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Please Help! Moving to Kl with a baby and toddler

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salmap
7/8/2014 06:02 EST

Hi there, my husband is being relocated to Kl later this year for work. We have a baby and a toddler. Could anyone please help with what area of Kl would be best suited to a young family. I am a stay at home mum, and would like to be in an area with other expats with young families to make friends with. My husband has heard from some people how difficult it was for their partners to make friends and for the kids too, and so they have ended up leaving Kl. My husband is concerned about how I will cope, as he will be working UK hours, so I would be with the kids on my own most days. What facilities are there for young children and is it easy enough to get around without speaking the local language?.
I appreciate any time you take to give me info and put both myself and my husband at ease about this move.

lynne05elmo29
7/8/2014 10:01 EST

Hello,

My wife and I moved to Malaysia from US in late May and we love it here. We first looked at KL and the surrounding area for everything including housing, but we ended up moving to Penang Island which is about 5 hours north of KL. The reason we didn’t like KL is because we left US (we are both from the north east) to get away from the busy and hurry up life style and KL resembles that a bit because it is a major city. It is a wonderful place with a lot to offer including the excellent city transportation. By the way the food in night markets and the street food is one of the best things we love about Malaysia.

As for making friends, all I can say is if someone is looking to make friends just with expats or they are stuck up yes they will have a lot of problems, But if you are open minded you will find that the locals are not only friendly they are so helpful that we as people from a western country look at it suspiciously. The time difference is 7 hours ahead of UK, so based on your message, your husband does not leave home until 4:00 PM Malaysia time, so you will not be alone with the kids all day.

By the way they do have their own language, but almost everyone speaks English, so you will not have any problem communicating. In my wife’s opinion you should not have any problems meeting people and making friends due to you having young children which will create opportunities to mingle with other parents thru school and activities.

Elmo and Lynne

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salmap
7/8/2014 11:04 EST

Hi Elmo,
thank you for replying back to my post. Im glad to hear you are enjoying Malaysia.
My husband has been told he will be working UK hrs for 2 weeks of the month, and during peak days of the month (he is in finance) he will be working from 12pm kl time and not finnishing until 1-2am most of those days. So we need to be close enough for him to commute easily.
I believe he will be working in the Petaling Jaya area, so we need something close to there.
Any recommendations for housing within an hrs commute?.

lynne05elmo29
7/8/2014 18:40 EST

Hello,
I have been to Petling Jaya by car with a realtor and it is a nicer place to live than KL because it is not so busy and the housing and cost of living is cheaper also. It is south of KL and closer to the international airport.

I know they have trains there but I am not sure about the public bus transportation there. When you contact a realtor he/she should be able to guide you with that.

You can go to iproperty.com and check out the houses or condos that are available for rent. Most of them will have pictures also. If you like something you can contact the listing agent via email or phone. By the way unlike USA, here you will work directly with the listing realtor so you will have many agents to show houses because of the small commission. We found a couple of agents who were willing to show properties listed by others.

Hope this helps. Good luck

Elmo

bintang
7/9/2014 00:28 EST

Hello "salmap"!

We enjoy living in Malaysia for a couple of years now. PJ is a good place to live, we lived in a part of it called "Kota Damansara" for a couple of years and liked it very much. It has lots of amenities, like "Sunway Giza Mall" and "The Curve" (my favorite http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VuZtWHagpY8) is only 5 minutes drive. There are a lot of kindergartens and an international school too.

Sure you´ll find some fellow expats in the area. It´s good to join an expat club or associations have a look at: https://sites.google.com/site/malaysiaauswandern/clubs-associations

Cheers

Conny

salmap
7/9/2014 17:58 EST

Hi conny, Thank you very much for replying to my post. I have bern looking at apartments for lease in PJ, it does look lovely. You said in your post that there is an international school there, do you know if it is british, american? Also, I don't drive. So im wondering what public transport is like.

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bintang
7/10/2014 06:14 EST

Hi,

actually there are 2 international schools in the area:
"Sri KDU" in Kota Damansara http://www.srikdu.edu.my/ and
in the adjacent district of Bandar Utama (also PJ) there is "The British International School Kuala Lumpur" http://www.britishschool.edu.my/en/home.aspx

But there are a lot more international schools in PJ and the greater KL area, have a look at the list: http://www.igcsecentre.com/international-schools/

Your future condo should be close to your husbands office and to a school as well. Consider that renting a condominium can be even more expensive than renting a terraced house (town house).

Because of transportation, if you don´t drive I´d recommend taxi. They are building an additional MRT line to connect Kota Damansara to KL and further down to Kajang, but it will be ready in 2016 or 2017 only. Buses are not much recommended, they don´t stick to the time schedule.

So the only option is taxi and it´s really not expensive compared to Europe. My urgent advice, to download and use the "myteksi" app to your HP: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.myteksi.passenger&hl=en
it´s 1. safer 2. more reliable 3. you get the estimated price before you even start.

I heard about a new service, private drivers on demand called "Uber" but have never tried, for more info: http://www.soyacincau.com/2013/11/24/your-driver-on-demand-uber-kuala-lumpur-review/

Cheers
Conny

salmap
7/15/2014 20:22 EST

Hi Conny,
Thank you for all info re schools and transport, will make it much easier to narrow our list. I believe the work office will be either in or right next door to the 1utama shopping centre.
We're fortunate enough that we will get a housing allowance and the boys education paid for. With that in mind are there any particular areas of PJ you could recommend?
Thanks.
Salma

bintang
7/15/2014 21:54 EST

Hi Salma,

"Bandar Utama" itself is a good place to live, as your husband works there and the British International School is located there too. They have the 1Utama Mall which is great (and huge) for all your shoppings and there is a "Jaya Grocer" in the area for more "expat grocery shopping". They have a lot of new condo buildings and terrace houses in the area.
This a link to some rental properties in Bandar Utama: http://www.iproperty.com.my/property/searchresult.aspx?t=R&gpt=AR&st=&ct=&k=Bandar+Utama%2c+Selangor&pt=&mp=&xp=&mbr=&xbr=&mbu=&xbu=&lo=&wp=&wv=&wa=&ht=&au=&sby=&ns=1

Two other nice neighborhoods of PJ are in the immediate vicinity of 1Utama, "Taman Tun Dr Ismail" (TTDI):
which is an older part of town, but with lots of greenery, pretty bungalows and a nice park (loved to take a walk there).

The other is "Mutiara Damansara" wich is a relatively new area, love the shopping and restaurants at "The Curve" and Ikea of course.

So I think you should consider one of these three.

Regards
Conny

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