Families consider relocating down under. Can James convince his partner Kelly to buy into his dream of making Australia their home?
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You spend your life wishing you were living
on the other side of the world.
Your partner, on the other hand,
is more than happy with life in the UK.
So how would you go about turning your dream
into a shared goal for your family?
James Reeves longs to move to Australia.
The country left such an imprint on my thinking and way of life.
It's just something I can't seem to shake off.
But convincing partner Kelly to give up the life she enjoys in England
has proven quite a challenge.
The UK is definitely where my heart lies.
When a trial week down under shows them both what life could be like...
It looks so lovely.
It is fantastic.
..will Kelly be won over?
I'm concerned that everything that you've put into this
to even get me here is for nothing.
Or will James decide home is where the heart is?
I've come up with what I think is the right decision
for now for my family.
So I need to make that and then deal with the consequences.
Often ranked among the world's top ten countries for quality-of-life,
Australia's long been a magnet for British families on the move.
Boasting a buoyant economy and temperate climate, with average
annual rainfall of less than 600 millimetres
and over 2,000 hours of sunshine every year,
it's no wonder the land down under attracts
those in search of good fortune.
James Reeves is obsessed with Australia,
having first fallen for the country's charms
on a family holiday there over ten years ago.
Unfortunately, though, partner Kelly doesn't share his enthusiasm.
Close to family in the UK,
she hates the sun and doesn't like travelling,
so will a week down under be enough to persuade
Kelly to buy into James's dream
of moving to the other side of the world?
The family's trial week down under begins
with over 20 hours in the air,
travelling from London to Melbourne via Dubai and Singapore,
and when they finally touch down,
even James admits the journey's been exhausting.
The flight for me was pretty awful, actually.
I wasn't particularly well.
I don't think I probably appreciated,
even from past experiences, how much of a trek it is.
The challenge of travelling with small children
has taken its toll on Kelly.
The kids slept one at one time, and then the other at the other time
so there was hardly any sleep for me.
And all the time awake has given her plenty of time to contemplate
how far they've come.
It is quite difficult to know that I'm so far away from home.
It's like a little gut-wrenching thing inside.
Ewan's already picking up on Mum's anxiety.
I don't think that my mum likes Australia.
Now he's finally got her here, James is determined
to make homebird Kelly consider the country as their base.
I never thought I'd get Kelly to Australia so I just really need
to nail home now that this is the place for us to be.
But that's not going to be easy.
I think there's so much that we've got to see to make me actually
come to a conclusion.
Having made the 10,000 mile trip,
the only thing standing between James and his dream right
now is the next seven days.
Meet the Reeves and Simpson family from Leicester in the East Midlands.
They are dad James,
mum Kelly, nine-year-old Ewan and Evelyn, aged three.
Kelly and James met while working at a local football club ten years ago.
It took me a while to finally persuade her
that I was decent enough to go out with.
It took me about a year or so, didn't it?
It was more like two years.
For the first couple of years, he was just somebody who I spoke to,
unfortunately for you, my darling.
James's persistence paid off though and eight years later,
the couple make a good team,
despite very different personalities.
I'm much more of a risk-taker.
I'll do a lot more things off-the-cuff.
She's very strict, schedule, organised.
I like to say that I keep James's feet to the ground
because he does fly.
I'm the safe person out of all of us.
But a holiday to Australia when he was just 13 years old has left
James with a dream he refuses to give up on.
The country left such an imprint on my thinking and way of life.
It's just something I can't seem to shake off.
I really want the Australia dream more than anything.
Longing to call the country his home,
James has done everything in his power to put Australia on the map
for Kelly and the children.
I check up on a lot of Australian things - Australian sport,
we have Australia Day parties more than St George's Day parties.
When I first went there, I had kangaroo for the first time
and luckily I found a place in England
that you can get it from.
So, yeah, we have it quite regularly now.
-Who wants a kangaroo burger?
-The children have developed a taste for Dad's dream.
I want to live in Australia because it's hot and sunny.
It might be fun for us to visit new places.
But Kelly has no appetite at all for moving
to the other side of the world.
I was never really a big flier, not really interested.
The thought of taking a day out to travel is not really something
I'd like to do.
And the climate the country's famed for, leaves her cold.
I don't like warm weather. The sun sees me, I go bright red.
You know, putting a coat on, going outside
and going in fields with puddles,
they're the types of things that I enjoy.
So thinking about being over in Australia where it's warm
and sunny and it's just beaches, is completely the opposite.
Do your kangaroo dance.
James knows convincing Kelly to change her mind and relocate
10,000 miles from home won't be easy.
She's very much a homebird,
very used to her surroundings and routines.
As far as I see it, Australia would be a holiday destination,
not a home.
So the UK is definitely where my heart lies.
He isn't giving up, though.
Juggling careers with family time, James is now pitching the prospect
of a better work-life balance down under
in the hope it will provide a chink in Kelly's armour.
I feel this move to Australia could potentially free up more time
for me and Kelly and the kids to do
what we want to do and spend more time together
and enjoy being around each other.
But while moving might give Kelly more time
with James, Ewan and Evelyn,
it would also mean losing out on time with loved ones in the UK.
'You should be able to see your family whenever you need them.'
If we ever came to the decision to move,
I don't know how I'd tell them.
She's especially worried about the impact a move would have on her mum.
The kids get excited when they see her, so to know that that wouldn't
happen would be difficult because
I know how much that means to my mum.
I'm not going to Australia, I'm going to Nana's house.
Desperate to make Kelly buy into his Australian dream,
James knows the coming week will be his best chance
to convince her to take a gamble on where they call home.
I'm prepared to put in the graft to make it work for all of us because
in the long-term I think it really could
provide an amazing future for us.
But torn between her husband and family,
Kelly's not looking forward to what lies ahead.
It's a massive thing and if I make the wrong decision,
then it could ruin our lives.
The family are spending their trial week in Melbourne,
Australia's second-largest city.
It frequently tops opinion polls as one of the most liveable locations
in the world.
The stuff that you look at on the internet and just think "Oh, that would be quite nice",
to be seeing it here in real life is...
a bit bizarre, really.
Home for the week is a three-bedroom house
in the new suburb of Williams Landing,
around 12 miles west from the centre of Melbourne.
But the big question is,
will Kelly be impressed by her first glimpse of Australian living?
I'm not quite sure whether it's something that we're normally quite used to, though, is it?
No, it's very different from what we normally have
but it's quite nice. I quite like it.
-James is more upbeat.
-It's a good start, yeah.
Wow, a nice kitchen, Yeah, I love it.
Kelly's staying quiet but Ewan's not sharing his dad's enthusiasm.
-I don't really like it.
-It's just got two bits.
It's a bit different from home, isn't it?
-Wow, open-plan lounge.
-I'm not sure I like it.
-I just think it's too plain.
The enormity of the task ahead could be dawning on James
but he's determined to keep trying.
-What do you think?
-It's not our garden.
Fortunately, James is quick to spot something
that does compare favourably to home.
I didn't expect to see these in the back garden in Australia.
They look like the ones that we used to have, don't they?
Yeah. It does give you that homely feel, doesn't it?
It hasn't been the best start to the week,
but while the children kick back,
James and Kelly get to work making themselves at home.
Just get up the stairs, this suitcase is heavy!
It's not my fault you're not very strong, is it?
And having reached their destination,
it's not long before they're unpacking their thoughts
on the importance of the week ahead.
Babe, I really do hope you like it this week.
I have felt a lot of pressure that...
I want you to like it.
I'm concerned that everything that you've put into this
to even get me here is for nothing.
Back in the UK, the family live in a three-bedroom terraced house
in Leicester and they've worked hard to make it home sweet home.
We've refurbished every room in the house.
we spent so much time, money and effort.
Still, James is willing to give it up for a home in Australia,
but what kind of house will it take to tempt Kelly down under?
We like open plan, three bedrooms, ideally stairs,
I like the thought of going up to bed, a bit of space for the dog, and that's it.
A pool would be beneficial.
If they do move, the couple have around £200,000 to spend on a home.
To find out what their money could buy today,
we'll show them three properties -
two based on budget and a third which could be their dream home.
Only after they've seen each one will they find out its value.
House-hunting begins in the suburb of Hoppers Crossing,
around 19 miles from central Melbourne.
With parks, shops and excellent transport links,
it's an ideal spot for families.
It does look like quite a nice little area, though, doesn't it?
But will this three-bedroom house in a quiet cul-de-sac get Kelly
enthused about making Australia her home?
If it was more two storey rather than a bungalow,
-I think we'd probably be there.
-Not quite the reaction James wanted.
Hopefully, things will look better inside.
I think it's more dated than I imagined from looking on the outside.
I'm not keen on the tiles.
I wouldn't like to live in something that has this type of hallway.
-Well, we could make our own stamp on it if this was ours, couldn't we?
-Yeah, yeah, maybe.
Or maybe not.
Perhaps the master bedroom will be more pleasing.
-Oh, wow, walk-in wardrobe!
That's a big... A big plus.
It's got space and having a wardrobe like that...
That would be a huge help.
That would be massive... A massive difference.
But Kelly's less taken with the en-suite.
I would probably want to gut it and start again.
-And Evelyn's spotted a problem too.
-There's no television.
There's no television in here, no.
That would make it better, wouldn't it?
Next door, a potential room for Ewan.
There you go, mate, this is the one for you.
I think it's a bit small.
This isn't going well for James.
For Evelyn, it's all about try before you buy.
It's like she's in a sofa shop, isn't it?
Hopefully, the spacious living area will appeal to everyone.
Oh, wow! It's nice, open plan.
It's a lot bigger than I actually expected.
-I can't believe how big it is.
-And the kitchen...
Again, goes back to the...
Everything's a little bit on the dated side.
Moving on, Kelly discovers something more palatable.
-Oh, wow! It's a pantry.
-Oh, wow. They've got peanut butter.
This is quite good, I like that.
So this is where we'll put the main things?
This is where I'll put the food that you're not allowed.
It looks like Kelly could make herself at home here after all.
Time to see what's outside.
A dog must be here because there's a doghouse.
That's always nice, isn't it?
Hopefully, James's dream won't be confined to there
come the end of the week.
Meanwhile, some other features of note.
-The washing machine!
-The washing machine's outside!
-I'm a little bit shocked.
-At least it's covered, though.
-You're not going to get wet while you wash your clothes, are you?
-Nice try, James!
But having seen inside and out, is this somewhere Kelly could call home?
The house needs a lot of work
to make it up to what we would feel comfortable in.
The property might not tempt her to the other side of the world
but with £200,000 to spend, would it be affordable?
I think £215,000.
I was looking more along the 200,000.
-Right, let's have a look then, shall we?
That's £6,000 over budget.
-I'm not quite sure what I think, actually.
So it's less than what I thought, which is good.
Considering the amount of work that we would probably
have to put into it, I was hoping for a little bit less.
The price hasn't gone down well.
If James is to convince Kelly to make the move,
the next property will need to be more on the money.
To find out, the family head to Werribee,
a western suburb 19 miles from Melbourne city centre.
It's one of the fast-growing areas in the country, with excellent
schools and amenities, making it an attractive option for families.
-I don't know which one.
-It's this one here.
Will the chance to check out a display home on a new housing
development help James sell Kelly his Australian dream?
I'm not quite sure if I like it or not.
It's a bungalow and I don't really like bungalows.
No, I know.
Kelly and Ewan are a tough audience.
Maybe they'll feel differently inside.
Oh, wow! I like what they've done with the wall.
-The wall looks amazing.
-I like it. It's really nice and bright.
Yeah, it seems a lot more spacious.
It makes you want to go forward into it a bit more.
That's more like it.
Oh, wow! Look at the bedroom!
It's got the same textures as outside.
-It's a lot bigger...
-..than the first house.
It's very spacious.
It's so good, Evelyn's jumping for joy.
That's a lot of pillows!
The walk-in wardrobe is a hit, too.
-It's really white.
-Don't matter, it's a wardrobe.
It's massive. I love it.
I wonder if we have that much stuff that will fit in this.
I'm sure Mummy has.
And unlike the last house, an en-suite worth fighting over.
-Who do you reckon will be in here all the time?
-You can jog on, mate, it's not for you!
-I don't think so.
The modern kitchen-living area gets Kelly more excited.
-It's so lovely.
-It is fantastic.
The breakfast bar is humongous.
Perfect for entertaining, wouldn't it?
But before James gets too hopeful,
she's quick to put on her practical hat.
It looks so lovely and so perfect that
that's going to come with a cost...
Moving on, it's not long before Kelly's finding fault again.
I don't think I'd be able to cope with having a bathroom
with a completely separate toilet.
It looks immaculate but it's not something I think it would
be easily... To be able to get used to.
It was all going so well.
Perhaps the outdoor area will get her back on track.
-The grass is fake.
-Of course it's fake.
The grass needs to be real.
-It's quite small as well.
There's a little bit for the kids to run around in, but not a lot.
Bear in mind, with the dog and everything, I think we need more.
The lack of space has left Kelly underwhelmed,
but moving back inside, she admits the house itself is pretty special.
This is, or could be, very close to perfection, couldn't it?
-I think that's the problem
because I don't ever think we'd actually get there.
Time to find out if Kelly's right.
With a budget of £200,000, can they afford
to call somewhere like this home?
Who's going to turn over the card?
I'll do it.
That's £35,000 over budget.
235 gives me some hope that we could get something like this.
The price has shocked me.
It would possibly tempt me to have a house like this.
The compromise in the garden...
It would all have to be taken into consideration.
It looks like Kelly is beginning to see potential in a house down under
and there's still one more property to view.
But on their way there, Kelly points out
something not quite to her liking.
It's strange, some grass looks really, really nice and healthy,
-and some just...
-It looks like it's dying.
It does, doesn't it? I just want to go and water it all.
Property three is in Wyndham Vale, north of Werribee
and 20 miles from central Melbourne.
Offering shops, schools and recreation areas,
it's an ideal area for families with young children.
But could this five-bedroom house be James
and, more importantly, Kelly's dream home?
It's the first two-storey we've seen, isn't it?
-Which is what we...
-It was what I was looking for, wasn't it?
-It looks a bit promising, doesn't it?
Let's go see inside.
It's a good start.
Oh, the hallway's a little bit smaller than I imagined it to be.
It feels like it would be very dark, wouldn't it?
You're not going to spend a lot of time in here though, are you?
No, but you'd like a nice walk in, wouldn't you?
Hopefully, the rest of the house will have the space Kelly wants.
I don't like it. I think it's too small.
I think it actually feels like we've walked into somebody else's house.
That's not a good sign.
I really don't like the kitchen.
I feel like it's very dated.
It feels like we've gone back in time to like 1970s.
And James admits he has doubts about the decor too.
It's very Scandinavian I think but we're nowhere near Sweden.
You got that right, James.
So will the master bedroom be more to their taste?
No walk-in wardrobe. Never thought I'd be saying that.
I'm not sure what to make of it, really.
It has a walk-in wardrobe!
Oh, no way, I take it back.
A girl's bedroom always needs a walk-in wardrobe.
Yes, that's a good point.
We've got an en-suite!
We finally found a toilet in the same room as the bathroom.
Sometimes it's the small things.
It's what I sort of expected about the Australian houses,
to have an outside relaxation area.
I don't think there's anything that's wowing me, though.
As far as I can see, we can have this back at home.
How about something you wouldn't typically find at home?
I don't think it would sell the house
just because there was a pool in the garden.
I think it would for three out of four of us.
Me, Evelyn and Daddy versus you.
The pool has put Ewan and Evelyn back on James's side
but back inside, the modern upstairs extension isn't working for Kelly.
I don't like the feel of coming from downstairs up to an area
as open as this. It feels then too disconnected
from whatever's going off downstairs.
James knows when he's beat and has to admit it's not the property
he dreams of either.
The outside was good but just not for me.
Even so, the couple are curious to know how much it costs and whether
their £200,000 budget could buy it.
We don't think much of it, but I bet it is quite expensive.
I'm going to say 270.
-So who's going to turn the card?
-I'll do it.
That's £80,000 over budget.
In a way, I'm quite glad it's that high
because it's definitely out of our price range.
It's not something we're interested in
so we can close the book on this one.
The family have had an insightful day looking at houses down under.
Property one was over budget and the dated decor,
coupled with the price, put Kelly right off.
The grass was somewhat greener in property two.
Even though the garden lacked space,
it offered better value for money.
Although it had the pool James wanted,
the third property fell short
of being the couple's dream home
and Kelly wasn't disappointed to discover
it was £80,000 over budget.
So, with all things considered,
will the family opt for homes in Australia or the UK?
You voted Australia. Why?
Because the houses in Australia, I really like them
because they're new to me.
I feel that the jury's still out at this point.
I'm a bit disappointed that not all of the houses that we've seen have
met what I think, or thought, an Australian house
would be like for us.
I feel torn at the minute because I can kind of see a little bit of what
we could potentially have if we followed your dream
but I'm still very drawn to being at home.
Australian homes haven't won over Kelly or, surprisingly, James
but refusing to give up on his dream just yet,
James remains determined to show Kelly
the family can prosper and spend more time together down under.
Back in the UK, James is a surveyor for a building repair company.
As the family's main breadwinner,
he regularly works up to 50 hours a week.
I'm working a lot of hours in the weeks and often weekends as well,
so, no, definitely the balance isn't right for us at present.
He hopes doing a similar job in Australia will enable him to work
less hours and improve his earning potential.
I'm hoping that the move to Australia could mean an increase
in my salary to somewhere between 37 and £40,000 per year.
It's very important to me that my job out there is secure and provides
a salary for us to make a success of it over there.
But persuading Kelly to leave her part-time job
as a catering manager at Leicester Football Club won't be easy.
I've worked at the stadium for 12 years so to give it up,
I'd lose all my friends and it would be a very difficult thing.
While the children are being looked after by a childminder,
the couple head out to explore work opportunities in Melbourne.
James knows the day ahead has the potential
to make or break his dream.
We've arranged for him to meet manager Andrew Georgiou
at one of West Melbourne's largest surveying firms.
Hi, James. Great to meet you.
James explains the kinds of buildings he's used to looking at.
'Recently, it's been specifying repairs for existing buildings,
'not really new-builds.'
It's a good basis but you'll need to have specific
'So we're looking at a diploma, advanced diploma or a degree.'
-And we're also looking at registration
in the Victorian environment.
Having only recently qualified as a building surveyor,
James would have to top up his qualifications
and get more experience to register for work in Victoria.
How long do you think a diploma or degree
or the registration would take?
Most people do part-time because they're working so it could take,
depending on if it's a diploma, two years.
If it's an advanced diploma, anywhere up to 4 years
and then a degree's longer again, maybe up to six years.
It's not good news.
Is there anything I could do without the qualifications that you've mentioned?
You can start working in the industry initially in more basic
-roles and then obviously work and do your course part-time.
Having to work in a junior role whilst awaiting state registration
is not what James anticipated.
Meanwhile, Kelly is visiting Melbourne Cricket Ground,
one of the largest sports venues in the world.
I feel really, really nervous knowing how big the stadium is,
how big that the catering can be here.
We've arranged for her to meet with dining manager, Adam Portelli.
First up, a tour of the facilities
and straightaway Kelly's bowled over.
I thought the Leicester City Football Club was massive
but this is out of... It's a completely different scale.
It absolutely is. We can seat 100,000 people here,
we can dine over 3,000 of them.
Welcome to the members' dining rooms...
Kelly's eager to find out if she has the right experience for a
catering management position in a venue as large as the MCG.
The football stadiums are generally very different and run differently
compared to any other hospitality operation
but you do have the core skills.
It looks promising.
Would flexible hours around school hours and things like that be possible?
Work generally is either full-time or on a casual basis, but absolutely
you can work as a casual and you can work whatever
hours suit you throughout the week.
Knowing she could have control over her hours is a big plus.
What about the salary?
To compare your 30 hours part-time in the UK you currently do,
we would be looking at around £23,000 per annum.
-It's about 50% more than what you're getting currently.
To know that I would get a figure like that, to be still flexible,
to work with the children, is amazing.
Encouraged, Kelly wants to know what her chances are of getting work.
-We would definitely employ you here.
-That's absolutely fantastic.
-And hopefully welcome to the team.
-Thank you very much.
The news couldn't have been more positive for Kelly.
Back at the building site, James asks about potential work hours
for him, hoping it will bring better news.
The typical office hours are 8.30 to five,
Monday to Friday, so that tends to be fairly family-friendly.
That's good, it's a lot less than I'm working at the moment at home.
Less hours would mean the family time he craves,
providing he can find a job.
It's dependent on you applying for positions,
it's also the other companies that are putting those ads out,
whether they've got the more junior positions that you can then ease
yourself into and get yourself on the rung, moving yourself up the ladder.
The big question now is how much would he earn?
Anywhere from £30,000 initially and moving up to £50,000 and above when
you've got the registration.
How quickly do I get up to the sort of 50,000 figure that you mentioned?
Anywhere from five to six or more years.
Until he establishes himself, James could be earning
£4,000 less every year.
'I'm absolutely gutted, to be quite honest.
'I didn't think the salary would be less
'than what I earn back in England.'
It's put a downer on the whole thing really, to be quite honest.
The day's delivered mixed fortunes for the couple.
Keen to share their news, they reunite at the stadium.
-You all right?
-How did your work trip go?
-Better than I expected.
-Yeah, they could give me some form of work here
on a casual basis, looking about 23,000 a year.
We need to know how yours went more because you need the work.
-I could get work...
..but it would be probably starting at like 30,000.
It could take up to five or six years
for me to get properly qualified,
at which point it would go to 50,000
-but it would mean doing a part-time qualification.
-That's shocked me.
I was literally just crushed.
Focused on the news that short-term he might have to work
in a junior role for a smaller salary,
James could be starting to doubt his own dream.
Knowing what they do now, how will the day impact
on the couple's decision when it comes to choosing
between work in Australia or the UK?
Why did you pick the UK?
Just based on salary and job prospects really,
in terms of what I do at the minute and what I'd have to do
to bring myself up to speed.
I voted UK.
We go in this together and even though my work chat went really well,
my vote goes on as a couple.
Right now I feel quite negative about the Australia dream.
'Well, on a selfish note, I hope lifestyle day
'goes better than today has gone.'
News that James may have to take a step back in Australia has been
a knockout blow for both him and Kelly.
So will the opportunity to sample the outdoor lifestyle
James first fell for as a child be enough to resurrect his dream
and prove a game changer for the whole family?
Making the most of their time together,
the family head out to explore Melbourne,
starting the day at Federation Square -
a modern piazza referred to as the heart and soul of the city.
Popular with family-friendly street performers,
there's always plenty to see here.
-That's a nice doggie, isn't it?
-It's a polar bear!
And soaking up the atmosphere
helps give them an appetite for Aussie living.
Yeah, thanks, Daddy.
-Thank you very much.
-Here's your serviette.
In five years' time we'll come back, yeah.
-Wow, look how big that is.
-Do you want a bite?
How big are your chips?
I'm not sure if that's a kangaroo burger
but the day's definitely got James and Kelly thinking.
If there's any chance of Kelly wanting to move out here
away from her family and friends,
we need to be spending more time together,
doing more stuff like this.
It's quite nice out here really, isn't it?
Next, they head to a park in the redeveloped Docklands area
where we've arranged for them to meet up with two other families
who've made the move.
Everybody shake hands.
While the children enjoy kick about, Kelly and James chat
to expat Charmaine and her husband Greg.
So, guys, what are the pros about living in Australia?
There are so many amazing facilities for small children...
And all the fantastic beaches.
The lifestyle, everything is really laid-back,
-But there's got to be some cons.
An enormous con is the fact that my family are in England.
It's 24 hours on an aeroplane away.
That is a concern of mine,
not being in a position to be able to keep going back as often.
Yeah. I think technology helps,
being able to talk to my mother whenever I want.
There's a massive British population in Melbourne
so there's lots of help so all the things that you would normally...
You'd ask your mum, there's somebody else there to ask.
Spending time with the other families
has given Kelly a much needed boost.
To be able to see the kids running around and having fun is what we
actually want more than anything else.
To actually see them interact with some of the kids
already based here, it helps.
But the afternoon has also reminded her they'd be spending days
like this without their extended family.
To take my children away from both sets of grandparents
would be extremely difficult,
so to come all the way over here
and knowing that they won't have the relationship
with our children like they would their other grandkids...
I don't think it's fair.
For James, though, the day's done enough to reignite his passion
for moving after his disappointing work news.
I'm clinging on to the fact that there could be other jobs for me
which could make the decision to move to Australia a lot easier.
Kelly's delight at today has put James in better form
but his enthusiasm could make her choice harder
come the end of the week.
I love James and... I want to see him happy.
If we don't come to a decision,
it becomes then, which way do we go?
For now, it's time to find out if the Australian lifestyle has done
enough to win over the whole family.
Why did you choose Australia?
It's just everything I imagined a lifestyle day would be,
a day off for us, you know?
All weekends can be spent doing this.
Similar to me, really.
To see the kids enjoying themselves outside
and actually to be able to spend a little bit of time
talking to people who have done a similar sort of thing
has helped to try and put it into a bit more of a perspective for me.
-Today has been a good day.
Yeah, it definitely has been a good day.
A unanimous vote for Australia has saved James's dream for now
but after the news he'd earn less earlier in the week,
can the family really afford a move?
Ideally, they would plan to sell their home in the UK.
They believe it's worth about £126,000.
To see if they're right, we sent round two estate agents
for current valuations.
Oh, no! We didn't tidy the shoes up.
A nice open-plan living space incorporating the lounge, kitchen,
the dining room. There's a few cracked tiles in the kitchen.
It would have been nice to see the tiling go through
-to the dining area.
-I never thought about that.
The main bedroom here.
Slightly cluttered but generally a good size and airy.
In today's market, I'd value this property
-between 135,000 and £140,000.
-For quick sale, I would put on the market £1330,000.
In today's market, I would have valued this property for 134,950.
For a quick sale, I'd market it for best offers over 125.
-I didn't expect that at all.
-Oh, my gosh.
-What? What did he say?
I'm a little bit shocked.
Basically, we've made probably between 20 and 25,000 on the house.
While the children play, the couple take a look
-at the rest of the figures.
-I'm really nervous about this bit.
You're nervous about everything!
To help, we've provided them with a breakdown of living cost.
First up is the weekly food bill.
So the salmon we pay just under £4 for, £3.98 in the UK.
-In Australia its £7.42.
-You pretty much get the whole fish though.
That's like almost double.
But the higher price tags aren't the only contentious matter.
Your honey nut cornflakes...
-I don't eat honey nut cornflakes.
I buy them for you.
Overall, they'd be paying out over £30 more per week.
I'm not happy with that figure.
Moving on, they look at the bigger monthly bills -
starting with mortgage repayments.
They're basing the figure on the second house they viewed.
The mortgage in the UK is £470.
In Australia, it would be 998.
Overall, Kelly's shocked to learn they would be paying out
over £600 more every month.
The figures aren't adding up.
It might be different though after our salaries.
Even though I had disappointing news, you had really good news.
And James points out a positive with his earnings, too.
Even though there's £4,000 a year difference,
we're going to lose out on £6 per month.
The tax differences from our wage bracket
must be really different over here.
Kelly's higher salary is cause for further celebration.
We are better off by £732 per month.
What do you think about that?
-That is a better figure to look at.
Even with the substantially higher outgoings,
the final sum shows they would still be in the black every month
in Australia and James is delighted.
I couldn't be any more pleased, really.
What, that we're £50 better off?
This is literally saying to us, "Can we make it financially work?"
On the basis of that bottom figure, no matter what it is,
-the answer is yes.
-But I see that as yes, just.
We're not going to agree, are we? Let's face it.
There could be trouble ahead but when it comes to choosing between
finances at home or away, how will the couple vote?
-I'm not surprised at all.
-I'm not surprised with yours either.
I haven't seen enough figures.
I think we're back to where we were, aren't we?
The risk-taker and the safe-player.
A modest financial gain has dented James's chance of persuading Kelly
to uproot to the other side of the world.
As the family sit down to watch messages from loved ones back home,
James knows this could be another hurdle he just can't overcome.
Hi, Jamie, Kelly, Ewan, Evelyn.
-Hi, Kelly and James.
Jamie's a loyal person who loves his family.
Kelly, to me, has been a breath of fresh air to James since they met.
She's such a bubbly girl.
Everybody I know who knows her loves her to bits.
Jamie and Kelly, they're really good together.
They're great parents as well, bringing up Ewan and Evelyn.
Ewan and Evelyn mean the world to us, the absolute world.
They are very much fun.
Evelyn can make us giggle at the drop of a hat.
I would desperately miss them.
Kelly's got a very big decision to make.
Albeit it's a long way away from England,
it's a fantastic opportunity that I don't want them to miss.
We're with you 100%.
If you like it there, you stay there.
And we'll be the first out, Kelly.
Jamie, Kelly, follow your dreams. Just go for it.
-You've got to live with the decision you make...
..and you've got to do what you think is right.
-Mummy is crying because they are all missing her.
The couple send the children out to play while they reflect
on what they've heard.
To actually see them and hear them...
..just makes... I kind of just want to go give them a hug.
I don't know what I'm going to do.
Watching heartfelt messages from loved ones is never easy
and the prospect of leaving friends and family
has hit James much harder than expected.
So will the couple's strong emotional ties to the UK
ultimately prevent him from securing the Australian lifestyle
he's dreamt of for so long?
The past seven days in the country of James's dreams has delivered many
twists and turns for his family.
The week in general, to sum it up, has been just a rollercoaster.
There's been quite a few highs, quite a lot of lows.
The work day would probably have been my highlight
but within the same day was probably our very lowest point.
And viewing messages from loved ones has reminded everyone
of their ties to home.
Today has been very stressful, just, obviously,
a high of emotions which I didn't know were there.
They said stuff so nice that it made me cry.
'It's been tough for me to see everyone else get upset.
'To sit there and see James crying in front of me,'
is something that he would never normally do.
Where the family's future lies now rests on one decision.
It's extremely stressful to think that whatever I choose is going to
affect somebody that I love very dearly,
whether it be James and the kids or whether it's going to be someone
back at home.
I've come up with what I think is the right decision now for my family
so I need to make that and then deal with the consequences.
It's time to cast that all-important final vote.
You've shocked me.
There's a big part of me that thinks that we could and a massive a part
of me that still wants to.
I've loved every minute here but I just can't.
I just can't.
I actually expected you to go for undecided because I still
think that there were things that you'd probably still want to...
To prove that it could really work. I don't feel...
I don't think it would be enough.
I don't think right now this is where we should be.
I think our lives can be better.
Being over here has made that clear to me.
We all want to be happy together, don't we?
So we're definitely going to take some things out of this week
and bring them back home with us.
James's attempts at selling Australia to Kelly
haven't gone to plan but the good news is
their week down under has put the couple back on the same page.
With neither believing the country is the best fit for their family,
they're now fully committed to improving the life
they've already got in the UK.
Who knows what the future will hold but wherever they end up,
we wish James, Kelly, Ewan and Evelyn the very best of luck.
Since visiting Australia on a family holiday over ten years ago, James Reeves has been obsessed with making the country his home. He celebrates Australia Day over St George's Day and regularly cooks kangaroo burgers for tea. But while his actions have given children Ewan and Evelyn an appetite for their dad's dream, partner Kelly just doesn't share his enthusiasm. With strong family ties in the UK, she hates the sun and doesn't enjoy travelling, so tempting her to relocate to the other side of the world is proving challenging. A trial week in Melbourne could be James's best chance yet at getting the life he wants.