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Information on renting a home for refugees

Who can rent a home?

Recognised refugees and asylum seekers who are likely to stay in the country long-term, who have been living in refugee accommodation for longer than three months, have - regardless of their residence status - the opportunity to rent their own home.

What conditions does a home need to satisfy?

A home must be fundamentally suitable for living in: There must be a kitchen, bathroom with bath or shower and toilet. The size of the home must be appropriate for the number of persons living there.

The total rent should not exceed the following upper rent limits (maximum gross rent) so that these can be considered for services which secure any present tenants’ livelihoods:

  • 1 person household: 354,50 euros
  • 2 person household: 451,10 euros
  • 3 person household: 555,20 euros
  • 4 person household: 668,80 euros
  • 5 person household: 796,40 euros
  • 6 person household: 882,00 euros
  • 7 person household: 975,00 euros
  • 8 person household: 1,064.00 euros
  • 9 person household: 1,147.50 euros
  • every additional person: 76.50 euros

What is the process with the authorities?

Approval to rent a personally rented home is checked by the Office for Social and Housing Issues - housing agency for refugees- for all residents of city accommodation.

The following documents are required for assessment:

  • The tenant’s certificate with details on the property. This certificate is to be filled out by the landlord.
    Tenant’s certificate form (pdf, 30 kB) (pdf, 30 kB) ReadSpeaker
  • Copies of the residence permit and the national passport, if available, the permit notice for services from the JobCenter or the Office for Social and Housing Issues
  • The documents can be sent to the housing agency at the Office for Social and Housing Issues by e-mail Housing for Refugees, by fax on 0201 88-50237 or delivered in person during opening hours Monday-Friday from 8:30 am to 12:30 pm in Room 28.
  • The rental contract can be agreed as soon as approval is granted. A copy of this should then be presented at the housing agency.
  • If a deposit is required, the declaration of acceptance of the deposit for the rental can be approved by the housing agency
  • After moving in, it is required that you re-register at the city hall or at the immigration office. You should also present confirmation from the landlord.
    Landlord’s confirmation (pdf, 760 kB) (pdf, 760 kB) ReadSpeaker
  • Household electricity and energy can be applied for at the local providers. A release can be applied for to pay the broadcasting fee.
    Broadcasting fee

What support is granted?

  • Once a contract is agreed, an aid application can be made to furnish the house with furniture and household goods at the housing agency. The amount is determined according to the number of persons, the size and the furnishings in the property.
  • If renovation is required, this must be noted on the landlord’s confirmation form. A grant in the amount of 2.00 euros per square metre plus a lump sum of 15.00 euros for tools is provided for renovations without further application.

Office for Social and Housing Issues - Contact and Opening Times

Telephone: +49 201 88 55555
Fax: +49 201 88 50237
E-Mail: Housing for Refugees

Room 28, Steubenstraße 53, 45138 Essen

Opening hours:
Monday - Friday 8:30 am to 12:30 pm