Hong Kong has a long history of welcoming people from all over the world. It’s a popular place for multinational companies to move their headquarters because it’s seen as an important gateway into world markets. Many people find work in the city’s financial sector, advertising, marketing, and HR. However, finding a place to live is not as easy as exploring job opportunities. So, before you hire the best moving company Hong Kong has to offer, we will cover all the details about some of the greatest places in Hong Kong with lowest costs for renters. Keep reading if you want to find out more.
How to find an apartment in Hong Kong
Finding housing in Hong Kong is one of the biggest challenges for people who are trying to move here. Most people migrating to Hong Kong will have to pay a large portion of their income toward rent, utilities, and other living expenses. Depending on where you live, the rent can vary significantly. The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Hong Kong ranges from 12,000 to 20,000 HKD (1,500 to 2,500 USD) per month. But on the upside, most older buildings are renovated to offer their tenants the same comfort as new housing developments. There are 3 most popular ways of finding an apartment in HK:
- Online: Searching the web is probably the best way to find places in Hong Kong with the lowest costs for renters;
- Real estate agent: Hiring a licensed agent is a great choice for foreigners that are new to HK and that don’t speak the language;
- Searching the land registry: It’s always a good idea to check the land registry of the place you are about to rent. This will help you figure out if the apartment is already rented, or if there’s a mortgage on it.
Places in Hong Kong with lowest costs for renters
If you’re thinking of relocating to Hong Kong and renting, you may be worried about high prices. However, there are many places to rent, so it shouldn’t be too difficult to find something within your budget. Here are some of the cheapest places we have found in Hong Kong for 2022.
Wan Chai: Busy neighborhood with lots to offer
Wan Chai is a district on the northern shore of Hong Kong Island. It is one of the busiest commercial areas in Hong Kong with offices of many small, medium-sized, and large companies. Wan Chai North features office towers, parks, hotels, and an international conference and exhibition center. The median cost for an apartment is $7,200 HKD. Wan Chai is one of the most popular places for foreigners, but it’s very diverse and we are sure you will fit in no time.
North Point: Popular amongst families
North Point is an east-end district in Hong Kong Island. It’s a popular residential and commercial area with both high-rises and low-rises, as well as shopping areas, restaurants, hotels, and MTR stations. It features a residential housing estate, many schools, and kindergartens, and it’s a popular choice for families. The average rent is around $8,000 HKD, which is a big decrease in the price since 2020. If you are looking for international movers Hong Kong, this year would be the best time to relocate.
Sheung Wan: Great atmosphere and a western vibe
Located west of the main business district, Sheung Wan is a lively area known for its unpretentious atmosphere. Shopping is mostly based in the Western Mall, a restored Edwardian building that offers handicrafts and fabrics, as well as stalls wafting from the intoxicating aromas of Dry Seafood Street. The winding streets are also home to laid-back restaurants and the 19th-century Man Mo Temple. The Hong Kong Macau Ferry Terminal is a hub for daily commuters. The average rent is a bit higher at $9,800 HKD, but still much cheaper than some of the most expensive neighborhoods like The Peak where the rent goes as high as $200,000 HKD a month.
Causeway Bay: Commercial hub with a hint of history
This neighborhood is among those more affordable, at the median price of $8,200 HKD. Causeway Bay is the vibrant commercial heart of Hong Kong. Luxury malls, department stores, and boutiques line the west end, and bargain hunters roam the street market on Jardine Crescent. Numerous restaurants, from fine dining to street stalls, fill this area. Local meeting places include the Hong Kong Central Library, which houses historical collections, and the peaceful Victoria Park, which is popular for tai chi exercises.
Central: One of the best places in Hong Kong with lowest costs for renters
Central is the frenetic business and commercial part of Hong Kong, full of skyscrapers, shopping malls, and luxury hotels. The famous Victoria Harbor is full of ferries and traditional boats. This part of the city is known for its nightlife with the buzzing pubs and nightclubs in Lan Kwai Fong and the wine bars and trendy restaurants in nearby Soho. Away from the crowds are Hong Kong Park and the Zoological and Botanical Gardens. The median rent price is slightly higher at $9,600 HKD. However, many say that it’s totally worth it.
Yau Ma Tei: Mix of urban architecture and open-air markets
Yau Ma Tei is a highly urbanized area in the heart of Kowloon, in southern Hong Kong. The area is located between Mong Kok and Tsim Sha Tsui, to the north, and is known for its Temple Street market, one of Hong Kong’s most famous open-air markets. Other points of interest include Tin Hau Temple and various architectural buildings. This neighborhood is amongst the cheapest to live in, but more expensive than the others on our list at $10,500 HKD per month.
Discovery Bay: Expensive but worth exploring
The most expensive neighborhood out of all that we mentioned, but still worth mentioning: Discovery Bay. It is only a step away from downtown and very close to TaiPak beach. The area is a mix of residential and commercial buildings, including several upscale homes and condominiums. The current rent price is around $17,000 HDK a month, and yet it’s still cheaper than neighborhoods like The Mid Levels Central, Repulse Bay, and Stanly.
Remember this when renting in Hong Kong
When you are moving to Hong Kong and looking for a place to rent, make sure to check all the details carefully. You may want to hire a lawyer to investigate all the offers for you. People who want to move here are often subject to fraud as they are unfamiliar with local customs and the usual procedure for renting in Hong Kong. If you are looking for an apartment online, check the comments section of the landlord’s website. If other renters had a bad experience with this person, they might have shared their experiences on blogs or forums.
Always make sure to see an apartment or house before you sign anything or pay a deposit. Do not rely on pictures only because they can be misleading. When looking for an apartment in Hong Kong, it is a good idea to visit the place in person and meet with the landlord. This way, you will have a better idea of what you might be getting into if you sign the tenancy agreement. And an extra tip, you will probably need storage services Hong Kong, so make sure to check out that option beforehand.
Here are the steps, rules, and process for a rental in HK
After you find a place you like and your realtor helps you negotiate a fair lease with the landlord, you can begin preparing for your move. This is when you should discuss issues such as utility payments, pets, length of stay, etc. You should also check in advance if pets are allowed. If they are, Hong Kong pet movers will be at your disposal. When you are renting a property with the help of a real estate agent, you should sign the provisional tenancy agreement immediately.
You and your landlord’s solicitor can then look into this contract and amend it in a way that would suit both parties. After you have chosen a place you like and agreed on a rental contract, you should pay the deposit and sign the formal tenancy agreement. Your landlord will have to sign it as well and fill in a letting notice. If you go through the process without a real estate agent, the requirements for renting may be different but the documents are usually the same.
Job market and applying for a visa
Because of its position as a global hub of industry and commerce, job opportunities in Hong Kong are plentiful. However, with so much talent coming into this region from all over the world, competition for these jobs can be fierce. That’s why it’s important to negotiate a contract before you arrive in Hong Kong. This is also a major center for the banking and financial services industry, IT products and services, advertising, and HR. The field of education is also in high demand.
To complete your visa application, you need to arrange your accommodation, job, and taxes. Applying for a visa can take up to 6 weeks, so early application is recommended. Your employer will need to complete the visa application forms with you. If you are married and have children, you will need a work visa for yourself and your spouse. However, only one work visa is needed per household so your spouse can also work in Hong Kong without needing to apply for a separate visa.
The average cost of moving to Hong Kong
When relocating, the cost will vary depending on your and your family’s needs. However, as a minimum, you should expect to budget for these costs at the beginning of the relocation process.
- Visa cost: Around $190 HKD
- Accommodation: As stated in the post, average price is 12,000 to 20,000 HKD (1,500 to 2,500 USD) per month + plus deposit.
- Taxes: On a salary of $450,000 HKD with a progressive rate, you can expect to pay $76,500 HKD per year
- Schools: A deposit of $10,000 HKD is required along with an annual fee of $106,500 HKD (Primary Year 1-2).
- Bringing pets: For each additional animal included in the shipment, you will have to pay about $10o HKD.
- International move: Get a free estimate on your move, as each relocation is different.
More things to know before moving
Within 30 days of receiving your visa, non-citizens must also register for a smart identity card. This card can be used to confirm your identity, as well as be used for applications such as e-Certificates, which can be used for online identification verification. You can get a smart ID card, and you should always carry it with you.
If your card is lost or damaged, you must obtain a new one within 14 days and pay a fee of $3,700 HKD. You can register and get your smart ID card at any Registration of Persons Office in Hong Kong. Free Wi-Fi is widely available in Hong Kong, thanks to the public Wi-Fi brand ‘Wi-Fi.HK’. However, some websites are blocked by the Great Firewall of China. If you would like Wi-Fi in your home, consult with your landlord or property manager ahead of time and ask them to install it for you.
Conclusion and our final thoughts
Living in Hong Kong in 2022 is an exciting prospect. There’s a lot to discover, both culturally and financially. To make the most of it, do your homework before you move! We hope this blog helped you to find the best places in Hong Kong with lowest costs for renters. And if you have any additional information, you can always contact us.