Mobile creates successful relocations for expats coming to New Zealand. In this article our expert Resettlement Advisors, Helen, Lesley and Raewyn share their must-know tips for people moving to Auckland for the Americas Cup campaign.
Finding a home
Auckland has some beautiful real estate – think the hills of San Francisco but warmer! It’s a competitive market though, because Kiwis tend to live in their houses rather than renting them out. Local property website, Trade Me, provides an overview of what’s available. Although many of the best places are snapped up well before going online.
How realtors operate
Goodwins, Barfoot and Thompson, Ray White and Bayleys are all reputable property management companies with good books of listings. However, our international clients are often surprised to find that NZ property agents show you only the properties they are letting or managing. And these may be dispersed throughout the city. Viewings can be at set times and you’ll need to drive yourself between appointments.
Where to live
Americas Cup families love the inner-city suburbs like Herne Bay, Freemans Bay and Ponsonby with their upmarket housing and vibrant local shopping/eating precincts. All within a few minutes’ drive of Syndicate bases. Yes, Auckland does have a traffic problem. But if you’re prepared to work around that, there are other lesser-known suburbs that offer great lifestyle too – the bays of St Heliers and Kohimarama and further afield to East Coast Bays or out to Howick and even Whitford for amazing country lifestyle properties popular with families.
Where you live in Auckland determines which school your kids can attend. Learning about the local public schools is a key part of choosing a house. Private schools aren’t zoned. If you’re happy to pay, and meet the entry requirements, this provides more flexibility. Evaluating qualification options is also important, particularly for teenagers. The New Zealand curriculum is highly regarded and recognized internationally but assessing portability is key if your kids are returning to another school system after the Cup finishes.
How can a Mobile expat onboarding programme help?
· Tailored solutions not data overload. Everyone has a list of burning questions when moving to a new city or country. You and your family need specific information and connections with the right people. Our Advisors will provide this, not pages of generic material.
· Finding a home. Working with a Resettlement Advisor is far more efficient. She will curate a list of properties that meet your brief, then take you to view them all, including homes that have not yet been advertised on the open market. And because we don’t take commission from agents, we’re on your team. Our Advisors share their unbiased property and local knowledge about which home and suburb suits your family best.
· Choosing the right school/preschool. We’ll help you understand the educational options and how they relate to where you’ve come from. Your Advisor will develop a shortlist with you, then organise visits and interviews, ensuring you make an informed decision and guiding you through the enrolment process.
· Re-launching Spouse Careers. Mobile provides specialist coaching for spouses to continue their existing careers in New Zealand. Or re-evaluate their working lives and explore new options.
· Linking to new friends and communities. Loss of personal networks is a problem for people moving to NZ - 65% of expats struggle with this according to research. Our Advisors understand. Like you, they’ve all experienced living outside their home country. They will introduce you to people who live locally and share your interests – be it babygroups, cycling clubs or crafts. Plus, we’ll give you the opportunity to be involved in ongoing support and networking through Mobile’s regular social events with locals and expats.
· Getting essential services up and running. Newcomers can underestimate the time it takes to set up bank accounts, mobile phone accounts and tax (IRD) numbers, doctor registrations – things people take for granted in their home country. Mobile will help you understand what needs to be done, select providers and get the process started well before you arrive.
Wouldn’t it be great if we could work together to make the America’s Cup Campaign an amazing relocation experience for you and your family? Click here to learn more.
By sharing our knowledge through this blog we hope to help newcomers prepare and accelerate their adjustment to life in NZ.
Mobile designs and delivers expat onboarding programmes – finding housing and schooling, community connection, cultural awareness training, coaching, spousal support. We get expats (and their families) settled and focused on their new jobs and lives. Mobile’s mission is to connect newcomers with what they need to thrive in New Zealand.
Note: I don’t have commercial relationships or take commission from any of the organisations mentioned in this article. So you can be assured that the advice is impartial and based on the experience of Mobile’s team and our expat and migrant clients.