Santiago - Post Report Question and Answers

What is your housing like? What are typical housing sizes, locations, and commute times for expatriates?

There are apartments downtown walking distance or a short bus/car/bike ride from the embassy. We live in Lo Barnechea which is more of a suburb. My spouse commutes 25-45 minutes each way depending on traffic, which can vary a lot depending on the time of day. Our house here is huge, far bigger than any place we lived in the U.S. We have a nice yard with a built in grill. Some have pools but we do not. The community is gated and very safe. The house itself is in great condition. - Dec 2020

I live in a (small) apartment in Providencia, on an avenue running parallel to the river. Overall, I find housing to be on the smaller end of the scale compared to other countries in Latin America. New Yorkers would feel no shock (or sense of relief, if you want to put s different spin on it) moving here and adjusting to housing affordable options. There are, of course, very nice and large houses which correlate nicely with very high prices. Distance traveled to/from work is a major consideration and will impact your choice of where to live. - Jun 2019

Apartments and houses located in Lo Barnechea, Las Condes and Vitacura. Unless you have several school age kids or a large dog, you should try to be in an apartment as it is closer to more activities in the city if you are a social person. Lo Barnecha is a 20 minute drive (best) when it is early in the morning or late at night. Otherwise during peak times you should expect to spend an hour. Vitacura can take 5 - 10 minutes by car, unless there's a traffic pattern change due to the construction which happensor 30 to 45 minutes walking. Las Condes is about 2 - 5 minutes by car or 5 - 30 minutes walking to the Embassy. - Feb 2016

Either close the Embassy (Las Condes and Vitacura are 2-5 minutes drive) or in Lo Barnechea or La Dehesa which are close to the international schools which are about a 20 minute to hour drive if there's traffic. - Nov 2014

All types of wonderful housing except for the building in Vitacura where the Embassy purchased 6 units. The building has chronic leaks and other plumbing problems, poor security, and black mold. - Oct 2014

There is a huge variety. Lots of apartments and lots of houses. Lots of options of different places to live, but most expats live in Las Condes, Vitacura, or La Dehesa. Commute time would depend on the time of day and where you are going. - Sep 2011

Housing is a morale issue at post -- two different areas: Apartments in Las Condes near the embassy for singles or couples without children, and family housing developments in the La Dehesa and Lo Barnechea areas, which are a considerable distance for commuting and which means hefty expenses for fuel and road tariffs. - Jul 2010

The housing seems pretty good. The apartments are spacious. - Jul 2009

For those without kids - most will live closer to the city, in Las Condes, which is walking distance to the U.S. and many other embassies. - Apr 2009

1-story ranch styles, 2-story homes and apartments. Many apartments have a guachiman (watchman) for added security. Most of the homes and apartments expats live in are in close proximity to the businesses, schools, churches, shopping areas, etc. (within 20 minutes) The neighborhoods on the east end of Santiago tend to be the nice family neighborhoods and are convenient to all the amenities. - Sep 2008

In town housing is mostly all apartments, and tends to be fairly spacious. We love our apartment, and have terrific views of the mountains, when the smog isn't too bad. Our place is only a 25 minute walk from the embassy. Out of town housing tends to require more upkeep and repairs, and requires a longer commute to work. - Jul 2008

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