How to Find Affordable Housing for Expats Working in Thailand
It’s easy to feel overwhelmed if you’re a working expat and you’re looking for affordable housing in Thailand.
But as in all things in life, it can be easily handled if you will do enough research and planning. There are numerous jobs for Americans in Thailand so you will not have a hard time looking for a place. If you’re looking for affordable housing though, do apply the following tips:
1. Have a defined budget
In order to successfully look for affordable housing, you need to be particular with your budget. How much can you dedicate to your housing expenses? To answer this, you need to consider the following factors:
- Your income
- Your financial obligations
- The cost of living in the area of your choice
- Your lifestyle
- Your daily expenses
2. Know different neighborhoods
It’s easy to think that there are few affordable housing options in Thailand if you will limit yourself to one neighborhood. No matter if you are moving to a city like Bangkok or Chiang Mai, or to the beautiful islands of Thailand, you should be open to exploring different areas. Different neighborhoods in Thailand vary in cost of living expenses. But in checking out different neighborhoods, you should consider the following factors:
- Proximity to your workplace
- Accessibility to transportation
Keep in mind that your safety should still be your top priority. Don’t settle so low that you compromise your security and peace of mind.
3. Use online resources
Be proactive in Googling. A general search is not recommended. It will be best if you will do the following:
- Take advantage of different online platforms that cater to Thai residents and expats in Thailand
- Look for websites that specialize in listing properties in Thailand like DDProperty, ThaiProperty, and Hipflat.
- Join online forums dedicated to your needs
4. Look into shared accommodation
If you want to truly save on housing expenses, you should consider sharing an apartment or house with other expats or locals. This will significantly decrease your rental costs. You’d be able to find someone to share accommodations with by checking out the following:
- Online forums
- Social media communities
- Expat groups
Be open to meeting new people. Before embarking on this option though, you need to be particular with the kind of person or people that you will be okay to live with. Consider your lifestyle and daily schedule.
5. Connect with expat communities
You will get a lot of information and specialized tips if you will go out of your way to join expat communities. You can do this organically or digitally. You can either go to places where expats often hang out or join online forums that expats in Thailand frequent. You will be amazed at how everyone is willing to help. You will also find it easier to ease into your new lifestyle if you’re surrounded by people who can easily relate to you.
6. Have local contacts
You should also take time to connect with local workmates and neighbors. Expats may know a thing or two about a neighborhood but it’s the locals who will be able to give you more insights about different places as they’ve lived in Thailand all their lives. Locals can connect you to more locals which can lead you to the ideal affordable housing that you’re looking for. You will also get to easily ensure that all the parties that you interact with are trustworthy.
7. Consider non-traditional options
You can also consider non-traditional options. Traditional options are preferred by many which leads such options to be in high demand. Non-traditional options are alternatives that are not preferred by many because they are not as popular. To widen your options for affordable housing, you should look into:
- Rental properties in less-explored areas
- Serviced apartments
8. Be ready to negotiate
You should have a list of deal breakers and preferences. This will be highly important once you’ve found the housing of your choice as you will need to negotiate your rental terms. You should make it a point to make your landlord know that you’re very open to adjusting the rent or lease terms. There is a high chance for you to enjoy incentives if you’d commit to a longer lease term.
9. Flexibility is key
You should be open to compromising and adjusting. Housing in Thailand is no different from any part of the world. There is no such thing as perfect housing. There will always be a CON or disadvantage to any of your preferred options. This is why you should ready yourself to adjust and compromise when it comes to the following:
- Location of the property
10. Real estate agents will make your search easier
If you have no time to research, network, and personally look for affordable housing, you should simply choose to work with a real estate agent. A local real estate agent has all the information that you will ever need in looking for affordable housing. They have all the right connections and networks so you’d get to simply chill and relax while they come up with affordable options.
You need to take note though that working with one will not be beneficial if you don’t know what you’re looking for. You should first fully know what you want to look for before engaging the services of a real estate agent. Knowing what you want will streamline and speed up the work of your agent.