So, you're really close to your mum, aren't you?

0:30:460:30:48

How's that been since being out here?

0:30:480:30:51

It is really hard and it doesn't get any easier,

0:30:510:30:53

but it is good to be here and when they do come out,

0:30:530:30:57

we get a really condensed time with them.

0:30:570:30:59

I don't think my mum could make the flight, that's the problem,

0:30:590:31:01

so we would have to go back, but then it's such a long way.

0:31:010:31:05

Becky's enjoyed her time with Dave's family,

0:31:050:31:07

but the afternoon has also reminded her

0:31:070:31:10

of the reality of living apart from hers.

0:31:100:31:13

It'd be great to have days like this where we can come outside

0:31:130:31:16

and just enjoy these kind of surroundings,

0:31:160:31:18

but I haven't got my family around.

0:31:180:31:19

You know, there is that in the back of my mind, as well.

0:31:190:31:22

For Dave, it's a chance to sample the lifestyle he craves.

0:31:220:31:26

Over here, I can pick up the phone, I can call my brother

0:31:260:31:29

and we could have Charlie playing with his cousins

0:31:290:31:32

and that, in all honesty,

0:31:320:31:34

is one of the things that I really want from this move.

0:31:340:31:38

Ultimately, someone's going to be heartbroken

0:31:390:31:42

come the end of the week.

0:31:420:31:43

Either way, one of us always misses out wherever we're going to be.

0:31:430:31:47

If we're in the UK, I miss out,

0:31:470:31:49

but if we come over here, Becky misses out.

0:31:490:31:51

It's getting near that decision time and it's getting a bit worrying.

0:31:510:31:55

Yeah, it's tricky.

0:31:550:31:57

For now, though, it's time to find out

0:31:570:32:00

whether the lifestyle has done enough

0:32:000:32:01

to secure another clean sweep for Australia.

0:32:010:32:04

After a lovely family day out seeing what Australia can offer,

0:32:050:32:09

our vote is for...

0:32:090:32:10

-..Australia!

-Australia.

0:32:170:32:20

Charlie, what are you voting?

0:32:200:32:21

Australia!

0:32:210:32:23

Australia, brilliant! You're voting Australia.

0:32:230:32:26

So, you had a good day out today, then?

0:32:260:32:28

It's just been nice to spend time as a family outside

0:32:280:32:31

and there's just so much more to do here. It's just much better.

0:32:310:32:33

Charlie looks like he's had a fantastic time.

0:32:330:32:36

Yeah, it's been really good, a really good day.

0:32:360:32:38

With Becky and Charlie sold on Australia's lifestyle,

0:32:470:32:51

Dave's dream life down under is within touching distance,

0:32:510:32:54

but it still has to prove financially viable for the family.

0:32:540:32:57

To help fund a move, they could sell their home in the UK.

0:32:580:33:02

They believe it's worth around £217,000,

0:33:020:33:06

so we sent round two estate agents to see if they're right.

0:33:060:33:09

-Go on, then.

-Let's have a look.

0:33:110:33:13

Lovely open plan property.

0:33:160:33:20

Great feel with the kitchen leading through to the dining area

0:33:200:33:23

and onto the lounge.

0:33:230:33:26

Good-sized outside space.

0:33:270:33:29

Really great size. Nice having the gates at the end as well for access.

0:33:300:33:35

Great to see an upstairs bathroom accommodation,

0:33:360:33:40

would benefit from slight modernisation.

0:33:400:33:43

In today's market, I would value this property at £210,000,

0:33:430:33:48

but for a quick sale, I would market it for 200.

0:33:480:33:51

In today's market, I would value this property at £195,000.

0:33:520:33:56

For a quick sale, I would put it on the market at £190,000.

0:33:560:34:00

I'm not sure about that second guy's valuation.

0:34:020:34:04

I preferred... The £210,000 was better,

0:34:040:34:08

maybe I would have liked it to have been a bit more,

0:34:080:34:11

but I could cope with £210,000, I think.

0:34:110:34:13

With the valuations lower than expected,

0:34:130:34:16

the couple sit down to look at the rest of the figures.

0:34:160:34:19

This is the scary bit.

0:34:190:34:21

To help, we've provided them with the cost of living comparison.

0:34:210:34:24

First up is the weekly food shop.

0:34:240:34:26

-Frozen peas.

-Frozen peas.

0:34:280:34:30

-Wow! We pay £2 for a bag of frozen peas.

-For a bag.

0:34:300:34:33

£5.27.

0:34:330:34:35

-Fabric softener.

-Oh, wow.

0:34:350:34:36

£2 in the UK versus £8.81.

0:34:360:34:41

Do Australians all walk around with really itchy clothes?

0:34:410:34:45

I don't think so.

0:34:450:34:46

Becky is disappointed to discover

0:34:480:34:50

they would spend nearly £30 more every week.

0:34:500:34:53

I just hope the rest of the bills aren't going to be like that.

0:34:530:34:56

Basing the figures on the final house they viewed,

0:34:560:34:59

the couple move on to consider the bigger bills.

0:34:590:35:02

The good news is the mortgage looks very similar.

0:35:020:35:05

So we are paying 790 a month and that's 803.

0:35:060:35:10

-For the big house?

-For the big house, yes.

0:35:100:35:12

That's crazy, isn't it, when you think how much more you get.

0:35:120:35:15

-Water.

-That is going to be more expensive, surely.

0:35:150:35:17

No, that's cheaper.

0:35:170:35:19

We've got a lot of minus figures here, these are great.

0:35:190:35:22

The sums show they would be just over £100 worse off each month,

0:35:220:35:26

not enough to dent Dave's enthusiasm.

0:35:260:35:28

Both of us have got pretty good news from the job day.

0:35:280:35:32

If we can earn more, then we can cover the shortfall.

0:35:320:35:35

And he's right - their joint incomes are more than enough to compensate

0:35:350:35:39

for the higher outgoings.

0:35:390:35:42

We would be £1,925.90 a month better off.

0:35:420:35:48

That's like somebody's full-time salary on its own.

0:35:480:35:51

-Are you sure that's right?

-£2,000 a month, virtually, better off.

0:35:510:35:55

That's just crazy.

0:35:550:35:58

Overall, they work out they would be over £1,800 better off

0:35:580:36:01

every month down under.

0:36:010:36:05

-We can have...

-Laundry, the frozen peas, all those things,

0:36:050:36:08

-a bigger house.

-Or a bigger walk-in wardrobe.

0:36:080:36:10

Or a bigger walk-in wardrobe, yeah.

0:36:100:36:11

When it comes to choosing between finances in Australia and the UK,

0:36:110:36:16

I would put money on how this vote's going to turn out.

0:36:160:36:19

Based on the cost of living in Australia,

0:36:190:36:21

compared to the cost of living in the UK, our vote goes to...

0:36:210:36:24

-..Australia!

-Australia!

0:36:300:36:32

-That was pretty obvious.

-That was obvious, wasn't it?

0:36:320:36:35

It's a no-brainer, isn't it?

0:36:350:36:37

That's a clean sweep so far.

0:36:370:36:39

Four out four votes for Australia

0:36:430:36:45

could mean Dave's in with a real chance

0:36:450:36:47

of making his dream come true.

0:36:470:36:49

But he knows he's not home and dry just yet,

0:36:490:36:52

as the biggest hurdle of all is still to come -

0:36:520:36:55

watching messages from loved ones in the UK.

0:36:550:36:58

Are you ready for this?

0:36:580:37:00

No, not at all.

0:37:000:37:02

-Shall we see?

-Yeah, go on, then.

-All right.

0:37:020:37:05

Hi, Becky and Dave,

0:37:070:37:08

hope you're having a really lovely time in Australia.

0:37:080:37:11

Hope you're all having a fantastic time out there.

0:37:110:37:13

Dave's a great family man.

0:37:130:37:15

He's always supported me,

0:37:150:37:17

always been there when anyone's in trouble.

0:37:170:37:19

I'm not saying we agree on everything, but that's life.

0:37:190:37:23

But he is a good father.

0:37:230:37:25

Becky is very sweet, but very funny as well.

0:37:250:37:29

She's been a brilliant friend over difficult times

0:37:290:37:33

and she means so much to me.

0:37:330:37:36

Charlie is a great kid, he's a really, really nice kid.

0:37:370:37:41

I quite often come round his house and play with his toys.

0:37:410:37:44

It would be a big loss if they weren't round the corner,

0:37:450:37:47

but at the same time, if it's what is best for them as a family,

0:37:470:37:51

and if it's what they want to do, then I fully support them in that.

0:37:510:37:55

It's a fantastic opportunity for all of them as a family,

0:37:570:38:00

to build a new life.

0:38:000:38:02

There's nobody that wouldn't want to wish them the very best for it.

0:38:020:38:04

I would be very sad in a way to see them go,

0:38:060:38:10

but, on the other hand, I can't be that selfish

0:38:100:38:13

that I would ever turn around and stop them.

0:38:130:38:15

Because I think it's what they need.

0:38:150:38:19

Make the right decision for you.

0:38:190:38:21

You know I'm going to miss you tonnes.

0:38:210:38:23

I love you lots and you know, whatever happens,

0:38:230:38:26

I'm going to be your friend,

0:38:260:38:27

wherever I am and however far away we are.

0:38:270:38:29

OK, take care.

0:38:290:38:31

Not having you round the corner, um...

0:38:320:38:35

Yeah, it would be hard, but if that's what you want,

0:38:360:38:40

um, then go for it.

0:38:400:38:42

You've got to do what's best for you and your family

0:38:420:38:44

at the end of the day.

0:38:440:38:46

Dave, you are a great friend.

0:38:460:38:48

I can imagine this will be a really tough decision to make.

0:38:480:38:51

But I would fully support if you went there

0:38:510:38:54

and I would love the opportunity to come and see you

0:38:540:38:56

and have a round of golf over there.

0:38:560:38:59

So, make the right decision and go.

0:38:590:39:01

Right, I know this is the time you've got to decide

0:39:010:39:06

and all I want to say is, much as I love you...

0:39:060:39:10

Oh, God, I'm starting now.

0:39:100:39:11

Much as I love you, I want you to do what's best

0:39:110:39:14

for you and your family.

0:39:140:39:17

Give it a go. Really go for it.

0:39:170:39:19

You know, don't think emotion-wise.

0:39:190:39:23

Just do what's best for you.

0:39:230:39:26

That was a lot harder than I thought it was going to be.

0:39:320:39:35

I wasn't expecting that. Are you all right?

0:39:350:39:38

-That was really hard.

-It really hits home, doesn't it?

0:39:390:39:42

Yeah, you can't bring them with you, can you?

0:39:420:39:45

Australia may have surpassed Becky's expectations,

0:40:050:40:08

but moving messages from home were a tough watch for both her and Dave.

0:40:080:40:14

They were also a reminder of the facts.

0:40:140:40:17

If they move, Dave will be closer to his loved ones,

0:40:170:40:20

but Becky will be thousands of miles from hers.

0:40:200:40:24

So, as the final vote draws closer,

0:40:240:40:27

could the reality of such a difficult choice

0:40:270:40:30

call time on Dave's dream once and for all?

0:40:300:40:33

When they arrived in Australia a week ago,

0:40:330:40:37

Dave was desperate to convince Becky

0:40:370:40:39

they could make the country their home

0:40:390:40:41

and it looked like he was winning her over,

0:40:410:40:43

until messages from home cast a cloud.

0:40:430:40:47

Everything was going really positive

0:40:470:40:48

and then the friends and family messages...

0:40:480:40:50

I knew it was going to be upsetting,

0:40:500:40:52

but, you know, they don't say those kind of things back home.

0:40:520:40:55

Dave's also confronting the reality of a move.

0:40:550:40:58

I was 100% onboard, this is what I wanted to do,

0:40:580:41:03

and that knocked me back.

0:41:030:41:05

It's been an emotional end to an eye-opening week

0:41:050:41:08

and the couple now face a difficult choice.

0:41:080:41:11

We've got family here that we can enjoy spending time with and see,

0:41:110:41:15

but it's my family, it's not hers.

0:41:150:41:17

I think that is what this is all going to centre on, to be honest.

0:41:190:41:23

I'm still not 100% sure on which way I'm going to vote.

0:41:260:41:29

And whichever way I do vote,

0:41:290:41:30

you know, someone's going to be worse off.

0:41:300:41:32

So, yeah, I can't really win.

0:41:320:41:35

After much deliberation,

0:41:360:41:38

the family must now decide where their future really lies.

0:41:380:41:42

Based on our week here in Australia,

0:41:430:41:46

we decided that as a family we'd be better living in...

0:41:460:41:50

-..Australia!

-Australia!

0:42:010:42:03

Australia? That way round.

0:42:030:42:06

-No, UK.

-Oh, OK.

0:42:060:42:07

Why did you pick the UK, mate?

0:42:090:42:11

-Is it because of Granny?

-Yeah.

0:42:110:42:13

I think it's because Charlie misses all his family.

0:42:130:42:15

Well, perhaps, if we come out here,

0:42:150:42:18

perhaps we can arrange it so Granny can come out for long visits.

0:42:180:42:21

A bit of work to do with this little one,

0:42:210:42:23

but I think that's a really positive step.

0:42:230:42:25

Yes, I'm surprised at myself.

0:42:260:42:29

It is a really difficult decision,

0:42:290:42:30

but just seeing Charlie here this week,

0:42:300:42:32

seeing what we can do, seeing what we can earn,

0:42:320:42:34

I think it's worth a shot.

0:42:340:42:36

I think the hard work starts here now

0:42:360:42:37

when we have a look and see actually

0:42:370:42:39

how much we've got to do when we get home.

0:42:390:42:41

Yes. I think we need to go and tell some people.

0:42:410:42:44

Get ready for life in the sun.

0:42:440:42:46

Their week in Perth

0:42:530:42:54

has thankfully put Dave and Becky on the same page.

0:42:540:42:59

Despite concerns about leaving her mum

0:42:590:43:01

and taking little Charlie away from his granny,

0:43:010:43:04

Becky finally agrees with her husband -

0:43:040:43:07

life in Australia will be better for them all.

0:43:070:43:11

We wish the Vickerstaffs the very best of luck,

0:43:110:43:14

as they take the next steps towards a future down under.

0:43:140:43:18

For as long as he can remember, Dave has wanted to make Australia his home. With most of his extended family already living there, he is more desperate than ever to make the move. But, having failed to sell the country to wife Becky on a visit ten years ago, getting the life he wants is proving easier said than done.

For Becky the situation is complicated, because while moving would put Dave closer to his family, it would also mean cutting close ties to hers in the UK. Torn at the prospect of taking son Charlie away from his granny, she also worries about who would look after her mum if she was on the other side of the world.

A trial week in Perth provides Dave and Becky with the opportunity to explore what their life could look like down under. But after years of discussion and debate, will it be enough to see them agree on which side of the globe their future really lies?


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