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Housing in Germany



The housing situation in Germany ranges from nearly impossible to a piece of cake, depending on the city. In some cities, increasing numbers of immigrants, largely from Eastern European countries as well as the increase in mobility of Germans themselves since the opening of the German-German border have added new dimensions to an already serious housing problem. Please be aware that quality and cost of housing facilities vary greatly among different German cities.

In major cities, particularly Hamburg, Munich and Cologne, rents can be expensive. It is common for up to half of salary to go towards paying rent. The type of accommodation required by many foreigners can be expensive: furnished or at least partly-furnished apartments rented at short notice and for relatively short periods. Nor is it easy to find apartments for larger families at reasonable rents.

Supply and demand can vary considerably in the course of the year, particularly in cities with a large student population. At the beginning of a term, i.e. in March/April and September/October, there is usually a high demand for accommodation.

Popular areas for the expatriate community are Berlin, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Hamburg and Munich.

Renting a Property

Despite continuous government efforts to increase the number of property owners, rental accommodation is still the most common form of housing in Germany. The German rental market is highly regulated; giving tenants a wide range of protection. Unfortunately, this also sometimes makes it difficult for landlords to get rid of tenants who cause trouble or simply don't pay their rent. For this reason, some landlords are very cautious when choosing future tenants.

A wide variety of private rental accommodation is available, particularly in the cities, but it is expensive, particularly if you wish to rent furnished accommodation for a relatively short time period. Rental accommodation in Germany varies widely in price and availability. The rent can be anywhere from EUR 300-800 for an apartment and EUR 1,550-2,550 and higher for a house. The majority of rental properties are let unfurnished, excluding even basic facilities such as curtains and kitchen equipment.

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