Apartments and houses are advertised by owners in the classified section of daily newspapers, and in special supplements in the weekend editions. There also are specialist real estate magazines as well as dedicated websites. Most daily newspapers offer real estate sections on their websites. Some of the most useful websites for finding houses and apartments to rent are:
Real estate agencies (Makler or Immobilienmakler) are private companies that deal in renting or selling properties. Agencies can act as a mediator between landlord and tenant, as well as provide expert advice about the local area and the laws surrounding rental leases. Most of these companies charge a fee (Maklergebühr) of up to two months' rent plus VAT, which is due once a contract has been signed. Some agencies operate completely online, such as immonet.de, while others have offices based in the area .
Rented accommodation in Germany generally has two types of rent: "warm" and "cold"
Cold rent (Kaltmiete) is the basic rent only with no additional costs included
Warm rent (Warmmiete) includes additional costs such as water, property tax, chimney sweeping, street cleaning and waste disposal services. In some cases it includes costs for electricity and gas supply.
Kleinmachnow Just South of Zehlendorf/Steglitz, in the state of Brandenburg, is the city of Kleinmachnow. BBIS is located in Kleinmachnow and it is a family orientated community. Here you can be surrounded in nature and enjoy the Grunewald forest and nearby lakes. Potsdam An historic city just outside Berlin, Potsdam is known for its quiet streets and lush palace gardens. In fact, one-half of the city is covered in park-like green space. An "island" city surrounded by lakes, Potsdam quickly became one of the most desirable places to live in Germany after the unification. The film industry thrives in part of Potsdam known as Babelsberg.
Zehlendorf Zehlendorf is the Berlin neighborhood closest next to Kleinmachnow. Here you can find most of the banks, supermarkets, shopping, and café culture that exists in Berlin on a smaller scale. It’s family living but also has a bit more city life than Kleinmachnow has to offer. There are many accessible train lines and buses from here as well that connect to both school and the city.
Steglitz Steglitzis home to the second largest shopping district in Berlin. (around Schlosstrasse.) Both Kleinmachnow and mitte are easily accessible by metro and bus lines. It is mostly a combination of residential and shopping areas, but in addition to easy access to shopping and train lines and busses, Steglitz has many parks and restaurants.
Charlottenburg In West Berlin people used to call this area simply "the City". There used to be many (movie) theatres and nightlife venues in this area. In recent years, though, it has developed increasingly into an upscale shopping area on lower Kurfürstendamm, mainstream shopping on upper Kurfürstendamm and Tauntzienstrasse, and a lot of fast food around Zoo Station. There are nicer cafés and restaurants around Savignyplatz. A cultural highlight is Deutsche Oper Berlin (German Opera House, the second important opera house next to Staatsoper Unter den Linden) on Kaiserdamm in Charlottenburg. Further West you find Charlottenburg Palace, a large baroque residence with a beautiful park close to the Spree River.
Schöneberg Schöneberg lies right south of Wittenbergplatz and Nollendorfplatz in former West Berlin. Mainly residential area with quite some nice bars, restaurants, cafe's and little shops. Especially the neighbourhood around Motzstrasse is home to Berlin's gay scene. Famous is the Lesbian and Gay City Festival in the streets around Nollendorfplatz. Popular among Berliners and visitors is the Saturday market on Winterfeldplatz (fresh groceries). Viktoria-Luise-Platz gives an idea about the luxury and elegance of this area before WW II.
Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg Friedrichshain (Freed-riks-hain) lies South East of neighbouring Mitte along the North banks of river Spree between Alexanderplatz, Ostbahnhof and Ostkreuz station (former East Berlin). Friedrichshain is a mainly 19th century residential and former industrial area where disgruntled Prenz’lbergers moved to when the hipster set took over. Now home to dive bars and grungy alternative stores, this is where the artpunks and aspiring artists call home (mainly the area both sides of Boxhagener Strasse). Around Ostbahnhof and along the Spree River there are vast areas of deserted industrial grounds, abandoned warehouses and expired docks. Many of Berlin's nightlife and clubbing venues have found their locations here. Right east of Alexanderplatz where Friedrichshain borders Mitte, huge socialist flat buildings can be found, further down Karl-Marx-Allee (originally called Stalinallee) between Straussberger Platz and Frankfurter Tor these buildings date back to the early 1950's - looks like Moscow, welcome to Eastern Europe! The longest maintained piece of Berlin Wall can be found in Mühlenstrasse on the banks of the Spree River. After the opening of the borders, artists from all over the world painted this piece of the Wall - it became famous as East Side Gallery.
Kreuzberg South of neighbouring Mitte, in former West Berlin presents a more alternative and multicultural flavor, courtesy of 35% of inhabitants hailing originally from Turkey, Greece and the former Yugoslavia. For a flavor of the area, try Bergmannstrasse, with its second hand stores, hip cafes, and restaurants. More mix of ethniticies can be found on Oranienstrasse between Oranienplatz and Wiener Strasse with its cool hangouts and fabulous baklava. Famous highlight of Kreuzberg's cultural life is Karneval der Kulturen Festival which takes place in the streets of Kreuzberg every year in early summer.
Mitte Mitte (could be translated "Midtown", zip codes: 10117, 10115, 10119, 10178, 10179) is roughly described the area between Brandenburg Gate and Alexanderplatz. It is the borough which includes the oldest sections of town. Mitte is Berlin's cultural and administrative centre. Between 1949 and 1989 Mitte lay in East Berlin - geographically it used to be the most Western district of East Berlin. Most interesting and authentic is the "uptown" part of Mitte, an old and diverse neighbourhood between upper Friedrichstrasse and Hackescher Markt square. This is an historical area where a culturally "new" and dynamic Berlin has been developing after the wall had come down. Here, in Spandauer Vorstadt and Scheunenviertel, you find numerous bars, cafes and restaurants, trendy and unusual shops, art galleries, and some clubs. Oranienburger Strasse is famous for the alternative cultural center Tacheles, located in the WW II ruins of a former department store, and for Jewish life around the Neue Synagoge (New Synagogue). In warm summer nights don't miss the open-air bar Strandbar Mitte next to Monbijoupark, with impressive views of the Spree River and Museum Island. Shopping is great and unusual in Münzstrasse, Rosenthaler Strasse, Neue Schönhauser Strasse. Check art galleries and bars in Auguststrasse and Linienstrasse. Sophienstrasse and Grosse Hamburger Strasse have some old-Berlin feel. Visit Hackescher Markt square, Berlin's inofficial city centre, see the impressive courtyard landscape of Hackesche Höfe, Gipshöfe, and have a glimpse into the courtyards.
Prenzlauer Berg Prenzlauer Berg is a 19th century residential area in former East Berlin, located right to the North East of neighbouring Mitte. Parts of it used to be a center of the bohemian and squat scenes after the wall had fallen down in the early 1990's. It subsequently developed to become one of Europe's upcoming and hip urban landscapes and to some it lost quite a bit of its edge as a result. Cleaning up in the process, many prefer its current, less grungy but still lively state. To many, Prenzlauer Berg is a highly popular residential area - especially among young and middle-aged families who have just moved to Berlin from other regions of Germany. Visitors especially like the bars and restaurants around Kollwitzplatz and in the surrounding streets. A more grungy touch still has the area around Oderberger Strasse and Mauerpark ("Wall Park") at the upper end of Bernauer Strasse. Especially on week-end days in summer Mauerpark becomes a typical playground for easy-going Berlin urban lifestyle.
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