Nowell/Horton Wanted Down Under


Nowell/Horton

British families sample life down under. Car mechanic Simon Nowell dreams of swapping South Wales for Australia, but his fiancee Laurie's doubts are holding them back.


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Transcript


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When you want to sell up and move your family to the other side of the world,

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your whole life is thrown up in the air,

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especially if your partner has reservations about the idea.

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Simon knows exactly what he wants.

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I'd move tomorrow if I had the chance.

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I really want the opportunity to let my family prosper in such a great place as Australia.

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But fiancee Laurie doesn't entirely share his dream.

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I feel as though, if I was to turn around and say,

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"I don't think it's right for us," for whatever reason it might be,

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I feel like I'll break Simon's heart and really don't want to

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because I know it's something he's always, always wanted.

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And if the decision wasn't hard enough already, their family can't bear to let them go.

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We don't want to use any sort of emotional blackmail. I think that's unfair...

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We say we don't want to but I think, being emotional anyway, it is going to do that.

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I feel very torn between my family at home and Simon,

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and what would be the right thing to do.

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Either way, I'm upsetting somebody very close to me and I don't quite know what to do about that.

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-Can you see how hard it would be for me to make a decision?

-Mmm.

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Australia is the most popular country for Brits moving abroad.

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They may be tempted by its 10,000 beaches, sunny climate

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and famous relaxed lifestyle.

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But leaving behind everything you know to start a new life

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thousands of miles from home can turn a simple dream into

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the hardest challenge of your life.

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Simon and Laurie are facing a week of tough decisions

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as they test out life in Australia.

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At the end of it, they'll have to make the hardest choice of all...

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to stay in the UK or to move down under.

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Newport in South Wales is home to Simon Knowle and his young family,

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fiancee Laurie and their one-year-old son Derry.

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Simon dreams of a new life in Australia but it's Laurie's doubts that are holding him back.

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I'm probably 90% there already.

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I thought you were 100%.

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I'm not 100% because you're not... you're 50-50.

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So if I wasn't so reluctant, you...

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-I'd be 100%.

-So really you are.

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Only because I don't want to get my heart set on it and you say you don't want to go.

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OK, fair comment.

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As an experienced car mechanic, he hopes his skills are in demand down under

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and will be the passport to a brighter future for his baby son.

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When I was younger, I used to be out from nine o'clock in the morning till nine o'clock at night.

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I was always out playing in the fields and building tree houses and stuff like that, really,

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and I want Derry to enjoy that sort of stuff as well. I don't want him to feel as if he's stuck.

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I just want him to enjoy his life, and I think the prospects

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for Derry are a lot better in Australia that they are in the UK.

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But Laurie isn't convinced Australia has enough to offer.

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The thing is, I see that Derry could have a good life here as well as Australia for different reasons.

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I think about the fact that Derry will grow up and not know his family

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as well as perhaps he would if he was here in the UK,

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so I am really very undecided, but something's got to convince me

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somewhere along the way, one way or the other.

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Although Simon loves his job in the UK, he feels he'll have more prospects in Australia.

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I think I'll have better career progression in Australia,

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and I'm at a level now where I think I can transfer my skills

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and be able to go on further, really make something of myself.

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Simon's prepared to risk everything on a new life in Australia

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but Laurie, who spent a year working in Spain as an estate agent,

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knows only too well that dreams of starting again in the sun

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can quickly turn into a homesick nightmare.

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I'm not so sure that the grass is always greener.

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I've got a lot of ifs, buts and maybes in my head as to whether it would be the right thing to do,

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but I do think that living in Spain has really had a detrimental effect on my thoughts of moving abroad.

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I think, because she's lived in Spain, when Laurie gets there,

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I think she'll be a bit reluctant to let it in,

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because I think she'll be thinking about the UK.

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I think it'll take a bit to persuade Laurie but I think I can do it.

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Yeah, I feel as though, if I was to turn around and say,

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"I don't think it's right for us," for whatever reason it might be,

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I feel like I'll break Simon's heart and I really don't want to do that,

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because I know it's something that he's always, always wanted.

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So, whether Simon and Laurie choose to stay in the UK

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or decide to leave family behind for a new life down under,

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someone could be left broken-hearted.

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As a car mechanic, Simon could find work almost anywhere,

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but which area would suit the family best?

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We could send them to Darwin, the capital of the Northern Territory and Australia's most remote city.

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It has the outback on its doorstep and yet is a modern and cosmopolitan city.

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Average house prices are high at around £357,000,

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which would really stretch Simon and Laurie's budget.

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Or maybe the Gold Coast in Queensland has more to offer a young family.

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It's Australia's sixth largest city and, as one of the country's fastest-growing areas,

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would offer plenty of housing and work options for Simon.

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With average property prices at £290,000,

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they would need to shop around to find a home they could afford.

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Perhaps they could go further down the coast to Sydney,

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Australia's unofficial first city and,

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with a population of nearly 4.5 million, its largest.

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Known as the Harbour City, it's a cosmopolitan metropolis

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with a thriving cultural life, but all this comes at a cost,

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and Sydney is home to the highest property prices in Australia,

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something which will challenge Simon and Laurie's limited budget.

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But to which of these three locations did we choose to send them?

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We decided the Gold Coast would be the better place for their trial week.

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It offers good work prospects for Simon and the lifestyle they crave.

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During their week, Simon finds out if working in Australia is really for him.

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MAN: Ah-ha, got you! They always do! HE LAUGHS

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'Yeah, he strikes me as a nice guy.'

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Let's see what he's like when he comes out of his shell. CHUCKLES

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The cost of living in Oz pushes their finances to the limit.

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-Mortgage is...

-The mortgage is going to be substantially higher.

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That's a lot of money.

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Laurie has to cope 10,000 miles from family.

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For us, seeing them suddenly move on would be devastating.

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I can't really explain how it's made me feel. It's been hard going.

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Leaving them behind in the UK, and not being able to pop in the car to see them, I think is still an issue.

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I don't know how I'm going to get past that, if I'm honest.

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In the end, can Laurie be persuaded to make Simon's Australian dream come true?

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I think one of us isn't going to get what we want.

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I'm not too sure how I'll feel if she does say no.

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After a 20-hour flight and 10,000 miles,

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Simon, Laurie and little Derry arrive in rainy Brisbane,

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and Simon's first impressions aren't good.

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Weather's not impressing me at the moment but hopefully that'll pick up and it'll get a bit better.

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Despite her doubts about Australia,

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Laurie wants to remain positive for Simon.

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I'm keeping my mind completely open this week.

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I'm not thinking, "I definitely want to come here, I definitely don't want to be here, "

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which I didn't think I would feel like when I first got here.

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Even on the flight over, I was thinking, "Hmm... " so...

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Yeah, I'm definitely pleased to be here and get to see what it's all about and whether it's for us.

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With a week of tough decisions ahead, Simon and Laurie are keen to hit the Aussie highway.

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They'll be staying in a three-bedroom property in Chirn Park,

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one of the Gold Coast's chic suburbs 45 miles from Brisbane.

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Centred around Loders Creek River, it's just five minutes from the coast.

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It's a perfect base for their week but what will they make of it?

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-Oh, this is nice.

-Yeah.

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-I like the floor.

-Nice big open kitchen as well, isn't it?

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It even brings the outside inside.

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-Yeah, I like that.

-Gives you a nice light feeling, doesn't it?

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Yeah, definitely.

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Outside is a modest patio garden...

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Yeah, it's a good size.

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and their own private jetty.

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Just one problem.

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The road does let it down, though, doesn't it?

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-It does, yeah.

-And the barking dog.

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We live on quite a busy main road as it is, but not as busy as this.

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No, nowhere near as busy as this, no.

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-Food for thought.

-Definitely.

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Simon's trying to keep positive.

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He's placed a lot of faith in Australia holding the key to his family's future,

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but Laurie's doubts are starting to creep back in.

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My biggest fear of this week would be if I don't feel the pull to want to come and live in Australia

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as a family because I don't know what that will hold for our future.

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Everything is riding on us potentially moving here,

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and if I don't get that pull that you have,

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that feel that I really want to come and live here, or us as a family,

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I don't know what it's going to do.

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I don't know where it's going to take us.

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-We'll have to wait and see, won't we?

-Yeah.

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Whatever happens, someone is going to be devastated.

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Back in the UK, Simon and Laurie live in a two-bedroom mews-style home in Newport

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with a large garden which they bought for £111,000 in November 2007.

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Simon and Laurie want more space for their growing son, and the Gold Coast has plenty to offer.

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Finding the dream home will depend on where they look,

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but ultimately getting the right price for the sale of their UK home.

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In Australia, living in the city can be expensive.

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This house in the suburb of Molendinar

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has all the bedrooms they could want and a swimming pool for Derry,

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but all that space can be pricey and would be a stretch on only one salary.

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But there are other, more affordable areas

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which would give Simon only a short commute to work.

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More rural suburbs could give

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Simon and Laurie the village feel of their childhoods.

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Pimpama is 15 minutes from the coast

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and would mean a longer commute for Simon, but a home like this

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would give them the outdoor space they'd like for Derry.

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If it's life on the coast they want,

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then living in the heart of surfers' paradise could be for them.

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This two-bedroom flat is only minutes from the beach

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but its prime location does come at a cost.

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Average flat prices start around £220,000,

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so it could be a push for them with Laurie not working.

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They may need to look further afield.

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The Gold Coast has some wonderful places to live,

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but property prices there, like everywhere, have boomed in recent years.

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And, on their limited budget, Simon and Laurie will have to shop around

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to find a home they can afford with the space they want.

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They're going to start their search in the suburbs,

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with this house located in Nerang 15 minutes from the beach.

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Welcome to Nerang. Alex Hayes.

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Property one has three bedrooms, one bathroom and a small garden.

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It's part of a residential complex and comes with access to communal facilities.

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Nice and bright and airy in here, isn't it?

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Yeah, it is.

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It's on the market for upwards of £150,000.

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That's right on Simon and Laurie's projected budget, but will it

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set their imaginations alight?

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Not our choice of kitchen, but it's still a nice workable space.

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We would need to change it, but it's liveable. It's liveable.

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Yeah, it is.

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The house has to be more than just "liveable" if Laurie's going to even think about

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leaving her home and family behind.

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-Maybe the upstairs will be more inspirational.

-This looks like

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your master bedroom, and it's got an en suite which also is...

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Main bathroom. Definitely a nice workable space.

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Needs a little TLC, doesn't it?

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-Yeah.

-It's a good size for a bathroom,

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-but it's...

-Needs new...

-It needs replacing, doesn't it?

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-Yeah.

-Things aren't living up to Simon's hopes, but Laurie's putting on a brave face.

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Is there any chance the garden can win them over?

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It's quite small. I'm assuming that that's next door, so you've got just there to there.

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Yeah, it's, um...

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-not very private. A lot smaller than what we've got, isn't it?

-It is, yeah. It is.

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This is all they can afford, so they're going to have to stretch their budget

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if they want to find a home to make such a huge move a real possibility, so it's back on the road.

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-Bye.

-Thank you. Bye-bye.

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Simon and Laurie are going to have to take a long hard look at their finances if they are

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to afford a property with a garden big enough for Derry to play in,

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but, for now, he's off to the babysitter

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while Simon and Laurie have a proper snoop around the next house.

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Property two is a three-bedroom house in the more up-market area of Pacific Pines.

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Like the first house, it's part of a residential complex and comes with access to a tennis court and a gym,

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but it also comes with

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a higher price tag of around £180,000.

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That's 30,000 over-budget.

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-It's quite nice.

-Nice and modern, isn't it?

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Yeah.

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-Nice tiled floor.

-Yeah.

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Makes it feel really airy.

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That's a nice kitchen. It's modern as well.

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-Yeah.

-I like the colours, lovely back splash. I like the black tiles.

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-Yeah.

-This is more positive, but is there enough space outside?

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That's nice.

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Yeah, pretty. It's a bit small.

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There's not much space for Derry to run around in, is there?

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Well, no, not really.

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You could do away with the table and have a smaller table.

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But it's not much room for him to run around.

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-No, no.

-Although I like that it's private.

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Well, that's a bit of an improvement, and the three bedrooms

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upstairs are much more impressive than the first house,

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but if Simon can't find a job that pays as much as he hopes, they just won't be able to afford it.

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-Oh, a walk-in wardrobe!

-Yeah.

-Nice.

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-You're happy.

-Yeah!

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I like the dual aspect.

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Yeah, it's nice. Nice outlook as well.

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-However, I think that might be a road right behind.

-Yeah, it sounds like it.

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For Laurie, traffic seems to be a recurring theme.

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Unfortunately it's at the level that your bedroom's at, which is a bit of a downside, I guess.

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Yeah, but we've got the noise at home, haven't we? And we're on the road side as well.

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-Still, it will be noisy, I think.

-Yeah.

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Another no for Laurie.

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Is Simon's dream slipping away?

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The first house we saw wasn't for us, didn't give me

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any inclination to say, "I'd prefer to live in Australia to the UK,"

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whereas this second house here is a lot nicer, a lot more the sort of thing that we'd be looking for.

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However, for the price, I don't know whether it's better than the UK because, if you're spending this kind

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of money on a property in the UK, you might get more for your money.

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I think Laurie's a bit surprised about what you get for your money.

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I think anything bigger than our house is a bonus in my eyes.

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Optimistic Simon has his work cut out to completely convince Laurie,

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but he thinks his earning potential could be greater in Australia, allowing them to afford

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a bigger mortgage, but it's only worth it for a house they both love.

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-Simon.

-Nice to meet you.

-Hi, Nicola, I'm Laurie.

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Nice to meet you. Come through.

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And that could be where property three comes in.

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Although it's the same price as the last house - £180,000 -

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it's a compromise. There are only two bedrooms

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but it does have the bigger garden they want.

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This is quirky.

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I like it.

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Nice, though. I like the tiles.

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I like it. I like the colour as well.

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It's cream rather than white so it feels a little bit more homely.

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It does, yeah. It's got a lot of light coming through so,

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yes, good first impressions.

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But what about the rest of the house?

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Will it have the space they need?

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I guess this is the master bedroom.

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OK size. Not massively big, is it?

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No, not too bad, but it's got built-in storage on both sides by the looks of it.

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Yeah, but it's a nice room.

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-You could move into it and...

-Yeah.

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-..and use it as it is. You wouldn't have to change anything, would you?

-No.

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It may be a nice room, but does the house have enough space for a growing family?

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The garage.

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You could convert this into another bedroom, really.

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-It looks like it was a room, doesn't it?

-Yeah.

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It's got the coving and the painted walls etc.

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-Shall we view the garden?

-Yeah.

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Well, that's a possible solution to the bedroom space, but making the garden bigger is slightly harder.

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Lack of outdoor space has been the deal-breaker twice already.

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Look at that tree! It's really tall.

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-Good size.

-Mmm.

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I think this is more the sort of thing we'd be looking for.

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-Yeah, definitely.

-I like this.

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After three houses, are they impressed by what they've seen?

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The first house was right on budget,

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but it was tired and the garden was tiny.

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Property two was modern, airy and much more to their taste

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but its price, together with the busy road, ruled it out.

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And finally, the last house was just as expensive

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and only had two bedrooms, but it had a bigger garden and a garage

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which could be converted into a third bedroom.

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So will they choose Aussie homes or side with the UK?

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We're going to vote for...

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-Not sure.

-Not sure.

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It's been a bit of a varied day, hasn't it?

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-I need to see more properties like this...

-I think I agree with that.

0:19:490:19:52

..to be able to make my mind up.

0:19:520:19:54

I can't go just on this property.

0:19:540:19:56

I need to see more of these properties to make my mind up.

0:19:560:19:59

-I agree.

-I'm very picky.

0:19:590:20:02

That's an understatement!

0:20:020:20:04

I think if you come to Australia expecting to get a lot more for your money than you can afford,

0:20:070:20:12

you're going to be significantly disappointed.

0:20:120:20:15

Properties are more expensive than I think people expect them to be, but as long as you're

0:20:150:20:19

mindful of that, then you're not going to come here and be completely disappointed in what you can afford.

0:20:190:20:24

It is difficult for us to get a three-bedroom house here in Australia

0:20:240:20:29

for the money that we can afford, but hopefully we'll be able to afford a bit more if the job

0:20:290:20:35

goes well and I get paid a bit more than I expected to be paid,

0:20:350:20:39

so just keep our eyes open and see what happens.

0:20:390:20:42

With Simon and Laurie unsure about property, it looks like HIS Australian dream is slipping away.

0:20:440:20:52

Simon knows he'll need to get a good job if they're going to afford

0:20:520:20:56

a house they like and if he's going to keep his dream alive.

0:20:560:21:01

Back in the UK, Simon is an experienced

0:21:040:21:08

car mechanic and earns £23,000 a year working for a dealership in his home city of Newport.

0:21:080:21:14

But after seeing the property they can afford in Australia,

0:21:140:21:17

he now knows he must increase his salary if he wants to keep his dream alive.

0:21:170:21:22

Work is really important.

0:21:220:21:25

There is a lot lying on the work

0:21:250:21:27

and I'm hoping that Australia will be able to deliver.

0:21:270:21:30

Simon's piling the pressure on himself. What he thinks

0:21:300:21:34

of his work opportunities will have a dramatic effect

0:21:340:21:37

on their decision of whether or not to move down under,

0:21:370:21:41

and ultimately the future happiness of Laurie and baby Derry.

0:21:410:21:44

The salary will be the most important thing,

0:21:440:21:47

but I think equally he needs to know that

0:21:470:21:49

he can feel comfortable working here

0:21:490:21:51

and that he can have better prospects here in the future,

0:21:510:21:54

and know that it's going to be right for us as a family.

0:21:540:21:56

I think he is a little bit apprehensive about that at the moment.

0:21:560:22:00

We've arranged for him to spend a day at Mike Smith's garage

0:22:020:22:06

to see what he makes of Aussie working practices.

0:22:060:22:09

-Hi, Simon, I'm Mike.

-Hi, Mike.

0:22:090:22:10

Pleased to meet you. Come in. We've got some work for you.

0:22:100:22:13

Will it offer him the prospects that he wants so badly?

0:22:130:22:16

-Got a nice Australian car for you to work on.

-Oh, brilliant.

0:22:160:22:20

Simon, we're going to do a basic service

0:22:200:22:21

and a safety check on this vehicle, so I'll get you set up, get started and get it up in the air.

0:22:210:22:27

We have to pull it back a little bit to get it

0:22:270:22:29

into some sort of position.

0:22:290:22:31

Simon needs to test out whether working in Australia is for him.

0:22:310:22:37

Ha, got you!

0:22:370:22:39

They always do.

0:22:390:22:40

Tip it up vertically and then just pull it through the hole.

0:22:440:22:47

The aim is to try and keep yourself clean.

0:22:470:22:50

I'll leave you to finish this off.

0:22:500:22:52

Check the brakes, look at the suspension, give the exhaust a rattle, see if there's any

0:22:520:22:58

loose catalytic converter or anything,

0:22:580:23:00

and I'll leave it with you and go and get this filter for you.

0:23:000:23:03

OK, brilliant.

0:23:030:23:05

This is his one chance to find out if his skills match up to those

0:23:050:23:08

needed in Australia and see whether he can earn enough money to afford the life he wants for his family.

0:23:080:23:15

Yeah, he seems to have the skill set.

0:23:150:23:18

It'll be interesting to see how he goes with some of the vehicles we have that he's never seen before,

0:23:180:23:23

but a car's a car underneath it all so...

0:23:230:23:27

He strikes me as a nice guy.

0:23:270:23:29

I'd like to see what he's like when he comes out of his shell.

0:23:290:23:33

If they make the move, Simon will be the sole wage earner for the first few years at least.

0:23:330:23:38

Laurie will be looking after Derry.

0:23:380:23:40

She'll be away from her support network, which could be very isolating,

0:23:400:23:45

so she's come along to the local mother-and-baby group

0:23:450:23:49

to find out more about raising children on the Gold Coast.

0:23:490:23:51

-Hi, I'm Laurie. How are you?

-Good.

-Good, good.

-Come and join in.

0:23:530:23:58

Come and just introduce yourself to everyone as you go.

0:23:580:24:01

This is Carrie and Ava.

0:24:010:24:03

-Hi, Carrie.

-Hi, how are you going?

0:24:030:24:05

-I'm good. You?

-Good, thanks.

-This is Ava?

-Ava, yeah.

0:24:050:24:08

-Hold old is she?

-She's 19 months.

0:24:080:24:11

The Gold Coast has a high transient population made up of immigrants from outside Australia and Aussies

0:24:110:24:18

in search of a better life, so groups like this

0:24:180:24:22

are essential to fill the void left when friends and family are so far away.

0:24:220:24:27

So you're thinking of moving to here?

0:24:270:24:30

-Yes.

-To this part, to Labrador or...?

0:24:300:24:32

Not necessarily this particular spot, but the Gold Coast.

0:24:320:24:35

We're still quite open-minded at the moment.

0:24:350:24:37

-Originally it was the Brisbane area, but...

-The beach is nice.

0:24:370:24:41

Yeah.

0:24:410:24:43

Back over at the garage, Simon's coming to the end of his service.

0:24:460:24:51

-Leave it where it is for now.

-OK.

-Let's go and have a chat.

0:24:510:24:54

But he's not finished yet. There are some important questions to answer.

0:24:540:24:59

-What did you think?

-I enjoyed that.

-Yeah?

0:25:000:25:03

It was good, yeah. At the end of the day, a car's a car.

0:25:030:25:05

-They all look the same from underneath so...

-Yeah, they do.

0:25:050:25:08

-That's true.

-It seems you work the same systems as we do in the UK.

0:25:080:25:12

At the end of the day, it's pretty much the same.

0:25:120:25:14

More diesels over there, though.

0:25:140:25:16

There are. We do quite a lot of diesel management.

0:25:160:25:19

-We're just getting into that here.

-Yeah.

0:25:190:25:21

It seems a lot more laid-back here in Australia compared to the UK. The UK's just go, go, go, constantly.

0:25:210:25:26

-We have sunshine.

-Yeah.

0:25:260:25:30

It may be more laid-back in Australia, but if Simon

0:25:300:25:33

can't increase his salary, his hopes of a move will remain a very distant dream.

0:25:330:25:39

It's time to get down to the nitty-gritty.

0:25:390:25:41

How much would I be expected to earn here?

0:25:410:25:45

How much do you anticipate that you would want to be paid?

0:25:450:25:48

Well, I haven't really got a ball-park figure, but I've done a lot of research in the area,

0:25:500:25:56

-and I'd probably like it to be around 50,000.

-Mmm.

0:25:560:26:00

So that's probably what I'd be looking for.

0:26:000:26:02

That's a pay rise of around £7,000, but has he got the experience to command this salary?

0:26:020:26:09

You might get 50,000 if you had a lot of breadth in your experience.

0:26:090:26:14

My tradesmen here, I've got one guy who does both electrical

0:26:140:26:18

and mechanical and he's earning 52,000, which is about £30,000.

0:26:180:26:23

But he can swing from one side of a job to another which is really handy.

0:26:230:26:26

How much electrical experience have you got?

0:26:260:26:28

-I do more electrical than mechanical.

-That could be handy.

0:26:280:26:31

It really is quite handy in this shop because we do both sides in here.

0:26:310:26:35

That's what I was hoping to achieve,

0:26:350:26:38

so that sounds all good.

0:26:380:26:41

-Do you have any more questions, Simon?

-No.

0:26:410:26:43

-OK. Go downstairs and finish that car.

-Brilliant. Cheers.

-All right.

0:26:430:26:46

Well, that's encouraging news on a potential salary,

0:26:480:26:50

but what does Mike think about Simon's chances of getting work?

0:26:500:26:55

I think he'll fit in OK.

0:26:550:26:57

He brings a new skill set into the workshop.

0:26:570:27:00

We don't have a lot of experience with diesel

0:27:000:27:03

so I think he'd be good.

0:27:030:27:05

Mike seems confident about Simon's prospects, but is it what Simon wants?

0:27:050:27:10

The work here is pretty much the same as what it is in the UK, the hours are the same.

0:27:100:27:14

The big bonus is the wages are a lot more so, with this in mind, I'm going to vote for...

0:27:140:27:20

-Australia.

-Simon's convinced the work is for him, but there are many

0:27:220:27:26

more challenges in the week ahead, and his dream of a new life is far from secure.

0:27:260:27:32

Back in the UK, Simon and Laurie live in a two-bedroom modern home in Newport.

0:27:370:27:43

They bought it in 2007 for £111,000

0:27:430:27:46

and have spent £5,000 making it their own.

0:27:460:27:51

Laurie's worked as an estate agent and so is confident

0:27:510:27:54

she's on the money with her valuation of around £115,000.

0:27:540:27:59

But with the high cost of property, can Simon and Laurie afford to make the move.

0:27:590:28:05

It's time to take a close look at their finances.

0:28:050:28:08

So we've sent some local agents round to give us their opinion.

0:28:080:28:15

Is Laurie in for a shock?

0:28:150:28:17

This is a very modern kitchen. It has all of the necessary appliances

0:28:200:28:25

and would be ideally-suited to a young couple or first-time buyer.

0:28:250:28:30

A good-sized double bedroom,

0:28:340:28:36

twin aspect,

0:28:360:28:38

nice and light and bright.

0:28:380:28:41

The second bedroom, a good-sized double. Very nice for a second bedroom.

0:28:440:28:47

Good condition. Very nice.

0:28:470:28:50

This is a mid-link terraced house which is ideal for the first-time buyer or single purchaser.

0:28:520:28:58

I would value this property at £120,000

0:28:580:29:01

although, for a quick sale, I would sell it at £110,000.

0:29:010:29:05

I'm not surprised at that, really.

0:29:050:29:07

-It's about smack on what you said.

-Yeah, I'm not surprised.

0:29:070:29:10

The plus points, it's in very good condition, the kitchen and the bathroom, the size of the garden.

0:29:100:29:15

A couple of minus points, perhaps the lack of double glazing

0:29:150:29:18

and perhaps the approach to the property.

0:29:180:29:21

I would put the property on the market at £115,000,

0:29:210:29:24

expecting to achieve £110,000.

0:29:240:29:25

For a quick sale, though,

0:29:250:29:27

you might have to come down to £105,000.

0:29:270:29:31

I think 105 is silly-low, but that's... You know,

0:29:310:29:36

a house is only worth what anyone's prepared to pay for it and, of all people, I should know that.

0:29:360:29:41

But I think, realistically, 110-115 is what we'd said, really, wasn't it?

0:29:410:29:46

-Yeah, yeah.

-So, yeah...

0:29:460:29:49

Well, at least there are no surprises with the value

0:29:490:29:52

of their home, but it does mean they could lose money on a quick sale, so can they really afford to move?

0:29:520:29:58

We've prepared a breakdown of their everyday living costs in Australia

0:29:580:30:02

to see if they can really pay for the life they want.

0:30:020:30:06

So you've got

0:30:080:30:11

the main income

0:30:110:30:13

in the UK which is before tax, so we're looking at a salary of £8,000 more if you were living in Australia.

0:30:130:30:21

Your council tax

0:30:210:30:24

is more again, so you're down £77 again.

0:30:240:30:29

Phone and internet... it's £25 at home, £60 here a month.

0:30:290:30:34

That's a lot of money.

0:30:340:30:36

What about the shopping list?

0:30:360:30:38

It's interesting to know what things are going to cost us.

0:30:380:30:41

It's an extra £88 a month,

0:30:410:30:44

so that's an extra... say £1,000 per year.

0:30:440:30:50

I think we knew that the cost of living here was going to be slightly higher.

0:30:500:30:54

The properties. Right, OK.

0:30:540:30:57

Mortgage is...

0:30:570:30:58

It's going to be substantially higher.

0:30:580:31:01

If you're comparing it with what our outgoings are currently,

0:31:010:31:04

-it's a bit of a shock to the system, isn't it?

-Yeah.

0:31:040:31:07

Looking at the total outgoings, um...

0:31:070:31:11

per month, there's a huge difference.

0:31:110:31:13

I think that we'd be £2,500 worse-off living in Australia.

0:31:130:31:20

-Yeah.

-So there's a lot less money spare for...

0:31:200:31:23

To be honest, this was one of my main concerns,

0:31:230:31:25

the financial side of it, because if that didn't stack up, all the rest of it is just a waste of time.

0:31:250:31:32

If Simon can't overcome his financial worries, his dream of a new life in Australia could be over.

0:31:320:31:39

It's time to find out.

0:31:390:31:42

-Australia.

-Not sure.

0:31:420:31:44

I thought you'd go for that.

0:31:460:31:48

-Did you?

-Yeah.

-I thought you'd go for Australia.

0:31:480:31:51

-Yeah.

-I just think I need to have a bit more information to be satisfied in my own head.

0:31:510:31:55

Of course, this is only based on one wage as well.

0:31:550:31:58

Yeah, and based on specifics, isn't it?

0:31:580:32:00

I know you're thinking of going back part-time so that will help

0:32:000:32:03

quite substantially, so it's definitely worth considering.

0:32:030:32:08

Mmm, yeah.

0:32:080:32:09

Simon is happy that the figures add up,

0:32:150:32:18

but Laurie still has serious doubts.

0:32:180:32:22

He knows the way to win her over is to convince her that Australia will give Derry a better life.

0:32:220:32:29

Simon and Laurie have come to Broadwater to hook up with Skye,

0:32:320:32:36

one of the women from the mother-and-baby group,

0:32:360:32:40

husband Nick and their two young children Oscar and Noah.

0:32:400:32:43

-Hiya.

-Hi, how are you going?

-Hiya, all right?

0:32:430:32:47

Skye and Nick spent three and a half years in London away from loved ones, so know exactly

0:32:470:32:53

the heartache that lies in store for our family IF they move.

0:32:530:32:56

-Do you want me to take Derry over to play with Noah?

-Yes, please.

0:32:560:32:59

Yeah, that would be great. Cheers.

0:32:590:33:01

I'm still a little bit unsure about making the move here.

0:33:040:33:08

Tell me what the really good thing about living here is for me, for Simon, for us as a family.

0:33:080:33:13

Sure. It is a big decision, to move your family from the other side

0:33:130:33:18

of the world, but Australia's a fantastic country for a young family like yourselves.

0:33:180:33:22

We decided to move to this specific spot because it does allow us to have more family time.

0:33:220:33:29

When we lived in London, we were always running, we were always busy, busy,

0:33:290:33:36

and I think here we can take time out for our family.

0:33:360:33:39

And there's so many things to do, that are pretty much free, on our doorstep.

0:33:390:33:43

So, knowing all that Australia can offer Derry and Simon,

0:33:430:33:49

will Laurie bring herself to leave the UK behind?

0:33:490:33:51

It's a long way to live from your families.

0:33:510:33:53

How do you feel about that?

0:33:530:33:56

It's my biggest reservation about moving here.

0:33:560:33:59

One, I'll miss them, obviously, and they'll miss us.

0:33:590:34:02

But I kind of have a guilty feeling about taking Derry away from them.

0:34:020:34:07

I'd love him to have this lifestyle

0:34:070:34:09

over here, which is one of our main reasons for moving here,

0:34:090:34:13

I feel like I'm taking him away from his family.

0:34:130:34:16

If they did make the move, there's a very real risk

0:34:160:34:19

Derry could grow up never forming that special bond with his grandparents

0:34:190:34:23

if he only sees them once a year.

0:34:230:34:25

Soon Laurie and Simon will have to face hearing from loved ones back at home,

0:34:270:34:31

but, for now, how will they vote on what life could offer down under?

0:34:310:34:36

We're voting for...

0:34:360:34:39

-Australia.

-Australia.

0:34:410:34:44

-I knew you'd go for Australia.

-Yeah, on this, definitely.

0:34:460:34:49

Yeah, the lifestyle and the social life here, yeah.

0:34:490:34:52

Yeah, I think we'd fit in quite easily.

0:34:520:34:55

Yeah, I think they're so friendly, I don't think we'll have a problem fitting in here.

0:34:550:34:59

I think, when you came back from the baby group,

0:34:590:35:01

-you were...

-Really positive.

0:35:010:35:03

I think, if I hadn't met Skye at the baby group, and then obviously seeing Skye and Nick's two boys again today,

0:35:030:35:10

really just sort of backed it up.

0:35:100:35:11

Yeah. I'm glad that you've made that right choice.

0:35:110:35:17

-Only one of them, though.

-Yeah.

0:35:170:35:19

Despite that positive vote, Laurie's time in Australia has left her

0:35:240:35:29

with more questions than answers, and from the start, her biggest worry has been the wrench

0:35:290:35:35

of leaving her family,

0:35:350:35:38

so will reminders from home be the final nail in the coffin of Simon's dream?

0:35:380:35:45

We've prepared a DVD of messages from friends and family back home.

0:35:450:35:50

Hello, Laurie.

0:35:500:35:52

Hello, Simon, and Derry of course.

0:35:520:35:54

Hi, Sime. Hi, Laurie, Derry.

0:35:540:35:57

Our Simon, he's a gentle giant.

0:35:570:35:59

He's quite quiet, really, isn't he?

0:35:590:36:03

-He's quiet.

-Yeah. Wicked sense of humour.

0:36:030:36:06

He's just a really, really nice guy.

0:36:060:36:08

You know, he's somebody that you're proud of.

0:36:080:36:11

Simon's a good, loyal friend.

0:36:110:36:14

If Simon moved,

0:36:140:36:15

I'd probably miss our Sunday chats.

0:36:150:36:17

We want to know how the weekend's been,

0:36:170:36:19

the week's been and what we're looking forward to Monday to Friday.

0:36:190:36:24

Yeah, I would miss that, the chats.

0:36:240:36:25

Plus he's my personal mechanic so, if anything goes wrong with my car, who's going to fix it?

0:36:250:36:30

Laurie's full of life,

0:36:300:36:32

full of personality, very chatty,

0:36:320:36:36

very, very close to us as well.

0:36:360:36:39

Obviously, as parents of Laurie and grandparents of Derry,

0:36:390:36:45

you know, we're not quite so happy because we would really, really, really miss them if they did go.

0:36:450:36:51

For us, seeing them suddenly move on and going to Australia would be devastating.

0:36:510:36:56

I can't really explain how it's made me feel. It's been hard going.

0:36:560:37:02

We don't want to use any sort of emotional blackmail.

0:37:020:37:04

I think it's unfair. I think...

0:37:040:37:07

We say we don't want to, but I think, being emotional anyway, it is going to do that.

0:37:070:37:12

I think we've made our position quite clear, but, at the end of the day, they have to make up their own minds.

0:37:120:37:17

Seeing Derry grow up, missing out on Christmases and birthdays,

0:37:170:37:22

and just doing things like taking him to the park or babysitting, you know?

0:37:220:37:27

That's what I'll personally miss.

0:37:270:37:31

It's not our right to have those opportunities, but it's something

0:37:310:37:34

you perceive that will happen, and if that's taken away,

0:37:340:37:38

you then have to redress it, what would I do?

0:37:380:37:41

And we'll just miss so much.

0:37:410:37:43

We'd like you to think seriously about whether you move to Australia,

0:37:430:37:47

more from a selfish point of view than from anything else.

0:37:470:37:51

But it's got to be the right move for all of you as a family.

0:37:510:37:54

We fully understand

0:37:540:37:57

that it's perhaps a fantastic opportunity to experience Australia,

0:37:570:38:03

but we would really, really, really miss you if you did go.

0:38:030:38:08

We can't stand in your way, but we'll cut to the chase and say that's how we feel.

0:38:080:38:12

If they say, when they've come back, "Oh, actually, we've decided we are going to go, it is for us,"

0:38:120:38:18

then obviously we would have to

0:38:180:38:20

dig deep and say, "OK, fine, they need to go and experience it."

0:38:200:38:26

I didn't realise your mum was...

0:38:290:38:32

They've hidden that well, haven't they?

0:38:320:38:34

Yeah, I didn't realise quite how upset they were

0:38:340:38:38

about it. They certainly haven't let on.

0:38:380:38:41

Both of our parents made it clear what decision they'd want us to take,

0:38:410:38:46

but we shouldn't lead our life through our parents.

0:38:460:38:49

Can you see how hard it would be for me to make a decision? Because...

0:38:490:38:53

..whatever decision I make,

0:38:550:38:57

-I'm upsetting somebody.

-Yeah, yeah.

0:38:570:39:00

And they're the people closest to me.

0:39:000:39:02

I can understand how hard it will be for you, so I'll be behind you 100% whatever you decide.

0:39:020:39:10

Albeit upset?

0:39:100:39:13

Albeit upset? Well, yeah, I probably will be, you know, cos it's my dream.

0:39:130:39:18

My main concern still is leaving my family behind and the fact that they won't be able to see Derry grow up.

0:39:200:39:28

I know they'll be able to see him.

0:39:280:39:30

I'll still speak to them all the time.

0:39:300:39:32

Nothing would change on the fact that I would still speak to my mum all the time, my family,

0:39:320:39:36

but leaving them behind in the UK and not being able to pop in the car to see them, I think is still an issue.

0:39:360:39:43

I don't know how I'm going to get past that, if I'm honest.

0:39:430:39:46

I think one of us isn't going to get what we want.

0:39:460:39:50

I'm not too sure how I'd feel if she did say no.

0:39:500:39:52

So smiley!

0:39:520:39:54

It's been a challenging week for Simon and Laurie, and while Simon

0:39:540:39:58

has remained positive, Laurie's played her cards very close to her chest.

0:39:580:40:04

So, as the final vote approaches, will her decision be any clearer?

0:40:040:40:10

Australia has been everything Simon hoped for.

0:40:170:40:21

My tradesmen here, I've got one guy and he's earning 50,000.

0:40:210:40:24

Yeah, that's what I was hoping to achieve.

0:40:240:40:27

But Laurie still has her doubts.

0:40:270:40:30

I think there are lovely things for life,

0:40:300:40:32

especially for outdoor activities, for a better lifestyle, but I haven't...

0:40:320:40:36

If I'm quite honest, so far nothing has really

0:40:360:40:38

given me that pull yet and I don't know whether I'm going to get it.

0:40:380:40:43

If Laurie's not happy, it's going to be a big issue.

0:40:430:40:47

Laurie loved the mother-and-baby group, but she wasn't sold

0:40:470:40:50

on properties and worried about the cost of a new life in Australia.

0:40:500:40:55

I think if you come to Australia expecting to get a lot more for your money than you can afford,

0:40:550:41:00

you're going to be significantly disappointed.

0:41:000:41:02

Properties are a lot more expensive than I think people expect them to be.

0:41:020:41:05

And it was always going to be a heart-wrenching decision.

0:41:050:41:09

We don't want to use any sort of emotional blackmail.

0:41:090:41:12

I think that's unfair.

0:41:120:41:13

We say we don't want to, but I think, being emotional anyway, it is going to do that.

0:41:130:41:19

I feel very torn between my family at home and Simon, and what would be the right thing to do.

0:41:190:41:25

Either way, I'm upsetting somebody close to me and I don't know what to do about that.

0:41:250:41:29

-Can you see how hard it would be for me to make a decision?

-Mmm.

0:41:290:41:34

So has Laurie been won over by the benefits of a life down under

0:41:340:41:37

or is Simon's dream about to be shattered?

0:41:370:41:42

How will they vote?

0:41:430:41:46

We've thoroughly enjoyed being in Australia.

0:41:460:41:48

It's totally lived up to our expectations and it's been a brilliant trip.

0:41:480:41:52

We got to meet people that we wouldn't have met had we not been on this trip, we got to see things,

0:41:520:41:56

find out information about the place that we wouldn't have been able to find out ourselves.

0:41:560:42:01

With this in mind...

0:42:010:42:03

we're going to vote for...

0:42:050:42:07

Australia.

0:42:100:42:12

Not sure.

0:42:120:42:14

-I knew you'd go "not sure".

-Did you?

0:42:140:42:17

Yeah. There's too much doubt in your mind.

0:42:170:42:21

-You've been not sure on quite a few things.

-Yeah.

0:42:210:42:24

I think the reality of the financial side of things is my concern, and the properties that we've seen

0:42:240:42:31

aren't necessarily quite what we're looking for.

0:42:310:42:34

Yeah, we need to find out a few more things

0:42:340:42:36

and do a bit more research, I think, and take it from there.

0:42:360:42:40

-Sure. Yeah. I agree.

-Good.

0:42:400:42:42

It looks like Simon's hopes of a new life down under are over, at least for now.

0:42:460:42:52

Maybe, in time, he'll be able to persuade Laurie that their future really does lie in Australia.

0:42:520:43:00

Join us next time and find out whether another British family

0:43:000:43:05

can bring themselves to make the move where they're wanted down under.

0:43:050:43:09

Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd

0:43:190:43:22

E-mail s[email protected]

0:43:220:43:25

A young family from South Wales have a week to find out if life can be better for them in Australia. Car mechanic Simon Nowell dreams of a new life down under, but his fiancee Laurie's doubts are holding them back. Whilst staying in Brisbane they look for work and a home, and try to find a lifestyle to make the move worth the pain of leaving close family behind.


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