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Free accomodation..... just how common is it?

Discussion in 'Teaching overseas' started by devils, Apr 20, 2017.

  1. devils

    devils Occasional commenter

    As the title says, is this a reasonably widespread practice in the international schools community?
  2. JL48

    JL48 Star commenter

    Seems to depend on the region. Outside the EU and the US / Canada, schools do tend to offer housing or a housing stipend. In the EU, it's more common in the east.
  3. T0nyGT

    T0nyGT Lead commenter

    Central/Southern Europe, Australia, US and Canada - No

    Everywhere else - yes

    As a general rule of course. I'm sure there are exceptions
    Teachallover likes this.
  4. karel

    karel Occasional commenter

    Even in Eastern Europe it depends. Some schools provide a housing allowance but certainly not all schools do.
  5. gulfgolf

    gulfgolf Established commenter

    That pretty much covers the geography.
    Remember this only refers to proper international schools and teachers who qualify for recruited hire. Dodgy schools will get away with what they can, and not every English speaker has the skills to justify a recruited package.
  6. the hippo

    the hippo Established commenter Community helper

    Unfortunately "accomodation" is quite common these days. Maybe some people do not know how to use a dictionary.

    On a slightly more serious note, "free" can be quite a flexible term. As regular readers of the pachyderm's ramblings will know, when Mrs H and I were in Bucharest we had "free" accommodation, but each month we still had to pay for the maintenance of the building (very shabby), refuse collection, another thing, something else and an extra charge that I never understood. Altogether, these charges came to nearly two hundred euros by the time we left Romania. When we were in Qatar, we did not have any of these monthly bills.
  7. gazzmus

    gazzmus New commenter

    I recently went to visit a buddy at his international school in South Korea. His apartment was a three bed roomed, over two floors with a big open plan kitchen and living room.

    He is married with two kids. The teacher who left happened to have a family, so he just got his house. BUT 60% of the teachers (single) live in a dorm style building with shared cooking/shower area. Their room is just big enough for a bed and a desk!

    So, would my friend have been offered/been able to accept this job if the person leaving was a single person?
  8. ejclibrarian

    ejclibrarian Established commenter Community helper

    We get a set monthly accommodation allowance which pretty much covers the cost of our apartment. I think we end up paying maybe 40GBP out of our salary to cover the difference. We have a two bed, two bath, with an office, and open plan living room, dining room and kitchen. At our school the allowance depends on your marital status and also whether you have children. You are expected to find your own place to live though HR does put us in touch with agents who deal with foreign teachers.
  9. englishjohn1

    englishjohn1 New commenter

    WHat international school? There aren't any PROPER intl schools there except one on Jeju island. Rent in Korea is cheap as chips outside Seoul. Same for Taiwan outside of Taipei. Cheap as chips. At least they are for studios. There are of course expensive places to rent if you want to. I have a 2 room studio with no kitchen (i made my own) for 225 pounds a month, mostly paid by the school. Now Hong Kong and I think SHanghai are extremely expensive. According to Numbeo, HK is 4.5 times more expensive than Taiwan to rent.
  10. devils

    devils Occasional commenter

    Oh do behave and get a life for God's sake...... the amusing irony of your statement is that there is nothing worse than an internet pedant! Dear oh dear.....
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2017
  11. devils

    devils Occasional commenter

    I've heard that HK is really expensive too
  12. devils

    devils Occasional commenter

    Oh and BTW you should have written..

    Unfortunately, "accomodation" is quite common these days. Maybe some people do not know how to use a dictionary.

    Sentence adverbs or something like that.... ;)
    JL48 likes this.
  13. devils

    devils Occasional commenter

    It would be interesting to know if teachers get stitched up a bit by these "agents"... do you reckon they thrown in a few hidden fees?
  14. the hippo

    the hippo Established commenter Community helper


    Well, it makes a change from yet another photo of our house in Bulgaria, so here is Mrs H. next to our apartment block in Shenzhen.

    Of course renting agencies might want you to choose this apartment rather than that one, devils. That was our experience, but you are not stuck with just one agent. Here in Shenzhen, some teachers looked at quite a few different apartments and they used several different agents. The agents charge a "one off" fee, as I understand it, so it all seemed to be fairly straightforward. Fortunately my school has some wonderful HR ladies who were very helpful, as were our dear Chinese friends. My impression is that landlords prefer to rent apartments to foreigners, but maybe I am mistaken about this.

    The rental allowance the school gives us means that Mr and Mrs Hippopotamus can rent a two-bedroomed apartment in the centre of Shenzhen, right next to a huge park and a metro station. Hooray! The apartment blocks are covered with red tiles in order to keep away the ghosts, as there used to be public executions nearby!
  15. karel

    karel Occasional commenter

    The housing allowance that I get covers the rent for a large detached 5 bedrooms house in the hills. We pay some towards the bills ourselves. We could easily get a smaller house or an apartment in the city within the housing allowance. Teaching couples with kids get a larger allowance which would cover a house with a swimming pool if they wanted that. The schools recommends a few different agents, but what happens more is that a number of landlords always rent to teachers from school and as teachers leave incoming teachers take over the apartments or houses, so there are no agent fees needed. The school helps with the contract etc and the deposit is typically 2 months rent.
    This is in Eastern Europe.
  16. Alldone

    Alldone Established commenter

    Wow - love the colour of the buildings. Is this a common feature of buildings in Shenzhen?
  17. the hippo

    the hippo Established commenter Community helper

    Yes, the dark red colour is not exactly my favourite. The red tiling seems to be effective, as so far we have not met any ghosts. Most buildings in SZ are not this repulsive shade, I am glad to say.
    JL48 likes this.
  18. rosiecg

    rosiecg Occasional commenter

    I'm in Malaysia... At my school we are given a housing allowance of 3000RM per month. I live in an expat area of the city, and my 2 bed apartment costs 3300RM so I have to pay approximately 60GBP on top of my allowance. I have to pay all the bills as well. Whereas I have friends at two other schools here, who get their apartment completely free, with no bills to pay.

    I was recently offered a teaching job in Russia, where everything was included - even 4 meals at day at school!
  19. gazzmus

    gazzmus New commenter

  20. mikemcdonald25

    mikemcdonald25 Occasional commenter

    Englishjohn1 = musicteech?

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