Cat’s been pounding the pavements looking for that elusive perfect place. To developers, estate agents and all sellers alike, she says, Get real.
Photo Credit: http://www.homelivingmall.com
Whether you are looking to rent or buy a property, finding somewhere to live in Bangkok, or any other city in the world for that matter, can be daunting and tedious. Although there is a forest of condos and plenty of houses available for rent or sale here, finding the perfect place to live is a task that requires a lot of time and effort.
As an expatriate, renting was an obvious choice when we first moved to Bangkok almost nine years ago. We were fortunate that our agent showed us the most family and expatriate-friendly soi in Bangkok immediately. Nine years later, we are still living in the same place.
However with the property market flourishing and prices of condominiums and houses rising steadily, many long-term expatriate families, including us, have decided to look for somewhere to buy. Some have been very lucky; they’ve managed to make a purchase not too long after searching for their perfect home. I nevertheless have been treading the streets of Bangkok in search of a perfect place forever!
The problem I have been facing is that many agents are so keen to sell you something, they tend to forget your requirements. On numerous occasions, I have turned up at a place that bears no resemblance to what I am looking for.
Deciding on an area that is most suitable for you perhaps is the foremost important factor. If you only have a narrow stretch that you are willing to live in, that can limit your search. For instance, I have been living in the Sathorn area ever since I moved to Bangkok, therefore I am very reluctant to look for a place through the vast number of sois on Sukhumvit Road and any other areas outside the Sathorn ambit. For others, moving from this side of Chao Phya River to the other side could be an issue.
Sometimes, some of you may even be tempted to move out of the city centre of Bangkok altogether. Have you ever considered moving to Nonthaburi or Ram Intra? According to residents currently living in those areas, the air quality is much better there, but would the air issue alone persuade us to forget the traffic problems we face daily and the cost of the commute on the expressways? Chaengwatana and Bangna are also popular areas for some, but then we face the same problems.
In the past couple of years, property developers have explored the shortage of superior quality accommodations in the centre of Bangkok by developing a number of sites. New condominiums have sprouted up in various prestigious areas. However, for me the problem I am still facing is the lack of large properties. Many of the new condominiums are built to rather limited space for an average family.
In order to meet demand for properties in the centre, some developers are even buying up old buildings to renovate and resell to eager buyers.
With the large number of property speculators as well as genuine home seekers buying up new developments, townhouse and condominium developers are finding their properties being snapped up before they are even built!
So far, I find myself a long way away from finding an appropriate place to move to. My hope was lifted when a friend of mine told me there was an amazing place for sale in an excellent location for a very reasonable price. Filled with excitement, I made an appointment to see it straight away. Unfortunately, two hours before I was due to view the place, the owner took it off the market. The opportunity had proven too good to be true!
Now, if you are a real estate agent or a property owner who has something suitable to sell, please do not hesitate to contact me. You may have a very grateful buyer knocking on your door.
For the rest of you who are looking, good luck and happy hunting!
06/10/2011 - 11:08