It is not always easy to find a suitable, affordable place to live in a city as sought after as Hamburg, especially at the beginning of a semester. For international students in particular, the search for your own place can seem daunting. To make it easier for you, we have compiled a list of options and places to start your search for your perfect dorm or flat.
Studierendenwerk Hamburg: rent a room for a study period
The Studierendenwerk is an inter-university service for Hamburg students and universities providing social and financial services for students. Their offer includes a number of dorms (“Wohnheim” in German) across Hamburg where you can rent a dorm room. The International Office assists exchange students who want to rent a room in a public students’ residence administered by the “Studierendenwerk Hamburg” [www.studierendenwerk-hamburg.de]. You will get more information on how to get a room during your application process. However, we cannot guarantee that all students will get a room, as we only dispose of a limited amount of rooms.
In case you were lucky to get a room in one of the dormitories, you need to make an appointment with a tutor of your dormitory before your arrival to arrange your move-in. At most of the dormitories, tutors are available as direct contacts for international students. The tutors are very familiar with the questions and problems that international students have.
Please find your responsible tutor in this overview.
In case you were unfortunate not to get a room, you can apply for a vacant room in some dormitories for a period from one to six months (depends on availability). You can inform yourself about the spare rooms available here. They will be hired out directly by the property management of the dorm. They can tell you the exact rental fee, too. Keep a close eye on this list, and if there are free “guest rooms”, try to contact the dormitory – even if it seems quite far away from the center (like Rahlstedt or Kiwittsmoor), it is better to have this for the first months than nothing at all or something twice as expensive.
Otherwise, we hope that the following alternatives help you to find an accommodation in Hamburg:
Dormitories of non-profit organizations
Apart from the dorms of the Studierendenwerk, there are many other housing opportunities by non-profit organizations in Hamburg. Find a list of them here. Applications should be sent directly to the dorm you are interested in. Please address the providers for further information on the application process!
Finding your own place in Hamburg - Flat shares
It is quite common in Germany to share a flat (“WG”) and many students offer unfurnished or even furnished rooms for a limited time while they go abroad themselves. On the following websites, private rooms to let and sub-let are being advertised. This is also a great opportunity to work on your German.
Attention: With flat shares, it is not common to pay any money before arrival/signing the lease agreement – so please be careful with demands concerning advance payment as they are likely to be fraud.