How to rent an apartment in Germany?

Updated on
September 11, 2022

Rent an apartment in Germany

When it comes to foreigners trying to rent an apartment or flat, more often than not, it is quite a challenge. Finding the right apartment might difficult but it can be the key to happiness and might end up being the place you fall in love with the most. This is even more important if you are not travelling alone and have a family or other family members travelling with you as many other factors have to be considered. In addition to that, finding pet friendly apartments can be even more hard, but with enough planning and negotiating and research, you should be able to find your home.

A common problem experienced by expats trying to rent long term accommodation is that, foreigners may be deemed to be untrustworthy by the landlords. One of the main reasons landlords are very picky with finding the right tenant is due to the rising popularity in squatters and their rights. Once a squatter inhabits your building, it is can be very expensive and a great hassle to get them out, thence, the strict requirements by many landlords.

In order to make things more challenging, demand for renting is high, especially in the city, therefore, some landlords tend to over price their apartments. When moving to a new country, expats tend to have many expenses and might find it too hard to cope with the monthly rents.

How do you find an apartment?

First, make a lot of research and contact as many agencies and landlords as you can. There are also many websites you can visit with apartment vacancies.  The more you search and apply, the more likely you are to find an apartment. With that being said, luck plays also a role in this. We suggest the following steps for expats searching for apartments:

  • Research in advance as much as possible.
  • Get in touch with the landlord or agency.
  • Ask for as many pictures and details as possible.
  • Try and pre-visit the area or the actual apartment you will be staying in before you move for long term (recommended at least 1-2 months before your final move).
  • Be careful with deposits and contracts. Always make sure you are aware what you are signing for. If the contract is in a foreign language, take it to someone you trust or a legal person.
  • In the case that once you arrive there, things do no work out, seek for a cheap alternative and get back to searching.
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