I'm an undergraduate in Singapore who is considering in taking up a 6-month internship in Frankfurt. My biggest concern is finding an accommodation as I'm planning to survive as much as possible on my internship remuneration for the 6 months.
Could you please kindly answer the following questions that I have:
1) Which websites would you recommend to find an accommodation that is affordable?
2) Does the Studentenwerk/Studentenwohnheim in Germany accept foreign students who are not studying in Germany?
3) Lastly, are there any points I should take note of when looking for an accommodation?
This list is a starting point to get to grips with German real estate "lingo". You have no chance of deducing on yourself that "2ZKB" means "2 Zimmer + Küche + Bad (a two-bedroom flat).
Make an overview list to keep track of the people you have contacted, and whom not yet. Best to do that on the computer and insert the links to the ads.
Hello Chin Yann,
For regular housing, Frankfurt is one of the really expensive cities, like Munich.
1) Websites (the really obvious ones):
kleinanzeigen.ebay.de (ads category "Immobilien" > "Auf Zeit & WG")
A good word to search for is "Zwischenmiete", places offered for intermediate rent. Students will often rent out their appartments or shared flat rooms while they themselves are doing their compulsory internship, bachelor thesis or the like. With furniture, of course. And of course you want something furnished. "Studenten" is also a good search term.
2) Ask! Sometimes they don't get these houses full and will accept a contingent of non-students, then typically restricted to young people e.g. still making an apprenticeship or not having a regular job yet for a different reason (like doing the "voluntary National Service"). You may very well be eliglible with your internship.
Furniture: Many dorm rooms are not furnished, but some are.
3) Some people behind ads on the internet will only be available by telephone, and you may only see the phone number when registered on the platform. 1) Calling is scary, but you can do it. Use the German you have and slow clear English if necessary. 2) This is rather obvious, but: if you call via your regular telephone connection/sim card, these calls may get expensive very quickly.
Be aware that there are fraudsters. For us locals, they are (or should be) easy to tell from the non-fraudsters: They will want payment before you've seen anything in person. Since you must make arrangements from Singapore (apparently), you are at a disadvantage. You could pretend you have a friend in the Frankfurt area who does the "scouting" for you, and ask to arrange a showing of the room for your friend. If they decline and reply "That's unlucky because I'm currently in Ireland, but...", do not pay anything.