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Starting New life in Norway!

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Hello friends! 😊 My name is Filip, I am 24 years old from Poland. Recently I decided to move with my girlfriend to Norway and start a New happy life here. We are both fluent in English and want to go to Norwegian language classes when we are there. If you don't mind, I would ask a few questions as we don't know how to start. I am a professional independent paver with 4 years of experience in a reliable Polish company, also knowledgeable about excavators and loaders and not afraid to learn new things. Here are some of my questions: 
-Where to look for suitable jobs? Are there any job advertisement websites? 
- is it hard to find a job if I only speak English so far?
-wich part of Norway is Best to live?
-is it really hard to find cheap flat to rent?
Thank you very much for any support! 

   #1
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Hi, and welcome to Norway and to the forum.

First, language is not an issue in that industry. To be honest, that you are so fluent in English will make you attractive to lots of people. I had workers at my house where I need to call there boss to ask questions. Lots of people (good people) from Poland, but that don’t speak Norwegian or English at all. 

There are lots of rules and regulations in the industry, so I would recommend to work for a business before attempting to take on jobs yourself. Also due to risk related to warranty etc.

Salary: do not say I will work for very little. “Say I expect to get what others get. If I prove myself I get more over time”. Something like that.

Where to look: www.Finn.no is Norway’s biggest market. For everything. Things, work, etc. Also you may contact entrepreneurs in the places you decide to move and settle down. Call them, email them etc. show that there is something in you. Show up at there office. That show them that you are willing to get the job done. Lots of companies need people, even these days.

Where to live: do not look for an apartment in Oslo! It is way to expensive. On the other side, trains to Oslo from north or east/west is possible. West of Oslo you will need to travel to Drammen to get acceptable prices. East and north is probably better. A lot of entrepreneurs do actually live outside the city. If you can get a job before apartment that is perfect. Then you know where to go. Other places are great to, but I know Oslo best.

How to get apartment: go back on Finn.no and look for rented apartments. They will almost always require 3xmonth rent as a deposit, which you get back when you move out. Start saving:) you can also put in an add for “apartment wanted” (Ønskes leid), wherre you say something about yourself. What you probably will be looking for is called “2-Roms leilighet” (2 room apartment) which means 1 bedroom and a living room. They range from 25-50 m2. Price very dependent on location.

Pay: have no idea what people get payed for this type of work, but remember that tax will be approx 30-35% when you estimate monthly pay in your account. The company do all the paperwork and practicall stuff, you get the final pay, but important when you estimate monthly pay in your account.
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   #2
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Thank you for very fast reply, this was what i was looking for. Ill start to look after Jobs and apartaments soon. 🤟
   #3
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In a work situation, English may be good enough, but don't ignore your social life after work! (And also, lunchtime chats with your co-workers). Keep up your plans about learning Norwegian - as quickly as possible!

True: Most Norwegians below 60 years of age speak English quite well (although some not quite as well as they believe themselves... Smile English learnt from American action movies may be lacking a few nuances, if you get my drift). But when sitting at a table with six other Norwegians, the conversation will not switch to English simply because you pop in. Older people, and service personell everywhere with less education will usually be able to speak English, to some degree, but not necessarily fluently. Even your co-workers may be at the "intermediate" level.

Do not underestimate the Norwegian style of social life and after-work activities. E.g. for young people, wildlife activities (skiing, mountain walks, ...) are essential. Also (I mention this because you are Polish!): Be aware that Norway is a secular country. If you are a devoted Catholic, you cannot expect to get much response. Even those who declare themselves Christians (the great majority are Protestants) do not display or promote their religion very much; lots of them do not go to mass every Sunday!

Regarding cost of housing: The further away from the cities, the more affordable the housing. Oslo in particular! Also, other expenses are often higher around the big cities: Local travels, entertainment and after work activities, social expectations to you appearance (fashions, equipment, ...). So if you do not feel dependent on big city life, consider a smaller place. To pick one example: Here in Trondheim, you can hardly buy even a small apartment for less than 2 MNOK. If you are willing to cross the fjord, a 20 minute ride with the express boat, you can buy a detached house for that price, a third of the Trondheim price. But then you can't decide to go to a Saturday night movie in the city and expect to get back home the same evening with the express boat; you'll have to drive your car to the ferry.

As Børhaug indicates: Entrepreneurs will have to move around anyway; you do not go to the same office every morning. So few of them are located downtown. You rather find them in the outskirts or suburbs of a city, or in neighbouring villages - with much lower cost of living, but further away from city culture.

If you are used to a dry, inland climate, winter storms in a costal town (including Oslo) may drive you crazy. Winters are not that cold, but with the humidity and the wind, they may really chill you to the bone. Inland towns usually have a much nicer winter climate.

But of course: Whoever you ask will say "Move to where I live - that's the best place in the country!" ... So I will make a vote for the Trondheim area: Trondheim is big enough to be a true city, small enough to be friendly (e.g. you can bike all over town). But unless you bought a house here 30+ years ago (the way I did Smile), find housing in the outskirts or suburbs/villages.

Go ahead asking more questions! We've got a few Polish employees where I work, and they have adopted reasonably well to life in Norway. (But ... If they had stressed learning Norwegian more, they would have succeeded even more in social life.)
   #4
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Good stuff added here. I want to some morething;

Consider the life, work and social life of your wife. In Norway man and woman are very equal, as they should be(!), but that is not what I am pointing to foremost here. I have had friends with good jobs, but where the spouse have mostly stayed at home, due to different reasons. Lack of oportunities, volunarily etc. This has not turned out well for the long term relationship. Second, the location you setle down will determine how easy it is to get a job for both of you, and the more remote, the harder it will be to stay at home for periodes of time. So consider a balance, and how you both will take part in both work and social life. There is a reason why the prices are higher in some areas.

I also know that there exist Facebook groups like "Polish in Norway" or so. Maybe some of these can help you get started. But make sure that the people you work for are solid companies that follow the standards. Take no shortcuts.

I do second that of learning Norwegian, but I meet ALOT of polish worrkers that dont speak any English (or norwegian), so your skill is a big pluss.

I lived in Trondheim for some time (9 years), and can also say that that is a nice place. The city, the people, and much more (noot the weather). That said, I know alot of entreprenours operate in the "Viken" and "Oslo" area, which gives oportunities for work. This area serve 30-35% of all people in Norway.

You could also enjoy the parts of Norway as Kristiansand and that area, which is warmer than e.g. Trondheim, and the places further north (not by much though).

Don't think too much about buying properties for now. Start to rent, and learn the culture and how stuff works. You can move around later.

Best of luck!
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   #5
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Wow really thank you for Such big support. Angel
I think we will settle in very well here, because our views, unlike most Poles, are left-wing (no devoted catholics!) , and we are Young and want to live Our lifes to the fullest so i hope Our social life Will be great and also hope to meet New people . Of course, I also take into account the life of my girlfriend, who would also like to develop professionaly. One of the reasons why we want to leave the country is that a party that makes life difficult for young people has come to power, but also we are amazed by Norway and people that are living there . For now, I am not considering buying a property, I will rather rent something cheap until I stabilize 😅. Winters in Norway are beautiful and this is one of the things I like about this Country. I'll first look at advertisements and settle down after i find proper job. Im very excited to start a New life in the Land of Ragnar Lothbrok Wink
   #6
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I'd like to add that in these days lots of norwegians move to Poland. I've spent some time in Poland in the past few years. I tend to have the radio on while driving, just to expose myself to the polish language and pick up some words, and I have the impression that there are news about norway in the polish radio every day. I have no clue what they say thou.
But, as a lot of polish workers return home from norway, and even lots of norwegians move there, it migth not be the right time for moving to norway at the moment. At least you should lookup the news about norway in the polish media to see why this is happening before you make your decision to move.
As for my friends who moved from norway; to say they were not treated nicely by norwegians in powerful positions is a major understatement.