30 yr old couple, no kids - where to live for ~4K a month?

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ocho79
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30 yr old couple, no kids - where to live for ~4K a month?

Post by ocho79 » Mon, 03 Jan 2011 10:15 pm

Hi everyone, I have been doing a lot of research and reading all the forums but I thought I'd ask for advice from some veteran expats too. My husband and I will be moving to Singapore next month and he'll be working near the Conrad Centennial in the city. We don't have kids yet so we don't need a big apt or to live near schools and the top end of our budget will probably be 4000-4500 a month. It seems like Holland Park/Orchard area and East Coast would be good? But when "walking" around the Holland Park area on Googlemaps Streetview it seems very suburban and I couldn't easily find restaurants/stores from the condos I looked at. Are there areas that are very neighborhood-y and where you could just walk out of your building and be at some good restaurants? I'm a little worried how we both will hold up walking around in the heat and humidity since we're originally from the Northeast US. We've lived in Shanghai and Hong Kong so we have experienced hot, humid summers but no reprieve in winter will be tough so the closer to food, drink and metros we are, the better!

Any advice?

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Post by beppi » Tue, 04 Jan 2011 2:40 pm

There is hardly anywhere in Singapore more than 100 - 200m walk from the next eating place. I'm sure you'd manage that even in the heat of the day.
But if you're picky, want Western style (or standard) food and aircon, you might have to walk a bit further or take a bus/train/taxi.

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Post by JayCee » Tue, 04 Jan 2011 3:20 pm

Holland road has Holland village nearby which has loads of restaurants and bars, and a cold storage supermarket too. Further down holland road towards clementi is also the cold storage Jelita, so if you choose the holland road area I don't think you'll struggle for places

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Post by cbavasi » Thu, 06 Jan 2011 3:03 pm

If I was younger with no children I would not live in Holland Village. I'd be looking at Sommerset area, Duxton Hill, Mount Sophia. Such great restaurants close by - close to shops, transport... Etc.

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Post by durain » Thu, 06 Jan 2011 7:19 pm

yeah, holland village just doesnt cut it for me too. i think it is a bit over rated. if i was free, young and single, i would choose grange road or tanglin. :)

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Post by Girl_Next_Door » Fri, 07 Jan 2011 1:38 pm

I work in Millenia Tower which is just next to Conrad Centennial. The near MRT stations are Esplanade & Promenade on Circle line. However, the MRT system in Singapore is very efficient and changing trains to another train line is nothing more than a 2-3 mins walk.

Unlike Raffles Place (Central Business District), Centennial & Millenia area always have taxis available during the day and during evening time as well. Cabs are also fairly reasonable priced if you are traveling around city area.

Holland village have ample of restaurants but its an expat family oriented area. If the two of you have no kids, I would suggest for you to look at units around Clarke Quay, Sommerset, Dhoby Ghaut, Orchard & Novena. Robertson Quay, though not near a train station, is very popular among expats as well.

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Post by x9200 » Sat, 08 Jan 2011 11:12 am

Where do you see this specific family character of HV? It is just an isolated expat spot so bars and restaurants are limited and in much smaller number than in Clarke Quay (etc.) but there is nothing family-like over there and pubs to restaurants ratio is pretty similar as anywhere else in the mentioned areas.

Besides, for the 4k budget, isn't a bit tight for a couple in any of the places if they do not want to share the apartment? An HDB maybe.

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Post by cbavasi » Sat, 08 Jan 2011 11:29 am

That's just it, it's quite isolated. HV has great restaurants, shops... But not the same as living in Sommerset or Orchard. Plus from a transport angle the buses going into HV after work take forever. After 4 years here I would also describe HV as a place for young family. But from a budget angle may be difficult.

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Post by x9200 » Sat, 08 Jan 2011 2:52 pm

This is probably up to an individual. What we normally did was to start at CQ and after few drinks/beers take a cab and land back in HV. If someone prefers to change places more frequently then HV has only one such place :) but if this is about having a beer or two after work then HV should be fine. Personally I like the bars at the end of Pasir Panjang Rd. There is always a beautiful mixture of all sorts of expats, guys from the oil rigs and researchers from NUS area to mention only two groups. And almost no tourists.

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Post by ocho79 » Mon, 10 Jan 2011 9:26 am

Thanks everyone, this is very helpful and gives us a start on where to look. Although it sounds like our budget might be a problem, we definitely don't want a shared apartment :-/

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Post by Girl_Next_Door » Mon, 10 Jan 2011 9:52 am

ocho79 wrote:Thanks everyone, this is very helpful and gives us a start on where to look. Although it sounds like our budget might be a problem, we definitely don't want a shared apartment :-/
You would have ample of options, and it all boil downs ultimately on how fussy you are, in your apartment selection. If you are looking for a 2,000sf brand new fully furnished 2-bedroom condo with designer decor, yes, you might not get it. If you looking at 1,000 sf 2-bedroom apartment/condo, you have ample of options, regardless it is Holland Village area or East Coast. How the owner furnished his/her place, might not be your desired decor, but you definitely do not have to share, with this budget.

I have friends paying less than $2K in a HDB and myself is paying less than $2.5K in an older 2-bedroom apartment near Orchard. With a budget of $4-$4.5K, I can safely say that you have no issue finding a 2-bedroom apartment.

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Post by ocho79 » Mon, 10 Jan 2011 8:44 pm

Whew ok that's a relief. Thanks for the encouraging response GirlNextDoor. We definitely don't need a brand-new 2000 sq ft place, just somewhere clean and not moldy and ~1000 sq ft is plenty for us. One question though, we used to live in HK and the listings that said a certain sq ft were always deceptive and included windowsills and closets, etc. Is it like that in Singapore too? After living in Shanghai we're used to living with very odd and tacky furniture that the landlords loved so at least we're prepared for that!

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Post by ev-disinfection » Mon, 10 Jan 2011 10:16 pm

Well, a 2 bedroom apartment is kinda standard at 1,000 sq ft +-, The newer they are the smaller they get, even so for the HDB apartments.

Where you work is down town, the further you choose away from down town in all directions will be cheaper by the mile. there are some exceptions to that rule (of course).
Enjoy searching... and welcome to Singapore.

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Post by seabraa » Wed, 09 Mar 2011 11:39 pm

Wow, this topic completey describes the situation I'm currently in, so all the info here is great. A friend on mine sugegsted Serangoon as a "non expat area", but I'm not sure what to expect from a non expat vs expat area. I'll be working around Clarke Quay, so easy transport links would be great.

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Post by nicole.du » Fri, 11 Mar 2011 12:13 pm

ev-disinfection wrote:Well, a 2 bedroom apartment is kinda standard at 1,000 sq ft +-, The newer they are the smaller they get, even so for the HDB apartments.

Where you work is down town, the further you choose away from down town in all directions will be cheaper by the mile. there are some exceptions to that rule (of course).
Enjoy searching... and welcome to Singapore.
hi, would like to ask do you use a house renting website to find a living place in Singapore? If so, would you please share with me? I am planning to move there in coming months, and want to have some pre-survey on it.

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