How to find an apartment in Hong Kong

How to find an apartment in Hong Kong?

To find an apartment in Hong Kong you can look at real estate websites or apps. A good start is Centaline property or 28Hse.com. Or you can hire a real estate agent. Or you can ask around your social circle and get in contact with landlords. 
Apartments in Hong Kong are quite expensive. It might take time for you to find something affordable that meets your taste.
Pay attention to details when you sign a lease contract in Hong Kong.

Most linked resources below are in Chinese or English. So, if you need, use Google Translate, or any other translation service.

Hong Kong is one of the world’s most expensive cities to rent a property. The city has a very high population density. Let’s take a quick guide on how to find an apartment in Hong Kong.

How to find an apartment in Hong Kong?

Popular rental apps in Hong Kong can help you to search for an apartment. Hong Kong renters prefer traditional housing agencies. Online sites, colleges, and property dealers can help to get details of locations to rent.

Below is a list of options when you are searching for your desired apartment.

Real estate agencies in Hong Kong

People often have a bad experience with the intermediaries as they are been thought of as liars. But Hong Kong is different as the real estate agents here are well managed by the government. Estate agents are the most common way to find a house in Hong Kong.

You shouldn’t be in a hurry to rent an apartment as Hong Kong is developing very fast. You can find agencies in each district and street with different sources. You should decide on the area to rent and visit the nearest agent for renting a house. The agents usually charge one month’s rent. The owner and tenant each pay half.

Websites to find an apartment in Hong Kong

Many resources are available to find an apartment to rent. An online resource is one of the best. It is easier as well as reliable. There you can find plenty of listings from basic to high rentals. Following is the list of websites that can help you make your search easier.

Centaline property is a popular real estate agency in Hong Kong.

28Hse.com is a popular real estate platform in Hong Kong. You can find the latest real estate information every day.

Midland realty is a popular housing agency in Hong Kong.

Ricacorp properties is another popular housing agency in Hong Kong.

House 730 is another popular property search platform in Hong Kong.

Spacious is another popular real estate website in Hong Kong.

Hong Kong homes is a real estate website in Hong Kong.

Explore your social circles

Once you arrive in Hong Kong many Chinese mainlanders look for a community circle. You can find a suitable house through Wechat groups or your friends or mates. These type of housing are reliable as well as secure and doesn’t need any intermediary. Go to see the house in person. Try to avoid “second landlords”, so make sure you are talking to the property owner. And also you will not have to pay agency fees.

Public transportation in Hong Kong

Hong Kong is having a great public transportation system making it very easy to go around. It is easier to go around no matter where you stay. If you look for a convenient option then you should choose the apartment close to the subway station.

Affordable areas in Hong Kong

When you rent an apartment you need to check how affordable it is for you. That depends on your budget and taste. Some affordable areas are Hong Kong Island, Kowloon, and New Territories.

The North island of Hong Kong is more expensive as it is the financial and the commercial heart of the city. Kowloon is cheaper than the island. It has more local vibes as well as access to the heart of urban life.

New Territories is ideal for people who prefer a calming environment. This region is full of parks, rural villages, and villa houses far away from the city and business areas. New Territories even has Lantau Island. That is full of beaches and greenery.

Documentation for renting an apartment in Hong Kong

These are some things you want to remember when renting an apartment in Hong Kong.

Before signing the contract

Before you sign the contract, read the real estate certificate and identification cards. Make sure the landlord who signs the contract is the owner of the house. Check if the lease is on the right house. Control that the apartment on the contract is the same one you want to rent.

It is necessary to discuss in advance with the landlord about the refund of the deposit. It allows preventing the unreasonable deduction of the deposit.

When signing the contract

When you sign the contract the rent and deposit payment are in cash so make sure to prepare enough cash in advance. While signing the agreement the landlord and the tenant must be present. The tenant and the owner should have one copy each.

After signing the contract

A contract needs a stamp duty. Stamp Duty for a one to three-year lease is generally 5% of the average annual rent. Landlord and tenant pay half each. You also need to go to the utility department for turning on water, electricity, and gas.

Termination

Termination can be in advance as long as the landlord and the tenant agree on it. Though do not forget to sign an “early termination agreement’ if you do so. If the termination is after the expiry of the contract then you only need to rent according to the contract. Termination is when it expires in this case.

Housing prices in Hong Kong

1000 Hong Kong Dollars, or HKD, is about 130 US Dollars, or USD. That is also around 120 Euros, or EUR, or 9700 Indian Rupees, or INR, or 810 Chinese Yuan, or CNY.

These are some figures. They are useful to understand the cost of living in Hong Kong. Lunch for 2 in a restaurant in Hong Kong is about 350 HKD. A monthly pass for public transport is HKD 460.

A four-person household has a monthly expense, without rent, of HKD 27,000. A single person has a monthly expense without rent of HKD 7,000. 

The average price of a 50 square meters apartment in Hong Kong is around 9 million HKD.

A one-bedroom apartment in Hong Kong, far from the center, is about 12000 HKD per month. If you plan to live closer to the center or in a bigger place the rent will be around 12000 HKD per month.

The monthly rent for a one-bedroom flat in the city center is 16,000 HKD. The monthly rent for a one-bedroom flat outside of the city center is 12,000 HKD. The monthly rent for a three-bedroom flat in the city center is 38,000 HKD. The monthly rent for a three-bedroom flat outside of the city center is 24,000 HKD.


Sources: Hkdiy cn, Culture Trip

The above cover image is somewhere in Choi Hung Estate, Hong Kong. Photo by Dan Gold on Unsplash