How to succeed in the Cologne housing market
Tips on finding a flat

Living space in Cologne is scarce. No fear! We have some tips on how to find a cheap flat and what else to consider!

How much does a room in Cologne cost?

According to the latest survey by the German Studentenwerk, a student in Cologne spends an average of 367.00 euros per month on rent including utilities. Across Germany the average is 323.00 euros.

When is the best time to find a room?

It is easier to find a room during the semester than at the beginning. Future freshman should look for a room or an apartment directly after receiving the letter of admission to the university. Don't wait - the sooner one looks, the sooner something will come up. Submit an application for a place in a residence hall even before admission. If studies are already underway, then it is best to look for a new residence towards the end of the semester when many students move out and apartments or rooms become available.

Dormitories from the Cologne Studierendenwerk

These dorms are still the best and cheapest way to live while studying. But our residence halls are very much in demand and very limited. So apply quickly! Here students can find more information about the application process and our dormitories.

    Mein Zuhause in Köln - Private Room Placement

    The project Mein Zuhause in Köln (My Home in Cologne) from the Studierendenwerk has been successfully arranging private rooms and apartments for students for years. Find out more about Mein Zuhause in Köln here.

      Housing for help - volunteer instead of paying rent

      Housing for help is the name of the housing partnership concept between the Cologne Housing Authority and the University of Cologne. Students can live rent-free through this program and in return help the landlords do housework and chores. The rule of thumb is: one hour of volunteering per month per square meter of living space. 

      Click here to find out more about → Housing for help.


        Living for help - living in inclusive flats

        In the inclusive living housing in Cologne-Rodenkirchen disabled people and students live together in a community. Up to 11 students can live here rent-free. They help out by doing tasks in their shared flat by the hour. Students should be between 18 and 24 years old and plan to live in the shared flat for at least two years. The housing project is unique in NRW and a new form of living with many advantages and opportunities for everyone.

        To the website → Inclusive living

          Social housing, residence entitlement certificate and housing allowance

          Social housing is housing whose construction has been subsidised by public funds and which is therefore available at lower rents than those available on the free housing market. 

          To be able to move into social housing, a certificate of eligibility for housing (Wohnberechtigungsschein) must be obtained. This entitles low-income citizens to move into social housing. Find out how to obtain a Wohnberechtigungsschein (WBS) at → this link.

          Wohnberechtigungsschein (WBS) and advice centre for people looking for accommodation.

          Housing allowances are also available. Here’s how to apply for a housing allowance at the Wohngeldstelle of the → city of Cologne.

            Gebausie - Gesellschaft für Bauen und Wohnen GmbH der Stadt Brühl

            Gebausie is a partner of the Studierendenwerk and offers apartments for students.

            Click here to go to the → Gebausie

              GAG offers dormitories for students

              GAG is also a partner of the Studierendenwerk and offers apartments for students.
              Click here to go to  → GAG

                What to consider when an apartment is offered through an estate agent.

                You only have to pay a commission if:

                • The brokerage fee or commission doesn’t exceed two cold rents plus VAT.
                • The new rental contract was signed with the broker's mediation. This does not apply to extended rental contracts.
                • The apartment is not owned or managed / rented by the agent.
                • A brokerage agreement was signed beforehand.

                The fastest way to complete your application - online.
                Online Application

                Are you interested in a room in one of our dormitories or an apartment?

                Apply directly via our online application portal. We will register your request there and send you suitable offers as soon as a place becomes available.