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Search for a flat and rents

When you look for a flat you can obtain regarding information from the  Wohnungsgesellschaften (housing associations) or on the websites of real-estate companies. Many newspapers also publish housing advertisements. Before entering in a tenancy agreement, you should make yourself acquainted with all details: the height of the rent, the ancillary costs (particularly the cost of heating) and the security deposit, the term of the tenancy agreement (for a limited or unlimited period), and renovation obligations.

When you hold a housing voucher, the Welfare and Integration Office will assist you in the procurement of a flat. This voucher can be applied for with the Amt für Soziales und Integration (Welfare and Integration Office).

When you take over the flat, you have to sign a handing-over protocol. By your signature, you acknowledge the condition of the flat at the moment you have taken it over. At a later date, your landlord may make you responsible for any defects that have not been recorded. The landlord may request a deposit as security for the flat. When you move out of the flat and leave it in bad condition or you have not completely paid the rent, he will retain the security deposit. The Jobcenter or the Welfare and Integration Office may grant a loan for the security deposit of your flat. In addition to the rent for the rooms you live in, you have to pay ancillary costs for heating and water as well as fees for sewage and waste. These costs are accounted for once a year. Usually you pay a certain amount for the ancillary costs every month, and get a final bill at the end of the year.

When you move to another flat, you are obliged to inform the Bürgeramt (Citizens' Office) of the City about your new address within 14 days. You should give the Post (post service) a redirection order, so that your letters and parcels are automatically sent to your new address. You have to pay a fee for this service. You should also use the period covered by this redirection order to inform banks, insurance companies, agencies and offices, etc. about your move. Please be aware that it is common in Germany to comply with a termination notification period of three months when you intend to move to another flat.

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Accommodation during asylum proceedings and in case of residence toleration

Accommodation during asylum proceedings and in case of residence toleration

For the period of the asylum proceedings or residence toleration, the Central Agency for the Reception of Asylum Seekers in Halberstadt has sent you to Dessau-Roßlau. The municipality provides accommodation for you, rented by the Amt für Soziales und Integration (Welfare and Integration Office), sublet to you.

The furniture (bed, cupboard, etc.) provided in the rooms you live in are the property of the municipality. The Welfare and Integration Office pays the rent to the landlord. The ancillary cost for electricity, water, heating and waste are also paid to the regarding providers. The employees of the Welfare and Integration Agency render assistance for the people accommodated in these flats during their asylum proceedings. For example, they provide the furniture for the flats and are your contacts if problems arise in connection with the flats.

Accommodation after a positive asylum decision

Accommodation after a positive asylum decision

As soon as the Federal Agency for Migration and Refugees has taken a positive decision in your proceedings, you are obliged to search for your own flat and rent it by yourselves. Should you not be able to personally care for your subsistence at that time, the As soon as the Federal Agency for Migration and Refugees has taken a positive decision in your proceedings, you are obliged to search for your own flat and rent it by yourselves. Should you not be able to personally care for your subsistence at that time, the Jobcenter bears the cost of the flat. File an application in due time and make use of the assistance of advisory agencies. In your search for a flat, you have to consider the standard values of the Jobcenter regarding the size and the rent of the flat. Before you enter in a tenancy agreement, obtain the consent of the Jobcenter to it. The signed tenancy agreement can be used to apply for the payment of the security deposit, the relocation costs and the initial equipment for the flat by the Jobcenter.

When you have found an appropriate flat, you have to contact the Stromversorger (electricity supplier), the Abfallwirtschaft (waste disposal company) and the Rundfunkbeitragsservice (radio toll service). You can agree with the Jobcenter that the payments you are granted for your accommodation are directly transferred to the regarding company or institution.

Resting times

Resting times

As stipulated by law, it is not allowed to make any noise between 10:00 p.m. and 06:00 a.m. as well as on Sundays and public holidays. Additionally, most houses have their specific house regulations. These are voluntary regulations that you accept to comply with by your signature on the tenancy agreement. The house regulations stipulate the rules for the cohabitation of all tenants in the house. Usually this includes a midday rest from 12:00 a.m. to 03:00 p.m. Should conflicts with neighbours arise, it is useful to try and talk with them to find an amicable solution. If this is not possible you can contact your landlord.

Environmental protection and cost savings

Environmental protection and cost savings

In Germany, waste is separately collected and disposed of for recycling purposes. Specific bins are provided for paper and cardboard, bio-waste (e.g. fruit and vegetable residuals), plastic and the remaining domestic waste. There are also collection points or containers for other kinds of waste, for example glass and hazardous waste (e.g. batteries, electrical devices, etc.).

At public spaces, like parks or roads, please use the existing waste bins. Should there be no such bins, please take the waste with you until you can dispose of it.

To protect the environment and to save cost, consume electricity and water sparingly. When you ventilate your flat, turn down the thermostats of your radiators. Ventilate all rooms twice to four times per day. Open the windows wide for some minutes to avoid the occurrence of mould and the associated risks for your health. Do not overheat the rooms. Check the power consumption of electrical devices and use as many power-saving devices as possible. Disconnect not used devices from the electricity network and open your water taps not longer than necessary. To reduce your power consumption and to save electricity and heating costs you may contact an advisory service of the Verbraucherzentrale (Consumer Centre). When you receive allowances from the Jobcenter, such advice is free for you.