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Finding a bachelor's pad for a newbie

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gator
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Finding a bachelor's pad for a newbie

Postby gator » Sun, 27 Sep 2009 7:58 am

Hi all,

The plan at the moment is that I'll be moving to Singapore for my job from the States (NY) in December. I've never been to Singapore, let alone East/Southeast Asia, and I'm really looking forward to it.

So I'm starting to do some research into good places to stay. I'm a single guy in my late 20s and would like to have a place near the nightlife, but also relatively close (by mrt) to the business district (I'm not sure where exactly my workplace will be yet, but my uneducated guess is District 2). I've heard a lot about Orchard Road, but I don't know if that area is out of my price range.

My budget is under S$3500/mo ideally for a furnished 1+1 place (1 bed, 1 office/guest bed) with modest living room, kitchen, and bath. Does this sound at all reasonable?

Also, I heard someone else mention this but didn't hear an answer.. Are brokers typically paid for by the tenant or the landlord? I know in NY the brokers take money from both ends (which I find to be crazy, but besides the point).

Any help is hugely appreciated. This is really a great resource, and once I settle down in Singapore, I hope to give back.

Thanks!

gator
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Postby gator » Mon, 28 Sep 2009 7:50 am

I think I should have posted this in the "Staying, Living in Singapore" forum. My apologies.

Are Singaporeans generally accepting of errors such as these? :wink:

TommyD
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Postby TommyD » Mon, 28 Sep 2009 2:12 pm

gator wrote:Are Singaporeans generally accepting of errors such as these? :wink:


No.

Girl_Next_Door
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Re: Finding a bachelor's pad for a newbie

Postby Girl_Next_Door » Mon, 28 Sep 2009 3:10 pm

gator wrote:Hi all,

The plan at the moment is that I'll be moving to Singapore for my job from the States (NY) in December. I've never been to Singapore, let alone East/Southeast Asia, and I'm really looking forward to it.

So I'm starting to do some research into good places to stay. I'm a single guy in my late 20s and would like to have a place near the nightlife, but also relatively close (by mrt) to the business district (I'm not sure where exactly my workplace will be yet, but my uneducated guess is District 2). I've heard a lot about Orchard Road, but I don't know if that area is out of my price range.

My budget is under S$3500/mo ideally for a furnished 1+1 place (1 bed, 1 office/guest bed) with modest living room, kitchen, and bath. Does this sound at all reasonable?

Also, I heard someone else mention this but didn't hear an answer.. Are brokers typically paid for by the tenant or the landlord? I know in NY the brokers take money from both ends (which I find to be crazy, but besides the point).

Any help is hugely appreciated. This is really a great resource, and once I settle down in Singapore, I hope to give back.

Thanks!


A few options to consider:
Robertson Quay
- Near a lot of water holes, rental around $3 - $4k for 1 br, I think
- Small apartments though, but most are quite new
- Not near any train station. The closest is Dhoby Ghart which involve 10 - 15 mins walk, which is considered a long walk, when its 30 degrees.

Tg Pager / Outram
- There are options of fancy condos (eg. Icon) or HDB (spottiswoode area)
- Can probably find a 2 bedroom if its an older place, or 1 br in Icon
- Traffic is accessible if you find a place next to the train station

Orchard /Somerset
- Rental varies because there is a mix of new fancy condo and older apartments.
- Food and train are accessible

Alternatively, you can consider Newton area, if you can find a place next to the train station.

If your rent is more than $3k, the landlord will pay the commission. If your rent is less than $3k, you would need to pay half of it.

Just to give you an idea... I spent 1 month, viewing more than 10 apartments, going through several internet sites and going through several agents (for different viewings) before settling in the place I am staying now. You need to view a decent number of apartments, before you find something that you will be happy with. Of course, if you want to do it fast, expect to pay a bit more, and potentially settling down to a "crappier" place.

Good luck!

gator
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Postby gator » Tue, 29 Sep 2009 11:52 am

Big thanks, Girl_Next_Door. A lot of really good info. I'd like to be near a train station (I'll be roasted in the sun unless I wear sunblock every day) - so I'll probably stay clear of Robertson Quay.

I just checked out Icon, and the place looks ridiculously modern but expensive. Seems like for my price-range, I'd get about 575 sq feet (which really isn't that bad considering the amenities. Included washer dryer = paradise for me :wink: ). Is the Tg Pager/Outram area good for watering holes/restaurants?

And I take it that the value of Newton is that it's really near Orchard, right? At least it seems that way from the maps.

If 30 days was enough for you to find your perfect place, then that's excellent. I should have about 30 days of exploring before I have to pick a place once I get out there. Based on your advice, I'll take a good look at Tanjong Pagar, Outram, Newton, and Orchard/Somerset.

Appreciated...

Girl_Next_Door
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Postby Girl_Next_Door » Tue, 29 Sep 2009 12:47 pm

I like Robertson Quay for the wine and dine, but I am just bothered by the distance of the train station. My friends who stay around that area told me there are many bus which you can catch to town area, so that might work for you.

You can also look around Clarke Quay area? I think there is some apartments n condos near Merchant Court area.

My bf stays in one of the 600sf unit in Icon. While the outdoor facilities are gorgeous, I find the unit very small (and I love big spaces). Tg Pager is near a strange mix of really good restaurants, dodgy bar (Duxton Hill) and some gay bars (Yes, there are apparently some in Sg!). Outram seems to have a lot of HDB but I am not 100% sure since I am not familiar with that area.

Do check out Somerset area. There are alot of new n older apartments n condos (Anyway, you will find most condos have washer n dryer) so you can have a good pick. Those nearer to River Valley is about 10 mins walk to Robertson Quay (Which is not too bad at 8pm in the evening. Its just terrible if you are walking at 8am in the morning).

Newton is 1 train station away from Orchard but very limited food options. There is only a hawker center there, but its about 5 mins to Orchard/Somerset. Trains in Sg is very reliable, so no more waiting for 30 mins for a train to come! Yay!!

Novena is also quite popular among expats (2 stations from Orchard) and have a few shopping malls around as well. You can explore that area if you prefer a slightly bigger place.

And yes, if you look at classified ads or ., etc, and make use of several agents, I am pretty sure you will find something decent within 2-3 weeks, and another weeks to tie down the documentations, etc. Just remember, never never let the agent pressure you. They like to pull stupid tricks like, there is another offer, yada yada yada...

gator
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Postby gator » Tue, 29 Sep 2009 3:28 pm

Sorry for the ignorance, but what's HDB? I assume public housing by the context?

Thanks again for the suggestions. The Somerset/Orchard area looks great every time i look at it, but I share your like of big spaces. I'm living alone, so don't need a ton of space, but it would be nice to have a spare bed for visitors. I suppose I can't have everything =)

If I found a place along River Valley Rd (like say UE square), would the walk to the MRT still be far? condos seem a little more reasonable in the area between Somerset and Robertson Quay.

It's getting late here, so I'll have a look at Novena tomorrow. And duly noted about the agents. It's always "sign now, or never get the place".

Thanks!

Girl_Next_Door
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Postby Girl_Next_Door » Tue, 29 Sep 2009 5:06 pm

Yes, HDB is public housing in Singapore. One of my friends is staying in one, and the place is huge. The key differences are they are mainly its occupied by Singaporeans and they dont have facilities like pool, gyms, etc.

UE Square is near Mohd Sultan. Its still quite a distance away from the train station. Maybe you can look around Devonshire Road, Killinery Road or Oxley rise area. There are walking distance to train stations and near food & groceries.

Another option is Emerald Garden in Club Street, which is near Raffles Place.


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