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ChTTay

Renting an apartment in Wudaokou (BLCU, BEIDA, Tsinghua)

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roddy

Excellent stuff, made a sticky. Might also be worth adding a link to the Accommodation in China topic (and will give that one a bump, been a while since it was updated) so people can see roughly what's available. I know it's not Beijing-specific though. 

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barashkov

Dear all,

 

I will be studying at Beida from February-June or possibly until August if I do the summer chinese course as well.

 

I was wondering whether Wudaokou is a good option to rent an apartment for Beida students if i don't really want to ride to Beida?  Is it easy to get a taxi or a bus from Wudaokou to Beida?  (I notice on the map that it looks too far to walk from Wudaokou to Beida - at least for me as I'm quite lazy) (I imagine at peak times it would be difficult to get a taxi there although there always seem to be a lot of taxis near the Wudaokou clubs - but I was usually there in the early hours of the morning so not sure about what it's like during the day)

 

Looking at the map, it seems for Beida students that Zhongguancun or Haidian Huangzhuang could also be good options as they are, respectively, only one and two stations from Beida's subway station.  Has anyone rented an apartment in either of those locations?  How does it compare to living near Wudaokou subway station in terms of price of rent, nearby restaurants and cafes, etc.?

 

Do you think it would be difficult to rent a studio or 1-bedroom apartment for just 6 months? (I guess there will be some owners who want to rent for at least a year but I'm hoping there's still some good choices for half-year leases)

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ChTTay

It's not far from Beida to Wudaokou, of course it depends where exactly in Wdk that you live but there are a few different buses you can take. It would be around 1 to 5 stops. If you took a taxi it would be a waste of money, it's very close. You could walk there in 20-30 minutes depending from the centre of Wdk. Most people realise a bike is the way to go when they've sat in traffic for 30 minutes or more. It's a very short bike ride, most students take that option and there are bike lanes most of the way. You can buy bikes cheaply.

You don't mention your apartment budget but ZGC and HHZ areas are quite expensive areas to live. You also don't mention if you speak Chinese. Assuming a low level, you might find letting agents in Wudaokou more used to dealing with foreigners. There are also independent agents who speak some English.

A studio apartment in Wudaokou is probably at least 5,000rmb these days. I'd expect to pay more. The prices just before I decided to move away were getting crazy. You'd be paying 6k for a room in a 3 bedroom house - not even the master bedroom. One issue is that a lot of students come for 6 months so landlords will charge more for shorter let's. Also, foreign students are generally willing to pay more. This has always been the case I guess but it's getting silly these days. We had a place for 4400 and we're looking to find a better one. The agents we went to literally laughed when we said the price we wanted. They only stopped when we told them we pay 4400 now.

If you want a cheaper place, essentially they get cheaper the further away from the middle of Wdk. For you, you could look at somewhere on line 4, further north or south of Peking University. Again, finding a place may depend on your Chinese level.

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barashkov

Thanks very much for your reply.

 

My budget is 4500-6000RMB, I guess, though obviously the cheaper the better.

 

I can speak Chinese fluently so I guess I can try Wudaokou, ZGC and HHK and see what prices I get quoted and maybe look at other areas on the Beida subway line.

 

In terms of looking for an apartment around Chinese New Year, is it a bad time to look?  At the moment, I'm thinking of arriving in Beijing on 3 February to look for an apartment.  I realise that Spring Festival is officially 7-9 February.  Is it difficult to find an apartment in the week preceeding/following Spring Festival? (I suppose some landlords will return to their hometowns for more than 3 days?)

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ChTTay

I'd imagine most agencies will be closed around 7-9 but should be open otherwise. The main problem is what you've already anticipated in that many landlords won't be in Beijing at that time. If you're looking in Wudaokou, a lot of agencies take care of the apartments so you might not have as much of a problem.

 

Unless you have a specific desire to live in Wudaokou, I'd personally try find somewhere else on line 4. Perhaps near Renmin University or further North/West of Beida. I personally don't like Wudaokou though... so that might just be me.

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JY.X1199

in the above post, you guys have mentioned about which street to look for apartments, but my question is how to look for an appartment in beijing, and I am going to attend PKU this upcoming September 2016. Also the school did not give any information to us international students about the accommodation on how to sign up.

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ChTTay

Actually, the names I have in the first post are apartment complexes, not streets. Or did I misunderstand?

As for "how to look", did you read the full post above? I mention dealing with agents. Essentially you will need to go through an agency or find roommates on an expat website.

As for PKU accommodation, you might want to head over to the PKU thread and see if anyone states how it works or what's available.

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morepotatoes

How much is a room in a shared apartment in wudaokou usually?

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ChTTay

As my post above....

"For a room in a shared apartment, it can vary wildly depending on where the apartment is, the size of the room and your good fortune (or lack of it). I have known people find a box room for 1800RMB a month but know others who live in something ‘one up’ from a box room but pay 4000RMB. Double rooms with ensuit bathrooms in shared apartments usually cost the most."

Last I heard, a friend was paying 4500 for a medium sized room in a shared apartment. The master bedroom with ensuit was 6500+.

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reric123

I'm coming to BLCU this semester (Feb 23rd) and arriving on the evening of the 21st. Apparently, they didn't receive my dorm reservation soon enough so now I have to find something. I contacted a few agents but they all told me I needed to be there in order to rent something. Also, they don't seem to keen on renting for a period of 4 months or so. Does anyone know of a classifieds website, like a Chinese Craigslist (in English..lol)? I'm looking at the Beijinger. Is there any other resource anyone knows of to secure housing before I come into the country?

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Video Vocabulary
13 hours ago, reric123 said:

Does anyone know of a classifieds website, like a Chinese Craigslist (in English..lol)? I'm looking at the Beijinger. Is there any other resource anyone knows of to secure housing before I come into the country?

 

http://www.ziroom.com/ditu/

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ChTTay

It might seem like a good idea to secure housing before you arrive but, unless it's the University dorms, it really isn't. You need to be able to see the location, who you might share with and the quality of your room. Furthermore, who you are actually renting from. Most of the online photos of apartments in China aren't the actual apartments. When asked the agents might say they're "examples" of what it might look like. 

 

Just book yourself a hotel room in or around Wudaokou for 5-7 days. Within that time you should be able to find a place. Read the threads already on the forums about house hunting in wudaokou. You can go to popular housing complexes and there are always letting agents nearby. As for 4 months, there are rooms and agents that cater for this kind of time period but you'd likely be paying a premium for a short term stay. 

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reric123

I didn't even think that the pictures wouldn't be the same. That makes sense though that an agent would do this and target people like me...lol. 

 

I'm in contact with a few agents now who seem to be OK with the time and price range and everything. I'll probably do just that and book myself in a room for a couple days and try to find something as soon as possible.

 

Thanks for the info!!!

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