How to Find Accommodation in Chiang Mai
So you’re headed to Chiang Mai and you want to find a place to stay, but where do you start?
Like most of us heading to Chiang Mai for the first time, you’ve probably looked online and found very few websites, or only overpriced ones.
Whatever you do, do not book long-term accommodation in Chiang Mai online and definitely do not use Airbnb unless you want to pay double what you should.
What I would recommend for Chiang Mai (and Thailand in general) is to book a hotel for just 2-3 nights in an area you’d like to stay in. Then, hit the streets.
Thailand is full of apartment buildings – especially in Chiang Mai.
While you might find some houses available for rent, your best bet is an apartment building. All of these apartments have a reception where staff are waiting to show you around. Just walk in, ask if they have any rooms available, and ask to take a look.
I’ve just done this recently and was able to find my new apartment. I had an ideal location, size and budget in mind. I looked at 6 different places before I found the place that met all of my criteria. It took around 2 hours in total, and my accommodation was sorted for the next few months.
Check out this tour of my new place below.
Before you head to Thailand you do need to do a bit of research on the area you’ll be staying. If you’re heading to Chiang Mai to work online as a digital nomad, I would recommend the Nimman area. Some places here can be a little more expensive, but there are great deals to be found.
The Nimman area is full of cafes, co-working spaces, bars, nightlife, and heaps of other online workers. If you hire a scooter then you can definitely stay in other areas and still fit right into the community, but being in Nimman is quite handy in my opinion.
There are tons of high rise apartments in Nimman for all different budgets. They can be as cheap as 3500 baht per month and can go all the way up to 30,000 baht plus, so there really is something for everyone.
Be aware that most places will charge you for your electricity and water separately to the rent. Before signing any agreement, make sure you check how many baht they are charging per unit so that you can factor that into your costs when comparing apartments.
I recommend walking around for at least 2 hours and then at the end of it, choosing the best place for your needs. If you’re unsure about committing long-term, you can normally sign a 1-month rental agreement, and basically move houses each month which is pretty cool!
If you would like to find a house instead of an apartment, you can walk/drive around and look for ‘For Rent’ signs. Give them a call and see what you can negotiate.
If you’re not too confident in doing the whole process yourself, there are a few resources you can use.
There is a service called Chiang Mai Buddy (www.chiangmaibuddy.com) that will help you to find a place, but note that this will obviously cost more than finding it yourself.
You can also sign up to this Chiang Mai Facebook group to see if people are offering their place to rent: https://www.facebook.com/groups/HouseChiangMai/?fref=ts
Lastly, you can also check out a local real estate agent and ask them about rentals. There is one of these real estate agents on Huay Kaew road, right near the Shell petrol station.
If you’d like to take a look at the rooms available at the place I’m saying you can check out their website here: www.huaykaewresidence.com
They are one of the few places with a website. Literally 90% of the available rentals have zero web prescence. So, don’t stress about it too much, book a hotel for 2-3 nights, and then hit the pavement once you’re here and you’ll find the perfect place in no time!
See you out in Chiang Mai!