It's difficult to compare leagues but why are so fixed on wanting to start at an EPL club? You know how difficult that is going to be? Those teams release their own youth players all the time who are between 16-18 years old. Its tough.
Nothing wrong with starting at a League Two or League One side if you can get a trial or even the Conference. Teams are buying players from lower leagues all the time. No real risk involved and they can buy the player cheap.
All teams in the UK want a CV sent through the mail, no exceptions, emailing or calling will not work, its stated on most teams websites that CV's need to be sent through the mail. Game tape/highlights will be a major plus, a CV only tells a team so much but game tape will tell a team a lot more about how you play. They will want game tape just to let you know.
Macclesfield Town scroll down to "trial information" http://www.mtfc.co.uk/page/ContactDirec ... 93,00.html
http://www.cambridge-united.co.uk/page/ ... 23,00.html
scroll down to the bottom of the page. You can also fax your CV to them if you have access to a fax machine
http://www.leytonorient.com/page/Contac ... 39,00.html
Read the "please note" they prefer game tape as well
Look for a part time job? Maybe 15-20 hours a week? It won't be much money and it will take you a lot longer to save up but it's something.
What are you going to be doing while you wait until your 17 and a half? Will you playing at a high level? Try to get to the highest level possible before leaving Australia. Just because you send your CV to a club doesn't mean they will offer you a trial, they get thousands of trial requests each season. However, the more you send out, various divisions, the better chance you have of getting a response. A good CV helps as well, good clubs/level, any youth national team stuff, etc.