This is a one of my Experience
A ‘tree change’ is a phrase used to describe the move from city living to a more rural/country setting.
Those looking to leave the hustle and bustle of the city behind often find themselves packing up their studio apartment and buying or renting a house in the bush.
A tree change doesn’t have to mean a move to the middle of nowhere. It can a smaller move, just 30-40 km away depending on what you’re looking for.
According to Australia Post movers data, almost 15% of people who moved house in the last year relocated from inner city to rural pastures, outside metropolitan boundaries.
I’ve done it myself.
What are the benefits?
Living in the city is full of excitement and energy. There is something happening daily and it can feel like the city never sleeps. However, a tree change takes you away from the fast city pace and introduces a more tranquil lifestyle.
You go from man-made parks, high-rise buildings, and waking up to the sounds of trams in the morning, to a more natural setting like waking up to the sounds of birds.
You enjoy a green environment, an amazing community focus and the sights, sounds and smells of Australia’s natural habitat.
Why make the move?
Considering such a change can be a big decision. A move to the country could lead to you changing your job and moving away from your friends and family; but it’s all worth it if you’re looking for more space.
Maybe you have a growing family,are looking to take on some large renovations, want a greener life with your own veggies, chickens and other produce, or maybe you’ve always wanted a big dog and are dreaming of a large back yard.
Whatever your reason to undertake a tree change, you can’t beat the natural surroundings you’ll be calling your new home.
A tree change also introduces the challenge of learning new skills and discovering new passions.
Personally, I’ve recently bought a chainsaw to cut a tree that had fallen down due to Melbourne’s stormy winds. If someone had told me a year ago that I would be chopping firewood, I would have laughed. I believe my thinking and attitude has totally changed with the change in environment.
I believe my thinking and attitude has totally changed with the change in environment.
My weekend plans now consist of stacking firewood for next winter, learning to ride a horse and experiencing dirt-bike riding, none of which would have occurred to me if I continue living in the city.
Room for friends
Living in a studio city apartment, we did not have enough space for family and friends to visit us. Previously, when having just two extra people join us for dinner, everyone felt claustrophobic. Now, with a four bedroom home, there is a constant stream of guests with our motto – “the more the merrier”.
The houses on sale
Most of the country houses have a great vintage look with each of them having a completely different character and being uniquely designed.
For me, having a functioning fireplace just tops it and makes sure we stay warm in the cold days.
What to look for when making a tree change?
As good as all the above sounded to my wife and I, there were still some concerns that we had before making the move.
Consider your proximity to public transport and compare the extra time to travel to work.
Some sacrifice may be needed, as plans need to be made in advance and spontaneity can sometimes go out the window.
Checking availability of utilities like mobile phone reception, Internet, TV reception etc in the area is also something to consider in advance. All areas might not have the best service or might not be available at all.
What are the local amenities? Is there a chemist nearby, a supermarket for those last minute errands? Would you like to be near a café, pub, or have some shops handy?
Be prepared for all weather. You may experience disruption to services due to fallen trees, and being fire ready is a must everywhere, but especially in bush fire areas.
Some areas may not be lit by street-lighting, the way city streets are. It makes for amazing star-gazing opportunities, but the dark can be a little unnerving at the start. Carrying a torch can help in these situations.
So is it worth it?
At the end of the day it all comes to your personal property dreams and lifestyle needs.
When you think of the future, what do you see? What things in your current life can you compromise on and where does your heart lie?
For me, the open space and fresh air that our tree change has brought cannot be beaten, and we appreciate the amazing Yarra Ranges community that has welcomed us in the last six months.