What are the top factors to keep in mind when searching for a place to live in your city?
Location, budget and type of apartment desired are key factors to have in mind when looking for a place to live.
What are the most popular neighborhoods in your city for expats?
Favored city areas are Haidhausen, Bogenhausen, Schwabing, Neuhausen and Glockenbach.
Outlying Munich Starnberg (southwest of Munich) is well-liked. There is no special expat area. Expats normally orientate themselves according to work and school locations.
Do expats tend to buy or rent their homes?
The majority of expatriates choose to rent their homes. Generally one can say that it makes no sense to buy a home if you are not sure that you will stay in Germany for more than 10 years. This is because the side costs (notary costs, taxes, realtor fee) for buying a house are about 10% of the purchase price.
Typically, will I be required to pay additional money up front (such as a deposit) before moving into leased housing? If so, how much is common?
You have to pay three months' rent as deposit. This can be arranged to be paid in cash or via a
Bankburgschaft or special account where the money is kept and is available to both parties at the end of the rental agreement. Your first month's rent is paid in advance before you can move in.
The German real estate market hardly ever offers property without a realtor involved. The realtor commission is 2 months' rent plus 19% VAT.
Are utilities generally included in the price of rent, or are they extra?
Utilities (NK = Nebenkosten) are generally not included in the original list price of rent when looking for an apartment. The tenant is expected to pay utility fees as a fixed sum on a monthly basis with any rental fees. Generally, utilities covered in this lump sum payment are listed in the rental contract and may include heating, water, general electricity, stair hall cleaning, general repairs, various taxes, building insurance and gardening fees. At the end of the year, the landlord issues an invoice that lists any costs from utility usage. If this amount is more than what has already been paid, the landlord will charge you for additional usage. If this amount is less than what has already been paid, you will receive a refund.
Important words to know when looking at housing in Germany are Kaltmiete (rental price without utilities) and Warmmiete (rental price that includes utilities).
Are there special security concerns I should be aware of in regards to my home or choice of neighborhood?
Munich is one of the safest places in Germany; it is the city with the lowest crime rate. Therefore it is sufficient to lock the door and to close the balcony door when going out.
I’m not sure if I should bring my appliances. What is the electric current, Hz and plug shape in your city?
Electricity is the standard European 220 volts running at 50 Hz. Plugs are round. This is different from the American and Japanese systems (110V and 120 Hz). Transformers are therefore required. In the
US, stores such as Radio Shack can order this item for you.
For appliances or electronic devices, you will need to use a bulky transformer, a step above a travel adapter, which is more widely available. Travel adapters will work only for short-term or intermittent use.
Washing machines in Germany differ from those manufactured in other countries. Machines from abroad will generally work here, although it is recommended that you check with your dealer or the manufacturer before deciding to bring one from abroad. Keep in mind that European washing machines are typically front-loading machines and only take in cold water from the tap. The water is heated up in the machine. They are focused on energy- and water-saving measures and work slightly differently than some machines from abroad, so make sure you know which cycle performs what function before using your machine.
Televisions and videos run worldwide on two different systems: PAL, the standard o in Europe, and NTSC, which is the system used in the United States and Japan.
- DVD players are organized by region codes: Europe is Region 2 and North America is Region 1. Make sure you buy the right DVDs for the right DVD player or, alternatively, a multi-system player.
- CD players are the same worldwide and do not face compatibility problems.
Do you have any other accommodation information that might help me?
Please contact Crown Munich for a detailed guide which includes (among other things) a brief description of various neighborhoods.
Crown Relocations has made every effort to present accurate information. However, regulations, rates and other variables are subject to change and Crown Relocations cannot accept responsibility for the errors that might result. Should you have any questions or need additional information, please contact your local Crown representative.