Dortmund / Berlin / Hamburg (dpa / tmn) – Finding a flat is often a matter of luck. Those interested can, however, help their fortune a little: by making a good impression. What matters when people looking for a flat want to earn points with landlords.
Anyone applying for a flat should prepare as carefully as they would for a job application, advises Karsten Statz from Spar- und Bauverein Dortmund. The largest cooperative in North Rhine-Westphalia has around 12,000 apartments. With an average of just over five euros per square meter, the rent is very cheap. Bau-und Sparverein would like applicants to their desired apartments to have “a well-groomed, self-confident appearance and polite behavior”. including punctuality.
Stakeholders can earn extra points if they justify why they want to move into a co-operative apartment and how they feel connected to the neighborhood and community. Volunteering can also count. “It’s important to make a good overall impression,” says Statz.
Personality is also important
There are housing companies and private owners just like cooperatives. They want to find out about the personality of potential tenants as soon as possible on the first contact – be it in writing or by phone. For example, most want to know why they are looking for a place to live – for example, due to shorter commuting periods, family development or separation. Applicants should report this immediately.
On the other hand, income, Schuf’s information and a certificate of no rent debt should only be a problem if there is serious interest in housing after inspection. Owners cannot officially request this in advance. This is what the data protection law says.
Although there is no right to information, “tenants often have no option but to present documents, otherwise they have no chance of renting a flat,” says Jutta Hartmann of the German Tenants’ Association (DMB) in Berlin.
The tenant must match the property and neighborhood
Based on the information obtained, the owners expect an early indication of whether the candidates meet their expectations of an ideal tenant. Usually, it should suit not only the property on offer, but also the neighborhood and, of course, the landlord himself. The comparison “is the most important selection criterion,” says Hamburg broker Simone Foth, who is the social ambassador to the German Real Estate Association (IVD). It’s about homogeneity and avoiding conflicts.
However, housing ads do not always make it clear what is expected. This makes it difficult for potential customers to hit. Foth’s experience has shown that many use blindly. The broker still advises you to read it carefully. As even indirect information can help: the location described as being conveniently located is not for people in need of rest, the quiet complex is unlikely to be suitable for families.
Prepare your application as carefully as for work
Most people looking for a flat contact the landlord first via the internet and e-mail. Even with such contact, the cover letter should be prepared as carefully as when applying for a new job: factual and concise text to save the reader’s time with a large number of candidates, content as free as possible from spelling errors.
Digital App Folder vendors are targeting those who ship all documents with them. They advertise that landlords have access to all documents from the outset without much effort, meaning a candidate for an apartment can get a better starting position. In addition, a saved profile can usually be used several times, which in turn saves candidates’ work.
The Foth broker does not think about such offers. “I don’t look,” he says. Prefers direct personal contact. “It’s more time-efficient than working with unnecessary data,” he says. Candidates with four or six eyes can also convince with qualities that go beyond excellent papers: for example, sympathy and help.
© dpa-infocom, dpa: 220524-99-413210 / 4