Cost of living in Kuala Lumpur



Malaysia is one of the most inexpensive countries in the world, and the industrialized city of Kuala Lumpur is very affordable. With taxation kept at a minimum and no capital gains on assets, KL is ideal for living condition to expats.


A rental accommodation is cheap. Expats can easily find a place to live under RM1000 (approximately USD$300). Expats looking for high-rise space will find the condominium market quite good; the average cost of monthly rent ranges from USD$875 (75 sqm) to USD$3,657 (300 sqm). 

A typical rental contract involves an earnest deposit, security deposit, and utility deposit.  

Buying Property  

In Malaysia, foreigners are allowed to buy real estate properties. Homes are sold lower than expected to boosts the inflow of foreigners investing in real estate market. The only restriction imposed by the government is the minimum price level per unit. Property valued above RM500,000 (USD$145,383) effective January 2010 can be bought without the permission of Economic Planning Unit (EPU). 

Kuala Lumpur condominiums range from USD$1,424.00 (75 sqm) to USD$2,502.00 (300 sqm) per square meter.  


Electricity for a 100 square meter apartment costs approximately RM90 (USD$26.28) and monthly telephone bills costs around RM40 (USD$12). Having a cable television costs approximately USD$30 to USD$40 monthly. 

The internet is widely available; broadband services cost approximately RM60-70 (USD$21). Internet cafes cost approximately RM3 (USD$1) per hour. Prepaid internet is available, and denominations include RM10 (USD$2.93), RM20 (USD5.87), RM50 (USD$14.68) and RM100 (USD$29.36). While monthly internet connection is worth 100-150 RM.

LPG (liquid petroleum gas) is mostly used for cooking in Malaysian homes that costs RM25 (USD$7.34) per canister and RM50 (USD$14.68) for the deposit. Some of the suppliers are Shell Gas and Petronas. 

Domestic help is affordable; part time house cleaner rates are between RM15 (USD$4) to RM20 (USD$5) per hour. It is important to note that getting the services of Muslim maids will have some cultural considerations as Muslims do not cook pork and will not use utensils used in cooking pork.  


Dining out is relatively cheap. Dinner in a middle range restaurant costs 227 RM for two persons.

Buying a can of imported beer costs USD$2.18 in groceries, while in restaurants, it costs USD$3.07. 

A liter of milk costs USD$1.34, a dozen of eggs costs USD$1.16, and fresh bread costs USD$0.74.  


Taxi fare in Kuala Lumpur varies depending on the destination and type of taxi. Red and white taxis cost RM3 for 2 kilometers and succeeding charge is RM0.90 per kilometer. Gasoline costs 2.10 - 2.30 RM per liter.



Continue reading:

Cost of Living in Malaysia

Expat Services in Kuala Lumpur