Accommodation in Munich

Updated 2022-10-29 04:04

Munich is one of Germany's most popular cities among expats due to its prosperous economy and thriving labor market characterized by low unemployment rates compared to the national average numbers. In fact, the capital of the Bavarian (Bayern) region is the country's second-leading destination in terms of expatriation after Berlin, and the country's most expensive city.

Hence, finding accommodation in Munich can be challenging, as the demand is high (which is to be expected in a city of about one and a half million inhabitants), and prices can be high. But don't be discouraged! We have put together some valuable information that will assist you with finding the right accommodation for you and your family, and making the most of Munich's high standards of quality of life. 

Reasons for moving to Munich 

Munich is a city of iconic architecture (e.g., the New Town Hall with its world-famous dancing figures) with its castles and palaces, churches (e.g., the gothic Frauenkirche), gardens and parks, squares (e.g., Marienplatz and the Florence-like Odeonsplatz), and museums (e.g., the German Museum of Masterpieces of Science and Technology, the largest museum of its kind in the world). Also, since 1972, Munich has been hosting the 850,000 sqm Olympic Park, which was built for the Olympic Games, and is now used as a leisure, cultural, and sports center enjoyed by all. Munich is an active city, so it comes as no surprise that it has many outdoor (some of them heated) and indoor public swimming pools. 

Munich is home to Oktoberfest (Wiesn) — if that is not a good enough reason to move there, then what is it? Joking aside, Oktoberfest is the largest public festival in the world, with a tradition of over two centuries. Every year, for about two weeks, millions (6.3 million in 2019) of people gather in Munich to celebrate the Bavarian tradition, eat delicious food, and drink good beer produced by Munich's largest breweries and some artisan ones. Now, if you aren't a foodie or a beer drinker, Munich is also home to Hellabrunn Zoo, a unique conservation place on the banks of the Isar river. Animal lovers will come across over 750 species from all continents in environments that simulate their natural environment.

Bavaria is known for its heavy and meat-based cuisine and dishes such as the Weißwurst (i.e., white sausage made of veal and pork) with pretzels and sweet mustard or the Obatzda — soft cheeses combined with butter, cream, onions, and chives — are all-time classics. If you have a sweet tooth, Dampfnudeln (i.e., steamed dumplings) or Germknödel (yeast dumplings) can easily become part of your weekly menu. 

And if all of the above haven't been convincing enough reasons to establish your home in Munich, maybe the fact that the city is so close to the picturesque Alps will be. No more than 100 kilometers away from Munich is Zugspitze, Germany's highest mountain, which is a great winter escape from the city for skiing or simply to enjoy the scenery and the snow. 

Popular neighborhoods in Munich

Munich is divided into 25 districts, which, in turn, consist of several neighborhoods. Each of these neighborhoods is easily accessible by the public transport network and hosts shops, shopping malls, schools, and many other facilities. Munich is also known to be a green city thanks to its many parks and other recreational spaces. Munich's city center (i.e., Zentrum) is the busiest region, located within the neighborhood of Altstadt-Lehel, near Ludwigsvorstadt, Isarvorstadt, and Maxvorstadt. These areas are also known as tourist hubs, shopping districts, and the home of big firms and office buildings. Haidhausen and Glockenbach are close to the center and have active nightlife. Hauptbahnhof, Westend, and Theresienwiese in the South of the city center, offer an impressive urban look, just like Sendling and Thalkirchen. Solln is known to be a posh neighborhood with many modern residential buildings.

As a student city, thanks to the many universities it hosts, a great percentage of Munich's residents are young people from all over the world. The area near Ludwig Maximilian University, as well as Schwabing, are the most popular residential areas in the city. Families tend to live near the animal park Hellabrunn in Harlaching or in Nymphenburg. Pasing, Laim, Nymphenburg, and Gern are in eastern Munich. Obermenzing, Northwest Munich Harlaching, Ramersdorf, Trudering, and Waldtrudering are also trendy residential neighborhoods, ideal for families looking for modern apartments or a small house with a terrace and garden in a peaceful environment. If you wish to escape from the busy and noisy downtown, you will definitely like Forstenried, Fasangarten, Waldperlach, Obersendling or Perlach, which are peaceful and green neighborhoods.

Rent prices in Munich

Be prepared to face fairly high rental prices in Munich, as the city is known for its high cost of living. In general, you will need an average of 1,400 euros per month to rent a single-bedroom apartment in the city center and some 2,500 euros for a three-bedroom apartment. Uptown, rent prices may be even higher, depending on the type of accommodation and facilities attached to it. On the outskirts, you can expect to spend an average of 1,000 euros monthly to rent a single-bedroom apartment and some 2,000 euros for a three-bedroom apartment. Students in Munich tend to look for shared apartments where costs are shared among the housemates, studio flats, or a room in a home where bills and amenities are included in the total rental price. If you are a student in Munich and you want to live in a student hall of residence, which is, of course, the most affordable option, note that student halls are usually always full and have very long waiting periods, so you have to apply well in advance to at least enter the waiting list. In the meantime, make sure you explore the other alternative options.

Finding accommodation in Munich

Preparation is everything when it comes to searching for accommodation in Munich. Given that it is difficult to find accommodation, it is wise to start your housing search online as soon as possible, even from your home country to get an initial idea of the types of accommodation and specialized real estate websites available, as well as rent prices in general.  If you are already in Munich, consider registering with a real estate agency, which can be a costly option, but it can be time efficient and effective to have a professional on your side. Friends, word-of-mouth, and classified ads in local newspapers may also help. If you haven't done so already, we suggest you follow relevant conversations in's friendly Munich Forum where seasoned expats may be able to give you guidance and advice based on their experiences. 

Here are some principal tips for finding and booking a place in Munich:

  • Act fast, contact potential landlords quickly, and be prepared to accept viewing appointments (some might be group viewings) during work hours. Note that some real estate agents may charge a fee in case you don't appear at the agreed viewing. 
  • Consider housing cooperatives (i.e., Genossenschaften), which may offer reasonably priced housing. You'll have to become a member and pay a contribution of usually the equivalent of a month's rent as a rental deposit. In return, you own shares and have the right to stay for as long as you please.
  • Take your search offline and check local newspapers, such as Kurz und Fündig. Many papers publish housing opportunities once a week, mostly on Saturdays.
  • Dress formally and make a good first impression during the viewing. Some people recommend dressing as you would do for a job interview. Keywords such as “non-smoker,” “academic with a permanent contract,” or information on your monthly income can be surprisingly helpful to secure you a place faster.
  • Prepare a folder with a brief CV, picture, the last three payslips from your workplace, and SCHUFA information. A letter of reference, a copy of your ID card, and, where applicable, a guarantor can also be helpful.
  • Check the apartment for cracks in the wall or broken objects, and double-check the contract, so you don't have to bear the expense for already existing damages.
  • Understanding the difference between Kaltmeite and Warmmiete is crucial. Warmmiete includes all the expenses, while Kaltmiete means that additional costs such as service costs and waste disposal, water and heating bills must be paid separately.

Useful links:

Immobilien Scout 24




Mr Lodge

Wohnungsmarkt 24 

Münchner Merkur



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