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Live and Work in Hong Kong: Why Not?!

With many sectors of the Hong Kong economy growing fast (notably the construction industry), if you are an engineer, quantity surveyor, project manager or other construction professional, coming to work  in Hong Kong presents an excellent opportunity to develop your career, earn good money and have a great time.

Apart from being an excellent place to work, Hong Kong also offers an excellent standard of living comparable to any major city in the world. Often misrepresented as a place with an extremely high cost of living, Hong Kong can in fact also offer a great lifestyle for expatriates working in middle management positions as well as for the super-rich. When making the decision to move to Hong Kong there are various factors a construction professional should weigh up; I’ll try to cover some vital ones here.

Income Tax in Hong Kong is pretty low (certainly by UK & Australian standards!), and is calculated on variable rate from 2% - 17% of your earnings with generous personal allowances often thrown in too. This is usually paid annually rather than on a monthly basis and it is common for employees to complete their own tax return. Moving to Hong Kong from somewhere like the UK you will certainly notice the benefit of the lower tax rates on your take home pay & your inclination to give yourself a treat or an extra holiday!  Find out more about Hong Kong taxation here.

By far the biggest expense to consider when moving to Hong Kong will be that of your accommodation. The majority of expatriates taking up a new job in Hong Kong will choose at first, to rent rather than buy whilst living in Hong Kong. Accommodation ranges from city centre apartments to countryside town houses on the surrounding islands. Rental costs will be dependent on various factors including but not limited to: location, size, the age of the building, and any on site facilities. Although rental costs can be high, they are often misrepresented as being exceptionally high; this however is certainly not the reality the 7 staff in the office at Maxim Recruitment has experienced.   Being relatively new to Hong Kong myself my experience of having to find suitable accommodation has been straight forward, and we found a variety of properties available within a sensible budget and in various locations around Hong Kong. A little bit of forward planning and research means you can build the confidence that you will be able to find the accommodation you’re looking for within your budget. Take a look at the Squarefoot website  or discuss the issue with one of the Maxim Recruitment consultants in the Hong Kong office as a part of the interview and assessment process we follow with active Hong Kong job seekers.  We wouldn’t be here if it didn’t add up!

Hong Kong has a lot to offer when it comes to a social life, whether it’s the hustle and bustle of the vibrant city centre night life for a young single expatriate, or the laid back family lifestyle (a little out of town) that offers beaches, leisure facilities and hiking and mountain biking trails.  Hong Kong is the ideal location for all of this; and don’t forget the great climate in which this can all be done nearly all the year round!  There are numerous websites giving Hong Kong travel, holiday & lifestyle advice including Lonely Planet & HK Magazine.   

One big of advantage of living in Hong Kong is its geographical location within the Asia region. Its central location in Asia allows quick and easy travel to numerous surrounding countries within Asia; Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, China, Cambodia, Vietnam & Singapore all spring to mind.   So whether it’s a short weekend break or a long beach holiday, living in Hong Kong gives you a great opportunity to explore new places. Check out the flights and prices from Hong Kong airport and you may well be amazed!

As a leading construction industry recruitment consultancy, how could we not mention the attraction of the job and career opportunities available in Hong Kong and around Asia!
The construction industry is booming at the moment and so are long established and well connected recruitment consultancies like Maxim Recruitment. 

There  is a big demand for construction professionals to fill the ever increasing number of live job vacancies we are working to fill for both local and international construction contractors and consultancies.  As we have well documented in previous blogs, the construction boom in Hong Kong has been driven by major infrastructure investment which has included 5 large MTR railway extension projects, and this is now being followed by a surge in building construction projects in Hong Kong and Macau.  These projects have created thousands of new job opportunities and are in the process of creating thousands more.

Major  projects in Hong Kong are set  to continue for many years to come and are creating excellent career opportunities for both construction professionals already here, and those brave enough to take the plunge and relocate to Hong Kong!

We look forward to speaking with you – why not?!

Tim Cole
Recruitment Consultant
Maxim Recruitment Hong Kong Office

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