It is not difficult to find accommodation in Mumbai. Here are a few tips to guide you through your search.
As one of India's major cities, stretching over some 603 km², Mumbai, formerly Bombay, is also one of the country's most densely populated cities. In fact, its population amounted to 12,772,094 inhabitants in 2015, thus ranking 4th among the whole world's most densely populated cities. However, the State of Maharashtra's capital city keeps on attracting foreigners worldwide due to the numerous opportunities it provides.
If you are planning to settle there, you should know that, being a highly industrialized city, Mumbai is also very polluted. But you can still find a range of accommodation options there at affordable prices for rent. Make sure to inquire on the different options so as to determine which one would best suit your needs and budget.
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Mumbai has several satellite cities, namely Navi Mumbai, Thane, Kalyan, Bhiwandi and Ulhasnagar which make up a conglomeration consisting of more than 18 million inhabitants.
Despite its commercial and industrial looks, Mumbai includes several residential neighborhoods that are quite popular with expatriates, namely Malabar Hill, Marine Drive, Flora Fountain, Colaba, Breach Candy, Kemps Corner, Cuffe Parade, Bandra, Juhu and Powai. Juhu, for its part, is famous for its beautiful beaches while Colaba is, above all, a commercial neighborhood where you can find anything at small prices.
Marine Drive, which is now known as Netaji Subhash Road, goes till Malabar Hill passing by Chowpatty Beach. It is deemed to be a residential and tourism neighborhood thanks to its walkways and relaxed beach atmosphere. You are also likely to find several modern residential buildings there. Malabar Hills is also a very open and dynamic neighborhood consisting of colonial architectures. Note that Malabar Hills is known to be Mumbai's most upscale neighborhood.
On the other hand, Flora Fountain, also known as Hutatma Chowk, has been listed as a World Heritage. It is deemed to be a tourist neighborhoods thanks to its lush green gardens decorated with light jets at dusk. It is also a residential and commercial neighborhood, hosting the University of Mumbai, the Mumbai Stock Exchange, the Gateway of India, as well as several banks and office buildings, etc.
Rent prices in Mumbai are higher than in many other major Indian cities. In some cases, the owner may request you to pay the full rent in advance due to high demand. In the case of foreign professionals, rents are generally taken care of by employers. But in case you have to manage on your own, you will need an average of INR 33,000 per month for a single-bedroom apartment in the city-center and an average of INR 15,800 per month for the same type of accommodation in the outskirts.
To rent a three-bedroom apartment, you will need an average of INR 77,124 per month in the city-center and around INR 35,345 per month in the outskirts (equal to 3,000 to 6,000 euros). For a four-bedroom apartment, thus, you will spend an average of 15,000 euros per month in the city-center and around 6,000 euros per month in the outskirts. Note that unlike in other major Indian cities, you are not likely to find villas in Mumbai. But in the contrary, you will can find studios whose prices vary between 1,000 and 2,000 euros per month according to the neighborhood.
Feel free, during your housing search, to browse offers on the Internet thanks to several general and specialized housing websites and other virtual platforms. Consider browsing classified ads in local newspapers online as well, and if you have friends and contacts on the spot, word-of-mouth may also help.
Finally, registering with a real estate agency can help you find accommodation as per your criteria and budget more rapidly.