Tips for Getting Financially Set Up in Australia

Updated 2010-09-27 13:22

Moving to a new country can be a frightening prospect, but also a wonderful financial opportunity if it is done correctly. While immigrating to a new country can be costly, if you are aware of the financial rules, regulations, and expectations of the country to which you are moving, you can save yourself a lot of money. The following are a few financial aspects that might be important to consider when getting financially set up in Australia.

Migration Costs: Airfare, transportation, hotel expenses while you are getting relocated, transporting your belongings, and the cost of a Visa or migrant application fees can add up quick, easily ranging into the thousands or tens of thousands of dollars (AU) per person! Visit the Australian Government's Department of Immigration and Citizenship to get a better idea of what costs you might encounter during your move to the country.

Exchanging Money: When moving between countries, one of the most important aspects to consider in your move could be exchange rates. What the rate is when you make your move as well as how much it costs in fees to exchange money once you are situated can make a significant difference in your finances. Therefore, when you make your move to Australia, you might want to watch exchange rates closely and check fees at ATM machines, banks or other financial institutions before converting your money.

Health System: Knowing and understanding the rules, laws, and policies of the Australian health system could end up saving you a lot of money as well as time and trouble. The Australian health system could vary vastly from the country in which you lived previously. A combination of private sector and government services, to learn more about Australia's health system, click here.

Bank Accounts: Probably just as in the country where you're from, there will be a variety of banking options from which to choose when you are getting financially set up in Australia. Most of the differences are nomenclature. However, do your due diligence when it comes to finding a new bank account to handle your money. One of the things Australians are slowly catching onto is that they can compare bank accounts and credit cards from many banks on one of the comparison websites.


Tax Laws: Knowing and understanding Australia's tax code can be good way to avoid issues before you must lodge a tax return. You can visit to learn more about Australia's tax laws and requirements.

Tax File Number: While you're visiting the government tax website, you might also want to apply for your tax file number. This number is necessary if you are planning to work during your time in Australia. You can select from categories such as 'Australian resident', 'Migrant or visitor', 'Business entity', and others depending upon your status and tax needs.

Real Estate: Coming to a new county, you'll likely want to seek out professionals who understand the laws, housing market, and proper negotiation techniques when searching for a new home. This can help you better protect yourself from scams, over-paying, or being taken advantage of during the home purchase process.

Talk to People: When you come to a new country like Australia, you can't necessarily assume things are done here like they were at home. That is why is can be important to ask questions if you aren't sure about something, and if you don't get an answer you're comfortable with or don't understand, then you should probably ask it again. The more people you talk to, the more you can learn and the more viewpoints, perspectives, and advice you can get on a variety of financial situations.

Give Yourself Time: Rushing through your financial adjustment to living in Australia can lead to mistakes, and mistakes when it comes to your finances can be costly. More than likely you're going to be converting prices back into your native UK Pounds, US Dollars or Euros etc for a long time until you figure out what is value for money in Australian Dollars. While you don't want to drag your feet when it comes to getting adjusted financially, giving yourself enough time to explore options and research your new surroundings can help you avoid making the wrong decisions regarding your money.

Create a Budget: Creating a budget for your new financial situation can be good practice for finding out how much things cost, doing comparisons to what things cost versus what they were at home, and getting used to the conversion rate. Getting adjusted to living in any new country will likely take some time. It can be important to your transition to the Australian lifestyle that you don't become overly-frustrated and make hasty or uninformed decisions that you might regret later. Talking to people, seeking out numerous opinions, and doing research before making pertinent financial decisions can make your transition less risky for your personal financial situation.

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