Are you moving to Hanoi? There are more things to do before moving there, especially as an ex-pat. It might be challenging enough for someone coming from a smaller town too, but ex-pats need to follow more rules. Assuming that you have already sorted your visa out, there are a few things to take into consideration while looking for an apartment to rent in Hanoi. So, what are your first steps in the process?
Deciding on a budget
Whether you move to Hanoi or New York City, you need a budget in mind. Of course, the financial market is different in Vietnam, and rules tend to differ a bit. As a general rule of thumb, the rent should not exceed 30% of your income. It might be alright to live with higher rent in other parts of the world, but not in Hanoi – not if you want a nice lifestyle.
Why is the budget so important? Easy! If you do your homework and know what you can spend every month, you will know what kind of price range to look for. You will also find it easier to choose one area or another. If you genuinely want to live in a nice place, you might want to consider cutting on various other expenses.
Considering value for money
Just because a Hanoi apartment for rent is inexpensive, it does not mean that you have only found the best deal. Instead, you have to hunt value for money. It is alright to pay more if you get a plethora of amenities. But on the other hand, a cheap apartment for rent in Hanoi can end up living in a dangerous area.
Many newbies believe that the city center is the key to a good life – a terrible idea. Sure, it works for those who want to be close to everything and can afford it. But if you cannot afford it, it is pointless. From this point of view, many ex-pats choose the urban area around Hanoi. Many residences provide a reasonable commuting time to work or the city center. They are cheaper and provide more tranquility.
Think about transportation costs too. Urban areas are not far from Hanoi – half an hour with traffic or less without traffic. If you save $30 on rent further away, but you spent $50 on buses and taxis, your deal is bad, especially as you also waste time.
Finally, do not give up on a nice apartment for rent in Hanoi if the price seems a bit too big. Negotiate instead. You can also choose to get a longer contract or perhaps come up with a bigger deposit – things that can get landlords to cut the prices a bit.
The bottom line, finding a Hanoi apartment to rent is not impossible, but just like everywhere else across the world, it requires time and attention to small details. The research will most likely save you lots of money in the long run.