Mumbai Fifth Most Expensive City in Asia for Rental Accommodation for Expats

Hong Kong is the most expensive location in Asia while London has the highest expat rentals in Europe, according to a survey.


Mumbai is the fifth most expensive place in Asia for mid-market rentals for expats in 2018, according to a recent report. The Indian city, which was at the eighth spot last year, has left behind Beijing, Yokohama, Singapore and Osaka, the survey of the most expensive places for expatriates in Asia for mid-market rentals, conducted by UK-based knowledge provider ECA International, showed.

Hong Kong has been ranked at the first place in the survey in Asia, followed by Tokyo, Shanghai and Seoul. China, in fact, saw significant increases in rental costs in the year 2017.

The research compares rental costs in accommodation in areas typically inhabited by expatriate staff in over 240 locations worldwide. “With a high population density and a consistently limited supply of property, the average rent in Hong Kong continues to remain more expensive than in other high-profile Asian cities,” Lee Quane, ECA International’s Regional Director of Asia, said in a statement.

Rental prices for an unfurnished, mid-market, three-bedroom apartment in areas commonly inhabited by international executives in Hong Kong average $10,461 per month. The survey showed that Singapore has continued to slip down the rankings as accommodation prices continue to drop.

According to expatistan.com, the monthly rent for a 900 sq.ft. furnished rental accommodation in an upmarket area in Mumbai can be close to Rs 67,248.

“In general, the costs of rental accommodation in Asian cities have risen in the past 12 months, with declines evident only in a handful of locations, such as Ho Chi Minh city, Jakarta and Yangon,” the survey said.

The survey showed that London remains the most expensive location for rental accommodation for expatriates in Europe. “The biggest rent increases in the UK have been in Manchester, Edinburgh and Glasgow due to high demand for rental property” said Alec Smith, the accommodation services manager of ECA International.

New York remains the most expensive place for expatriate rental in the United States, although rental prices have fallen in the last year.

As far as the cost of living for expatriates is concerned, another survey, conducted by the same company and published last month, showed that the newly-introduced GST tax in India had very little impact in Indian cities. All Indian locations that were surveyed have risen slightly from their positions in 2016, but New Delhi, at 166th spot, remains the city with the highest cost of living.

“When a new tax is introduced prices do not always rise overnight. The introduction of national goods and services tax in India to replace a range of central and state taxes seems to have had little impact on the costs overall,” said Quane.

Asian cities dominate the list of 50 locations with the highest cost of living, making up over half the entries. “Luanda returns to the top spot, Khartoum rises over 200 places in five years and UK cities continue to fall,” the survey said. Luanda is the capital of Angola while Khartoum is the capital of Sudan.

In October 2017, India was ranked 14th in a list of more than 150 countries that are best to live in for expatriates, according to the HSBC Expat Explorer Survey 2017.

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