Welcome & Essentials

Welcome & Essentials


Hello I’m Kristi and this is Randall and
we are part of the Settlement Services team Our team provides information and referrals
to skilled migrants and their families to help them settle into Western Australia.
We have compiled a number of videos to help you and your family get started when you move
to Western Australia. If you need further information please contact
us or visit our website and we wish you all the best establishing your life in Western Australia Hello and welcome to our essentials and getting
started session. While the majority of the information we will provide you, will be positive and support your settlement into Western Australia, I would just like to start with an important
message. As part of your visa application the Department
of Home Affairs would have required you to satisfy a character requirement check in order to be granted a visa to enter Australia. Until you receive Australian citizenship, you will be expected to continue to satisfy this character requirement. While the Department of Home
Affairs may have issued you with a temporary or permanent visa, just be mindful that all non-citizens are expected to continue to satisfy the character requirement. It is also important to be aware of Australian laws, to ensure you do not break any laws
especially if your cultural belief may differ from the Australian laws. While this information may be very simple, we wanted to provide you with the emergency services numbers in Australia. If you are experiencing an emergency call 000 and you will be connected with Police, Ambulance or Fire services depending on your emergency. 000 is a national number so you can call this number from anywhere within Australia. If you need police assistance in a non-emergency, please call 131 444. If you are on a 190 or a 489 visa please register your arrival via the online form available on the Migration Website. This ensures you are completing your state nomination obligations. Attached to your visa is what we call Visa Entitlement Verification Online, or your VEVO account. This is available online through the Department of Home Affairs website and contains important information such as your work and study rights as well as any government
entitlements you may be eligible to receive. We encourage you to check your entitlements
periodically on your VEVO account, as they may change throughout your stay in Australia. You can also print out the details of your VEVO account to show an employer you have the right to work, or show a training provider you are eligible to study. As you are setting your life up in Western Australia, you will often be asked to prove
your identify and local address. If you have not yet applied and received a Western Australian driver’s license or cannot apply for a driver’s license at the moment, and are over the age of 16, you can apply for what is called a proof of identity – photo card. You can use this
photo card as photographic evidence. It is particularly useful if you do not want to carry your passport. Proof of identify cards are valid for 5 years and are issued by the Department of Transport. To assist you with housing, whether you would like to buy or rent, there are number of search options available to you. The most popular
search option is called REIWA, and you can use this site to look for rental properties or property to buy You can also check the to let and accommodation vacant sections in the weekend papers. If you are looking to rent a property while
you are in Western Australia, this is normally completed through a real estate agent or leasing company. You can rent a property privately or directly from the owner, however in these circumstances we strongly encourage you to contact Tenancy WA to ensure all your rights are covered and you have completed all the required paperwork. Tenancy WA is a not for profit specialist community legal centre that provides legal services to residential tenants in Western Australia. This can assist you with things such as making a rental application and they have a number of online videos and fact sheets to assist you, they also have a number of videos
available in several languages. When renting in WA, it is extremely common that you will be asked to sign a lease agreement or residential tenancy agreement. You will
also generally be asked to pay a security bond, which is a deposit that you will give
to the real estate agent and is normally about 4 weeks rent up front. If you would like to have a pet at the property you may also be asked to pay a pet bond. When you stop renting the property, if you do not owe any money to the real estate agent you should be entitled to receive a refund of the full bond amount. If there has been damage to the property,
unpaid rent or unpaid water bills, the real estate agent will be entitled to keep part or the entire bond to pay outstanding costs. You will need to talk to your real estate
agent to confirm which utilities are included in your lease agreement. In Australia utilities refer to services to your home such as electricity, gas, water and sewerage. The most common utility
that is included in lease agreements is water. Generally the owner of the property will pay for the rates and you will be required to pay for what you use. If it hasn’t already been completed, we encourage you to request the real estate agent to contact the water corporation and arrange for a special meter reading prior to your move in date to ensure you are not charged for the previous tenants water use. While having insurance is not mandatory , we encourage to you get contents
insurance while you are renting. This will cover all your contents in the house, the owner will generally have building insurance and this will cover any damage to the building. There are a number of online websites available that will help you determine what is the best
insurance policy for you. If you want to buy a house and are not sure which suburb would suit your needs, the property reports available through the Landgate website, will be able to assist you in making a choice. These reports have information such as sales history of properties sold in the suburb with address, land size, bedrooms and bathrooms and build date details, you can also get streets sales reports and market trend information. If you are a temporary resident of Australia, you will generally need approval from the Foreign Investment Review Board before purchasing any residential real estate in Australia. Please be aware that you will be required to pay an application fee at the time of lodging an application. Some permanent residents will be eligible
to apply for the First Home Owners Grant. This is a one-off payment to encourage and assist first home buyers to buy or build a residential property for use as their principal
place of residence. Information about the First Home Owners grant is available on the Department of Finance’s website and we strongly encourage you to speak with your mortgage broker regarding the First Home Owners Grant. When you buy a property you will be required to pay a council rate, which is paid to your local government and helps fund local infrastructure and local services. As the owner of your own property you will also need to pay for all repairs and maintenance to your property. As mentioned earlier, as the owner of a property we encourage you to get building and contents insurance, this will ensure you protect your
home and your belongings. Once you have established your living arrangements you can now set up your utilities. As we mentioned above, utilities refers to services to your property such as water, power, gas and internet and if you are renting, you should check with your landlord what utilities are included in your lease agreement. When organising the services to be connected in your name you should give the utility provider at least
48 hours notice and they will arrange for the services to be reconnected and for the meters to be read. You can generally set up an account prior to the date you enter the property. There are also generally connection fees for electricity, gas and telephone and internet. To connect your electricity in the Perth metro area and surrounding regions you will need to contact Synergy. If you are in regional WA you will need to contact Horizon power to connect your electricity. If you are unsure which service provider to contact just give them a call and they will let you know if they are the correct service based on your location. If you need to connect water, contact the Water Corporation. To connect gas to your home you have a choice of 3 services providers: Alinta Energy, Kleenheat
and AGL. Like many countries you can get bundles which incorporate all your landline, internet and mobile phone needs from the one service provider. There are many service providers that offer this. All service providers have a good metro
coverage and Telstra has the best regional coverage. I hope you have found this information useful and please do not hesitate to contact us if you would like further information.

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