Site Search:
 
TEFL International Supports Dave's ESL Cafe
TEFL Courses, TESOL Course, English Teaching Jobs - TEFL International
Job Discussion Forums Forum Index Job Discussion Forums
"The Internet's Meeting Place for ESL/EFL Students and Teachers from Around the World!"
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 

Teacher Accomodation in Yangon (conclusion)
Goto page 1, 2  Next
 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Job Discussion Forums Forum Index -> General Asia Forum
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
mfinna



Joined: 21 Mar 2012
Posts: 25
Location: SE Asia

PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2012 4:28 am    Post subject: Teacher Accomodation in Yangon (conclusion) Reply with quote

Shocked

Last edited by mfinna on Thu Apr 03, 2014 8:23 am; edited 3 times in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Argofoto



Joined: 28 Aug 2012
Posts: 41

PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2012 1:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I wonder the same thing, Mongolia (Ulaanbaatar) also has high rents, but to me 300 to 500 a month doesn't seem too far fetched... then again I don't have personal experience with rents in """developing""" countries
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
mfinna



Joined: 21 Mar 2012
Posts: 25
Location: SE Asia

PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2012 4:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Shocked

Last edited by mfinna on Thu Apr 03, 2014 8:34 am; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Argofoto



Joined: 28 Aug 2012
Posts: 41

PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2012 5:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks but I am not in Mongolia, I want to go to Burma! Apologies for any confusion.

I have experience in "developing" countries however as a child visiting my parents' country in Eastern Europe, squat toilet and wood burning stove and all... However, to be honest I have no qualms with this.

My primary concern would be disease and medical treatment in Burma...
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
mfinna



Joined: 21 Mar 2012
Posts: 25
Location: SE Asia

PostPosted: Sun Dec 02, 2012 4:27 am    Post subject: Traveling to Myanmar December 2012 Reply with quote

Greetings,

In the absence of any replies from anyone in Myanmar, will be traveling there next week to see what the accommodation situation is really like. Will also be interviewing at language centers and business colleges (my preference) to see what kind of remuneration can be expected.

Thanks again to Teachurrr for the list of schools. Perhaps I can add to it.

Long time reader of Dave's but only recently started contributing. Happy to try and answer any questions regarding cheap accommodation, language center work and business colleges while there or upon my return later in December.

Will not be interviewing for jobs at primary, secondary or any kind of international schools, so cannot be of any help there.

-Fin
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Monkey king



Joined: 18 Feb 2013
Posts: 12

PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 6:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am in Yangon now and have heard that rent is terrible here.

$500 to $600 per month, even as much as $1000.
So it is important to try to negotiate accommodation into any work contract here.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
bentanddisfunctional



Joined: 19 Oct 2010
Posts: 83

PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 11:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MonkeyKing
I was under the impression from your other posts that you were already living in Yangon and working for Horizon?

Accomodation really is a quandry for a lot of people in Yangon right now.

'Western style' apartments/condo's with things we would take for granted -like stable/reliable electricity and water,elevator,semi-furnished are going for outrageous sums-anywhere from US$700-$2000/month plus.
There are only a few recognised apartment complexes for foreigners and the landlords haven't been slow to cash in.

However with contacts or a bit of legwork it is still possible to find a modest walk-up apartment in a local neighbourhood for $200-400.
Keep in mind most apartments are unfurnished and landlords will require anything from 6-12 months in advance with a rental hike probable at the end of your lease as well

I agree that you should come to an understanding with your employer about your accomodation allowance or what standard of housing they will place you in on arrival before you take up an offer.

Can save a lot of grief....
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
mfinna



Joined: 21 Mar 2012
Posts: 25
Location: SE Asia

PostPosted: Fri Apr 19, 2013 3:56 am    Post subject: Teacher accommodation in Yangon (conclusion) Reply with quote

Greetings,

With respect to the original post, have been here about three months and managed to secure, what is to me, reasonably priced accommodation. In the original post it was stated that I was looking to find what typical Myanmar people rent as far as apartments go. They are to be had, but as the previous poster stated, it takes some legwork and local contacts. I had the help of an adult student that found a place for me in his neighborhood.

Previous replies and prices (500USD+) are what I have heard as well, but expect these must be more western style apartments. Did not look at any apartments in this range or above 300USD.

The apartment building:

Did not look extensively, but from the handful that I saw, and looking around at similar looking buildings, it appears to be a standard, Yangon apartment building. They have 6-8 floors without a lift. There are two units per floor with the stairs running up the middle. Each unit has a front and back balcony in addition to four windows on the lengthwise side of each unit. If you go to the Wikipedia page on Myanmar, half-way down the page in the section on Yangon is a small picture of a typical apartment building. If you've visited or live here, you have seen them.

The apartment price:

The price was originally 185USD, but when they ultimately saw that it was a foreigner that would be renting, they upped the price to 210USD. Paid just 6 months upfront, could have paid for a year. Was charged one month's rent by the broker but will not be required to pay any further broker fees should I decided to extend a further 6 months.

The apartment itself:

It is one, long rectangular room, about 20 x 60 feet with both an attached bathroom (squat toilet, no sink or other fixtures) and shower room (shower head, cold water). It is unfurnished. Everything is made of concrete including what would be called kitchen counter-tops. The floor is concrete but 100% covered with a mix of various sized, colored and patterned pieces of linoleum. This seems to be standard flooring. It needs a paint job, but it's not terrible looking, just lived in, I guess.

Location:

It is not downtown but believe it is considered sub-downtown. It is not "off the beaten path," and do not believe the price is an "off the beaten path" price. It is within walking distance (15 mins) of Shwe Dagon Pagoda. It is a densely populated area.

Electricity:

Looking at previous bills from the last renter, monthly charge is between 3 and 5 USD.

The electricity goes out often daily but not as frequently as before Thingyan. Don't think this is just my building though as the outages seem to affect surrounding buildings as well.


Drinking water:

Unit already had three empty bottles. Drinking water is supplied by two companies identified by the color of the bottle, white or clear/blue. You can see the delivery folks on the street often. They are the large bottles that you see in front of shops and on the sidewalks for people to drink.

It cost .60 cents to refill one bottle. When they come down the street, just clap your hands to get their attention, and they will come up to your flat and either refill or replace your empty bottles. Pay them on the spot, no paperwork, but my place may have already had the service in place, hence the existing bottles.

Bath and shower water:

Although the landlord doesn't show me a bill like with the electricity, 3USD is the monthly water charge.

Trash disposal:

In this area, there are people that come down the street with carts, usually in the morning, to collect trash. Just clap your hands to get their attention. EDIT, Have since learned that they will come up to the flat to collect the trash but 500 kyats is expected (.60 usd). Have been running it down to the street myself to sometimes less than enthusiastic cart pushers (small bags to be sorted either way for recycling so may have value anyhow). Occasionally miss them in the morning and end up walking a few blocks to the junction where I know they have a city provided can.

Internet:

Many internet shops allow you to piggy-back onto their wi-fi signal if you buy a "booster" (about 40USD at downtown computer shops). They charge about 30USD/month for the service. They bought and installed the booster and configured my computer for me for approximately 6USD.

It's about as fast as you would expect an internet connection would be at a typical internet shop in Yangon, but not Trader's. You can't watch youtube videos and downloading is painfully slow if it works at all, but can check email and even use Skype. Not sure if this is an option everywhere, but would expect where there are internet shops, they offer it.

There are other, licensed options such as Redlink (do a Google search) or using your mobile phone, but I know nothing about them.

Conclusion:

It's possible to find more local style and priced flats, albeit with a not too unreasonable foreigner tax of nearly 15% of base rent price.

Have put as many accommodation related details here so as to be informative and try to help others.

Not sure what else to write about the flat or the process but happy to try to answer any questions.

For those interested, I was offered a rental for an unfurnished apartment for 300USD, or 500USD fully furnished, apparently with satellite TV, internet, the works (500 not 300). Was not interested in paying that much, so did not pursue it. However, it is quite easy to find. It is a very large, not standard looking, newly built white building with natural wood looking balcony doors and trim. It would be considered by most to be downtown. It is on 48th on the one block between Mahabandoola and Anawratha streets (bound by all three streets). You really can't miss it. Strangely, considering the rental market here, it appears to be largely vacant...

Guy approached me on the street while walking the area. Gave me the prices and pointed out the building. Offered to show me one of the flats but was not interested at the time.

Would like to say that I am in no way affiliated with the above mentioned rental, have not seen the inside and would repeat that it is quite strange that it is largely vacant. Just trying to be helpful and generate some Dave's ESL karma.

EDIT: Would be curious to know and hear about this if anyone checks it out.


Last edited by mfinna on Wed Jul 10, 2013 6:33 pm; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Saya



Joined: 16 Jun 2013
Posts: 17

PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 11:31 am    Post subject: Renting in Myanmar Reply with quote

It is true, apartment prices in Yangon are quite high compared to, say Thailand. If you don't mind living basic (concrete box style) you could probably find something for $100.

though generally, you'll be lucky to find somewhere livable for around $200. It seems that $300 is the best price these days , however there are many people looking for apartment shares (let me know if you need any help)

Anyway at the risk of seeming self serving, I've developed a guide for new teachers in Yangon on accommodation. Please take a look. I've been teaching here for over three years and I'm happy to answer any questions

http://www.sayagyi.com/finding-place-stay-0
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
mfinna



Joined: 21 Mar 2012
Posts: 25
Location: SE Asia

PostPosted: Fri Jul 05, 2013 1:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Greetings,

Livable seems a pretty subjective term. The place I have found for 210USD is quite livable, to me. However would definitely like to know how an apartment for 300 would differ from what I have rented (see apt details above), so as to have a reference point for myself and possibly others looking for housing in Yangon.

Your comments and posts are appreciated. I had no luck finding anyone on the ground to comment before arriving.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Saya



Joined: 16 Jun 2013
Posts: 17

PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2013 11:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi yes you're right, it is pretty subjective and it sounds like you've got a pretty good deal there. I'm used to people wanting their apartments to be as close to home as possible and so the price is normally higher...If you want a furnished place, with multiple rooms then it's gonna be more expensive. but yeah if you're unpretentious and want to make a place your own, then it can be cheaper. A word about electricity, if they know you are a foreigner they will charge you more, see if you get your broker to help with that.

the place you were talking about, is that the one facing the old secretariat building?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
mfinna



Joined: 21 Mar 2012
Posts: 25
Location: SE Asia

PostPosted: Sun Jul 07, 2013 9:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Saya,

$500 to $600 per month, even as much as $1000.

That’s a large range with the lower bound nearly double what you’ve said is a good price these days. Are people getting gouged?

'Western style' apartments/condo's with things we would take for granted -like stable/reliable electricity and water, elevator, semi-furnished are going for outrageous sums-anywhere from US$700-$2000/month plus.

That’s a very large range with the lower bound more than double what you’ve said is a good price these days. At least with this comment, according to the poster, we know we need to spend 700 for stable/reliable electricity and water, elevator, semi-furnished.

you'll be lucky to find somewhere livable for around $200. It seems that $300 is the best price these days.

None of these comments are terribly helpful because we don’t really know what you get for those prices. Went in to great detail about the place I found to try and establish a baseline or price point of sorts for newly arrived teachers or people considering a move here that don’t mind basic, concrete box style flats. If you could help establish a price point (with details on what that price gets you) for a not basic, concrete box style apartment, it would be really helpful for everyone.

I'm used to people wanting their apartments to be as close to home as possible and so the price is normally higher...

Normally higher than what? Are you saying that all the people that ask you for apartment advice work at the same place? I live in the vicinity of a few schools, but you didn't know that or where I work in relation to my flat. Not sure what the comment means. Assume you meant closer to work not home, but it's still not clear what this means for a new teacher looking for a place to live, that might possibly not have a job yet. Apartments in the vicinity of schools in Yangon are generally more expensive than apartments not in the vicinity of schools in Yangon? Apartments in the vicinity of schools are more expensive for teachers but less expensive for other foreigners? If the person that rented me this flat knew I was a teacher working in the area, would the price be higher for me, but lower for a foreigner that was not a teacher? I realize that is ridiculous and not likely what you mean but can't otherwise make heads or tales of your comment.

Are you perhaps talking about teachers that work and want to live in the Golden Valley neighborhood where there is a high concentration of schools, which also happens to be an affluent area with high rents? That makes sense. If you want to live in the Golden Valley area where many schools and jobs are, you can expect to pay more for rent as it is a very affluent area. Otherwise your comment doesn't make any sense to me nor do I see how living closer to work justifies paying more for rent when work could be anywhere. Just adds more to the confusion and frustration with the housing situation here.

Forum members, or at least myself, are happy to finally have someone here who has been on the ground in Yangon, and teaching, for three years, but we need more clear,hard facts, specifics.

If you want a furnished place, with multiple rooms then it's gonna be more expensive.

How much more expensive? 300, 500, 700, 1000, 2000? Could you be more specific as to what people can expect for "300 seems to be a good price these days"? how many rooms? one bedroom? two? hot/cold water, western/squat style toilet, lift/stairs, AC, refrigerator, TV, other appliances, concrete floor with linoleum scraps, hardwood floors or maybe tile (something other than concrete with linoleum scraps), generator for stable electricity, internet, anything else that would not be included with a basic, concrete box style flat such as the one described in my earlier post?

For me, accommodation is a key variable in determining the lifestyle (how much of my paycheck remains after paying rent, typically one's biggest expense) or even the economic viability of teaching in a given country. Happened to be in SE Asia for my last job, so it wasn’t that great of a hardship to come here for an exploratory trip. Had I been some where back in the west, with the figures I had heard relative to salaries, and the lack of information on the internet, probably would not have considered coming here to possibly just find out that one has to spend upwards of half their salary on accommodation.

Sorry to needle you like this, but you are one of just a few teachers on this forum that have been here for any great length of time, and you’ve availed yourself to answering questions, which I and surely others are grateful for. Back to it.

The price range for not basic, concrete box style places seems to fluctuate wildly and not sure why. Don’t think I am alone in having been a bit frustrated if not completely confounded with the housing situation here. Think housing is the number one issue for new teachers here or teachers considering a move here. Although I’ve found a place that suits me and my budget, may aspire to be more than a language center hack one day, with a higher salary. Any specifics you could provide on a 300USD place (“livable” and “a good price these days”) would be greatly appreciated by me and surely others. With such specifics, we could probably guess what the higher priced places are like and at what price(s), with what facilities/amenities, people are just being gouged or taken advantage of.

Regarding the apartment building in my previous post, yes, it faces a now vacant government building. Another forum member went to check it out and could not find the entrance. Never saw the entrance myself. It’s a rather bizarre structure. The bottom floor appears to be a large, green warehouse of sorts with the apartments sprouting up from the second or third floor. The local guy that stopped me on the street was named Ali. He gave me the details (see earlier post) and his number but number has been lost.

Thanks for your help and insights.


Last edited by mfinna on Mon Jul 08, 2013 5:57 pm; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
bentanddisfunctional



Joined: 19 Oct 2010
Posts: 83

PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2013 8:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Crikey Mfinna

What's with the rant?.
Shocked

PMT??
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
mfinna



Joined: 21 Mar 2012
Posts: 25
Location: SE Asia

PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2013 2:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rolling Eyes A rant indeed. Considered adding at the bottom after writing it that the entire post could have been summed up with one sentence:

Saya could you give us the specifics on one of these 300/month places with specifics similar to what we would see in traditional newspaper classifieds?

For what it's worth...

As a language center hack, often working 2-3 part-time jobs, always have to find and pay for my own accommodation, as others do too. Accommodation has often been a deal breaker for me. Had I not already been in SE Asia from my last job, would not have given Myanmar a look. It's frustrating when there isn't a lot of info out there, or worse, when the info is vague and confusing.

Had it not been for the local contact, might still be scratching my head as to what kind of value for money is here in the Yangon housing market. Possibly would have plunked down 500 for a place that should be 185-210, because prices run the gamut with no real specifics on value for money. One teacher is paying 350 for basic, concrete box style, almost double the price I paid.

I suspect teachers are getting ripped off, and don't have to be. My intention is to help by seeking clarification and details from people that have been here longer than myself, and reporting my own findings too. Have met many foreigners here very surprised that a place such as mine, or any place, can be had for 200 dollars. It's a standard price, give or take 50 dollars, for a typical, basic, concrete box style Yangon apartment. Myanmar people refer to this style as "a hall". They are ubiquitous and can be spotted all over Yangon from the outside as described in my earlier post.

The impetus for the rant is that Saya's comments and answers on this topic and another have been vague and not really all that helpful. Seems a sincere guy, and don't think he's intentionally being vague, but makes you wonder if he just bumped the Myanmar threads up to plug his website, ultimately a business with profit motive. Nothing wrong with that. As such though, he's presented himself as something of an expert on teaching and living here offering to field any questions. I have questions, sometimes in long form.

Don't think any of my post was pure rant in that points pertinent to the topic were being addressed, albeit some at great length. In my frustration may have gone off the deep end!

Thanks for bringing me back. Razz
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Saya



Joined: 16 Jun 2013
Posts: 17

PostPosted: Wed Jul 10, 2013 10:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Mfinna,

I'll admit that my answers have been slightly vague but as you may have guessed the housing situation is pretty erractic and it is really hard to nail down what is available and for what price.

Btw , your reply highlighted some comments that weren't made by me but by other people, (Monkey King and bentanddisfunctional), who also highlighted the rising price of the housing market.

By "close to home" I meant closer to what they would expect from their (presumably Western) countries.

Quote:
could you give us the specifics on one of these 300/month places with specifics similar to what we would see in traditional newspaper classifieds?


The thing is it's impossible to give specifics for a question like this, because there are so many variables that affect the price of a place.landlords here generally work by themselves. Some may try and push prices up to maximum, others seem to be happy to freeze the prices for years, it can make a huge difference. There is no communication between landlords, especially throughout the city, so any kind of summarization of the housing market is going to be vague. You've done a great job of doing that with the places you looked at and rented, but it may be different throughout the city.
That said, I will try and do my best.

let's just look at apartments for now, houses are normally about 1000 a month (and rising)

Let's start with your basic concrete box hall type on the outskirts (or suburbs) of the city, unfurnished and on the top floor, with no elevator.
that's probably going to be around 80,000kyat/month (1 dollar=1000kyat roughly)


now, there may be other things you might desire. here's a list
being in downtown (or close)
furniture (tables chairs and bed)
Air con
washing machine
view of Shwedagon
western toilet
pressure pump (if you live high up)
wooden or tiled flooring
internet (usually you get this yourself)
cooker
hot shower
Fridge
inverter (backup battery power)


I'm not an expert, so don't quote me on this but I would say on average each of these things would add an extra 20 dollars a month to the rent, (obviously some more than others). Then you've got extra intangible things such as the cleanliness and niceness which can add 100 dollars or more on to that. What do I mean by cleanliness and niceness? Well I can imagine an apartment that had all of the list above, but in a rather haphazard way, and where the walls were stained and there were rat holes in the shower room, trash on the balcony, etc...on the other hand there might be a nice place which had been designed tastefully and was fairly well kept. These things make a big difference here.

There is also the "Condos" which have elevators and security guards and generators (it's unusual for a normal apartment to have a generator), and sometimes carparks. These places are rising in price, and are quite similar to a "western style" of apartment. these would be at least $700 though I know some which went from $700 to $1500 in the space of a year.

I know my answers haven't been specific, but hopefully this has been helpful. I think it would be better if people could describe what they are looking for (or what they have found) and query what a ballpark figure would be (to make sure they aren't being ripped off).



[/i]
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Job Discussion Forums Forum Index -> General Asia Forum All times are GMT
Goto page 1, 2  Next
Page 1 of 2

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


This page is maintained by the one and only Dave Sperling.
Contact Dave's ESL Cafe
Copyright © 2011 Dave Sperling. All Rights Reserved.

Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2002 phpBB Group

Road2Spain - TEFL and Spanish with one year student visa
EBC