Finding an apartment for rent in Phnom Pen is a pretty straightforward operation. See what’s offered, visit it, arrange a lease, sign the lease, and you are done. That’s pretty much how renting is done in the other parts of the world.
Of course, there are various types of communities and neighborhoods. Some of them are flooded with expatriates, while others are mainly populated by the locals. But wherever you might go, people are very friendly and warm. What’s not so friendly are some of the rental prices in some high-end communities.
But figuring out the area that you need to focus on is just a matter of a simple online search. Also, there is a wide selection available apartments; from affordable one-bedroom studios to super-luxurious apartments featuring spectacular views and premium amenities.
What’s specific for apartments in Phnom Penh, and might be a bit confusing to a foreigner, is that some are advertised as fully-serviced, while others are listed as apartment providing services.
Difference between different types of serviced apartment
A fully-serviced apartment is very much like hotel accommodation. You get a fully furnished apartment with all household appliances, fully equipped kitchen, and pretty much anything in between. Furthermore, you have a concierge on call for everything you might be needing.
Another typical thing about these apartments is that they are al-inclusive. What that means is your rental fee includes cable, internet, cleaning, water, and sometimes even the electricity bill.
Recently even some mid-range apartments started including a bunch of amenities in their monthly rental fee.
Then there are the low-end apartments that, in most cases, are rented unfurnished, and don’t include any of the mentioned amenities in the lease.
The lease contract and its importance
This is probably the single most important part of the entire renting experience. The better your contract, the better. Make sure you add clauses that protect you from forceful, no reason eviction, unfair rent raise, what happens in case a water pipe or fire breaks out accidentally, and so on.
Thing is there aren’t any Cambodian laws that deal with these types of disputes. That is why you need to cover as many potential issues as possible in your lease contract.
And while scouting for an apartment, make sure that you don’t end up renting a place from a landlord that is not easy to work with or sounds too demanding.
Phnom Penh’s real estate market is booming, especially the residential sector. The demand is there, but the output is more than enough for the current demand. The point is to make sure that you’ve seen as many apartments for rent as possible before choosing.
And when you are talking to the potential landlords, don’t forget to mention that little detail. If nothing else, they will be careful with the demands they impose on you. Some may even lower their rental fees or be open to your demands.