Updated: Apr 18, 2021
Why rent when you can just buy a house? Don't waste your time and money lah, just buy one! - I bet you've heard this before. Well, for a financially stable professional, with over 10 years of working experience, buying a house can be a breeze but not for beginners. The stamp duty for property purchase alone can cost up to RM 11,000, what more the price of your dream home.
A lot of people like the urban style of living in the city centre. But then, living in Kuala Lumpur can be financially exhausting and mentally draining. It's expensive.
You have to endure the high cost of modern living; not to mention the huge chunk of savings you need to have upon purchasing any property, which most people lack today.
I hate to break it to you, but you've probably got the idea; possessing a house is not easy and definitely not cheap, especially if you're an entry-level employee or a junior executive in Kuala Lumpur.
Even in Malaysia, the total cost of purchasing a house can literally make your jaw drop - out of complete shock!
So, how to get a financial sense out of this pricey mess? How can I save money on rent?
Well, instead of buying an entire house, here are the 10 proven reasons why renting a room is a great strategy to save your money:
1) Yep, No More Housing or Maintenance Fees
Getting your hands on your own house can be dreamy. But if you don't do it right, you might end up between a rock and a hard place; and that's either the trouble you get from the bank loans or from the ah-longs. We don't want both of that.
So, save yourself the trouble and start saving money by renting a room. Why room renting is even better than purchasing an entire apartment?
Go figure - all of the housing and maintenance fees are taken care of!
You can absolutely save a lot of ringgits by having landlords; they're responsible for the maintenance of the unit (unless you're the one to cause it).
How do we make sure the landlord is really liable for all the repairs and performs his fair share in the duty of care of the rental property?
Yup, through the tenancy agreement - a legal contract that outlines the responsibilities of both the landlord and tenant during the tenancy period.
Before signing the rental agreement, take a close look. See if there's a clause specifically stating that the owner is liable for all the repairs and maintenance of the rental unit.
If there is, then you're good to go on your money-saving journey! If not, discuss with your landlord and talk about putting extra clauses on maintenance.
And by then, all malfunctioning electrical appliances, leaking roofs, cracking walls and damaged furniture will be maintained and taken care of by your landlord. No more DIY home maintenance, yay!
Potential $ Saved Per Month = RM 100 (Maintenance)
2) Pay All-In-One: All-Inclusive Rental Fee
Another reason why renting a room is a cost-effective alternative to buying a house is the "one bill pays all" concept.
All-in-one rental payment every month can save you thousands of ringgit, as against buying a house or even renting an entire apartment.
A lot of room renting agencies in Kuala Lumpur have this all-inclusive payment concept so you can pay your rental, utility bills and wifi at once. Some places even provide you with free Wi-Fi, so you can throw away that financially-consuming monthly Wi-Fi subscription.
Potential $ Saved Per Month = RM 600 (House Payment) +
RM 50 (Electricity) + RM20 (Water) +
= RM 820
3) Metro Stations Are Literally Few Feets Away
No car? Or are you an eco-warrior, finding the best ways to save mother Earth?
If you are, you would love renting rooms in KL as they are situated in the vicinity of public transports like KTM, LRT and MRT. These metro stations are typically walking distance to your rental rooms, literally a few feet away.
So, if you’re suffering from spending a lot on fuel, car payment, maintenance, tolls and parking fees, this is absolutely your way out.
Not only you can break a sweat daily (which increases your lifespan), but you also contribute to reducing the emission of greenhouse gases (and save the Earth!)
Simply put, commuting using public transport makes you a healthy, eco-activist.
Above all, you won’t be frying your bank accounts anymore. And no longer expensive parking fees and tolls, yahoo!
Potential $ Saved Per Month = RM 400 (Car Payment) +
RM 160 (Car Parking) + RM200 (Tolls) +
= RM 960
4) Gym, Swimming Pool & Sports Court - Use All You Want
What else can you get from room renting? Depending on your rental unit, you can get unlimited access to the provided facilities like gymnasium, swimming pool and sports court for free! Some places even have a playground, sauna and cafe - all free for you to use and explore.
It’s a great compromise, I know. No more monthly subscriptions for the gym and long walks to the sports complex.
Potential $ Saved Per Month = RM 200 (Gym Membership)
5) Move-in Ready: Everything Is Fully Furnished
Getting your hands on your own house can be exciting but things can turn pretty ugly too. Unlike a lot of European countries, in Malaysia, a lot of houses are sold unfurnished.
Yup, that means you need extra money for home decorations and furniture. If you’ve been saving up for that, by all means, go on.
But then, if you have no savings for deco, it’s best you rent a room.
In Kuala Lumpur, there are countless fully-furnished units and rooms available for you to rent.
TV, furniture, mattress, bed and wardrobes are all there!
It’s definitely practical and cost-effective for entry-level professionals like you, or simply anyone with low to no budget for home decorations.
Potential $ Saved Per Month = RM 300 (Wardrobe) + RM 250 (Bed &
Mattress) + RM 250 (Sofa) +
RM 500 (Refrigerator)
= RM 1300
6) Zero Deposits - Yes, You Don't Have To Pay Upfront
Deposits are fees that some really hate paying for because it’s too much. It’s overwhelming sometimes, especially for first-time renters.
To make things even worse, there are different types of deposits; booking deposits (or earnest deposits), security deposits and utility deposits. If you’ve been renting a few places before, you’d know by now that deposits can cost you thousands of ringgit. Yup, only deposits - the rental fees aren’t included.
So, instead of throwing away your money for deposits, look for places that offer zero deposit schemes.
Yes, great news for you - there is such a thing as zero deposits in KL.
Still, this deal is most common among rental companies or agencies only.
Landlords or homeowners who rent out their houses to the public normally want a sum of money in advance to guarantee booking or security.
This is where you should be smart. If you aim to double your savings per month, go to rental agencies and check out their no-deposits program. It’s truly a great, economical way to save your money.
Potential $ Saved Per Month = RM 1200 (Security Deposits) +
RM 300 (Utility Deposits)
= RM 1500
7) Laundry & Dryer Free For You To Use
This feature is beyond doubt, one of the best and greatest deals you get when renting!
Rather than buying your own washing machine or going to the laundry, you can do it just for free.
All the washing and drying can be done without spending any ringgit - the machines are all provided in your rental unit (ask your tenants before moving in).
Most rental rooms in KL have a washing machine and dryer in each unit.
So, rent a room and no more weekly spending on laundry.
Potential $ Saved Per Month = RM 40 (Laundry)
8) Free Cleaning: A Time-Saving Advantage
In 2021, cleaning has accelerated to a whole new level. Everyone (including you and me), don’t deny that sometimes time feels short. Cleaning is doable but not every single day, or every single week.
This scenario is very understandable and relatable, which is why so many people offer cleaning services. In Kuala Lumpur, domestic cleaning services are everywhere.
On average, the rate for one-time cleaning in Kuala Lumpur is RM100. If you’re strictly cost-cutting and cost-saving, such an amount is quite a lot.
So one convenient way out of that situation is to rent a room.
Why? Well, a room is certainly much more manageable for you to clean.
Try to imagine what happens if you buy an entire house but don’t have that much time or money for cleaning (yikes!)
So, save your time and money by room renting.
Most room rental companies in KL provide free cleaning, which is a major advantage (especially if you don’t enjoy doing dirty work).
Potential $ Saved Per Month = RM 100 (One-time Cleaning)
9) Save Your Life: Safety & Security Guaranteed
Safety and security are some of the core essentials we’ll highly consider when buying a house. In Malaysia, owning a heavily-guarded property costs up to thousands per month, particularly in modern cities like Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya.
So what now? Live in a questionable residence with no safety guarantee?
Well, there’s no problem if you don’t mind the hassle. If you count on the “better safe than sorry” concept, I suggest you rent a room in condos or apartment buildings with safety measures and security guards.
Why rent? Because purchasing a whole condo unit is expensive and so does renting the entire place. What better way to save money than just renting one room?
Potential $ Saved Per Month = RM 1000 (Whole unit payment)
10) Get Cheaper Bills (Yes, For Real)
Up to this point, if you still wonder how to save money while renting an apartment, here’s your answer; much cheaper bills.
For beginners, renting is such a life (and bank account) -saver as the bills are much cheaper compared to buying a whole house.
This is when I told you to just rent one room rather than the whole house.
Why? Because you don’t want to spend a few hundred on electricity only!
Also, if you’re a smart cookie, you would rent a room that has individual billing. Yup, it exists my friends, even in Malaysia.
You really have to switch your hats when room hunting and be a Sherlock to get the best deals and cheaper bills!
Potential $ Saved Per Month = RM200 (Utility bills)
The Proven Way to Save Your Money in Kuala Lumpur
So, if you’re asking; is renting a room worth it? Well, having pointed out all the 10 reasons why room renting can save your bank account in 2021, heck yeah. It’s definitely worth it, considering you’re short on money.
Don’t mind over what the makciks and aunties have to say. Renting isn’t a waste of money - it’s a form of investment. The more you save, the better chance you have in owning your dream home one day.
Is there any single entity that offers room for rental with all these 10 magical features?
Yup, Utopia Co-Living has it all and you better believe it!
This room rental agency caters to those who want to save money but live comfortably in a big city like Kuala Lumpur.
Utopia has a lot of rooms to rent in Kuala Lumpur.
As I said, they offer all those amazing features; zero deposits, free cleaning, free Wi-Fi, free maintenance, 24/7 security, individual billings and free room-switching!
What else could you possibly ask for?