If you are reading this, it means you are planning to move to Berlin for a higher degree. Congratulations. But that’s just one huddle out of several others in line before you. Not to worry, we will teach you how to secure accommodation in Berlin for international students is not as impossible as many paint it. If you follow the guidelines in this article, you will scale through just fine.
But is it difficult to find housing in Berlin for international students? We’ve had so many students ask this. To be honest, the answer is yes; it is very hard to get accommodation in Berlin. According to the student room flat.com website, about 85% of Berlin’s population rents. This invariably is the reason for the housing shortage in Berlin making rental prices incredibly high.
Notwithstanding, international students in Berlin are privileged to have different housing opportunities. Hence, there are different accommodation types available to international students. While some are owned by the government, a good number of them are privately owned. Therefore, regardless of your economic class, there is sure to be an option for you.
Let’s find out together in this article.
Types of Accommodation in Berlin for International Students
Before we go into how to secure accommodation in Berlin for international students, It would be wise to consider the different housing options in Berlin.
There are different student types of housing options in Berlin, such as flat share, studio rooms and student dorms. Each comes with unique features, prices and rules. But, finding the best accommodation is a task you must do online, except if you have a relative student in your choice institution., the housing options in Berlin are classified into two. They are:
On-campus housing and
Let’s take a brief look at the subgroups under each:
1. On-Campus Housing – Student Halls of Residence
This is the cheapest housing type in Berlin for international students, costing around 350 Euros per month. In a student hall of residence or dormitory, it is very common to find about 5 to 6 people sharing one room, bathroom and kitchen. However, it comes furnished with cupboards, reading tables, beds, washroom items and even mirrors.
More so, the student halls of reference are mostly located close to the university, so students in this area enjoy good social interactions. However, in the student hall of residence, rules and guidelines are laid out by an administrative body.
2. Single room (furnished) in a shared apartment (WG) or ‘Wohngemeinschaft’
Flatshares or WG’s are more popular among students because they give more room for privacy. In a shared apartment or single room, you have a room to yourself while sharing common facilities like a kitchen and bathroom with flatmates. In this setting, there are no rules and regulations as in the student dorms. The average rent for a flatshare depends on the size of the apartment and the location. However, the price is usually around 400 Euro to 600 Euro per month for a large room.
3. Private Apartments – Studio rooms
The studio room is a popular choice for most international students. It differs from a shared apartment. Usually, a studio apartment is a self-contained space that contains everything in a single room (bedroom, kitchen and dining room) with a separate bathroom. Studio rooms in Berlin come furnished with basic amenities and interiors.
Also, the rent for a studio room ranges between €800-900 (INR 68,573-77,144), although the price of a studio apartment varies depending on the location and size of the apartment. Moreover, studio apartments are usually more affordable than 1 – 1-bedroom apartments in Berlin.
The application process for this accommodation is done online and should be done immediately. You confirm your admission, as the process can be highly competitive. In the next section, we will discuss the best way to secure accommodation in Berlin for international students.
The fact is, the best accommodations in Berlin for international students from popular research are usually the most expensive and the process is not seamless, either. However, it is possible to get relatively affordable housing options if you proceed with your search before your admission offer. The sooner your search, the better your chances.
Additionally, the best student accommodation in Berlin runs out as soon as they are listed. So, booking online with a housing agency like Housing Anywhere or WG Gesucht is a safe and fast way to find comfortable and furnished accommodation in Berlin.
However, there are other reliable ways to secure your desired accommodation in Berlin. These options include:
Online platforms: Platforms
Social media groups
Real estate platforms and agencies
1. Real Estate Search platforms
Using a real estate search platform helps connect one-on-one with a first-hand expert. This can be a quick and easy way to secure your desired accommodation. The good part is that you are not responsible for paying these agents; the landlord settles them after you’ve signed your contract. With a real estate agent, it is easier to compare different housing options with several factors in view.
2. Online Platforms
This is the next quick and best way to find accommodation in Berlin for international students. These websites offer step-by-step procedures on what you need to do to secure your accommodation details. More so, with these websites, you have access to reviews and ratings from current and previous occupants, pictures, costs, and amenities in your choice apartment. Hence, these websites make applications easier and faster with diverse options like shared rooms, studio apartments and student dorms.
3. Temporary and Furnished Accommodation
Supposing you cannot secure permanent accommodation before the commencement of your academic year begins, a temporary accommodation can save you the trouble of getting stranded. Although this type of accommodation can be a little more expensive than the others, it can save the stress of getting stocked between crossroads. You can rent a temporary apartment for as long as a year, a month or just for a few weeks. This gives you ample time to figure out your accommodation needs while settling into your academic activities.
Furthermore, there are two ways you can apply for or get temporary or furnished accommodation. The first is called Untermiete or Zwischenmiete which means renting someone’s flat while they are away on holiday or vacation. This is legal in Berlin as long as this is done with the landlord’s consent.
The second way involves working with a couple of agencies that provide fully funded apartments. Although these are usually more expensive.
Some popular website for accommodation includes
Immobilienscout24; Common in this list are Immowelt; Immonet; and Wohnung-jetzt: These are some of the most popular sites used for property and rental listing by landlords and property agencies.
eBay Kleinanzeigen: Here you can find all kinds of listings, from private rooms to studio and flat shares.
Facebook: If you are careful in your search, you can find legit factbook groups for quality listings of student accommodation in Berlin.
SoWohnt: Unlike the others, this website offers an English language interface. Hence, it is seamless to search for listings even for non-native speakers.
WG-Gesucht: According to reviews and online ratings, this is also one of the most used accommodation sites online in Berlin for international students. Aside from WG’s, you can find listings for shared rooms, private apartments and even student dorms.
Or work with a local housing agency or City-wohnen with an additional fee
Tips to Help You Find the Best Student Accommodation in Berlin
1. Familiarize Yourself with Rental Contracts and Regulations
It is one thing to secure a suitable accommodation and completely another to write the best contract. The basic things that should be included in your rental contract (Mietvertrag) are:
The length of your stay which forms the duration of the agreement
Total rent amount and everything included in the rent
Additional costs e.g. maintenance, water, electricity bills
Availability of Deposit and the required amount. Also, include the interest it will attract.
2. Prepare your Paperwork
If you want your name to be included in the rental contract, you need to present this paperwork. However, for most neighborhoods in Berlin, especially in populated areas like Kreuzberg or Prenzlauer Berg, these are not needed.
Personalausweis: a photocopy of your passport.
SCHUFA Auskunft (credit record)
Einkommensnachweis (proof of income)
Mietschuldenfreiheitsbescheinigung – free from rent-related debt certificate: This is a signed document from your previous landlord showing that you are free from rental debt
Other things you need to do after securing your accommodation:
Contact the landlord – Know what your landlord wants
Visit the accommodation in person – Know What to bring to your apartment in case it is unfurnished
Sign the lease and move in: Once you understand the rental contract and are comfortable with the space and terms of condition, sign the lease
Join local housing groups if you need more housing options
1. How to get student accommodation in Berlin?
The best way to get student accommodation in Berlin is to apply and book online with a reputable and reliable site like WG-gesucht or work with an agency like Wunderflats. These are reliable ways of securing accommodation in Berlin as an international student, it is free from scams and worries.
2. How to find accommodation in Germany as an international student?
There are different websites and groups on Facebook that are specially created for international students in Germany where students can source information about accommodation listings. For example, Student Flat shares a website and Spotahome. These are valuable sites for quick searches.
3. Is it difficult to find accommodation in Berlin?
Yes. Finding accommodation in Berlin is hard. You need to send out dozens of applications to different sites due to a shortage of housing options in Berlin. The increased rate of immigrants from Ukraine.
4. How much is student accommodation in Berlin?
According to a reputable source, Housing Anywhere, the average rent for student accommodation in Berlin is €350–€500 for student dorms. €749 for a private room. €1,154 for a studio.
The best way to secure accommodation in Berlin for international students is to be diverse in your application and use housing websites like Crocodilian, Nestpick, The Homelike, Hochschulkompass
and Spotahom. Or work with a housing agency and join student community groups online so you can ask questions and get clarified. Do not wait till you arrive in Germany before starting your search. The best time to start your accommodation hunt is as soon as you confirm your admission offer because securing students’ rent in Berlin is a very competitive process.
Withstanding, if you follow these steps and start way on time, you should be able to secure the best accommodation that matches your preferences.