Buying a House in Hong Kong ranges from tight accommodation to high-end apartments and places with luxury facilities and doormen.
There are also some city areas to choose from offering a wide variety of perks. In the past, mid-levels were the main ex-pats area, with beautiful expanses and a strong trade area.
Nowadays, you will find ex-pats along the island MTR line as they search for cheap apartments for rent. Some people also prefer large family homes near the beach in Stanley or Rapples Bay.
While short-term rentals are not a common choice for ex-pats, this may be a requirement in Hong Kong, a city where apartment advertisements are notorious for being misleading. Also, when looking for your future home, note that the size of the properties is square feet.
Whatever type of accommodation you choose, this section will suggest what to expect from your lease if you are looking for an apartment for rent, and its cost if you are thinking about buying a house. What is this? How much preparation will have to be done for this?
Rent a house or apartment
Housing in Hong Kong is extremely competitive, so renting a house or apartment can be quite expensive. This is particularly noticeable in Kowloon, where the population density is highest. The average rent for a one-bedroom home in Hong Kong can range from 12,000 to 20,000 HKD or more per month.
Upstairs, most apartments easily meet the highest standards of living. Older buildings are often renovated to give their tenants the same comfort as new housing developments.
How to find an apartment in Hong Kong
When renting you can usually choose between a standard or serviced apartment, the latter is usually on the pricey side. Standard apartments are usually unfurnished or partially furnished. The deposit is usually one month’s rent.
If you choose to rent in Hong Kong, you can explore the place online or look at the classifieds section of the local paper. This way you will be able to deal directly with the owner.
The other option is to hire a licensed estate agent. For a foreigner who rents in Hong Kong, this would probably be a better option if you are unfamiliar with the Hong Kong housing market and are not fluent in Chinese / Cantonese. Be sure to clarify all the details in advance with your estate agent, such as your preferences and needs, as well as the agent’s commission and payment time.
Check land registry
If you decide to search for a place for yourself or borrow someone who practices in renting in Hong Kong, be sure to search the Land Registry for information about that property. Do what you are about to hire. Check whether the property has been mortgaged and whether the mortgagee has agreed to lease the place. If you rent the property without the consent of the pledgee, you risk eviction at short notice.
Things to know when renting in Hong Kong
If there seems to be something unbelievable about a property or a landlord, you can always hire a lawyer to investigate your proposal. Migrants are often victims of fraud because they are unfamiliar with local customs and the normal process of rent in Hong Kong.
If you are looking for a place online, try doing some research on the landlord. If other ex-pats had a bad experience with this person, they may have shared their experiences on blogs or ex-pat forums.
Always insist on looking at the apartment or house before signing anything or paying the deposit amount. Do not rely only on photographs as they can be misleading.
While it may be good to have the right place to stay when you arrive in Hong Kong, it is always safe to meet the landlord and visit the apartment in person. That way, you have a good idea of what you can do if you sign a tenancy agreement.
As a general rule of thumb, if something does not seem right, do not sign the lease.
How much is fare in Hong Kong?
Hong Kong is notorious for its housing prices. The lack of available space and a high number of residents make the Hong Kong housing market very competitive and average rent prices very high.
The minimum rent in Hong Kong for a simple one-bedroom apartment away from the center is around 15,000 HKD (1,900 USD) per month. If you want to stay close to the center or rent a larger location with more facilities then expect to pay at least 20,000-30,000 HKD per month and more.
Fare Process and Rules
Once you or your realtor finds a place of your choice, you can start a conversation with the landlord. This is the time to discuss your tenancy agreement, including the length of your stay, who will be responsible for paying utility bills, and more.
If you are renting with the help of a real estate agent, then it is time to sign a temporary tenancy agreement. After that, you and your landlord’s lawyer can look at this contract and modify it in a way that suits both parties. Once you sign a rental contract, you should pay the deposit and sign a formal tenancy agreement. After you sign your landlord will have to fill out a notice.
If you go through this without a real estate agent, then the rental process is different. However, the requirements and documentation required for rent are similar in most cases.
Know the complete information if you plan about Buying a House in Hong Kong at https://www.gov.hk/en/residents/