Thanks to its advanced urbanisation and development in comparison to the rest of the country, most expats live in the capital, Phnom Penh. Prices for accommodation range significantly, depending on the area.
Types of accommodation in Cambodia
The two main types of accommodation for expats in Cambodia are non-serviced apartments and serviced apartments, though villas are also available.
With non-serviced apartments, expats are typically required to pay for all costs associated with the apartment. Because of the demand for accommodation, though, some non-serviced apartments have begun to include perks such as internet, cable, water and cleaning in the monthly rental rate. However, electricity is almost never included as a part of the monthly rate.
The cost of rent in serviced apartments is all-inclusive and they come fully furnished. They're also often in better-maintained buildings with more luxurious amenities and modern fixtures.
Finding accommodation in Cambodia
Online property portals are a good place to start when looking for accommodation in Cambodia as they are accessible from anywhere and can be used to get to know the property market better, particularly in terms of gauging common price points.
We advise that expats make use of a Cambodian estate agent once in the country, preferably one who is bilingual and has experience working with expats. This can ease the process of searching, negotiating and signing a lease immensely.
Renting accommodation in Cambodia
A tenancy agreement requires a number of documents, including a copy of one’s passport, visa and a letter from an employer. Typically a deposit of one to three months’ rent is required. Leases tend to be a minimum of two months, but it is common to arrange for a period of 12 months.
Expats who move into a serviced apartment should make sure a comprehensive inventory is included in the lease agreement. At the end of the lease period the deposit should be returned in full as long as there are no damages to the property beyond normal wear and tear.
►Education and Schools in Cambodia is a must-read for expat parents
"There is a huge choice of accommodation here, depending on your budget and your needs. You can find a room in a shared house, a studio flat, a modern one- or two-bedroom apartment in a complex with a shared pool, or rent the whole house. Houses are generally either traditional wooden Khmer villas or a modern house built to Western standards – of varying sizes."
Read more of Clare's expat interview about living in Cambodia.
Are you an expat living in Cambodia?
Expat Arrivals is looking for locals to contribute to this guide, and answer forum questions from others planning their move to Cambodia. Please contact us if you'd like to contribute.
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