Last week we had one of those moments were we stopped and though- have we been going about this all wrong? Never a good feeling when we are this far down the planning route and have booked a flight later in the year for some on the ground research.
It started with a call last week to a friend of a friend that has been living in Bali for a number of years with their kids. They are originally from Melbourne and were in the same situation that we are with 2 younger kids. They initially planned a slightly longer stay than we are, and have subsequently been there for about 4 years so far.
She provided a wonderful reality check for us on a number of things for our planning, choice of schools, and basically but through a lot of the bullshit for us. Whilst incredibly helpful and appreciated it was also rather scary considering some of the things that we had initially been lead to believe.
Visas for example were a big one, and her advise as many others have stated is that the more people you ask the more varied answers you are going to get. Even from ‘official’ sources there is always going to be a slightly different answer and solution to a given issue depending on who and when you ask.
One of our initial thoughts was to head over in August to check out the school and look for properties to rent. It seems like this is not going to be overly helpful as many properties only come onto the market once vacated by tenants and typically are filled quickly. Unlike here in Sydney where a place is advertised often with the existing tenants still in the property.
We are also strongly considering a suggestion that several people have told us with regards to looking for a short term (1-2 month) rental before we arrive to get settled, and then look for something longer term once on the ground in Bali. This seems to be more popular with a number of expats and opens up more options with regards to viewing properties and also talking to other expats and locals on what is available. Often many places are simply advertised on street poles in the local area- nothing more.
She also mentioned that there are some other school options that we should consider, and prompted us to look further out from the Seminyak areas for school.
It can often be disheartening when you realise that something you have planned for and worked on has ben done so under certain assumptions that turned out to be either slightly off or outright wrong. So the plan is still working, just a few changes to hopefully get us to where we want to go more efficiently.
Will be back with the next update soon.