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.
You can pretty much get everything in Moscow now (although some basic things are still ridiculously expensive!), but I would take Marmite and Pimm's. We left most things at home due to customs as we didn't want any hassle when leaving the country in terms of additional paperwork.
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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?
Traffic is usually terrible in Moscow so you should choose an area that's convenient for work, school and anything else you do regularly. We preferred living in the centre as we like going out and being close to the theatres, music and concert halls etc. Some people prefer living out of town in the compounds, mainly for the children. There are some lovely family friendly areas in town too. It's basically about reaching a convenient compromise for your whole family.
What type of housing do you live in? Is this typical for most expats in your area?
Apartment. Yes, in town it's almost always an apartment. Some expats prefer to live in the compounds out of town, which are usually town houses.
How did you choose your neighborhood and find your home or apartment?
We chose a family friendly area - Chisty Prudi - and used Evans estate agent for our first two apartments and Penny Lane for our last one. We used others too but Evans worked out to be the most reasonable overall and their agent actually listened to what we wanted, rather than showing us a whole load of rubbish. Penny Lane did a great job helping us find our last apartment.
Are your housing costs higher or lower than they were in your home country? What is the average cost of housing there?
Higher. It's expensive overall in Moscow!