HOUSING IN HONG KONG

GovHK, the one-stop portal of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government, provides basically all you need to know about renting and buying a property in Hong Kong.  If you plan to rent or buy a private property in Hong Kong, it is important that you read the relevant information on GovHK to know your rights and legal responsibilities involved.

While you may directly deal with a property owner to rent or buy a private property, you may also seek assistance from a licensed estate agent to find an appropriate property by paying a commission. The Estates Agents Authority (EAA) is a statutory body regulating the practice of estate agency in Hong Kongand provides information about what you need to know when engaging an estate agent and what you need to pay attention to when buying or renting a private property.

Legal matters involved in renting and buying a property are provided in details on the website of the Community Legal Information Centre.

Living Off Campus
  • The following residential locations are within easy commute to the campus:

    Location Flat Size & Costs Traveling
    Tai Po Tsai
    • 3 storey village houses, with flats ranging from 350 - 700 sq. ft.
    • Rental costs for a flat of 700 sq. ft. range from $15,000 to $18,000 per month
    About 10 - 15 minutes walk to campus
    Tseng Lan Shue
    • 3 storey village houses, with flats ranging from 350 - 700 sq. ft.
    • Rental costs for a flat of 700 sq. ft. range from $11,000 to $15,000 per month
    About 10 minutes from Tseng Lan Shue to campus on bus routes 91/91M and minibus 104
    Clearwater Bay and Sai Kung
    • Village development flats of ~700 sq ft., and townhouses of 1,500 - 2,000 sq. ft.
    • Rental costs for village flats (~700 sq. ft.) range from about $8.500 to $30,000 per month, depending on the environment, location, view and accessibility of public transport
    • Townhouses are more expensive, starting from about $30,000 per month
    About 20 minutes from Sai Kung to campus on New World First Bus 792M or Green Minibus 12 / About 20 minutes from Clearwater Bay to campus on KMB Bus 91
    Tseung Kwan O
    • New satellite town near HKUST with convenient access to shopping and transportation facilities
    • Flat sizes range from 500 - 900 sq. ft.
    • Rental costs for flats range from about $12,000 to $30,000 per month
    About 20 minutes from East Point City to campus on KMB Bus 91M or Green Minibus 11, 11M / About 20 minutes from Metro City to campus on KMB Bus 91M
    Lam Tin
    • Convenient access to shopping and transportation facilities to HKUST
    • Flat sizes range from 650 – 950 sq. ft.
    • Rental costs for flats range from about $15,000 to $30,000 per month
    About 40 minutes on MTR and Green Minibus 11 / About 10 minutes on staff bus
  • It is not always possible to secure a rental flat before you arrive in Hong Kong. Therefore, if you choose to live off campus, you may wish to arrive earlier before reporting duty to search for a rental flat. You are advised to book short-term accommodation as early as possible, as it will take at least a week to secure an apartment and file the required paperwork.

Renting an Apartment
  • Before renting a private property, you should know your rights and obligations as a tenant as well as the tenancy procedures. You are advised to carefully go over the terms and conditions of the tenancy agreement before signing it.
  • Tenancy agreements usually last for 2 years, although shorter terms may be possible depending on the landlord.  It is common practice to pay one or two months’ rental deposit and one month’s rent in advance. Generally, you will also have to settle your own utility bills (such as electricity, water and gas).
  • Here are some frequently asked questions on tenancy matters provided by the Government.
  • It should be noted that most of the apartments for rent in Hong Kong are normally unfurnished (i.e. fixtures, furniture and electrical appliances are not provided). Nonetheless, you may request to rent furnished apartments when consulting the estate agency.
Serviced Apartment
  • There are plenty of choices on serviced apartments for lease, though more commonly located in Kowloon and on Hong Kong Island.  Some are modern and chic accommodation in convenient locations while some are run by hotel groups providing high quality accommodation and service.
  • Normally, serviced apartments are furnished with attached bathrooms and pantries/kitchenettes and housekeeping facilities are available. The period of renting is normally very flexible but the price is relatively higher than a rented apartment.
Buying a Property
On-campus Housing
  • Staff Quarters
    • The University has 404 Senior Staff Quarters (SSQ) and 40 University Apartments (UA) for eligible senior staff and families in accordance with the conditions of appointment.
    • Staff quarters are located around the campus, all within walking distance from the main academic complex.
    • Subject to the provisions of your employment, you may opt to apply for accommodation provided by the University at a rental contribution of 10% of your basic monthly salary.
    • For staff members not eligible for housing benefits, they may also apply for the University accommodation at market rates subject to availability.
    • Staff quarters are usually unfurnished, but furniture and appliances may be provided upon request.  The lists of available furniture and appliances in SSQ and UA respectively as well as the detailed housing regulations are available on the website of the Campus Management Office (CMO).
    • Appointees are required to pay their own utility charges (electricity, gas, telephone etc).
    • Allowed occupants include the appointees and their family, i.e. spouse, dependent children, parents, domestic servants, and occasional guests. Guests shall not be allowed to occupy the accommodation in the absence of both the appointee and the appointee's spouse.
  • UniLodge
    • The UniLodge is a guest house operated by the University providing accommodation for official guests, short term academic visitors, and other guests of staff and faculty.
    • It includes single and twin rooms as well as serviced apartments.
    • Reservations must be made through a department, office, or center of the University.