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Things to Be Aware of When Visiting a Property

Wednesday, October 11, 2017 - 15:48

Air Conditioning

The weather in Shanghai is quite hot in the summer (up to and sometimes above 40 degrees Celsius) while rather cold in the winter (0 to -5 degrees Celsius but with very little snow). There are a few kinds of air conditioning and heating systems used in Shanghai, central AC, and stand alone, or wall mounted AC units, radiators & under floor heating. Heating may be turned on and off centrally in the whole buildings or in some cases there are both radiators and air conditioning units in each room. In regards to central AC units, sometime the building management will have to manually change the supply to your apartment. When you check the property you should ensure that there is an air-conditioning unit in each room that is functioning properly and is of adequate power and deficiency to cool down that size of room in hot weather. 

Water Quality

Never drink water from the taps unless you are informed by the relevant health authorities that the water is safe for drinking. Generally speaking, the water quality in China is not of a high standard. It is therefore suggested that when choosing your property, especially in the villa compounds, that you ask for a water filtration system. Also, for drinking water it is better to stick to bottled water form a reliable company (check with your neighbors and friends to see what they are using). 

Bed Mattresses

In China, mattresses tend to be quite firm. Please ensure that your JRE consultant is made aware of the type of mattress you and your family will require in order to have a comfortable sleep. We may try to negotiate this for you. You may also like to inspect the item personally before it is ordered as the term “soft” is relative and mattress comfort is based on personal choice. 

Double-Glazed Windows

If you choose an apartment that is close to a main road or public area, make sure the windows facing the road are installed with double-glazed protection to reduce the noise entering your home. Double glazing also substantially cuts energy cost because of the better insulation of heat they provide. 


The standard voltage in China is 220Vat 50Hz and the sockets have both 3 prong and 2 prong connections. Adapters for all electrical appliances are readily available in China, so you should have no concerns regarding bringing any of your own electrical appliances, e.g. Laptops, phones, etc. into the country. Alternatively most universal adapters purchased abroad should work just well.

Property Facing

South facing properties are most sought after in the city as they get the most sunlight during the day, we do suggest that you visit the property during the daytime so that you can judge whether the property is bright enough or not. 


Basements provide you with excellent additional storage space, another place for children to play, or even a good location for a home gym or study. However, basements may create a lot of problems if they have not been properly built. Water leakage problems and mold growth, especially during the humid summer season may plague certain properties. It is often wise to ask the landlord to provide a dehumidifier. When choosing properties with a basement it is worth considering properties that have a good track record already with their previous tenants. If you insist on an unproven site, you should carefully inspect the property after a heavy rainfall for any signs of leaks and also for any signs of past leakage. 

Low Grade Paint

Some individual landlords will use low quality paint or glue to decorate their properties, and many expats do not realize this until they move in and start to feel uncomfortable. So if you choose a newly decorated property, check with your consultant to see what brand of paint the landlord used to decorate this property or you may wish for an environmental assessment if you have young children or feel concerned about this issue.