Living in Berlin, Germany part 1
Prices are still cheaper than other parts of Europe, especially London, where rents are still pretty high, and there are many opportunities for musicians, artists or start-up companies. It is quickly gaining an international reputation, as there are students and people from all over the world here.
The unique aspect of Berlin is that it is still extremely new as an international city. There is a lot of growth and potential in areas of business, real estate, art and culture.
The first few months can be challenging – depending on your situation. If you know people in Berlin, in does make it a lot easier to get past some of the hurdles. AND if you speak some German, it will be easier!
Some things have to be addressed before moving forward with your move to Berlin.
IF you plan on working legally, you will need proper documents, unless you already are an EU citizen. Assuming you can live and work here, the first thing you need to do is register with the Buergeramt. If you go to Berlin.de, all the instructions are there how to do it – but in German. There are other websites around explaining the process, but some are a bit outdated. The laws changed as of Nov 2015 so you must have the 2 forms that the Buergeramt give you. You can download them from the website.
One is your basic info and the other is the rental agreement from your landlord – you have to make sure it is signed from the landlord. The Buergeramt does not take written hand letters.
You should register with the Buergeramt of the quarter you live in, however it isn’t necessary. Prenzlauer Berg / Pankow has a lot of expats so it seems doing it there is the fastest. You can get in the same day sometimes, so don’t pay a lot of attention to what the people say, telling you you need to wait weeks – it isn’t so. Just call the number (030) 90 24 99 0 (or have someone who speaks German call the number) and make an appointment. Then take those 2 documents there with all your information written on it, and your passport / or ID card and they will register you and give you the receipt.
After this, they will send you a Steuer ID (usually takes a couple weeks) and that will allow you to work in Germany. With this, you can work — you are now on your way to “officially” living in Berlin 🙂