Here’s some advice on living in Singapore.
It’s official: Singapore is the 20th most expensive city in the world to live in (according to data provided ECA International). But don’t worry – here are 5 ways to find a suitable nest on the island in line with both your budget and lifestyle.
If you find yourself in a legal bind, and don’t have the money to consult an attorney, don’t despair! There are a number of pro bono legal services available here. On the Singapore Free Legal Clinics site, you can locate a clinic in your area and make a short appointment to talk to a lawyer for free about a personal matter.
Likewise, the Law Society Pro Bono Services is a registered charity that provides free legal consultation to those who cannot otherwise afford it. Both services offer only “guidance” not actual legal advice and, of course, you may still need to retain a lawyer to pursue any legal action.
With housing prices still lower in SG than they were in 2013, the Red Dot continues to be a renter’s market. And, before you go into any rental negotiations, it pays to know the market rate.
One easy way to find out about property and housing information? Download the PropertyGuru app, and click on “Condo Directory”. Find a unit or building you like, scroll down to “View Past Transactions” – which lists recent rates – and make your offer accordingly. The app’s available on the App Store and Google Play store.
Think you’ve landed a bargain on that new unit? Does it check off all of your must-have criteria? Congrats! Just take note of these 3 factors before you sign on the dotted line.
1) Afternoon Sun
The midday sun in SG is no joke. Determine how daylight affects your unit (i.e., where your windows face) through the SunCalc online app, which shows how the sun’s movement and phases affect any location you’ve pinned on the map.
2) Noise Level
Is your unit close to the expressway? If it is, you can expect more noise, as sound travels up. (Tip: Ground units actually tend to have the least amount of noise.) Check your provided map and look at the surrounding roads. If possible, visit the unit during a peak travel time to note the ambient noise.
3) Nearby Construction
Some might say, if you’re not living close to a construction site, you’re not living in Singapore! However, you can at least check the Urban Redevelopment Authority Master Plan to see what’s coming up in the future.
Hoping to buy an HDB? (That’s short for “Housing and Development Board” – or public housing in SG.) Then, don’t do it without first consulting SingSaver’s new bank loan comparison feature. It impartially lists loans for HDB units based on interest rates, welcome offers and other benefits. Plus, it shows you the sample repayment amount based on a $500,000 loan over 25 years.
And if you’re fresh off the boat, you’ll want to check out this SingSaver post on the best cards to use to save more when shopping in SG.
Some text adapted from www.homeanddecor.com.sg and www.singsaver.com.sg/ Additional reporting, Sara Lyle Bow. From The Finder (Issue 293), June 2018
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