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Safer community lures young family

By Michele Hunter

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Jillene and Joseph Wiseman with baby Cooper.
Jillene and Joseph Wiseman with baby Cooper.

The chance of home ownership and a beachside upbringing for their children made the move from Auckland to Tauranga a good one for Jillene and Joseph Wiseman.

Jillene, 32, met husband Joseph, 28, after moving to Auckland for a job and early last year the couple were looking for their first home before starting a family.

Disheartened by the "dodgy" neighbourhoods they could afford to buy in, a chance look at the Tauranga house prices on Trade Me convinced Joseph the family should make the move to Jillene's home town.

"The house prices were the stepping stone to moving back down here," Mrs Wiseman told the Bay of Plenty Times.

Eighteen months on, Mr Wiseman is earning more than he was in Auckland, and the couple have bought their first home in Greerton and celebrated the birth of Cooper who is now 6-months-old.

Mrs Wiseman feels a lot safer raising a family in Tauranga, where she has great memories of her own childhood.

"West Auckland just recently had three murders and that was in our neighbourhood. I feel a lot more secure knowing that we're here, not up in Auckland, she said.

Mrs Wiseman also believes the family dog Floyd is safer in Tauranga, away from the high rates of dog kidnapping in West Auckland.

Mr Wiseman's 20 to 25 minute motorway commute to work as a truck driver has been reduced to "literally a minute's drive", she said.

The couple know their neighbours in Tauranga, which she says offers a stronger sense of community than Auckland. "If we didn't make the decision to move, would we be where we are now? It was meant to be" she said.

- BAY OF PLENTY TIMES

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