10 tips for finding an apartment in Berlin
Finding an apartment in Berlin can be difficult. Dozens of people often apply for an apartment or a room in a shared apartment. Berlin is a city with many students. There are many offers but as well high demand. Be prepared to provide all the necessary documents in case you like a flat or a room and use all the available channels to let everyone know that you are going to Berlin and that you are looking for a flat.
We have put together some tips for you so that you can quickly find a suitable home in Berlin.
What are you looking for exactly?
If you don’t know exactly what you’re looking for, the search will be much more difficult and take time. Here are some tips to help you decide what to look for
1. Where do you want to live in Berlin?
Are you still considering which part of Berlin you want to live in in the future? Here you can find a brief description of the Berlin districts and decide which one suits you best.
2. Flat share vs. living alone
5 reasons for a flat share
1. A room in a shared apartment will tend to be cheaper than your own apartment; many expenses (e.g. internet, electricity, gas and water supply) can also be shared
2. You can meet new people who may have been living in the city for some time. It might help in case of problems or if you would like to get to know the city
3. Many domestic duties (such as cleaning, management of electricity and telecommunications bills, etc.) can be divided
4. There is often someone at home when the postman rings, should you have lost your key, etc.
5. Spontaneity: In a shared apartment you usually get to know more people and there are many fun situations.
5 reasons for your own apartment
1. You are the master of your apartment: Nobody will interfere in the furnishing of your apartment and you are solely responsible for the apartment
2. You can implement your own expectations regarding order and cleanliness
3. Do you need your peace of mind and dislike it when other things use you? Then your own apartment is more suitable for you
4. You do not have to be considerate of your neighbors
5. You have more privacy than in a shared apartment
3. What characteristics should your new home have?
If you do not know what you want, it is best to visit different flats / apartments to get a feel for what you are looking for. Basically, you should be able to answer the following 3 questions:
What is the maximum expense on my shared apartment / apartment? Even for a room in a shared apartment, you often have to min. calculate 300 € a month. Apartments usually cost € 500 and more. Do not get confused here by the term “Kaltmiete” (also called “Grundmiete” or “Nettomiete”), which indicates the rental price without added services. Do not underestimate your spendings on groceries and co. Often there are also € 100-200 spontaneous expenses a month that you did not expect.
How big should my flat share / apartment be? Be realistic here and especially ask yourself how much time you will spend in the room and what you want to do in the room. If you are more likely to work in the library, you may not even need a workspace with a desk.
Which equipment do you need for living? Should the room / apartment already be furnished or do you have the money and the time to buy and furnish everything yourself?
Tips so that you can quickly find a suitable home
Hard but true: If you know what you want, but can also make compromises, this increases your chance of a shared apartment / apartment considerably.
Everyone needs to know that you are looking for an apartment/ room. Regardless of whether it is about jobs or a new flat share: these often come about through friends and acquaintances. If nobody knows that you are searching for an apartment, nobody can help you (often more people are helpful than you think).
It makes sense to spread your request via email and Facebook.
Activate automatic alerts for apartment / flat share search: On many platforms you can subscribe to newsletters with new offers. Here is a selection of platforms where you might search for an apartment
- http://www.immobilienscout24.de/ (shared apartments and apartments)
- http://www.immonet.de/ (shared apartments and apartments)
- http://www.kalaydo.de/ (apartments)
- http://kleinangebote.ebay.de/angebote/ (more apartments)
- https://www.wg-gesucht.de (WGs)
Search where nobody else is searching for apartments: search on smaller, less known platforms and check as well offers that do not have a picture. Concentrate on the newest offers, older one might be a waste of time because they are already taken.
Always try to contact the landlord/ agency directly. Do not email providers if you can call them. Try to be as relaxed as possible about WG Castings.
Sometimes you can find advertisements for new tenants at the bulletin boards in supermarkets
There is a variety of private student dorms. Please find a list here:
- House of Nations
- The Fizz
- The student hotel
- Studio B
- Campus Viva
Always provide all the necessary documents. If you are looking for your own apartment, be sure to get the following documents and bring them with you to every apartment tour. If the documents are not complete, your application will often not be accepted at all:
- security collateral
- proof of the parents’ income (last 3 months) if you do not have an own income
- Copy of the identity card
- Schufa information
- certificate of rent paid (CRP)