Capitolul 2: Locuințe
As an immigrant from the EU, you have a free choice when looking for a flat or buying a property. You can rent a flat or buy a property in Germany from your country of origin. However, you must comply with the legal regulations that apply in Germany. It is advisable to search via property advertisements on the Internet or in appropriate newspapers with an advertisement section. You must reply in writing to an advertisement with a box number (numbers or letters) and send the letter to the newspaper. The letter will then be forwarded to the landlord.
If you are in a particular hurry or want to live in a conurbation, it is advisable to hire an estate agent. Please note: The real estate agent may charge a broker's fee or commission if the brokerage is successful. You should therefore compare several offers. The broker's commission for you as a tenant may not exceed two net cold rents plus VAT.
The local housing office can also help you find a flat. They often arrange flats directly. The following applies to Saxony-Anhalt: Compared to the national average and especially to large cities in western Germany, the housing market offers relatively moderate prices for rental flats and also for home ownership. The stability of rents in some cities is due, among other things, to an evolved cooperative structure for which affordable housing is characteristic. In addition, many cities and municipalities in Saxony-Anhalt have social housing. As a rule, these may only be rented to people with low incomes. For this you need a Wohnberechtigungsschein, which you can obtain from your local housing office.
The portal WG-Gesucht also offers a good search option for entire flats, not just shared rooms: https://www.wg-gesucht.de. In principle, it is useful to post a request, so that landlords can also write to the person looking for accommodation and a good match can be found more easily.
The local Telegram groups for flat hunting and "Sharing is Caring" also provide support here. However, the names of these groups vary depending on the location.
For Halle, for example, this is www.t.me/WohnenInHalle and www.t.me/hallecare817.
For Magdeburg, the group is www.t.me/sharinginmagdeburg
GOOD TO KNOW
If you are planning a longer stay or a move to Germany, it is advisable to live temporarily with a friend. Check whether the landlord allows subletting.
You have a realistic chance of getting your own flat if you have your own job or proof of income.
A tenancy agreement regulates the rights and obligations of the tenant and contains provisions on running costs. In Germany, tenancy agreements are usually concluded in writing. There is no obligation on the part of the landlord to do so. However, you should insist on a written tenancy agreement. In the event of a dispute, you will have an important document in your hand.
Unlimited tenancy agreements are the rule in Germany. A sample residential tenancy agreement shows the points you should pay attention to when moving in.
Before signing the tenancy agreement, you should have a thorough look at each room with your landlord and address any renovation work that may be necessary. Check whether the heating, sockets and connections are working. Record any deficiencies in a move-in log when you hand over the apartment.
The same applies when you move out. Record the con-dition of the handed-over flat in a move-out protocol.
The rent for a rented flat consists of the basic rent and the costs for the supply of heating, hot water, gas if applicable, as well as the operating costs for the housing complex (warm rent). Electricity costs and costs for telephone and internet are usually regulated via personal down payments with your contractual partners. If your landlord wants to increase the rent over time, he can only do so under certain conditions.
A security deposit is usually agreed in the tenancy agreement. The amount of the deposit can be negotiated. However, the deposit may not exceed 3 cold rents (monthly rent excluding service charges).
The rent deposit is transferred by the tenant to the landlord. The tenant may pay the deposit in 3 monthly instalments. The first instalment is due at the beginning of the tenancy.
GOOD TO KNOW
The German Tenants' Association (Deutscher Mieterbund) provides information on risks and pitfalls in connection with housing and tenancy agreements in the section on tenancy law on its website.
If you notice defects or (technical) faults in the flat, you as a tenant must inform the landlord so that the defect can be remedied by him as soon as possible. It is important that you do this in writing and set a deadline for remedying the defect. Until the defect is remedied, the rent may be reduced to a reasonable extent.
GOOD TO KNOW:
Get advice before you reduce the rent. If you reduce the rent unreasonably, you run the risk of being terminated by the landlord.
If you have an open-ended tenancy agreement, you can generally terminate it with 3 months' notice. It does not matter how long you have been a tenant.
You must give notice in writing. If you give notice of termination to the landlord by the 3rd working day of a month at the latest, this month already counts as the period of notice.
There is also the possibility of a shorter notice period. However, this only applies if it is expressly stated in the tenancy agreement. The landlord must observe the statutory periods of notice and may not shorten them in his favour.
Housing benefit is a state subsidy for people on low incomes. It can be granted on application. Housing benefit is available
- as a rent subsidy if you rent a flat or a room, or
- as an encumbrance allowance if you live in a flat or house that
You will only receive the subsidy if you are actually residing in the territory of the Federal Republic of Germany and are entitled to freedom of movement according to the Act on the General Freedom of Movement of EU Citizens (FreizüG/EU).
Housing benefit is only granted on application - usually from the beginning of the month of application for a period of twelve months. Applications for housing benefit must be submitted to the housing benefit authorities of the districts, independent cities and municipalities with more than 20,000 inhabitants.
Use the prescribed forms to submit your application for housing benefit in Saxony-Anhalt.
GOOD TO KNOW:
Recipients of so-called transfer benefits, in which the accommodation costs are already taken into account, such as unemployment benefit II and social benefit according to SGB II ("Hartz IV"), basic income support in old age and in case of reduced earning capacity as well as assistance with living costs according to SGB XII etc.) are not entitled to housing benefit.
Antragsformulare und Informationen um den Wohngeldanspruch: Ministerium für Infrastruktur und Digitales