Moving to Melbourne: Tips and Tricks for Moving to Melbourne
With permanent AFL fever, a year-round festival calendar, art exhibitions and a world-renowned dining scene, Melbourne is a city with something to offer everyone.
Plus, if you’re a coffee fan, moving to Melbourne might just be the best thing you’ll ever do. Here are some tips and tricks to help you start the ball rolling towards your big move to the big M. (No one calls it that, fyi)
Finding a Home in Melbourne
Like most Australian cities, the closer you live to the CBD the pricier – and usually smaller – your home will be.
The beauty of moving to Melbourne is that many suburbs fairly close to the CBD are like miniature cities within themselves. You might even find yourself a backyard, or a decent-sized apartment for an affordable price.
Renting in Melbourne
According to Domain, the median rental price for houses is $430 per week, while units come in at about $410 per week. However, houses within the city boundaries are closer to $600 a week.
Competition for good rentals can be fierce, so it’s always best to get in quick and have your applications ready to go at inspections. You also might find it useful to register at local real estate agents in your areas of interest, so they can have your application on file and ready to go.
To save money on rent, there are plenty of options for private rooms, or to find flatmates to help share out the costs. Check out Flatmates and Flatmate Finders. It’s possible (but rare) to find bedrooms in already established houses or units for as little as $150 a week. These sites also advertise student accommodation, to stay with fellow Uni-goers at the cheapest possible rates.
Buying Property in Melbourne
House and unit prices in Melbourne vary widely according to location, however, the median house price as of 2018 is $880,902 and units go for $506,334 on average. Properties are most often sold through real estate agents, either privately or by auction. To get a feel for what’s available, check out realestate.com.au and Domain, both of which tend to offer most listings available.
Melbourne’s most expensive suburbs for property include East Melbourne, Docklands, Toorak, and Brighton. If you’re looking for homes at the cheaper end of the scale, start your search in areas such as Melton, Garfield, Millgrove, Werribee, Footscray, Dallas, and Braybrook.
If you’re hoping to buy a property that will increase in price, you’ll need to do your research. This list of Melbourne suburbs with the largest development pipelines could be a good place to start.
Melbourne Suburb Guides
Finding the right suburb for you in Melbourne shouldn’t be difficult. From cosy inner city pockets full of trendy cafes, to wide, leafy streets with community vibes, there are plenty of areas to choose from when you’re moving to Melbourne.
Moving to Melbourne’s Inner City Suburbs
Melbourne’s inner city suburbs obviously give you easy access to city life. However, they’re also flavoured by unique characteristics, cultural and natural highlights. Here’s a look at some of the most popular, in terms of lifestyle.
Just five kilometres from the CBD, Port Melbourne accommodation is a blend of modern apartments, converted warehouses and Victorian terraces. Residents enjoy salty breezes from the bay, cool pubs and restaurants, plus recreational spots like Kart Raceway and Port Melbourne Cricket Ground.
Melbourne isn’t necessarily known for its beaches, but St Kilda most certainly offers a coastal lifestyle. In fact, it’s generally considered Melbourne’s favourite seaside suburb.
Just six kilometres from the CBD, this trendy shopping and dining hub is home to Luna Park, Art Deco apartment buildings and heritage cottages. Sunday markets, the waterfront promenade and the famous Fitzroy and Acland Streets bring the entertainment. For families, St Kilda Primary School and St Michael’s Grammar School are nearby.
If you really want to be in the heart of the action, East Melbourne is home to the Melbourne Cricket Ground. As if that’s not enough, this is where you’ll find lovely terrace houses and the Fitzroy, Treasury and Parliament Gardens – which are all that separate you from the CBD. You’ll also find the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital and Freemasons Hospital in the area.
Moving to Melbourne’s Outer Suburbs
Melbourne’s outer suburbs are often characterised by tree-lined streets and historic character houses. You won’t miss out on entertainment either, with each one bringing its own form of recreation and a plethora of facilities for singles, couples and families alike.
If you’re looking for quality schools, Bentleigh is a good choice, with McKinnon Secondary College taking a spot in Victoria’s top state schools. Located in the city’s south east, the suburb offers open spaces with a wealth of parks and a family-friendly, relaxed ambience. It’s also near Brighton beach for days by the sea and shopping centres for convenience.
Williamstown is only about a half hour drive from the CBD, but you wouldn’t need to leave if you didn’t want to. With beaches, parklands, schools, shopping precincts and views of the city skyline, it’s a self-contained suburb with something to suit anyone. On top of that, it’s full of maritime history, as Melbourne’s first port.
When you want a residential area with everything you need at your fingertips, Essendon offers more than just the footy team. It’s home to several private schools, including Penleigh and Essendon Grammar.
Victorian and Federation homes dot the landscape, there are the Woodlands and Buckley Parks for picnics, plus shops, cafes and restaurants around Essendon North Village and Essendon Station.
Finding Work in Melbourne
Many a starving artist has fled to Melbourne to make their fortune, so if art is your thing this is the place to be. For everyone else, the city is full of opportunities, within almost any industry you can think of.
Getting Around Melbourne
Trams are an iconic attribute of Melbourne and they’re efficient, practical and cost-effective. Trains and buses also get you around town and into the city outskirts. First up, get yourself a myki card for travel on all public transport.
If you’re tossing up as to whether you should buy a car or not, it pays to think twice. Living near the CBD means parking is hard to find and many apartment blocks and terrace houses don’t provide onsite spots for your wheels.
A great alternative is GoGet, a car share network with over 600 vehicles available. You could get a van, hatchback, people mover, or convertible for a Sunday drive – whatever takes your fancy – without the hassle of ongoing fees and maintenance.
Becoming a local
Now you’re all set for moving to Melbourne, you can start getting excited for the Melbourne Cup, AFL fever, and ridiculously good coffee every morning. Soon you’ll be like every other Melbournian, insist they couldn’t (and wouldn’t!) live anywhere else.