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So you've decided to make the move to Vietnam. Congratulations! Now comes the fun part - finding a place to live. House hunting in a foreign country can seem daunting, but don't worry, we've got you covered. As expats ourselves, we know what's important - location, price, and amenities. We'll walk you through the major neighborhoods in Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi so you can find an area that suits your lifestyle. We'll give you an idea of what you can expect to pay for different types of apartments so you can make sure your budget is realistic. And we'll highlight some of the key features to look for so you end up with an apartment that has everything you need, like high-speed internet, air conditioning, and secure parking. With the right approach, finding an apartment in Vietnam can be an exciting adventure. Let's get started!

Choosing the Right Location for Your Apartment in Vietnam

Choosing the right location for your apartment in Vietnam depends on several factors. Do you want easy access to amenities, a lively neighborhood, peace and quiet, or a nice view?

Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC)

District 1

  • Preferred By: Diverse expat population, including Westerners, Japanese, and Europeans.

  • Note: Its cosmopolitan vibe attracts a broad range of expats who enjoy a bustling city lifestyle.

District 2

  • Preferred By: Primarily Western expats, Australians, and Europeans.

  • Note: The international schools and suburban feel make it a favorite among Western families.

District 3

  • Preferred By: A mix but leans towards younger Western and Vietnamese professionals.

  • Note: Its balance of local and expat communities attracts those who want an "in-between" lifestyle.

District 7

  • Preferred By: Korean and Taiwanese expats, some Western families.

  • Note: Known as the "Korean district" due to the significant Korean population and amenities like Korean supermarkets and restaurants.

Binh Thanh District

  • Preferred By: A younger crowd of expats from various countries who are on a budget.

  • Note: Its location and affordability attract those who work in District 1 but want cheaper rent.


Tay Ho (West Lake)

  • Preferred By: Primarily Western families, some Japanese and Korean expats.

  • Note: The international schools and upscale amenities make it popular among expats from developed countries.

Old Quarter

  • Preferred By: Backpackers and younger expats, primarily from Western countries.

  • Note: Its vibrant atmosphere is a magnet for those looking for an active social life.

Dong Da

  • Preferred By: Students and educators, primarily from Asian countries like China and Korea.

  • Note: Its proximity to several universities makes it an academic hub.

Ba Dinh

  • Preferred By: Expats working in government or international organizations, mainly from Western countries.

  • Note: Its status as a political center makes it popular among those working in related fields.

Cau Giay

  • Preferred By: Young professionals, particularly from Asian countries.

  • Note: Its growing tech scene is drawing more expats involved in IT and services.

Adding such details will not only enrich your guide but also help expats find a community where they may feel more at home. This can be particularly beneficial for your travel website which caters to a diverse audience.

Average Rental Costs for Apartments in Vietnam's Major Cities

Renting an apartment in Vietnam's major cities won't break the bank. In fact, you can find very livable places for reasonable prices, especially compared to other Southeast Asian capitals.

Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City

In Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, you can rent a one-bedroom apartment for $300 to $800 per month. A decent two- or three-bedroom unit will cost $500 to $1,500. The closer you are to downtown, the higher the rent.

Newer, luxury high-rise apartments are pricier, starting around $1,000 for a one-bedroom. But unless you really value amenities like rooftop pools, gyms and building security, older apartments can be totally fine and more budget-friendly.

Secondary Cities

In Da Nang, Nha Trang or other beach towns, rent is often a bit lower, around $200 to $600 for a basic one-bedroom apartment. The trade-off is that selection may be more limited.

No matter where you look, be prepared to pay 3 to 6 months of rent upfront as a deposit, and possibly additional agent fees equal to one month’s rent. Make sure any place you consider is located conveniently near your work, has stable internet, and will meet your basic needs.


A serviced apartment in Vietnam

Negotiating Your Lease & Understanding Your Rights as a Renter

When it comes time to sign a lease in Vietnam, there are a few things expats should keep in mind. Many landlords and property managers will ask foreigners to sign longer leases, often 2-3 years, to secure stable tenants. Don’t feel pressured into anything longer than a year for your first lease. You’ll want flexibility as you’re getting settled in a new country.

  • Negotiate the best deal you can. Do some research on typical rental rates for the area and type of apartment you’re interested in. Come prepared with a reasonable offer and be willing to compromise. Many landlords will charge foreigners higher “foreigner prices,” so push back politely if an offer seems too high.

  • Make sure you fully understand all terms of the lease before signing. Have a native Vietnamese speaker review the document if your language skills aren’t up to par. Key things to look for include:

    • The total lease term (6 months, 1 year, etc.)

    • The amount due at signing (1-3 months’ rent is common)

    • Utility and maintenance responsibilities (many leases stipulate tenants pay all utilities)

    • Penalties for early termination (often 2-3 months’ rent)

  • Know your rights. According to Vietnamese law, landlords must register the lease with the local authority and provide tenants an official copy. The lease should also specify the total area of the unit in square meters. As a renter, you have the right to “peaceful enjoyment” of the property. The landlord must give proper notice before accessing the unit.

  • If issues arise with the condition of the property or if repairs are needed, notify the landlord in writing and keep records of communication. Renters have the right to withhold rent if the landlord does not make necessary repairs within a reasonable time frame.

  • Take photos of any damage or needed repairs when you move in. This provides evidence in case the landlord tries to withhold your deposit when you move out.

Navigating rental agreements in a foreign country can be challenging, but knowing your rights and sticking up for yourself in a polite, reasonable manner will make the process smoother. Don’t be afraid to ask questions every step of the way.


Villa for rent in District 2, Ho Chi Minh city

Resources for Finding Apartment Listings in Vietnam

Finding an apartment in Vietnam as an expat can feel overwhelming, but with the right resources, you'll be settling into your new place in no time. Here are some of the best ways to search for and find apartment listings in Vietnam:

Property Websites and Apps

Some of the top websites and apps for apartment hunting in Vietnam include:

  • - Vietnam's largest property website with listings for apartments, villas, and houses across the country.

  • - A popular classifieds website where landlords and agents post apartment listings. You can filter by location, price, amenities, and more.

  • - An app available on iOS and Android with apartment listings and the option to schedule viewings and communicate with landlords directly through the app.

Facebook Marketplace and Groups

Facebook is hugely popular in Vietnam, so many landlords and agents advertise apartments on Facebook Marketplace and in local housing groups. Search for groups like "Apartments for Rent in Ho Chi Minh City" or "Hanoi Apartment Rentals" and you'll find many listings. Be prepared to communicate in Vietnamese, but with patience, you may find some good deals.

Local Agents and Real Estate Firms

For expats who prefer in-person service, local real estate agents and firms can help search listings and arrange viewings based on your needs and budget. Some well-known firms in major cities include Vhomes, Hai Phat Investment, and CBRE Vietnam. Agents typically don't charge any upfront fees and their commission comes from the landlord if you sign a lease.

With a combination of websites, social media, and real estate agents, you'll be well on your way to finding an apartment in Vietnam that suits your needs. Best of luck with your search and new adventure living in Vietnam!

The Impact of Weather on Your Apartment Choice in Vietnam

Vietnam's tropical monsoon climate plays a significant role in choosing an apartment. Beyond dry and rainy seasons, you should also be aware of potential flooding issues that are common in certain areas.

The Dry Season

From December to April, Vietnam experiences dry conditions with low humidity, making it a popular time for expats to move. An apartment that maximizes natural light and airflow is ideal during this period. Look for places with large windows, balconies, or an open-floor plan. Amenities like ceiling fans or air conditioning are beneficial for maintaining comfort.

The Rainy Season and Flooding Concerns

Running from May to November, the rainy season features hot, humid weather along with frequent tropical storms. Flooding is a major concern, especially in low-lying areas. To mitigate this risk, opt for an apartment on a higher floor and in a modern building with good insulation. Ensure the windows and balcony doors are well-sealed to prevent drafts and leaks. Air conditioning is almost a necessity during this humid period. Backup generators are also advisable to cope with potential power outages.

Flooding Alert: Before choosing an apartment, investigate the area's flooding history. Some neighborhoods are more prone to flooding than others. Your safety and comfort could be compromised if you overlook this crucial factor.

Location-Specific Considerations

Different regions in Vietnam are affected to varying degrees by weather patterns. Coastal areas may have consistent temperatures but are prone to heavy rains and occasional typhoons. The Central Highlands experience distinct dry and wet seasons, while Hanoi and the northern regions can get quite cold in winter. In contrast, cities like Ho Chi Minh City remain hot throughout the year.

Must-Have Amenities & Facilities When Renting an Apartment

When apartment hunting in Vietnam, certain amenities and facilities are must-haves for most expats. Here are some of the key things to consider:

24-Hour Security

Look for an apartment complex with 24-hour security guards and restricted access. This provides peace of mind and ensures only authorized people can enter the building. Some complexes also have security cameras monitoring the entrance, elevators, and parking areas.

High-Speed Internet

Reliable high-speed internet is essential, especially if you work remotely. Choose an apartment with a fast, uncapped fiber internet connection. Some places provide internet access as part of the rent. If not, you’ll need to set up your own internet plan with a provider like Viettel, FPT or VNPT.

Air Conditioning

Vietnam’s hot, humid climate means air conditioning is a must. Look for an apartment with AC units in each room, especially the bedrooms. Split-unit or ducted AC systems are most common. Make sure the AC is powerful enough for the size of the apartment.

English-Speaking Staff

If possible, choose an apartment complex with English-speaking staff, especially for maintenance and emergencies. Some higher-end places have bilingual receptionists and property managers which makes communication much easier for foreigners.


If you own a vehicle, secure parking is essential. Look for an apartment with an indoor parking garage, parking lots with 24-hour attendants, or designated parking spaces. On-street parking can be difficult in cities like Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.

Pool and Gym Facilities

For leisure and exercise, a swimming pool and gym are ideal. Many newer apartment complexes have rooftop pools, gyms, and recreation centers for residents. Some even have tennis courts, playgrounds, and BBQ areas.

Choosing an apartment with these amenities will make your stay in Vietnam more comfortable and convenient. Be sure to discuss what’s included with the landlord or property manager before signing a lease.

Furnished vs Unfurnished - Deciding What Works Best for You

Deciding between a furnished or unfurnished apartment is an important choice. As an expat in Vietnam, there are some factors to consider regarding your needs and lifestyle.


Opting for a furnished apartment means essential pieces of furniture come included, like a bed, sofa, dining table and chairs. This option provides convenience, allowing you to move in quickly without the hassle of shopping for furniture. It’s ideal if you’re only staying short-term, such as a few months. However, furnished apartments typically have higher rent and less flexibility to choose your own decor. The existing furniture may not match your tastes or needs.


Renting an unfurnished apartment gives you creative freedom to design the space to your liking. You can shop for furniture and decor that fits your preferences and budget. Unfurnished apartments often have lower rent since you’re responsible for providing your own furnishings. This choice works well for long-term stays where you want to settle in and make the place your own. However, you’ll need to invest time finding and buying necessary furniture and home goods to make the empty apartment livable.

A Hybrid Approach

A middle ground is to find an apartment that’s partially furnished with essentials like a bed, sofa and appliances but still allows you to bring in additional furniture and personal touches. This option balances convenience and flexibility at a potentially lower cost. Some apartments may allow you to keep or remove existing furniture as needed.

Another option is utilizing furniture leasing services such as Flexfit Rental ( You can rent monthly or annually for any duration you want.

In the end, selecting between furnished and unfurnished depends on your priorities, length of stay, and budget. Think about what level of convenience versus customization is most important. And if needed, you can always change or add furniture to make any apartment feel like home. The most important thing is finding a place in a location you love!

Maintenance Fees & Utilities - What to Expect

When searching for an apartment in Vietnam, it’s important to understand what additional fees and utility costs to expect on top of your rent. These can vary quite a bit depending on the type of building and location, but here are some averages to keep in mind:

Maintenance Fees

Many apartments, especially in high-rise buildings, charge monthly maintenance or service fees to cover costs like cleaning, security, and repairs. These typically range from $20 to $100 per month for a one- or two-bedroom unit. Make sure you understand exactly what amenities and services are included before signing a lease.


Utility costs in Vietnam are relatively low compared to other countries. Expect to pay between $20 to $60 per month for electricity in a typical apartment. The exact amount will depend on factors like the size of your unit, number of air conditioners, and how energy efficient the building is. It’s a good idea to ask the landlord or previous tenants for estimates on average utility bills to avoid sticker shock.


High-speed internet in Vietnam is very affordable. Most expat apartments offer free wireless internet or will allow you to set up your own WiFi router. If not, you can get unlimited data plans for around $10 to $30 per month from major telcos like Viettel, Vinaphone or Mobifone.


Tap water in Vietnam is not potable, so most apartments provide free ỏ paid bottled water for drinking and cooking. For showers and sinks, you’ll pay a small fee for water usage which typically adds just $5 to $15 to your monthly bills.

By understanding these additional housing costs upfront, you can make sure your total monthly expenses in Vietnam align with your budget. While rents may be lower than in other countries, factoring in maintenance, utility and internet fees will give you a more accurate estimate of the total cost of living in your new home.