From PROFESSIONAL SERVICES Thinking About A Move To Australia
Brielle Frampton and Howard Smith, Relationship Managers at the
Commonwealth Bank of Australia, describe some key issues to consider
before and after the big move...

Planning ahead

Plan ahead to avoid difficulties with accessing your UK finances from Australia. Contact your UK bank to inform them of your
plans. Ensure you have internet or phone banking access if you are planning on using your UK account while you are in
Australia. Make sure you understand any daily limits your UK bank has on electronic withdrawals.

Try not to use your UK account as your current account in Australia

The international fees for conversion to AUD and withdrawing from international ATMs are quite high, and will all add up.
Australian employers will generally not pay into a UK account, and will require you to hold an Australian account for salary
credit.

Opening an Australian account

Talk to us about opening an account before you move. The Commonwealth Bank of Australia offers a range of services to help
you move your finances to Australia. We can,
• open an account for you before you leave using your current UK address





provide a salary credit letter to give your employer to speed up that all important first salary credit

order a debit mastercard and have it waiting for you to collect from a branch of your choice

transfer your funds over to your new Australian account using competitive commercial rates of exchange.

You can apply online or in person at our UK office, check out www.commbankuk.co.uk

Before relocating

Plan your move by talking to the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC), the Australian State Governments, and
consider using a visa agent to get the best understanding of which visa is suitable for you. Speak to service providers like
shipping companies or relocation agents, to plan costs for moving furniture, cars, and to get an understanding of the costs of
settling in Australia. Shop around to ensure that you are getting the best service for your money.

Buying property in Australia

Generally you’ll need a 20 per cent deposit when buying a house. The process of buying property in Australia is similar to that
in the UK; it all comes down to eligibility, and this is where your Australian mortgage advisor will be able to determine whether
you are eligible or not. Pre-approvals will allow you the ability to bid at auctions or submit an offer to purchase a property with
the confidence of knowing that you have a loan approval from your bank. Your UK credit rating will not carry over to Australia,
and therefore will not be taken into account when applying for credit. Ensure you take six months worth of statements with
you from the UK when you move to Australia to prove your banking history in the UK (this may not be required for all credit
applications, but it’s better to be prepared!).
Buyers may be eligible for the First Home Owners Grant (www.firsthome.gov.au) which is a tax free grant given regardless of
income.

Starting a business

Australian banks offer a full range of support when it comes to setting up business banking, including business bankers
that have local knowledge of the area that you may choose to open your business. There is a very informative Australian
government website that provides great advice on setting up a new business in Australia (www.business.gov.au).

The Australian economy is going from strength to strength

Due to its natural resource industry, stable government and a conservatively regulated financial services industry, the
Australian economy has experienced continued growth in recent years. Australia largely avoided the level of recession and

economic downturn experienced in the US and Europe as it is now more closely tied to the growing Asian economies. There is
a resulting demand for skilled workers in Australia, with good salary packages, and a great lifestyle to go along with it. For more
information on the Australian economy, visit our Australian website for up to date economic reports: www.commbank.com.au

Difference in the banking system

Australian bank accounts typically incur a small monthly account keeping fee. There are ways of minimising these fees, such
as conducting your banking online. The Commonwealth Bank waives fees if your salary is credited to the account, or if you hold
a `relationship balance’ over $50,000. There is no agreement between the Australian banks to waive fees for using their ATMs,
so using another bank’s ATM will incur a fee. The Commonwealth Bank of Australia has the largest coverage with over 1000
branches across the country and over 4000 ATMs, making it easy to avoid that fee.
Australian Banks do not use a credit rating to assess you for credit applications. Rather they look at your ability to make
repayments on the loan you are applying for. This means they will want to compare your full income (including any overseas
income) and your full financial commitments to assess your application.

Interest rates

The current Australian cash rate is sitting at 4.75 per cent. The last change was an increase of 0.25 announced on 3
November, 2010. (source:www.rba.gov.au).
As the base rate in Australia is so much higher than the UK, you will be paying higher interest rates on mortgages (around 6 to
9 per cent). On the flip side, customers are getting much higher savings rates ranging from 3 to 6 per cent.
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