A few random, excited questions about move to Hong Kong

Reply
Page 4 of 4 FirstFirst 1 2 3 4
  1. #31

    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Ex Sai Kunger Sunny Qld for now
    Posts
    8,183

    You also don't live on a very narrow winding 2 way road on the South side of HK island either...

    Sorry Moving but we frequent Shek O quiet a bit, I know the area especially well, as we plan to buy a house there in the near future, and it takes me 45-50minutes to drive there, from Siu Lam/next to Gold Coast, it would take you atleast 2 possibly almost 3 hours if badly organised, which when you consider it's only 45-50kms away, it's going to waste most of your time in commuting !

    I'd also like to see you carry a 2 burner BBQ, 4 deck chairs, a fold out picnic table and a heavy LPG bottle, an esky full of meat/drinks on the bus LOL, which we can carry in our Toyota LWB 8 seater MPV, with refreshing ease, dual climate control running, the CD player playing familiar tunes, all in peaceful serenity, unstressed...


    You drove in all the other countries you lived, but now you're anti car, living close to a main arterial highway as you do, I agree in your case you have chosen to work your life without a car ?

    Most people who live in Shek O and Sai Kung which has the almost identical community demographic, own a car...As I said earlier, if you enjoy wasting what little spare time that you have for leisure, by not having a car while living in these outlying area's, and I have to say it, GOLD COAST is nothing like Sai Kung and Shek O, and is hardly comparable.

    When you move to Shek O, and experience it first hand, then you can tell us how easy it is, "without a car there" lmao...

    To further add, if you are prone to car sickness, that stretch of road once you get off Shek O road, turning left going toward Tai Tam, across the reservoir and onto Stanley, is a great one for making people bring their lunch up, thanks to HK bus drivers who have difficulty maintaining an even throttle/speed, the HK slow down speed up, hard on the brakes experience..

    Last edited by Skyhook; 24-01-2009 at 02:55 PM.

  2. #32

    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Hong Kong
    Posts
    23,207
    Quote Originally Posted by Skyhook:
    As I said earlier, if you enjoy wasting what little spare time that you have for leisure
    You're making a huge assumption there. Many people in Hong Kong live life at quite a relaxed place. I'm happy to take public transport around because my life isn't overloaded and it's rare that another 15 or 30 minutes will not be manageable, and for those rare occasions a taxi suffices. I spend far, far less on taxis than it would cost to run a car.

  3. #33

    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Gold Coast Marina
    Posts
    17,934

    Skyhook - I'm not anti car and certainly think there are places in HK where they are value-added. Not sure if Shek O is one of these or not - I was there last week on a hike and it only took us about 1.5 hours to get there from here (which is clearly alot longer than it would take in a car, no issue with that) but I guess it depends how long the OP wants to take commuting - if, for example, he's happy taking 40 mins or so to central (which seemed to be how long it would have taken us as we went via central on the way there and home) then he's fine. One person in our 11 person office owns a car and he does not use it to get to work on account of the cost of parking.

    The other thing is, if you need car transport, taxis are SO cheap here. So I agree, if you want to buy a load of heavy shopping or transport a BBQ somewhere, a car is very useful, but a taxi is just as cheap as owning your own car and you don;t have to park it when you arrive nor have a car park at your residence.

    But anyway - the best thing to do for the OP would be to try it and see for a few weeks - if he can cope on public transport/taxis, that's great and if not at least he'll know the trade offs.


  4. #34

    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Ex Sai Kunger Sunny Qld for now
    Posts
    8,183

    PDLM,
    I am not making any assumptions, I am basing my opinion on experience, having lived in outlying area's, which my post was pertinent to, it wasn't aimed at people that live right above a 7 eleven at street level, in the thick of central...

    I will re iterate, if you live in Shek O, or Sai Kung, between Sai Kung and Mah On Shan, Pak tam country park etc, a car makes life easy, by not having a car, in those area's, especially married, you are not going to have a happy home life....

    Have you ever lived in the above locations ?



    I am sure even you can work that out, that if one choses to live in an "out lying "rural esq location of Hong Kong, public transport is less than inspiring for most people, especially those that do focus on how much time is spent, getting somewhere. in my case, taxi costs would be double what I would spend in a given year... One of the advantages of having a 60% NCB and being able to maintain my cars myself...


  5. #35

    Thanks for those perspectives. My plan will be (as much as this is possible) to try finding short-term lets in two/three very different areas and assessing the pros/cons of each before I settle on one. As to car vs public transport, I've lived happily without a car in Sydney and London, but never having been to HK it could be completely different so I won't make any claims - again just wait and see. Cheers to all for the opinions.

    One other question. I've read that on top of rent there's 12% management fees. Is this negotiable, as seems a lot, and does the 12% include the 5% government rates or is this another extra? And are there any other 'extra' government/council charges I should know about?

    Thanks.


  6. #36

    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Hong Kong
    Posts
    23,207

    Management fees and rates are generally included in lets, but sometimes they are an explicit extra. The amount for management fees is whatever the management company of the property charges the owners for all the shared services and hence varies dramatically depending on what services there are (security, etc). 12% seems a bit high unless you are in a very flashy property. For example, the management fees on my apartment (which I own, but which I believe would let for about HK$25K/month) are about H$1200/month.

    Government rates are also normally included. Again, they are not a percentage of the actual rental - they are 5% of the rateable value of the property (which is far less volatile than the actual rental achievable). However, currently, Government rates are temporarily waived (as yet another sop to the building cartel that controls this town); it is not yet clear whether this waiver will be extended into the next financial year (April 2009-Mar 2010) but in the current economic climate I would be very surprised if it weren't.

    Last edited by PDLM; 25-01-2009 at 10:41 AM.

  7. #37

    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Ex Sai Kunger Sunny Qld for now
    Posts
    8,183

    Short term lets are very uncommon MT, I doubt you'll find anything short term in Shek O, due to a shortage of property to let. Demand there is high, because of a lack of turnover...

    Also, when you let a property over a standard 2 year lease, with a 2 month notice break lease clause from 12 months into it. The rent should be inclusive of management fee's etc, all you need to pay for yourself are the utility costs.

    Serviced apartments ( short term rentals usually are ) will be inclusive of all rental and utility costs, but generally 2 to 3 times more expensive than a non serviced apartment/gated security property...


    adding extra info as PDLM posted around the same time as I.
    I agree with PDLM, and management fee's are the responsibility of landlords/property owners ( generally), in our case we pay $1800 a month, which would be factored into any rent ( as will govt rates ) as a non visible cost to the tenant if we decided to rent ours out...

    Last edited by Skyhook; 25-01-2009 at 10:56 AM.

  8. #38

    Thanks again to you both. Thought it was say 20-25k then having to add the extras on top, so the general inclusion is good to hear (just a case of double-checking beforehand I guess, but makes my searches seem more reasonable now). Appreciate all the help - firm is leaving it all down to me to assess before I decide either way and not an area I had a clue about.

    Short term lets - have to just get out and about having a look then. That's fine too.

    Cheers.


Reply
Page 4 of 4 FirstFirst 1 2 3 4