Renting in Dusseldorf

Most of our customers come to Dusseldorf on an expat contract and stay three years. A lot of them enjoy to live in Düsseldorf so much that they decide to stay. But when you are planning to live here for three years only, it makes no sense to buy. We give you here first information about renting in Dusseldorf. Don't hesitate to contact us for more information.

1) The market for apartments and houses to rent

The apartment/house market in Düsseldorf is very small. Thus, there are almost always several interested people for each offer. The landlord can choose between them and he does this very carefully because the law is very tenant-friendly once somebody moved in.

And that unfortunately means

- you have to decide quickly

- there is not much room for negotiations


2) Apartments/Houses

In Germany generally apartments/houses are offered with the total number of rooms  (excluded kitchen and bathroom). That means a 3-room apt has

- 1 living room

- 1 bedroom

- 1 guest or children room.

An important indication is the number of sqm on which the rent and often the operation costs are calculated.

Furnished estates are about 30-50 % more expensive than unfurnished ones and there are not much less of them available.

Unfurnished apartments and houses normally do not have

- light fittings                                     

- air conditioning

- built-in wardrobes                             

- washing machine and dryer

- curtains


% of Apartments do have

- Kitchen installed 50%                                  

- Elevator 10%

- Balcony 15%                                             

- Garage 1%

- Outside Parking Space 2%                           

- Cleaning of staircase 60%

- Connection for washing machine in the basement 50% and in the apartment 50%

- Laminate or Parquet floor 60%, Tiles 25%, Carpet 15%


95% of the apartments have a cable TV connection. If you like to install a Satellite Dish, you need the permit from the owner to install your own dish on the balcony.

When you rent a house you usually have take care about you TV connection by yourself, but you are more flexible.


3) Prices and Costs

Rent: Prices increased in 2011 of around 10-15%, the rent is roughly between 12,-- and 20,- EUR per sqm, but

- the smaller the size the relatively more expensive it is

- the better the area the more expensive it is, in some areas more the 20 EUR per sqm.


Costs: On top of the rent you have to pay for the utility costs. You do this by paying a monthly amount as a prepayment. At the year end your actual consumption will be measured and then balanced with your prepayments. You then may have to pay the balance or get money back.

However, not all costs are consumption related. The most important consumption related costs are:

- heating 

- electricity      

- water

- waste water

NOT consumption related are costs for e.g.

- rubbish removal                                          

- property insurance

- property tax                                                       

- chimney sweeper

- gardening and house keeping/management      

- etc.

As a calculation basis you can reckon with 2.60 - 3.20 EUR per sqm for the operation costs.


Termination:  Most unfurnished estates have a clause saying that a lease contract can be terminated with 3 months notice to the end of a month. Most of the furnished apartments 1 month. But for furnished apartments also limited contracts are very common. You should mind that the diplomatic clause is mentioned in the contract.


Renovation:   It is absolute common practice that - when moving out - you have to return an apartment or house in the same condition as you took it over when moving in. Around 40% of the apartments are renovated if you move in and you need to return it renovated if you move out.

In this context renovation means painting of walls ceilings, doors and window frames, shampooing a carpet as well as a professional cleaning of the apartment.

The standard contract contains a clause saying that you have to do “smart repairs”. They have to be done after 3 years (for kitchens, bathrooms, toilets) and 5 years for all other rooms.

Assumed you move out after 1 year it means you have to bear 1/3 of the renovation costs for kitchens, bathrooms and toilets, and 1/5 of the renovation costs for all other rooms. The costs are based on a quotation by a professional.

However, quite often the landlord demands that you renovate the apartment/house when you move out - no matter how long you stayed in it. The renovation costs are very individual (depends on which wall paper etc.)


Other expenses: Other expenses you have to calculate with are

- public TV (GEZ fees; when you have a TV), approx. 17,98 EUR/month, includes Radio and PC:

                           - PC or Radio only approx. 4.95 EUR/month

                           - in 2013 it will change to a fix amount for each houesehold

                           - broadband cable for TV, depending on various suppliers


4) Deposits and Fees in connection with property

The landlord will ask for a security deposit of 3 months cold rent. Usually you can provide the safety deposit either in cash (bank transfer) or in form of a savings book that you opened and hand out to the landlord.

You will get the deposit including potential interest back when you move out, granted that you have fully complied with your contractual obligations (e.g. renovation) and the final balance of the operation costs has been settled, which sometimes can take the landlord a couple of weeks or months to prepare.

Almost all estates to rent are mediated by a property agent. He/She gets a commission of 2 months cold rent + 19 % VAT.

5) Telephone/Internet

There are a number of providers offering different packages. Prices are changing constantly so there is no one single provider one could recommend. Some providers need special technical prerequisites which are not always available in every region.

Most of the providers offer only contracts for 24 months, if you like to get a flat rate or a mobil phone.


6) Others

 Kindergarten  Lately it becomes extremely difficult to find a Kindergarten spot in Düsseldorf. There are also bilingual Kindergartens. Most Kindergartens have waiting lists. Please note that at the moment public Kindergartens in Düsseldorf are for free from the age of 3.


Living Areas   The most popular areas in Düsseldorf are:

-      For families: Kaiserswerth, Gerresheim, Grafenberg, Wittlaer

-      For singles and couples: Pempelfort, Düsseltal, Oberkassel, Unterbilk, Flingern

Due to different international schools around Düsseldorf the families can indicate their preffering living areas.