Family needs a flat

33 posts in this topic

Unfortunately buying is not an option. We thought about it as well, and let ourselves get professional advise, and with our income and the actual prices in Hamburg it is half way to get quickly in a bad situation. With our age, no significant savings and a less than average salary it would also be very difficult to get a loan from a bank. Also the propriety prices are so stupidly inflated to the point that the actual value of something is half of what is being asked for. I know people that around 10 years ago were able to buy a house with garden for 300.000€. Now even the simplest flat costs immediately half a million. With the so called bubble that is (supposedly) going to burst anytime soon I believe that getting myself in the adventure of buying something that I already know it is worth just half of the price is extremely risky. And on top of it I could not afford it anyway.

 

2 hours ago, emkay said:

Maybe there are local groups for people of your nationality.

That could be a possibility. I never got in touch with any people from my home country, although I live here for almost 9 years, so it never crossed my mind. But probably asking some help in my mother language could be a plus. There is also a big community here in Hamburg. Every other suggestion we already tried, except an eBay Kleinanzeigen ad with monetary reward.


 

2 hours ago, mtbiking said:

I recently rented one of my properties at 2.4% and that’s with a conservative evaluation of the place‘s worth.


That is also the hope I have when posting here. That someone here has a own house/flat to rent and is willing to help a fellow expat 🙂

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7 hours ago, sombra said:

That someone here has a own house/flat to rent and is willing to help a fellow expat 🙂

Expat status isn´t helpful as it signals additional risk to landlords. You might want to try to proactively reduce that perceived (and unfortunately, in my experience real) risk by pointing out e.g. that you have been living in Germany for 9 years already and are planning on staying long term and that you have permanent residence (if true), that you´re prepared to pay rent in advance (if you can afford say e.g. 6 months) on top of the deposit, that your police clearance certificate is clean, provide a letter of reference of your current landlord, boasting about your handyman skills (to signal that you can do small repairs yourself and may even be helpful in other regards), that you´re prepared to help your landlord with shopping, lawnmowing etc. (in case it´s an elderly person). In short, try to come across as a hassle-free tenant. Also, have your application checked by someone with good German language skills, if needed.

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It s really unfortunate but sad reality that as an expat you have to stump up extra cash in advance to swing it. Not sure it is behaviour I would encourage as it normalises something that should not happen. In short it stinks. But I understand that if the competition is so tough you maybe have to go that route. :huh:

 

Also, helping oldies with shopping can be its own minefield... a risky business I would not get into. 

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11 hours ago, emkay said:

Just out of interest…if the OP suggests a 1600€ (warm) monthly affordability, would buying such as the link you posted at 490,000€ be affordable? What percentage deposit would be necessary to make it affordable? Considering also potential Makler charges and Grundbuch costs?

 

ok - I'll entertain the math part here:

in this particular case there is no Makler - so we're looking at 7% Nebenkosten = 31.850,-€

assuming the buyer has 20% Eigenkapital, they'd need financing for 417.480,- €

At an interest rate of 1,2% and 2% Tilgung, fixed for 10 years, the monthly payment would be 1.113,28 €

If they had only 10% down payment, the monthly rate would be 1.252,44 €

 

I consider that within the target cost of 1.600,- € Warmmiete

 

That's why I said "affordable"

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12 hours ago, sombra said:

Unfortunately buying is not an option. We thought about it as well, and let ourselves get professional advise, and with our income and the actual prices in Hamburg it is half way to get quickly in a bad situation.

Don't buy, it's a bad advice. The temptation with low interest rate is common and will cause a lot of problems for hundreds of millions in the upcoming years.

 

12 hours ago, sombra said:

 With our age, no significant savings and a less than average salary it would also be very difficult to get a loan from a bank. Also the propriety prices are so stupidly inflated to the point that the actual value of something is half of what is being asked for. I know people that around 10 years ago were able to buy a house with garden for 300.000€. Now even the simplest flat costs immediately half a million. With the so called bubble that is (supposedly) going to burst anytime soon I believe that getting myself in the adventure of buying something that I already know it is worth just half of the price is extremely risky. And on top of it I could not afford it anyway.

Correct, this bubble will eventually burst.

 

12 hours ago, sombra said:

That could be a possibility. I never got in touch with any people from my home country, although I live here for almost 9 years, so it never crossed my mind. But probably asking some help in my mother language could be a plus. There is also a big community here in Hamburg. Every other suggestion we already tried, except an eBay Kleinanzeigen ad with monetary reward.
That is also the hope I have when posting here. That someone here has a own house/flat to rent and is willing to help a fellow expat 🙂

Olá, não é fácil. But direct contact is the easiest way to find a place.

Speaking of Portugal, and moving back, if you work in Software (long shot from my side) it's paying better there (relative to cost of living) than here.

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3 hours ago, karin_brenig said:

 

ok - I'll entertain the math part here:

in this particular case there is no Makler - so we're looking at 7% Nebenkosten = 31.850,-€

assuming the buyer has 20% Eigenkapital, they'd need financing for 417.480,- €

At an interest rate of 1,2% and 2% Tilgung, fixed for 10 years, the monthly payment would be 1.113,28 €

If they had only 10% down payment, the monthly rate would be 1.252,44 €

 

I consider that within the target cost of 1.600,- € Warmmiete

 

That's why I said "affordable"

On paper, it looks doable, but that does not take into consideration 

- Nebenkosten (the usual: water, electricity, heating. Probably more in a house than in an apartment)

- Insurance

- Maintenance

- Savings for future, bigger maintenance of the house 

- Need for car(s) plus insurance and maintenance cause there is no way you can find a house in the middle of Hamburg for that price 

 

~500 € per month isn't really enough for that, IMO. 

Plus, they'd need almost 100.000 € in savings. 

And I am pretty sure the interest rate would go up if the down payment is only 10%. Not to mention that there will be a rather big chunk that needs to be refinanced at the end of the ten years... 

 

OP: Good luck with your search! Tell everyone you can think of that you are looking - sometimes all it takes is a weird coincidence and good timing. 

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@sombra. I don’t know how swapping apartments works in practical terms though here’s one apartment on offer, Altona, 4 rooms, 1600€….looking to swap for something smaller in your current town - if I remember correctly.

 

https://www.ebay-kleinanzeigen.de/s-anzeige/tausch-charmante-altbauwhg-in-altona-4-zimmer-gegen-kleiner/1932955348-203-9504

 

this one looks lovely….also swap for smaller apartment required.

 

https://www.ebay-kleinanzeigen.de/s-anzeige/nur-tausch-traumhafte-maisonette-dachterrasse-gegen-kleiner/1927955811-203-9503

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Not sure if it would be appropriate though have you asked your landlord if he/she has any other bigger flats available? Most of the landlords we know, have more than one let property. They are also likely to know other landlords.

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8 hours ago, jeba said:

Also, have your application checked by someone with good German language skills, if needed.

@sombra I’ve seen various ads that specifically state that enquiries written along the lines of ‘bin interessiert’ or general poor German, won’t be considered, 

 

Wanted ads also need to be quite detailed stating positive facts such as….Shufa, work, landlord, bank etc references available. A nice photo helps (excluding children).

 

Sorry if this is obvious though have you saved online search criteria so that you get automatic alerts? Ie immoscout24, eBay Kleinanzeigen etc. My daughter got her flat by responding immediately to an alert in the early hours. She sent all of her prepared info. The landlord said that he didn’t even bother accepting any other applicants for viewing. 

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9 hours ago, maxie said:

On paper, it looks doable, but that does not take into consideration 

- Nebenkosten (the usual: water, electricity, heating. Probably more in a house than in an apartment)

- Insurance

- Maintenance

- Savings for future, bigger maintenance of the house 

- Need for car(s) plus insurance and maintenance cause there is no way you can find a house in the middle of Hamburg for that price 

 

~500 € per month isn't really enough for that, IMO. 

Plus, they'd need almost 100.000 € in savings. 

And I am pretty sure the interest rate would go up if the down payment is only 10%. Not to mention that there will be a rather big chunk that needs to be refinanced at the end of the ten years... 

 

OP: Good luck with your search! Tell everyone you can think of that you are looking - sometimes all it takes is a weird coincidence and good timing. 

 Tax too. 10s of 1000s ?

 

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12 hours ago, MikeMelga said:

Olá, não é fácil. But direct contact is the easiest way to find a place.

Speaking of Portugal, and moving back, if you work in Software (long shot from my side) it's paying better there (relative to cost of living) than here.

 

Olá! Porreiro encontrar aqui outro português.

Unfortunately I don't work in Software. Both our jobs are way worst paid in Portugal (considering if we would even get a job in our fields there). The only benefit there is that I a own big house in Portugal and have some family support. But regarding work we would probably have to reinvent ourselves, something even more difficult for my wife that is german and does not master the language.

 

9 hours ago, emkay said:

@sombra. I don’t know how swapping apartments works in practical terms though here’s one apartment on offer, Altona, 4 rooms, 1600€….looking to swap for something smaller in your current town - if I remember correctly.

 

Swapping could also be an option, but that does not depend only of ourselves. Our landlord would also have to agree to it. We already contacted a couple of people but did not have luck with the swap. Anyway thank you for your links. We will check these offers in detail.

 

8 hours ago, emkay said:

Not sure if it would be appropriate though have you asked your landlord if he/she has any other bigger flats available? Most of the landlords we know, have more than one let property. They are also likely to know other landlords.

Already done that and also contacted our previous landlord. They are both private owners. The current one does not have anything else and the previous one has a couple more flats but nothing bigger than what we already have now. They are both quite nice landlords and said that they would keep their ears open but so far no news.

 

8 hours ago, emkay said:

@sombra I’ve seen various ads that specifically state that enquiries written along the lines of ‘bin interessiert’ or general poor German, won’t be considered, 

 

Wanted ads also need to be quite detailed stating positive facts such as….Shufa, work, landlord, bank etc references available. A nice photo helps (excluding children).

 

Sorry if this is obvious though have you saved online search criteria so that you get automatic alerts? Ie immoscout24, eBay Kleinanzeigen etc. My daughter got her flat by responding immediately to an alert in the early hours. She sent all of her prepared info. The landlord said that he didn’t even bother accepting any other applicants for viewing. 

As already said, my wife is german so all our applications are very well written. I would say we are by now professional applicants. Cover page with photo, Schufa, income, references... all included in our application package and ready to send. The online portals are also being checked almost every five minutes. I check them so often that even with the automatic notifications I see new offers before the phone itself warns me about them being posted. But so far no success...

 

I would just like to thank you all so much for your hints and suggestions. I am pleased that you all took time to write some words.

Unfortunately after all this time searching I really have the feeling that we will only be successful if we get a direct connection. This way, if anyone knows about a possible free flat or, even better, if someone owns a flat to rent in Hamburg, please shoot me a PM :)

 

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6 minutes ago, sombra said:

Unfortunately after all this time searching I really have the feeling that we will only be successful if we get a direct connection. This way, if anyone knows about a possible free flat or, even better, if someone owns a flat to rent in Hamburg, please shoot me a PM :)

 

Friends of mine found such a connection by going to apartment showings of apartments that were bigger than what they were looking for.

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Sounds a frustrating time for you. My advice echoes earlier advice and would be to focus on an area that is commutable for you but has more availability. Arrange your holidays for 2022 that you have time to view properties there. Start building up a relationship with property agents in this area. This should be your medium term plan (6 months). 

 

In the short term, I would explain the situation to my boss, work colleagues, Kitaleiter(in) and see if they know of a local flat that might be available. Are you a member of any clubs or a church? I would second reaching out to the Portuguese community.

 

HTH

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