Accommodation in Germany: scams you should look out for

Hi,

Committing to renting or buying accommodation when you’re new to or have not moved to Germany just yet is always a stressful endeavour. Would you like to help us in putting together a handbook of what to look out for when house hunting in Germany?

What are the most common scams in Germany?

What are the red flags to look out for when scanning through adverts?

Is there a list of registered or accredited landlords or real estate agencies in Germany?

What authorities should be sought should one come across an accommodation scam?

Please share your experience,

Bhavna

Scams in the German rental and property market are very rare, because everything is well (some say overly) regulated.
Of course the common caveats apply: Never send money before you have seen the property, landlord and signed a written contract. And keep in mind: If something seems too good to be true, it probably is.
Once you follow that, the only pitfalls are being overcharged (here it helps to know the market and stick to your budget) or being rejected (incl. for being a foreigner, which is illegal but difficult to prove ...).
Many of the popular cities in Germany face a shortage of rental (or even for sale) properties, so be prepared for a long and sometimes frustrating search!

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