The "Typical" Hong Kong apartment will be on one level with a combined living-dining room, kitchen, maid's room and toilet, utility/laundry area, two/three/four bedrooms and one/two/three bathrooms. Some have balconies (usually the older blocks) and others on the top floor may have exclusive use of the flat roof area above. Separate dining rooms are rare.
Properties built in the last ten years are equipped with modern, fitted kitchens and bathrooms, while many older units have been renovated, some to quite modern standard. A few "luxury" premises offer high standard kitchens and bathrooms at matching "luxury" prices. Appliances are sometimes, but not always, provided.
Modern developments also often provide communal recreational facilities which may include swimming pool(s), tennis, squash, clubhouse and gymnasium, billiards, badminton and playgrounds.
Air conditioning is essential in Hong Kong and while the better buildings are equipped with central or individual systems, it is sometimes necessary to install your own and this should be checked while viewing properties.
Townhouses are usually built in developments of from around seven to 20 or 30 houses. Due to land space restrictions, these are often on four or five levels, sometimes with a small private garden and/or a usable flat roof.
They vary greatly in size from around 2,000 sq.ft. to over 5,000 sq.ft.. The larger ones usually have a separate dining or family room or study, with three or four bedrooms and bathrooms.
A number of developments share communal pool facilities, and the larger or more expensive ones may also have tennis, squash courts or a clubhouse.
A private detached house and garden is a real luxury in Hong Kong and there are only a very few available at the top end of the market or in outlying areas.
Most accommodation is leased out in good condition with walls and ceilings all repainted, parquet flooring (common to most properties) polyurethaned and minor repairs made to fixtures and fittings.
Depending on the age of the property and the rental, kitchens can be fully equipped with cooker, refrigerator, dishwasher, washing and drying machine or not be equipped at all. In the latter case, the bare essentials of fitted cupboards and sinks only may be provided.
Where central air-conditioning is provided, there may be an extra cost for its maintenance or else the tenant may be responsible for maintenance during the term of the tenancy. If no central system exists, individual room units are necessary.
Except for the smaller sized or serviced apartments, most properties are leased unfurnished, there is a wide choice of household furnishings and fittings available in Hong Kong.
A fairly wide choice of serviced apartments is available in Hong Kong, at sizes from around 600 sq.ft up to 3,300 sq.ft., but with the vast majority being under 2,000 sq.ft.. These can be studios, one bedroom with sitting room, bathroom and open kitchen, or with two bedrooms. Very few serviced units have 3 bedrooms.
Leasing is often for a minimum term of 3 months although, when vacancy rates are higher, it is easier to obtain a 1 month lease. Most units range from good standard up to international hotel-suite standard and are well provided with linen, cutlery, crockery and cooking utensils.
The costs are a fairly good indication of standard, with good quality starting around $32 per sq.ft. up to as high as $78 per sq.ft. for luxury standard.