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US Family Housing Advice (yes I've filled out the form)

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ivysmom
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US Family Housing Advice (yes I've filled out the form)

Postby ivysmom » Wed, 08 Jun 2016 2:42 pm

So many of you have already been gracious and one suggested I post here so here goes: just home from second look-see (almost moved 3 years ago). Older kids have been accepted into a school we love and looking for home advice. Would prefer condo to house so kids could swim with friends after school.

Priorities:
- your budget (approx range) approx. up to $18K (though we wouldn’t need to spend it all!)
- your workplace/s (don't name names, just approx neighbourhood) – TBD, husband will establish small office
- the size and/or type of property that you are seeking (#bedrooms, on-site facilities etc) – 4+ bedroom + room for a proper helper’s room (at least twin sized bed), anything I've seen under 3000 sq. ft. feels small to me which i
- will you have a car here? yes
- proximity to transport required. MRT-subway/buses/the airport/Malay border post (if so, which one). Ideally could live within 10 minutes of MRT for husband to commute to work and older child to meet up with friends
- will you have any accompanying children needing to attend school? If so, age/s? 11, 9, 5
- are you looking at private (international/fee-paying, or local schools?) international
- will your employer being funding any fees; or will you, 'out of pocket'? employer (thank goodness)
- is remaining within a national curriculum important; if so what nationality are you? At private, progressive US school so IB-ish curriculum preferred, American curriculum not necessary
- have you identified any such schools yet? 11 and 9 year olds (miraculously!) accepted to UWC East, 5 yr old school to be determined (suggestions welcome)

Nice to have:
- will you need to be able to say walk to the local shops, a library, your doctor, a market, and so on? I want to be able to walk to places
- access to any specific sport, social, and recreation facilities? Would like to be within reasonable distance of the American Club, though I'm not 100% sure we would join, and Orchard is not my favorite area (not a big shopper, prefer small and quaint)
- are you considering bringing any pets. If so what kind, and will they require outdoor access and/or exercise? No pets
- are you considering bringing any parents/in-laws etc? Do they have specific needs (for example difficulty climbing stairs?) no parents

Your current home and commute:
- are you already a city dweller? i.e. Are you used to city-centre hustle and bustle, or would you hope for a bit more peace and quiet? Live in moderate city now and prefer to stay central but not necessarily super busy/loud (something Holland village?)
- what is the size and type (apartment, house+garden etc) of your current home? 5000 square foot house with garden
- what are any current commute times like? Not applicable, as husband principally works out of state and would be primarily an airport commute while living in SG as well (India, China, Australia, etc.)

I would love to hear any and all suggestions. I definitely prefer something nice but needs of the kids/ availability of friends for them is most important to me.

Many thanks in advance.

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PNGMK
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Re: US Family Housing Advice (yes I've filled out the form)

Postby PNGMK » Wed, 08 Jun 2016 5:22 pm

I'd rent a bungalow on Jalan Kampong Chantek or thereabouts.... not to far from Bukit Timah and hence easy to get into town, Holland Village, the really neat Bukit Timah Racecourse shops (some interesting places there) and a very nice environ.
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JR8
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Re: US Family Housing Advice (yes I've filled out the form)

Postby JR8 » Wed, 08 Jun 2016 6:45 pm

Hi IvysMom
First thing I tend to do with such data is edit it down to the core answers that will drive the decision. And since we're prone to power cuts out this way I hope you don't mind if as a starting point I just make a copy of my edit here. Hopefully I've everything distilled down about right...
------------------------------

Priorities
- Budget - up to $18K (though we wouldn’t need to spend it all!)
- Workplace/s – TBD, husband will establish small office
- the size and/or type of property that you are seeking – 4+ bedroom + room for a proper helper’s room (at least twin sized bed), anything I've seen under 3000 sq. ft. feels small to me. Would prefer condo to a house so kids could swim with friends after school.
- will you have a car here? yes
- proximity to transport required. - Ideally could live within 10 minutes of MRT for husband to commute to work and older child to meet up with friends
- children needing to attend school? If so, age/s? - 11, 9, 5
- Type of school - international
- Who pays school fees? - employer (thank goodness)
- is remaining within a national curriculum important; if so what nationality are you? At private, progressive US school so IB-ish curriculum preferred, American curriculum not necessary
- have you identified any such schools yet? 11 and 9 year olds (miraculously!) accepted to UWC East, 5 yr old school to be determined (suggestions welcome)

Nice to have:
- will you need to be able to say walk to the local shops, a library, your doctor, a market, and so on? I want to be able to walk to places
- access to any specific sport, social, and recreation facilities? Would like to be within reasonable distance of the American Club [Scotts Road, just off Orchard], though I'm not 100% sure we would join, and Orchard is not my favorite area (not a big shopper, prefer small and quaint)
- Accompanying pets and parents? – None

Your current home and commute:
- are you already a city dweller? - Live in moderate city now and prefer to stay central but not necessarily super busy/loud (something Holland village?)
- what is the size and type of your current home? - 5000 square foot house with garden
- what are any current commute times like? N/A, as husband principally works out of state and would be primarily an airport commute while living in SG as well (India, China, Australia, etc.)

I would love to hear any and all suggestions. I definitely prefer something nice but needs of the kids/ availability of friends for them is most important to me.
'Do it or do not do it: You will regret both' - Kierkegaard

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JR8
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Re: US Family Housing Advice (yes I've filled out the form)

Postby JR8 » Wed, 08 Jun 2016 7:14 pm

Needs relatively big space, 2 children going to school in Tampines, workplace - TBD (sounds quite discretionary). Husband flying a lot. Prefers 'neighbourly' than the Orchard scene.
If you split the island into 4, mightn't that suggest the east-side, or S-E quadrant just as a starting point? It'd perhaps cater to all that, shorter commutes for the husband, + children, and so on...

When I come back later I'll try doing a test property search. Just as a starting point say > $20k [negotiable], 5 bed, full-facility condo in the SE quadrant and see what comes up...
'Do it or do not do it: You will regret both' - Kierkegaard

ivysmom
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Re: US Family Housing Advice (yes I've filled out the form)

Postby ivysmom » Sat, 11 Jun 2016 5:15 am

Thanks to you both for the replies and, yes, JRB, the consolidation is helpful. We've been knee deep in dealing with the timing of entity formation/employment/dependent passes, etc. trying to confirm that an August timetable is realistic. It's perilous to be the first person at a company to have moved overseas! I will get back to it on the housing front shortly and thank you again.

ivysmom
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Joined: Sat, 30 Mar 2013

Re: US Family Housing Advice (yes I've filled out the form)

Postby ivysmom » Sat, 27 Aug 2016 8:19 am

Hi listmates,

Just an update and a little advice -- we moved 3 weeks ago and the Capella on Sentosa has been absolutely divine (but for the 6:30 am bus pick-up for UWC East). But still well worth it, thanks for weighing in on that excellent decision. Undergoing property search right now, had trouble finding condos in East big enough for our big family and didn't want a single family home without good proximity to a club for the kids to hang with friends, etc. So...leaning toward Bukit Timah around Stevens or Botanical Gardens because bus commute times are fairly short to UWC East b/c of PIE proximity and it's a very short commute to Chatsworth Orchard where youngest son attends. Very close to MRT which is a big bonus (decided if we weren't going to live East Coast we wanted to be very close to an MRT), can't walk to much near Stevens MRT but a very short drive to Hollandse Club or American Club (too rich for my blood but maybe the company will pay for it, and it's too bad it's under major construction), Grandstand for kids stuff, Botanic Gardens, Orchard, etc. We will have a car. One place is very near Raffles Town Place so I'm wondering if you know anything about that club -- it isn't currently accepting members but you can buy memberships on the open market. Facilities look good, good pool, tennis, gym, bowling alley. I am not super picky but I want a good gym (machines, etc.) and more importantly for my kids to have friends outside of school -- if we're not getting that in a condo, I'd like it in a club. Any feedback on that facility? I've visited the Hollandse Club and like the low-key vibe but the gym itself is very small, we've also visited the Swiss Club. Any others I should be looking at?


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