Best Accommodations For Expats In Europe

April 12 , 2021 by: Victoria Anderson

Europe is a wonderful continent; its countries are full of history and dazzle with their architecture. It is one of the most visited, which makes it very well prepared for you to live in. Moving between cities and countries is very easy, and it is becoming more and more accessible.

The old continent has a wide range of cultures, languages, attractions and intricate stories that attract people from all over the world. Whether you are passionate about architecture, art or music, Europe offers opportunities for intellectual exchange, entertainment and inspiration.

To enter the old continent, it is mandatory that you have a travel insurance contracted that covers at least 30,000 euros. In any case, having insurance is a peace of mind for you, since in case you do not have it and something unforeseen occurs, you will surely spend much more (for example, lost suitcase, medical expenses, etc.).

Europe is a popular destination for expats due to its diversity in various areas. There are places that have famous music or film festivals like Berlin and Amsterdam, while other places have beautiful beaches and islands like Greece or Spain.

All the countries of Europe tell their story through their buildings, customs and people. When wondering how to plan a trip to Europe and which countries to visit, keep your personal preferences, needs and most especially your accommodation in mind.


Madrid, Spain. Photo by Falco on Pixabay

Accommodation in Spain

Spain is one of the best expats countries that offers something different for each person with a different lifestyle. It’s not just about the weather, you also have lively resort cities, sophisticated cosmopolitan cities, quiet rural towns and all the sun, sea and sangria you want.

Madrid, the Spanish capital, welcomes thousands of expatriates from all over the world every year. This city has been attracting large numbers of visitors not only for its cultural and historical richness, but also for its career opportunities. So, if you have decided to settle in Madrid, finding accommodation will be one of your priorities even before moving to Spain. But this should not be difficult as the city has a variety of accommodation for all tastes, namely apartments, studios, houses, etc.

Rent in Madrid

Rental prices in Madrid are quite high compared to other Spanish cities. These obviously vary according to the different neighborhoods, types of housing and comfort level. Therefore, you will need an average of 650 euros per month to rent a studio. For an apartment, you will need around 1,200 euros per month.

Students can choose to share the room or share the flat. This should cost about € 400 to € 550 per month.

Please note that short term rental prices may increase by 20-50%. Therefore, the long-term rental is financially more attractive. For a short stay in Madrid, visit hotels or apartments for short-term rental.

In all cases, regardless of the type of accommodation you are looking for, consider looking for advertisements on the Internet and in local newspapers. Feel free to contact the owners for more information on their offers. In general, online ads are quite short and do not include all the details about the offers.


Zurich Switzerland by Julian Hacker on Pixabay

Accommodation in Switzerland

Being one of the best expats countries, Switzerland is an incredibly diverse country. In addition to the four official languages, the large expat communities mean that you can hear dozens of languages on the streets of cities. Each place has its own charm, and attracts foreigners for different reasons. Whether you’re working in the booming financial sector or natural science sector, studying at one of the best universities or even working in the busy tourism sector, you are going to need a place to live in Switzerland.

Accommodation in Switzerland is generally of a high standard, you can even find apartments designed to allow families to grow, including community green spaces. As people tend to stay in one place for long periods of time, even as rented places, you can find places that will give you a real sense of community, even when you are in the heart of the city.

But finding a good place to live in Switzerland (especially in big cities) can be difficult. Over 60% of expats rent apartments in Switzerland, but there can be a shortage of rental housing at any time. It is worth doing a little research before deciding which area you would like to live in, as some neighborhoods are particularly difficult when it comes to finding rent.

The average price of a one-bedroom apartment in central Switzerland is around €1,365, although of course it depends on where you decide to live. There are large expat communities, mostly in cities like Geneva, Lausanne, Basel and Zurich, but accommodation in them is among the most expensive in the country. It will cost you around € 1,822 to rent a one-bedroom room in the center of Zurich, € 1,685 in Geneva, and around € 1,400 a month in Basel. It is not little to be simply a one-bedroom apartment.

In many areas of the country there are not enough rental offers to meet the demand of people looking for a new home. This translates into competitiveness when it comes to renting, and you can be sure that as soon as a property is available, it will be rented immediately. In this highly competitive atmosphere, it pays to be prepared. You may have to settle for a short-term rental while you are looking for the definitive one, as it can take even months in some of the areas. To get out of trouble, a short-term rental from a friend or acquaintance may be a good idea.

Regulation and rights of the tenant

As a tenant, you have certain rights protected by Swiss law. It is always advisable to check the information that the Swiss government collects on its website about the rights of tenants, especially since these rights differ from those of other countries.

In general, Swiss law protects the tenant in preference. You can, for example, dispute the rent that they charge you to the private market through a conciliation process if the property is not in good condition, or if you discover that you are paying significantly more than what previous tenants were paying. You are protected by law if you resort to this conciliation, so your landlord will not be able to fire you for trying to dispute the rent in this way.


London, UK, by Ming Jun Tan on Unsplash

Accommodation in UK

One of the main concerns that surround the minds of those who dream of venturing into the United Kingdom is finding housing. Renting an apartment in the UK is not always an easy task, whether in the capital city of England, London or in inner cities. The search for an apartment, house or room requires a great deal of research that involves dividing the city, the functioning of public transport and prices heated by the British real estate market.

Renting an apartment in the UK

Moving to a new city can be tricky, right? Not knowing the main streets, the easily accessible places, the best transport and yet having to decide where to live by looking at prices, regions and the size of the house can be a headache. Now doing all of that when you’re moving to another country can be even more complicated.

The value of a rental here has many variables. The main one is the city and the location within the chosen city. The values of the properties vary basically by the profile (number of rooms, space and if they have furniture), by the location and by the lifestyle sought.

There are options like houses or apartments that are not shared, if you are looking for privacy and can pay more for it. And there are also alternatives for flats or studios for those looking for smaller spaces.

A more flexible form of housing is rooms in shared houses, a proposal aimed at students, people alone or even couples who decide to save money. In this case, usually the bills are already included in the rental price.

The average monthly fee paid to rent an apartment is currently £ 926.

To rent an apartment here, it is important to consider access to transportation. The variation in property prices depends on the location in relation to the areas and neighborhoods covered by public transport.

To live in central London, you will probably spend less time and money getting around with easy access to the Underground, surface trains (Overground) and buses. In some cases, it may be worth it to pay more expensive rent, but save on transportation during the month.

In regions further away from the central area, where the rent can be cheaper, the time spent traveling will be greater, as will the value of the tickets. This will not be a problem, however, if you choose to use a bicycle as a means of transportation.


Paris on Pixabay

Accommodation in France

Although France is the most visited country in the world, it is not just tourism that people are interested in it, it is one of the best expats countries. Attracted by the quality of life, quality education, security and government aid, many expats choose to live in France if only for a few years.

Renting apartment in France

After deciding to live in France, the time has come to take care of the bureaucratic part and renting an apartment is perhaps the most time-consuming and complicated, so we will help you with some tips on how to rent an apartment in France.

If renting an apartment for a Frenchman is already an extremely bureaucratic process, for a foreigner it is even more so, but with organization and patience, anything is possible.

In fact, everything depends on two things: finding a place to live in Paris is not easy, as it is, by far, the most crowded and much more expensive city than any other. However, another important issue when it comes to renting a property is simply whether you will already arrive in France with an employment contract or are looking for a job.

That does change everything, because even if you have money saved, but not all the documents that property owners or agencies require, you will hardly be able to rent an apartment in France.

How to search for apartment rental in France

It is worth mentioning that, when looking to rent an apartment in France from real estate agencies, the documents they will require from you will be exactly the same as they would ask a Frenchman.

This is the most time-consuming and bureaucratic way to rent an apartment in France, but if you have the entire list of documents in order, go ahead, because you will be able to have a housing contract for longer than if you were to rent from any another place!

If this is not your case, we have separated some good tips from sites for renting an apartment in France for you. Come take a look:

How much does it cost to rent an apartment in France?

If you are going to live in Paris, get ready: the city is known for its exorbitant prices and tiny apartments, but if this is not the case in any other city, renting an apartment is cheaper and easier, since the demand is not so much.

One thing that is important to note when we talk about renting an apartment in France, is that it is always important to be very attentive to fraud, which exists all over the world. Never send money without having the contract in hand and use networks, since in the world we live in, everything is a matter of indication and through them you can, yes, find your future apartment.

Another thing that you should also be very aware of, is to know, before signing the contract, if your rent is TCC (toutes charger comprises) or not, since if you have to pay the water and electricity bill apart from the rent, this usually means almost a third of the rent. Therefore, give preference to rent an apartment in which all the fees are already included in the final price.


Rome by Udo on Pixabay

Accommodation in Italy

With the exception of the few large cities in the country, the pace of life in Italy is slow, it is as if people’s lives are based on the implicit idea of “If it can’t be resolved today, that’s fine: we think about it tomorrow”.

In fact, forget about big cities: Italy is a small country. Except Rome and Milan, all other cities have a population below 1 million. It is precisely for this reason that the pace of life is not as frantic as in large cities. The proximity to the interior is very felt, especially in more agricultural regions, such as Umbria, Tuscany and the Marche, as in other cities in the south-central part of the country.

Renting an apartment in Italy

A very important thing when we decide to live abroad is to know how house rent works and where to look for an apartment. Renting an apartment in Italy is very bureaucratic and, as in any country, requires a lot of research to find the ideal place.

To rent an apartment in Italy you have several options. First you need to start your search, to find the options available on the market and make an appointment, and check if you really like the property. To find apartments for rent in Italy you can do a search on the internet, you can go directly to real estate or search on social networks.

Rent apartment through real estate. To rent an apartment in Italy through a real estate agency, you can go directly to the stores and explain what you want (apartment size, maximum rent, region, etc.) or search the real estate websites. Many Italian real estate companies have a website where they list all the apartments available for rent.

Another option to rent an apartment in Italy is directly with the owner. To find these apartments, the best way is to search on the internet – as there are many websites where the owners advertise their properties for rent – or to see on the streets the ads that people distribute on the doors of buildings and poles.

Renting an apartment directly with the owner can be easier bureaucratically. In addition, you are in direct contact with him, in case you need anything in the apartment. Usually, the owners do not ask for a guarantor to rent the apartment, but a deposit is required. You can search for apartments online.

Tulips in Amsterdam by Catalina Fodorova on Unsplash

Accommodation in Netherlands

Renting an apartment in the Netherlands is one of the first things you should think about when deciding to move to that country. More than that, it is important to try to understand how the local real estate market works so as not to go through unforeseen circumstances.

Some information can put you at an advantage over other people who are also looking for a place to live in the Netherlands, ensuring a successful rental, combining a pleasant region to live with a fair price.

We will tell you right from the beginning that it is not easy to rent an apartment in the Netherlands. One of the biggest difficulties for expats who come to live in the Netherlands is to find a place to call home, since the Dutch real estate market is increasingly saturated, especially in the capital, Amsterdam.

Demand is much greater than supply, making prices very varied from one city to another, being higher in large cities. The high competitiveness means that many people who recently migrated have their rental offers denied by the owner or the real estate company.

But don’t worry, because if you combine good preparation and a touch of luck, you’ll be able to find a house or apartment to call your own.

How to rent

It is important to start researching as soon as you decide that you want to move to the Netherlands. It is through research that you will have a base of prices charged. New offers appear daily on the internet, and good seats are rented as quickly as they become available.

It is also through this research that you will be able to know the documents that you must present in order to be able to rent an apartment in the Netherlands. Write down the main information and, if possible, put alerts to notify you of available apartments in the price range of your interest.

It is also important to take into account the city map, to search for housing close to the workplace or the center, depending on your interest. These details are important for averaging monthly transportation costs.

There are also some websites available for those who want to start searching for houses and apartments. The Blow is the largest real estate site in Holland. Although its focus is on selling apartments and houses, there are also rental options.

How much does it cost to rent an apartment in the Netherlands?

It is difficult to answer the question of how much it costs to rent an apartment in the Netherlands, because it all depends on your standard of living and the comforts you do not want to give up.

Some questions to consider, especially if you are moving with more people:

In addition, the value of rentals in the Netherlands varies according to the city chosen to live in, the neighborhood and the size of the apartment. In a capital like Amsterdam, the values are higher, varying between 1,200 euros and 4,000 euros per month.

The rule for renting apartments is very simple in any city: the more central the apartment, the more expensive it will be.

Berlin by Stefan Widua on Unsplash

Accommodation in Germany

In Germany, you don’t choose an apartment to live in, it’s the apartment that chooses you. The phrase, of course, is a joke, but it demonstrates the difficulty of the German real estate market, with a lot of demand and little supply.

How to rent an apartment in Germany

It is not easy to rent an apartment in Germany, especially in the largest cities, most in demand by workers and students. It is worth remembering that Germany is the strongest economy in Europe and it is there that many Europeans move in search of better conditions for study and employment.

The big question is the demand, which is intense, and calls for a quick and accurate rental decision.

Generally, visits to properties do not happen individually, with one tenant candidate being served at a time. But, yes, in groups of many people. It happens like this: the ad is published and several interested parties evaluate the property at the same time. Everyone leaves copies of their documentation. Whoever inspires more confidence receives a call from the real estate agent or the owner to close the contract.

How much does rent in Germany cost?

As in most countries, the price of rent in Germany varies according to the city and the area you decide to live in. The more well located the more expensive they will charge for rent, the further away, the cheaper it will be. As well as in small towns you will find better prices, in big cities the prices are higher.

Do you need a guarantor to rent an apartment in Germany?

It is not very common to have a guarantor in Germany. In general, the person pays a first rent in advance plus three security rents – and the money is invested by the property owner. This money is returned when the contract ends, however, the owner has up to 6 months to make the return.

But it may be that the owner accepts an individual guarantor, or a bank that acts as a guarantor – which is even rarer to be achieved as a foreigner.

The charge for the real estate service is borne by the owner in Germany. It was not like that a few years ago, the tenant paid the broker’s percentage. So, at least of this cost you are released.



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6 months ago

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