Bangkok is a bustling city which can present challenges to getting around especially in the busy peak hours or in unfavorable weather. Despite this, many people still opt to live in the city for convenience and access to modern amenities. If you have a family or are single, this will also determine how much time you need to factor in for travel.
Also, whether you own a vehicle or not will influence your choice when deciding on the location of residence. Here are five tips to help you to decide on where to live in the busy city of Bangkok.
1. Do I have a Vehicle or Do I get Around on Foot?
If you own or have access to a vehicle, choosing to live near an expressway is a wise option. This is especially important if you have to travel a little distance to work or school. Using the expressway will take you out of the traffic for a significant period of time and reduce the delays you would experience if you had tried to maneuver through city traffic.
Doing a thorough survey of the area at different times of the day or on different days of the week will give you a good feel for the traffic flow. This will also help you discover alternate routes to take if you cannot avoid traveling through the city to get to work or school. If you do not drive, then selecting a residence which is in close proximity to the BTS (Skytrain) or MRT (underground train) will be most convenient for you.
2. Rental Costs
The rental cost while largely determined by the area in most cases, may also vary based on what the landlord chooses to charge. Areas which are popular for emigrants and companies tend to be among the more highly priced, could run you up to over a hundred thousand Baht on a monthly basis. The type of facilities and amenities offered will also influence the price you will pay for the rental property.
It would be a good idea to enlist the services of an agent who is in a good position to negotiate on your behalf and will also know how and where to find you living accommodations based on your budget. The services of an agent will come at no extra cost to you. If you are willing to accept accommodation with less modern amenities, you can find reasonably priced apartments, condos or single houses for between thirty and fifty thousand Baht per month.
3. Security of Area
Security is high on the list of priorities for anyone looking to settle comfortably into their new living space. Single detached homes are usually secured by their own perimeter fencing and gates. In some communities, there may exist regular police patrols for increased security.
If you don’t necessarily need a whole house, living in an apartment complex or condo offers security in terms of access codes and/or round the clock security through a security firm. The setup of these types of living accommodations makes security breaches and theft quite uncommon since the risk of being seen or detected is so great. This is due to the sheer volume of occupants, who may be coming or going from the building at any given time.
4. Type of Housing Accommodation Required
If you are looking for detached housing, it is more likely that you will need to look outside of the city. These are usually located on the outskirts of the city and you increase your chances of finding one by looking around the housing estates available.
You will want to consider the location of the house and how it is affected by heavy rainfall, for example, to ensure that it is not situated in a flood-prone area. A detached house also comes with ground maintenance responsibilities, so you may want to negotiate this into your rental agreement if possible.
If you would prefer an apartment or condo setting, then these are quite readily available in the city. If you have children, you might prefer to choose one located close to a park area to provide recreational activities for them. Some also come with swimming pools and other amenities and maintenance is usually included as a part of your rental expense.
5. Typical Cost of Utilities
You lowest utility bill will be your water bill because water is supplied at an inexpensive rate in Thailand. The telephone bill will be purely dependent on your usage of the instrument, however, the cost of local calls is also very affordable. Of course, having a landline is purely based on choice. The internet is a staple in most households these days and in Thailand, depending on the service package and provider you choose, your average monthly bill will be around twelve hundred Baht.
Your largest utility bill will be the electricity bill. The amount you will pay is dependent on several factors.
- If you are paying through a landlord, the charges to you will more than likely be greater than if you were paying the power company directly. The landlord will be compensating for times at which you may consume more than the regular, especially if your accommodations include air conditioning.
- If you are paying the bill directly to the power company and you use air conditioning heavily, in a medium to large apartment, you might end up paying up to fifteen thousand Baht per month.
The general average is around seven thousand Baht on a monthly basis for electricity.