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Apartment vs house (Brisbane)


Hello dear expats!

We could really use some advice from other newcomers.

We arrived from Denmark, Scandinavian design, "hygge" and a small townhouse (close to the sea and the forest) to live in Brisbane about 3 months ago. It is too noisy where we live now (on a big road), so we are searching for a new place (without a car, not quite ready for the left-side driving yet!)
In terms of a new apartment - they all seem to look alike with glass, metal, granite, white walls and the usual black leather furniture. The older apartments often look very "beige" and run down.
In terms of a house - how to deal with cockroaches, spiders, snakes and such like in the house/garden - not to speak of the very noisy birds here!?
We would like to be close to shopping opportunities and public transport in a more quiet area (we both work at the University of Queensland).
What decisions and considerations did you have in coming here in terms of finding a good and homely place to live?
Best wishes & thanks

Brisbane Forum