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Living here on a university exchange programme?

By: CP Residences
April 2022

Skip the tedious house hunt with CP

As she scrolled through yet more rental listings, Emma De Weers couldn’t help but sigh.

The law student from Leiden University in the Netherlands was due to study at Singapore Management University on a four-month-long exchange programme in January 2022. But shortly before her departure date, she was still frantically looking for a place to stay.

Emma had been diligently looking up popular Singapore property websites every day, but none of the listings met her needs. “The apartments were either too expensive or unavailable,” the 22-year-old recounted.

In her despair, she turned to her father’s colleague in Singapore. But that led nowhere either. 

Her house-hunting experience “was way harder than I expected it to be,” said Emma.

A Sigh of Relief

Then, as her flight to Singapore was approaching, Emma was handed a lifeline. Two other exchange students from Germany had found an apartment at CP and were looking for housemates in their shared exchange programme group chat.

Emma jumped at the opportunity. She, along with a friend, reached out to the German students. Much to her relief, Emma and her friend were selected out of a few other applicants to be their housemates. 

The third-year undergraduate now enjoys chilling on the balcony of her spacious, two-storey, two-bedroom, CP apartment in River Valley, which she shares with three other exchange students. She loves the central location, which allows her to go on morning and evening strolls by the Singapore River and get to campus by bus in 15 minutes. 

Best of all, Emma has found a welcoming community at CP. This is her first time alone overseas, but she hasn’t felt out of place at all. “I’m really looking forward to going home and seeing my family and friends, but it’s not that I’m homesick,” Emma said.

She and her housemates often enjoy movie nights and dinners together on the balcony and would celebrate each other’s birthdays. 

Assuring Staff

Emma has also forged a friendship with CP community manager Elizaveta Sukhomlinova, known as Eliza to residents. They first met when Emma moved in, and Eliza has proven to be a reliable source of help and advice since then. 

One such example was when Emma and her housemates needed help with the apartment’s WiFi. Once they signalled for help, Eliza was on the case in a jiffy. A new WiFi router was installed very quickly, allowing Emma and her housemates to get back to their university work and leisure activities without much disruption.

“I’m really happy with Eliza,” Emma quipped.

The exchange students are also reassured by the fact that Eliza is always responsive to their requests for help. “We can just text her and she will reply quickly,” said Emma.

After a few months in Singapore, Emma has settled in well. Her parents may be miles away in Europe but to her, the CP community “feels like a family away from home.”

“I enjoy the weather very much, the people are friendly, I love the food, and it’s a very different type of living from back home. I really enjoy living here!”

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