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Possible relocation to Singapore- Questions

Moving to Singapore? Ask our regular expats in Singapore questions on relocation and their experience here. Ask about banking, employment pass, insurance, visa, work permit, citizenship or immigration issues.

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x9200
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Postby x9200 » Sat, 22 Mar 2014 12:22 pm

Dert42 wrote:I think it silly to spend potentially thousands of dollars extra a month to accomodiate a pet. That money is better spend/invested on the actual human members of the household.

People have different priorities and different budgets and not really knowing the situation it is a bit silly to make any statements like yours above. Also, it is not really anybodies business how other people spent their money.

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Postby Dert42 » Mon, 24 Mar 2014 8:24 am

Merely stating my opinions.

What I say isn't wrong. What you say isn't wrong.
Since it's my opinion, you're welcome to think it's silly. I have stated I think it's silly to spend tens of thousands of dollars on a dog, but to each their own. If I wasn't being respectful, I would of used much different language. I get some people love their animals as humans, I really do.

Katiesimmo came here for opinions on her potential move. I gave her mine, some others gave theirs. Let's move on and not turn this into a dog vs non-dog thread.

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Postby Hannieroo » Mon, 24 Mar 2014 11:31 am

OP asked for opinions on dog friendliness and landlords. Not opinions on her financial choices.

Our budget was fixed. We needed a family home that would accept a dog. Our agent made a list fitting that criteria and there was a lot more available to us than we found in the States or UK. You need to make sure that the LL is ok with a dog because you need a letter from them as part of the import process. I think they often ask to see a picture of the dog so take one with you when viewing. We made sure we had the letter of consent to bring in a dog at contract signing time so we knew there would not be any issues or mind changing. As per another thread if the LL hums and haws over the dog and seems to want persuasion then walk away. There's plenty of other homes.

I find SG strange for pets. Lots of people are scared of dogs or dislike them but the people who do like them, really do. Our LL was appalled I felt I had to make it clear the dog would live inside. Where else would he live?

I know you haven't asked but pet supplies, grooming, vets etc are everywhere. It can be difficult getting a taxi with a pet but a lot of vets have a pick up service and a lot do home visits.

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Postby Dert42 » Mon, 24 Mar 2014 1:24 pm

Seeing as she hasn't made any choices, I couldn't of commented on them.

You bring up a good point though. We're starting to search for a helper. On the helper websites I've seen one of the selection filters is if the helper is ok with dogs or not. Just something to be aware of. Which brings up another topic entirely..

When looking at locations, consider whether or not you will eventually get a helper and evaluate the maid's living area. A lot of people are of the opinion that the maid's quarters aren't fit for a person to live in, and have extra bedrooms for their helpers. Others feel the opposite. So just another thing to consider when searching for a place to live.

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relocating to Singapore

Postby TryingTBBMom » Mon, 24 Mar 2014 3:43 pm

I'm pretty sure most expats that live here and are experienced expats would say that Singapore is a cake walk. Depending upon where you are from and the cost of living index there will determine your opinion on the cost of living here.
Singapore is not cheap but it has everything. The transit infrastructure is well thought out, the range of living accommodations are plenty and there is a lot to do if you get out and explore.
Singapore is a great Hub to travel quickly to anywhere in SE asia and the travel to the US or Europe is not an issue. Air Asia (low cost) even fly's to Australia.
Renting a car is expensive but far less than purchasing.
You can expect to hire a maid at around 500.00 sing plus 265.00 per month gov levy.
If you find a complex hear say Tanglin, Holland, Clementi, Orchard, you can go with a auto and save that way.
A lot of the complexes have kid friendly playgrounds and facilities.
NOW if your husband is negotiating his package here are some helpful tips…
what ever the HR says is the housing budget… DOUBLE it… or say that you will need to see what "suitable" housing is currently costing.
I would say in a expat quality condo complex 3-4 bedroom w/ maids quarters near a MRT your looking at min.10K
Small dogs are a non issue except for the quarantine rules… have the relocations person help you.
Have schooling included in the contract no matter what.
Most companies will pay but even if your child is not of school age now, you may still be here. If it's not in writing your going to have to pay and thats a BIG expense.
Tax equalization on BIK , home leave tickets,schooling ECT…
Even though singapore taxation here is low by most standards, you still have to file in your home country….
Singapore is efficient, organized, and very welcoming. If you follow the rules,
open to a new experience than theres no easier place to start.

Good Luck!

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Re: relocating to Singapore

Postby Beeroclock » Mon, 24 Mar 2014 4:01 pm

TryingTBBMom wrote:Renting a car is expensive but far less than purchasing.
Agree with most of your comments but not sure about this one, it really depends on what type of car, your requirements, etc. If you're prepared to consider 2nd hand with only few residual years left on the COE, then these can be better than renting in my experience.

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more to say...

Postby TryingTBBMom » Mon, 24 Mar 2014 4:30 pm

When asking a general question on a forum like this, you will need to weed through all of the opinions of good hearted, but sometimes slightly misguided people. And I include myself…sometimes!

Now there are "expats" from this general regional area. Their considerations and expectations are vastly different from someone from the UK or USA, for just an example.
My friends from the Middle East or India have different requirements well.
So in saying that, there are websites that explain "housing". The varying terminology ect... HDB is government housing complexes and yes you can rent one from 3-6k per month but I do not know anyone that is an expat that does. Thats not to sound snobbish but simply my experience.

Hire a full-time Amah or maid to live in with you. who ever said 1500 per child for child care is nuts to pay that.
First of all your in a new country, your trying to get settled and with 2 small children a set of helpful hands is a blessing.
I am a family of 4, we have 2 dogs and 2 cats I live in a HC Bungalow, (Landed house of high quality). I looked at 5000 sq ft condos an the East coast and CBD and Sentosa. Yes I have a bigger budget by some standards, but not as big as some I know.
At no time while I looked was I asked to pay more than the asking price per month for having pets.
If we were in Malaysia or another predominantly Muslim country I would agree that dogs are not as accepted as openly. I lived in KL with my 2 dogs and found that If I was respectful of my host country's religious beliefs and kept my dogs leashed while walking them, I was fine.
Now on the pet subject. look on the website for importation of your pet.
It explains it all… the bottom line have that included in your contract and know that your pet will spend mim 30 in quarantine. Double check with your home country about re entry for your pet coming home. When we moved from Australia to India we knew we would not be able to bring our dog back if we took him so we made other arrangements.

Being an expat is a journey.. it's not easy but you can make it harder if your not prepared. As a rule I always expect things are more expensive that I was told or assumed. I make adjustments accordingly and I always know my electricity bill will be far more expensive that I thought. My family lives comfortably but not above our means. We do not live like "rockstars" because the company pays the rent. We treat our journey with respect and know that it is a once in a lifetime opportunity to see the world, meet amazing people and expose our children to a life of amazing wonder. This is my 6th country, and 15th year of expating...

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Mon, 24 Mar 2014 5:02 pm

Guess I'll have to change your perceptions. I've lived in an HDB flat for 15 years. And I'm from the Washington DC area originally and a WASP (but without the P unless it means pagan! ;-) :cool:

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Postby x9200 » Mon, 24 Mar 2014 5:08 pm

Anton Casey is back and now he is a female.

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Postby Dert42 » Mon, 24 Mar 2014 5:12 pm

I guess I'm nuts, but it's not a maid watching the kids. It's school. Sure you can pay a helper to watch your children. I'd rather a qualified and certified person watch my children in a learning environment with many resources.
That's not a helper. And it's not a dirty dimly lit cramped "daycare". Looked at around 6 locations and that is about the going rate for 5 full day care.

I live in 3bed 1400 sq ft condo very close to an MRT. I pay less then 5k a month. And it's nice. 10k is nuts.

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Postby x9200 » Mon, 24 Mar 2014 5:25 pm

I think an average rental price for people on some kind of expat type of the contract is around 4-6k but there are tons of expats (skilled, foreigner workers on non-local contracts inclusive of some benefits) paying anything between 3 and 4k.

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Postby TryingTBBMom » Mon, 24 Mar 2014 6:00 pm

Come guys, lets not do a silly tit for tat.

I was perfectly clear that this is my opinion only. I pass no judgement and I did not say that no expats live in HDB's but that I do not know of any.
If i'm not mistaken the children are both under the age of 3 years.
Play groups are generally free so we are not talking about the cost of a dimly lit day care, or monthly cost of school.
Most mom's unless they are working like to go to playdates, they serve 2 purposes. Socialization for the child and the ability for a mom to get out and talk to someone who can relate.
Had I foolishly listened to the very nice relocation "expert" and not done my research that suited the needs specifically for my family, I would have been screwed.
Everyone has different expectations and requirements. So we are a one car family and I take public transport. It was my trade off, my choice. And yes you can find housing for the mentioned rent but it's your choice to live there if you are comfortable.

The beauty of being an expat is that you have choices…..
Now name calling is childish but if you must, then call me nuts, but I like my big house… I get to entertain have my friends over, we have space for our pets that we love and i do not have to hear my neighbors fighting or smell their cooking. AND BEFORE ANYONE MAKES A SNARKY COMMENT>>>
That's not to say that I wouldn't like the smell of their cooking but that it would save me the embarrassment of constantly knocking on their door asking for a taste!!!

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Postby Hannieroo » Mon, 24 Mar 2014 9:01 pm

Do push for schooling if you can.

What's expat quality housing? I thought it meant not living in your own country not anything linked to income or taste.

5th country and 12 years of economic migrantting. That's what most of us are...

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clarification

Postby TryingTBBMom » Tue, 25 Mar 2014 10:02 am

apologizes to any i offended by saying "expat quality".
Expat by definition:
expatriate

— adj.
1. resident in a foreign country
2. exiled or banished from one's native country: an expatriate American

— n
3. a person who lives in a foreign country
4. an exile; expatriate person

— vb
5. to exile (oneself) from one's native country or cause (another) to go into exile
6. to deprive (oneself or another) of citizenship

For me really #1 and 3 applies.
I applaud all who take on and embrace living in a foreign country.
For some it's labor of love and others it's due to a career or job requirement.
There are reasons that companies bring in foreign skilled professionals and they are duly compensated. So within that compensation includes "Benefits "
Housing, schooling, higher salary , expat allowance, hardship pay, ect… all as part of compensation for the employee and their family leaving their home, and "Familiar" life. Many spouses give up their career to" trail" as we say. So, I say
YES there is an expectation and personal definition of what your "quality of housing" is. That is a consideration. There are even professional relocation experts who make a living on advising families. Everyones needs are different.
What is important to some, maybe not so to others. To each their own.
Again, I choose this journey and I also place a value on what I left behind and what I gain with each country I have the privilege to live in. I make an educated decision that works best for my family.
I do not know it all…I have learned by trail and error, and I continue to learn.. That is my best advise…

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oops

Postby TryingTBBMom » Tue, 25 Mar 2014 10:11 am

Trail or trial …could be both :D


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