Our first week living in Singapore

A whole week has passed since we touched down in the Red Dot to begin our Southeast Asia adventure. It’s been an absolute whirlwind, but what have we done with ourselves?

Soaking up the rays

The weather has been pretty mixed since we arrived, and apparently it is unseasonably rainy. The locals also say it’s lovely and cool at a mere 30 degrees – something I’m not in total agreement with! We’ve had some epic thunder storms, scaring hubby on his commute to Malaysia.

In between the rain, the sun has shone hot hot hot and I’ve managed to get some tanning time in.

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The pool at Treetops, our lovely home for the first month

 

Life admin

We walked into our bank of choice (DBS), and strolled out a jiffy later with active bank cards and access to online banking. Singapore has to be one of the most efficient places in the world – we have already set up bank accounts, got new phone numbers, and received our permanent resident cards, and in week one! Boy, this place functions.

Finding an abode 

We’re going to be in Singapore for at least two years, so need a place to call home. In Singapore you have three options when it comes to housing:

  1. HDB – In the past, as housing costs soared, the Government stepped up and started building affordable housing for citizens. Today more than 80% of Singaporeans live in public housing.
  2. Condominium – pay a bit more and you can get a condo, which is a flat that comes with mega-facilities. Most fully equipped condo blocks have a full pool (many have a lap pool, a lounge pool, a kids pools, and a jacuzzi – pool overload!), a gym, a tennis court and communal dining BBQ areas.
  3. Landed house – For those which more cash to burn, you can get yourself a landed property, i.e a house.
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The Art Deco HDB housing in Tiong Bahru

Landed houses can either be big detached homes, the older of which are known as ‘Black and Whites’ and are reminders of 19th century colonial expats. Landed houses can also be shophouses, these amazing terraced houses that often function as both a business and a home. Typically they were built between the 1840s and the 1960s and are decorated in bright colours.

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Typical shophouses in all their colourful glory

Property prices seem to have dipped recently, so those moving here now are getting more for their dollar (yay!). We spent one day this week doing an intense condo hunt, viewing 12 in one day. I THINK we have chosen one…more details to follow.

Shopping

Our temporary accommodation just happens to be right behind Singapore’s famous shopping street, Orchard Road. 2.2km of shoppers paradise. I’m not usually much of a shopper, but with us living so close, it’d be rude not to!

Eating 

The food here is amazing! We have been stuffing our faces with delicious curries, noodles, dumplings, bao and sweet treats. Usually, we wash it all down with a Tiger Beer, or a lime juice. Obviously, all this eating is in our quest to find super places to take family and friends when visiting!

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Newton Food Court – one of the pricer and more touristy Hawker centres, where a typical dish might cost $6

 

Now, we’re looking forward to getting settled into our own place, and having friends and family visit. And of course, continuing to explore!

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