How to choose the perfect apartment for your needs

But where does one begin? With so many things to keep in mind, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. So here you are, your list of what you need to consider when going apartment hunting!

I’m sure you’ve seen our listicle of ‘things to avoid when looking for a serviced apartment’. How about the things you actually need-to-know? Don’t worry, we haven’t forgotten. 

It’s a nervy process; house hunting. Do I consider location? Is it too expensive? Do I really need that huge lava lamp in the middle of the living room? Short term or long term rentals aren’t any easier, to be honest. Especially if you’re starting your life in a new country.

The modern-day traveller heading here for work would pick a Singapore serviced apartment over a hotel. The flexible terms and ease of living offered by serviced apartments make it an obvious choice.

But where does one begin? With so many things to keep in mind, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. So here you are, your list of what you need to consider when going apartment hunting!

1. Step one; Get on the right platform

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From property agents to friends with too many recommendations, you can find serviced apartments through a load of different channels. What you want to remember is that many of these channels have their disadvantages. 

Options like engaging agents could require fees when you pay rent and as for your friend; you know he is no expert. So you should turn to a name you can trust and a platform dedicated to providing you with a vast number of serviced apartments. 

MetroResidences is one of these platforms and they exist to bring quality serviced apartments to modern-day travellers with the ease of technology. Once you’re on the right platform, we can move on down this list!

2. Prepare your documents

Before heading into considering what apartment you are going to end up choosing, make sure you have the required documents ready. If you’re coming into Singapore from overseas, you’ll need to have things like a copy of your passport, credit card, bank details and personal contact information at hand. Also, be prepared for the initial security deposit.

If you need help with your bank account, read this article about setting up your bank account in Singapore.

3. Make sure the space doesn’t cramp your style

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As you begin clicking on all the thumbnails, you’ll realise that there are apartments of all shapes and sizes. Depending on location and cost, you will start seeing correlations to apartments square footage.

We all have different lifestyles and living needs. The space that your next apartment offers is essential in giving you a chance to live. Choose an apartment too small and you won’t have the opportunity to grow.

However, if you run a minimalists’ lifestyle then opt for something smaller. As mentioned, the larger the space, the higher the cost. So use this as one of the things you could do to save on the budget.

4. Furnished beyond the basics

One of the great things about serviced residences are the facilities and perks they offer. Most of the serviced apartments out there come fully furnished. That means you’ll get a nice living area with a television, couch, dining table and WiFi.

You’d expect that to be a given in serviced apartments but always read the fine print. Some apartments out there come close to bare. So make sure you check. Little things like a washer and dryer fulfil your basic needs in a home.

Fully equipped kitchens are a great feature too! With stocked cabinets and a state of the art microwave, what else could you ask for? Check out the photos in this fully equipped kitchen; if you’re travelling with family, this apartment is a keeper!

5. Choose a location that keeps you close to the action

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The private homes which are located in residential neighbourhoods are far away from the most active centres in the city. Luckily, most of the serviced apartments in Singapore are located in a prime location which means it is within walking distance from the shopping districts and shopping centres, city centres, near an MRT station, etc.  

This means you will have a wider variety of dining choices, lifestyle, and entertainment options. Don’t forget to consider the distance from your workplace during the hunt – is it near public transportation? If you live close to work, you will have more time to spare on social activities and it’ll also help you save on monthly expenses when travelling.

If you are worried about apartments in the central areas being expensive, here are cheap serviced apartments in the heart of Singapore.

6. Request for a viewing

When you’re choosing an apartment to stay in for a long period of time, always request for a viewing before signing the lease. A viewing is your chance to get a firsthand look at the apartment of choice. Viewings are important for potential guests because it allows them to properly feel how it would be, living in said apartment.

Make sure you have a good look; do the pictures online match the actual product? Do the rooms look as advertised? What about the view? Is it worth that price?

Come up with a list of questions to ask and things to have a proper look at, before your viewing. A smart guest is a prepared guest!

Also, be wary of agents or services that do not allow viewings should raise red flags in your search.

7. Be sure how long you will stay

I know, a lot of the times expats and travellers coming over for work won’t have a definite duration of stay. But for this tip, an approximate duration would do. Knowing how long you’ll be staying will help you better plan what apartment to choose. 

If it’s a generally short stay, you should be looking for something more temporary; smaller space, lesser amenities, etc. However, for longer stays, you should be looking to make more of a place to call home rather than a ‘place to put up’. So naturally, larger space, amenities suited to your lifestyle and available home appliances.

8. Keep your interests in mind

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In order to live and play during your stay, jot down your hobbies and interests when coming up with a list of important factors to help with your serviced apartment selection. 

Some people are health freaks and need to get their daily gym fix. Obviously, they would choose an apartment with great gym facilities. Others love to cook, so they would look for serviced apartments with a fully decked out kitchen.

The location also plays an important role here; bookworms would choose apartments near libraries and book stores while those into arts and culture might pick residences within a culturally rich district. For instance, this apartment in Tiong Bahru is smack in the middle of a heritage district – bustling with great food, culture and history. 

 Find what works for you and you’ll be sure to enjoy your stay a whole lot more!

9. Don’t forget about your pets

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You might not be travelling alone – there’s a growing number of expats who choose to bring along a furry friend. If you are too, then you might want to bump this factor up the list of ‘most important’. 

It’s important that you check if an apartment allows pets (‘pet-friendly’). No all serviced apartments owners/operators are cool with allowing pets. Some even might charge you an additional fee to your rent.

But fret not, if you are looking for pet-friendly serviced apartments, here is a list of pet ready serviced apartments in Singapore.

Bonus read: Should you need help with the process of bringing in your companion, you might want to read this article on how to get your pet into Singapore!

Bonus!

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Not many people know about this but for millennials looking for engaging experiences during your overseas stints, you should look for serviced apartment providers that offer community living. 

While often associated with co-living options, companies like MetroResidences offer community gatherings and social events even for those not living in their co-living spaces. This means that guests from all walks of life will be able to mingle and discover new relationships just by choosing to stay with MetroResidences.


There you have it!

Wasn’t that much easier than diving straight into the thick of it? The task of choosing the right serviced apartment for you becomes quite achievable once you’ve broken it down. List what important factors you need to consider and pick the right platform.

Once you’ve shortlisted your chosen apartments, your set budget will take care of the rest. All the best, I hope you enjoy your stay!

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