OK, so I have been here for about a week. Everything is going well…except for the housing search. I have contacted 3 of the major real estate places, and had no help at all. I ask them for a place near NTU or the green line, studio, for 15k or so a month. They laugh at me, or are rather rude like I am missing something.
So, am I being crazy? Do I have to pay 20k+? I have read most of the posts on the forum about housing, and I was under the impression that 15k would actualy be a little on the high side…any ideas?
A few more details would help - what size do you require and do you want the place to be furnished etc.
I don’t care how small it is, as long as there are basic furnishings and I can get the internet. I was under the impression when they were asking me questions, that the ones that turned them off was the area and my budget.
You are below their budget, so I doubt that you will be very lucky with them. NT$15k/m is more or less the lowest they will touch, and due to their fees, you get less for your money than if you find one yourself, as the real estate brokers cut has to come from your pocket at the end of the day.
However, there are alternatives.
Do you read Chinese?
If you do, or get one who does out and help you, you have to go and see Tsui Mama:
they are a non-profit organization, which is specializing in mainly inexpensive housing. I have found places to live in by using them twice, first time was a NT$12k studio near Taipower building, last time was a NT$13k very big studio with own entrance near the Dunhua/Bade intersection. Even had a very nice view out over Yangmingshan.
an alternative is to go and look for red slips of paper with black writing on them glued to lampposts and the like. They are advertisements for places for rent. They are in Chinese though.
Yes, you’re budget is way below what many of the agencies are interested in. I work for an international commercial real estate agency and we’re often using local brokers if any of our international clients need resi services so I can pretty much see what these guys work with. You can, of course, find some smaller-time agents who will not turn you down because of your budget but I doubt they will speak good English (if any). If the language is no problem you’re chances are better by far.
I also got in touch with a couple of agents before I came to Taiwan but even if they offered something that was nowhere near my budget and I eventually found my place on tealit.com. I would suggest you visit tealit a lot (I wonder how good Forumosafied is, the old housing thread on Forumosa was quite good) and posting your requirement may also help a lot.
Thanks for the responses. My chinese is lacking so I will have to pound the streets with someone who can speak. Atleast now I know the situation isn’t hopeless.