How to Move to Hongkong I Living in Hongkong I Move to Hongkong I Relocation Guide for Expat to Hongkong
Relocating to Hongkong
If you are relocating an executive to Hongkong or if you are relocating to or within Hongkong yourself, you have found the right relocation and immigration specialists. Helpxpat provides professional relocation and immigration solutions tailored to the needs of international executives.
For the past 6 years we have consistently relocated corporate executives to live in Hongkong and their families to, and within, Hongkong. We are responsive and professional, and always operate with care and sensitivity towards our client’s needs.
Moving to Hongkong
Think Hong Kong and a number of images may come to mind. It’s where the old world meets the new, where high-rise buildings and neon outline a maze of a city milling with locals and dotted with expatriates.
Relocating services in Hongkong
For the past few years we have consistently relocated corporate executives to live in Hong Kong and their families to, and within, Hong Kong. We are responsive and professional, and always operate with care and sensitivity towards our client’s needs.
For the most part, accommodation remains one of the main financial benefits included in packages geared towards luring qualified personnel from all over the world to assist in the emirate’s growth. Most expats who move to Hongkong for work purposes arrive to accommodation chosen and organised by their employer.
If you are planning to relocate to Hongkong, www.helpxpat.com is best positioned to be your prefered partner of choice for relocation services in Hongkong
Home Search in Hongkong
Searching for a new property in Hongkong can be stressful, time-consuming and very frustrating, often requiring that you view numerous properties that don’t meet your requirements. Helpxpat will save your time by assuring all properties closely suit your needs and reporting back to you with an itinerary. Our consultants in Hongkong have considerable market knowledge and negotiation skills.
A safer option is to use the services of a relocation agent, who will be able to speak the language and understand the local nuances of the Hongkong property market.
Types of accommodation in Hongkong
Housing in Hong Kong is extremely expensive, whether buying or renting. The hilly topography makes it difficult to build on Hong Kong Island and since there are no open spaces for houses and villas, the only solution is tall blocks stacked to the hilt with tightly packed apartments. And they’re getting higher by the day, as the demand for good housing rises with the increase in population. And despite the shockingly high rents on Hong Kong Island, it’s incredibly popular. If you don’t mind the commute though, you’re better off venturing further out to get more for your money.
Rent is calculated on the square footage of the floor area, inclusive of the car park, foyer elevator area and stairwell, so check how much of this is actually your apartment. Quoted rents are per month.
Many expats have their rent paid by their company and thus tend to live in high rental homes. There are expat enclaves with luxurious apartments perched on top of steep hills with spectacular views, and often include facilities like a swimming pool, tennis courts, gym, children’s play areas and shuttle service.
Changes within the apartment can be made with the permission of the landlord, even if they are structural, but landlords expect you to remove them when you leave and hand the place over as it was. If you don’t then you may have to forfeit the deposit.
Most high rental apartments have one parking space with the option of paying for a second. Apart from the rent, you’ll pay a monthly management fee, which in some apartments includes air conditioning and covers the quarterly government rates determined by the Rating and Values Department based on the age, type and size of the building. When viewing properties, the rent will either be quoted as ‘inclusive’ meaning management and rates are included, or ‘exclusive’ meaning rates will be quoted separately.
Rent increases depend entirely on market conditions. If the market is down, you can negotiate a lower rent or expect no increase. If it’s high, rent increase could be 30% and if you can’t afford it or if the company refuses to pay the new rent, you may have to move out, which is actually a pretty regular occurrence here.
How to find a home in Hongkong
If you are planning to relocate to Hongkong and need assistance to find a home, helpxpat.com enables you to find the most appropriate home for the employee for their budget and lifestyle and to negotiate the best possible lease terms – saving the client and the employee time, financial liability and stress.
Choosing a right school in Hongkong
Various challenges face expats moving to the Middle Eastern emirate, but navigating the system of education in Hongkong is one part of the process that doesn’t have to be too complicated.
Most expats send their children to private international schools and their biggest obstacle is often not the lack of places in Hongkongi schools but rather choosing between them.
Hong Kong has high literacy rate and a big share of the government budget goes towards education. School here is free and compulsory, but children of expats almost always go to fee-paying international schools that follow the curriculum and graduation requirements of their home country.
International schools tend to be larger than regular schools and many have impressive facilities. The English Schools Foundation (ESF) has 10 primary and five secondary schools situated in different districts of Hong Kong. This school system dates back to the colonial days when British children went to school in their ‘catchments’ as they called it, meaning the area where they live. This process of placement still applies, but if there are vacancies in another ‘catchments’ the child could apply for admission there.
Most international schools have a debenture system so companies buy debentures for their employees to ensure a place in the school. This could be an amount between $25,000 and $80,000, which is refunded when the child leaves. School books and supplies, bus services and field trip costs are not included in the fees, which are charged either monthly or quarterly.
The ESF schools entrance fee is $10,000 for primary and $16,000 for secondary school, balanced later by the school fees. Smaller schools charge an entrance fee.
The school year for all schools in Hong Kong starts from August or September and runs through to June or July.
Typically there are up to 100 children in a class, they are then randomly split into four classrooms. Staff are recruited from abroad or locally from other international schools if they have the credentials.
School days are from Monday to Friday with varying hours. They close for Christmas for about two to three weeks, a week for the Chinese New Year, a week for Easter and then for about two months in the summer. Some schools work on a semester system while others divide the teaching year into terms.
Relocation agencies in Hongkong
Helpxpat specialise in helping people move and are set up to relieve employees of the issues that occur when moving to Hongkong and we offer a wide range of services and provide aid in every aspect of your relocation – from visa struggles and work permits, to transport and finding housing.
Relocating without any assistance and help can quickly evolve into a matter of frustration, confusion and surrender – Our expert expat team is ready to get your relocation going, so why not jump-start your move abroad and contact us today? Best to start early!
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in Hongkong, please contact our in-house Mobility Expert, Ms. Simi Sujith, Directly: