Now that I have my visa and a bank account, Operation Find An Apartment has begun. I have now looked at two apartments both in Winterhude. The first one I did not get and I find out about the second one tomorrow, although I’m not confident about my chances, being a foreigner counts quite severely against me in this extremely competitive rental market.
Finding an apartment in Hamburg is a very different experience to apartment hunting in Sydney. For one, most apartments come without a kitchen, you can search for Einbauküche (EBK) which means it comes with a kitchen fitted, but it does reduce your choices quite considerably. However, I am just not up to the challenge of trying to install my own kitchen with my very limited German speaking skills, so I am looking for apartments listed as EBK. Also most apartments seem to be missing rather basic things like light fixtures as in the current apartment I saw. The last tenant took the light fixtures with her meaning that if I’m lucky enough to get this apartment I would need to buy and then get an electrician to install light fixtures throughout the apartment. Also most apartments seem to be missing mirrors in the bathroom as well. It seems that tenants take with them most of the things that coming from Australia one expects as standard in an apartment – light fixtures, mirrors and the entire kitchen.
Apartment hunting in Hamburg has definitely been a learning experience so far and I have only just began my journey. I imagine I am going to learn quite a bit more before this whole experience is over.