We are already a month into 2019, and if you’re considering changing your current home, you might be asking yourself – how do I choose the right home this year?
I think it’s safe to say that things won’t be much different from the previous year, but perhaps for your next move you might be thinking about changing your criteria? For example, being in a prime location on the island might not be what you’re looking for anymore. I really believe that Hong Kong has much more to offer today than ever before, which become obvious when you consider the incredible expansion of residential areas. There isn’t just a handful of prime areas anymore, which now mean you can truly start expanding beyond location and think about what you truly want out of your new home.
THINK ABOUT THE FOLLOWING...
For any move in Hong Kong, whether you are a newcomer or in need of a change, start getting familiar with the neighbourhood you might want to live in – take the time to walk around the neighbourhood, visit the restaurants, shops, and natural surroundings; find out where the bank is and the public transport access, as well as the pet friendly areas if you have or plan to get a pet. If you’re a family look into the different school options and if you’re a young professional or couple, find the trendy places that suit your lifestyle. Before anything get a general feel for the areas you are interested in.
That’s all general advice though, but have you thought about looking into what’s happening in the market? Newer residential areas have expanded tremendously in the past few years. They did so along with new MTR lines, shopping malls, and school campuses – housing in Hong Kong is trying to keep up with new trends and developments. Many of the buildings you find in these rising new areas are completely new, and often will feature sustainable materials, lighter colours, and better equipped kitchens and bathroom finishes. Asking rents are also more competitive, and even though some sizes will have smaller square footage, the overall quality has substantially improved.
What’s the problem? One of the main issues in Hong Kong’s residential market is the leasing stock, not necessarily the quantity of standard stock, but the lack of quality supply. If you’re looking for something unique you’re going to have a hard time. Why? Because landlords prefer to keep their units on a ‘as is’ condition, without the improvements or renovations one would love to have. Hence, these ‘gems’ are often taken up very quickly! Landlords know that very well.
Landlords know that very well, and some will go to great extent to have a particular home; an individual one. You may be able to find for example an open plan kitchen, a large master bathroom, built in wardrobes or even sustainable and eco-friendly materials. If on top of that you can add a great view, then you have a good product.