How to find an apartment in Germany?
Find an apartment in Germany is simple and hard at the same time, but it should be understood that to cope with this task is not always easy even local. In large cities, the situation in the real estate rental market is so tense that the search for a suitable rental housing turns into a complex quest with incredible plot twists and unexpected interchanges. A person who has recently arrived in Germany often does not know how to solve this difficult issue, and more difficult than a local resident.
It is understandable, there are reasons: lack of knowledge of the laws and lack of understanding of the features of rental housing, plus lack of knowledge of the German language - only the main reasons for these difficulties.
The Germans also try to take the property primarily to their own, as guarantees and confidence in the local tenant more than in a foreign one.
If we reduce the essence of the search to the most important, it looks like an apartment search in Germany as follows:
We prepare a package of documents.
Proceed to the immediate search:
a) on the websites of major management companies such as Howoge, Gewobag, Gesobau, Deutsche Wohnen, Vonovia and others.
b) on websites immoscout24.de, immowelt.de, meinestadt.de, immonet, e-bay.…
List of required documents:
Passport copy, foreign country. passports, as well as a scan of the visa or residence permit.
Questionnaire, resume or Selbstauskunft. Almost all management companies have their own forms of questionnaires, but you can make your own by analogy with them and send by e-mail, so you can save a lot of time.
Income certificate. Typically ask for the last three months. For a freelancer, this can be a statement of income for the last fiscal year. Sometimes you can limit the confirmation of the tax (Steuerbescheid).
Help on credit history or Schufa-Eigenauskunft . Once a year, the certificate can be obtained for free, but this story can be delayed for a couple of months. If the apartment is not in a hurry, you can wait, in other cases, immoscout to help you! The price is 30 euros. Remember, however, that to get the cherished Shufu is possible only to persons who have an open account in a German Bank. Therefore, it is better to take care in advance.
If there are no certificates of income yet (since only started working), you can attach an employment contract. But this is not enough for many landlords, as the trial period in Germany is about 6 months.
Therefore, there is a possibility that in six months you will become unemployed. In this case or in the case of low income, a guarantee from relatives or friends (Mietbürgschaft)
Letter of recommendation from the previous landlord.
Or a certificate from the landlord that you have no debts on rent (Mietschuldenfreiheitsbescheinigung)
There is another important document, which, however, not everyone can claim. It's called Wohnberechtigungsschein or WBS. This certificate gives the right to apply for an apartment from the social Fund of housing, which in turn guarantees a lower rent. Validity of this certificate-12 months.
Here of course we must understand that it is one thing to find a suitable apartment and quite another to get it. In large cities such as Berlin, Hamburg, Cologne and Munich on the views of rental housing is up to 100 people or more.
Naturally, the chances of Germans with perfect documents are much higher than that of a freelancer from Russia or foreign students. But do not immediately give up, be patient, optimistic and prepared documents and into battle!
In an extreme case-Airbnb.