Sunday, January 19, 2014

Counting down to move!

It isn't long now. Counting down to my next big move. Ok. My 5th move in Hong Kong except it's gonna be easier being a local move and not international. 

My man n I had a bout of itchy butt syndrome and so we decided to rent another apartment after spending a few weekends looking around. We kinda felt crammed in with our own place. My security guards were shocked and expressed dismay that we are leaving. Ok, at least someone is sad to see us go:) 

interestingly, our ABC neighbors who moved in exactly the same time as us, are also moving out the same time as us after 3 years here! I spotted the KC DAT boxes outside their unit and went off to finger some info from the lobby security. Gossip has it that they bought another place and moving. No word yet as to if they are selling or renting out their unit. 

During rental Search, What we did discover is that there has been a huge exodus of expats, esp those with huge expat package. That leaves a lot, and I mean ALOT of empty units up for rental. Those previously unattainable units at The Peak, are now suddenly within reach. Of course I don't mean a sudden price fall but what used to easily command over HK$100K+ units are now asking for Hk80 and possibly negotiable downwards. 

My agent reckons these expats are icing away from HK to Singapore, especially those with kids. Primarily, education or getting their kids to school is a BITCH here. If u think long Qs or balloting is bad in SIngapore. Welcome to the Cut throat impossibility in HK. U gotto know people, belong to some network or club or buy your way in. Local schools? U better make sure ur kid speaks Cantonese or he or she might not even be considered. Depending on where u live and the school u are hankering after, u will be lucky if the waiting list isn't longer than the number if neighbors u have in your sprawling condo complex. In contrast, Singapore govt is ramming it's effort in building MORE intentional schools. It's not rocket science why, and while it helps not to deprive local kids a spot in school, it doesn't help in integration efforts either. But that is a topic for another day. 

We found a unit which for a change, didn't have views nor situated conveniently near the malls, eateries nor shops. I can't just pop down to causeway bay n grab a meal in 5 mins anymore. I will miss that. I will miss my unit, which was renovated to the way we like to live, not to mention storage... Plenty of storage space. I will miss it but I welcome the change. 

Unlike my previous experience with a shitty HK landlord who are total cheapskates despite being a lawyer, this time round, our landlord, a 34yo Harvard graduate is absolutely by HK standards, divine. He had his staff to accommodate to our request to provide a separate washer n dryer of over 8kg. Perfect. I explain my need for complete darkness in the bedroom and he agreed to providing the blackout curtains. I'm telling u, it's rare. 

My man has been rather excited. He's looking at shelves etc but I'm stuck between getting something not too shabby but not too ex, whereas he really want to splurge. I reckon it's a rental place and not knowing how long we will stay, I opt to wait n see before spending but my man is ra ra to go. He wants to get something nice ( not cheap) right away. Sigh. I find it hard to b spendthrift. Seriously. Getting me to open my wallet for anything beyond hk$2000 takes a lot of consideration but my man doesn't blink. I'm not a cheapskate, I just like to know where my money goes is worth it! 

Meanwhile, been asking for moving quotes and the prices are like heaven n earth. Ranges from Hk$10K+ to HK$30K. It's crazy. 

We got quotes from Tradewind, Santa Fe, Yamato, Classic Removal. Yamato is the Most expensive!!  I nearly choke on the quote! Santa Fe was surprisingly cheaper than Tradewind but in the end I decided to go with classic removal which was recommended by my man Taiwanese teacher, whose husband has been using this removalist for years for the whole family. Fingers crossed all will be well.

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