Areas and Suburbs in Perth
Ultimately, which suburb one chooses will depend on their budget and how much commuting they can put up with.
At the end of the day though, every expat – whether the young professional with a little extra cash, a family looking to live near the best schools or a retiree after the sun and sea – will find a suburb in Perth that fits the bill.
Professionals who are looking to live close to the Perth city centre have a great deal of freedom in choosing an ideal neighbourhood. The good highway system in Perth means that one can invest in or rent a property some distance from the middle of town, but still not spend ages on the motorway every morning to get to work. Good suburbs to consider are situated to the north of the river between the city centre and the beach suburb of Cottesloe, as well as East and West Perth.
►Places to look: Cottesloe, Swanburne, Subiaco, Mount Claremont, Karrakatta, Shenton Park, Nedlands and Peppermint Grove.
Expats moving to Perth with young children or teenagers will find that their choice of neighbourhood will largely depend on its proximity to good schools, especially since public schooling in Australia is based on catchment zones. Consult the My School website for a run-down of rankings before picking on a suburb.
It is also likely that expats may be looking to invest in Perth by taking on a home loan and paying it off while the kids study.
Generally speaking, expats can find a set of schools to investigate by cross-listing neighbourhoods that fall within their budget with the schools in the area.
►Places to look: Victoria Park, Applecross, South Perth (not on the river), and Rivervale.
An interesting feature of Perth is that people are either sea or river folk, meaning some prefer to live on the coast and others on the river shore. The coast north of Perth, up from Cottesloe is beautiful but blindingly expensive, but the south down past Rockingham and Fremantle is less so. Similarly, the north of the river is more pricy than the south.
►Places to look: The more expensive suburbs are north of Cottesloe and include Scarborough, North Beach, Ocean Reef and Quinns Rocks. To the south past Fremantle, consider Port Kennedy, Secret Harbour, Halls Heads and all the smaller towns around Peel Inlet like Point Grey and Falcon.
Arts and culture-lovers
Those interested in living in a suburb with an active arts and culture scene should consider Fremantle. Freo, as it is known in Australia, is not actually located in Perth but is about 12 miles (20km) to the south along the coast. The town is one of the largest ports in Australia and attracts all sorts and types. Freo is a touch more expensive than Perth, but the unbelievable range of restaurants, regular markets and art exhibits makes it a wonderful place.
►Places to look: Fremantle, South Fremantle, North Coogee, Hamilton Hill and Beaconsfield. Perhaps further south at Rockingham, for those who are willing to make the commute.