What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?
Name three things that you wish you had brought and three you wish you had left at home.
Brought-Cutlery, wine glasses and bedding
Left - Leather jacket, old family photos (just bring copies) and dried foodstuff
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What advice would you give someone preparing to move to your area about the actual move, choosing a neighborhood and finding a home?
Hanoi is very small and there are only a few areas where most expats live. You can live in town but then the noise can be a factor. Most kindergardens and schools are out of the centre. There are a few real estate companies and they generally have very good networks. I would recommend picking two or three and just spending time driving around to see what is on offer. You should never tell them your real budget and ask around to see what others are paying. You will probably change houses at some time during your stay and will know better the second time!
What type of housing do you live in? Is this typical for most expats in your area?
Large 4 bedroom house and yes
How did you choose your neighborhood and find your home or apartment?
Through an agent and talking to friends
Are your housing costs higher or lower than they were in your home country? What is the average cost of housing there?
Similar to UK. Land is expensive and housing can be too. You can find more local style housing for $500-700 a month but really you need to think about paying around $1000-1200 for something decent. The Embassy type housing goes for $1800-3500 and most good quality apartments will be $2500-3500. The most expensive place I have heard of is around $10,000 a month!
An Expat Talks about Moving to Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
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Expat Vietnam: 10 Tips for Living in Vietnam
It's an exciting time to live in Vietnam - with more and more tall buildings crowding the city skylines and rural areas developing rapidly as well. Learning Vietnamese poses a major challenge for most expats, but Vietnam's warm, welcoming people make up for the challenge.