- Purchase the complete Expat Arrivals Kuala Lumpur Guide (PDF)
Expats will find a range of accommodation options in Kuala Lumpur suitable for a variety of budgets and needs. Before embarking on the house hunt, new arrivals should also make sure they research the different areas and suburbs of the city and surrounding region to get a good idea of their options.
Types of accommodation in Kuala Lumpur
Housing in Kuala Lumpur comes in many different forms and includes standalone houses, known as bungalows, as well as semi-detached and terraced houses, apartments and condominiums. Generally, condominiums are the most popular option for expats in Kuala Lumpur, as they are secure and often have amenities such as gyms, swimming pools and tennis courts.
Accommodation can be furnished, semi-furnished or unfurnished, which may mean it's completely empty of kitchen appliances or even curtain rails. Most apartments will come unfurnished, while serviced condominiums are mostly furnished. Serviced accommodation is significantly more expensive than a normal apartment, depending on the area one chooses, but generally comes with all utilities and amenities included.
Finding accommodation in Kuala Lumpur
Expats can find accommodation in Kuala Lumpur online and by looking through local newspapers and publications. It's recommended to view a few properties to get a sense of how much one can expect to pay for a certain kind of space.
Many expats choose to use a rental agent to help them in their property search and in negotiating the terms of their lease agreements. Some expats who choose to stay in Kuala Lumpur for a long time have even gone as far as to invest in property, again with the help of an agent. Real-estate agent fees are normally paid by the landlord or seller.
Renting accommodation in Kuala Lumpur
Rental terms are negotiable, but most leases are set for a period of two years. It is possible to include a clause in the lease agreement allowing for early termination provided tenants give at least two months’ notice or pay a no-notice fine.
One or two months’ rent is expected as a refundable security deposit, and the first month's rent must also be paid upfront. At the end of the lease period, the deposit is returned in full as long as the home has been kept in good condition.
The tenant will be responsible for paying their own utilities, including water, electricity, sewerage, phone and internet bills.
Are you an expat living in Kuala Lumpur?
Expat Arrivals is looking for locals to contribute to this guide, and answer forum questions from others planning their move to Kuala Lumpur. Please contact us if you'd like to contribute.
Expat Health Insurance
With 86 million customer relationships in over 200 countries, Cigna Global has unrivalled experience in dealing with varied and unique medical situations and delivering high standards of service wherever you live in the world.
GeoBlue is one of the best international health insurance plans for US expats abroad or internationals residing in the USA. The GeoBlue Xplorer plan includes worldwide coverage and great customer service with access to a premium international network of hospitals and doctors including the Blue Cross Blue Shield network in the USA.
Sirelo has a network of more than 500 international removal companies that can move your furniture and possessions to your new home. By filling in a form, you’ll get up to 5 quotes from recommended movers. This service is free of charge and will help you select an international moving company that suits your needs and budget.