6 years ago when I started writing this blog, my goal was just sharing my experience and help other students, like me, they were trying to go abroad. That’s why language of the blog was Turkish, but today we considered this decision again and we decided to change our language to English in order to reach more readers and followers.
I hope this decision will help us to answer questions of our international friends and also we will help more to everyone. Today’s subject is one of the most struggling topic before start living in Germany finding an apartment / a room in Germany. It is struggling because the number of the applicants and the number of available places are not matching with each other, there are very less apartments than applicants. That causes also a dramatic increase of rents lately. Anyway today’s topic is finding long term accommodation, not whether it is easy or hard. You should follow next steps to get success and find your new house.
Today’s subject is how to find accommodation in Germany which is one of the most struggling topic before start living in Germany. It is struggling because the number of the applicants and the number of available places are not matching with each other, there are very less apartments than applicants. That causes also a dramatic increase of rents lately. Anyway today’s topic is finding long term accommodation, not whether it is easy or hard. You should follow next steps to get success and find accomodation in Germany.
Prepare Your Application Documents
Different than the other countries you need some application documents in Germany. They can be listed as:
Proof of monthly income
Proof of job contract duration, because of the contract positions. The householder prefer always long term interest to avoid to find new one.
Bank statement to show your savings
Proof of creditability (in German Schufa Auskunft), which you can get online or from Postbank. I got from Postbank and paid 29.95 Euro, because it was easy to contact and ask detailed questions there.
Form of self-disclosure (in German Selbstauskunft) on which you wrote the personal information of all inhabitants, like name, monthly income, work, instruments that it will be played, pets you own etc.
Copy of passport or personal id
Define Your Limits to Find Accommodation
You should define your budget before you started searching a house / room and following definitions will help you during your search.
Kaltmiete : Rent that you will pay for the house not including the other expenses. Maintenance, cleaning of the building, water and heating
Warmmiete : Rent which includes other expenses like maintenance, cleaning of the building, water and heating
Nebenkosten : Other expenses that listed aboveInternet, electricity and radio tax will be added on your warmmiete. Internet you can get from any supplier according to your search, you can find it between 18 to 40 euro. Electricity you can find online, which is the cheapest way, and you can get best offer. You should be careful, you will pay in advance and at the starting of next year you will get your bill, if you paid more than you used, you will get paid back, if it is not like that, then you have to pay more.
Find Accommodation including Available Apartments / Rooms
There are some possibilities to find available apartments / rooms. You can find them, of course, online, at newspaper, from friends and/or information boards at university entrance, work or school. Online apartment, room search can be done from www.wg-gesucht.de, www.immobilienscout24.de or www.immonet.de. My suggestion to you is create a profile at first two websites, they are very big and actual search portals. You should act fast and supply all documents and also personal information asking a visit to see apartment at your application.Also another way is Facebook Groups. You should use your Facebook account to follow these Facebook groups which are related to rent, finding apartments in your city. These groups are also very effective, I found my first apartment via Facebook Groups before arriving Germany in 2015.
First Come, First Serve
You should apply as soon as possible after arriving of post to get this apartment. Sometimes in few hours the apartment was already rented, or took enough applications. That’s why it is important to have a template and application documents before starting your applications. Your application should be written in German and also should contain some information about your personality like following:
What do you do?
How old are you?
Where do you come from?
Where will you get money for living?
How many people will live there?
Pets that you own?
Instruments that you played?
For the dormitories there are always different application procedure. For some of the dormitories, you should send a letter with asked documents and also your enrolment certificate. On the other hand, new private dormitories use also online application process, which are easier and faster but you need always luck to find accommodation.
Apartment / Room Visit
The landlord wants to meet with / know you before his / her decision. That’s why you should arrange a date to visit the apartment, if you will rent a shared flat (in German Wohngemeinschaft, WG), you should meet your future flatmates at the same date also. You should have good attitude, interest and nice looking at this visit to have a good impression on them.You should have your application documents as copy with you and you should show your determination, interest to rent this apartment and to have it.Other topic you should be punctual there, because punctuality shows your personality and interest on this place and Germans value punctuality. Be there latest 5 minutes before.You have to act fast and always need luck, but you can increase your luck applying early, properly enough.
Pay Attention to Details of Contract
Sometimes signing a contract without checking details can be a big problem. You should check your contract duration, responsibilities (cleaning the stairs, shoveling the snow in front of the house door), cancellation terms of the contract and conditions of subtenancy. If subtenancy is allowed, you can find a tenant from wg-gesuch.de during your absence to save money. If you are going to another country for an exchange semester or another city for internship that will help you.
Buy/Find Some Cheap Furniture
There are some Facebook groups for each city, where you can find some posts to buy some second hand furniture, you should collect furniture yourself and therefore you need a car. Other option to find second hand furniture is ebay-kleinanzeigen.de, which is used in whole Germany. Last option could be one of the furniture stores, like IKEA, Mömax, XXXL which are cheapest options to buy new furniture, they have some transport helps also but you should pay for it.
I hope this post will help you to find accommodation.
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If you have not read To Do List For Moving Abroad, click here.