Flatshares are housing situations where people who aren’t related or involved with each other share an apartment. Within such a flatshare, everyone has their own room and shares in addition communal spaces such as a kitchen, bathroom and living room, which can be used by all flatmates. Living in a flatshare means everyone has equal tenancy rights. While all flatmates live an independent life and are in no way obliged to spend time with each other, people might occasionally cook together, go out or take part in social activities.
Living space is offered by private individuals. This could be students, families, or single people of all ages who decide to offer a room in order to share the rent, or because they simply enjoy the company of others.
Rent will either be paid by the job centre, the social security office, Refugees Welcome, or the room will be free of charge. In any case, you don’t have to pay anything. Living together is unconditional and no one expects you to do anything in exchange, like babysitting, caring for the elderly, cleaning etc.
A buddy is someone you will meet before you are introduced to your potential flatmates. They will accompany you to the first meeting and will help you to decide whether to move in or not. They will also be available to help you if you have any other questions about flat shares.
During the first meeting you and the potential flatmates can get to know each other and you have the opportunity to also view the room in question. There is usually a buddy present when you view the flat. After the viewing you can decide whether you would like to take the room. You are never obliged to say yes; instead, you can decide freely if you want to move in or not.
Cats and dogs are popular pets in Germany so they might be living in the flat shares too. Most of them are vaccinated and not dangerous.
Yes, we also match women into female-only flat shares. A lot of flat shares also support LGBTQI refugees.
Unfotunately not all flatshares are free of racism but we try to exclude problematic people or flats as early on as possible. If you should encounter any racism despite this, please contact us immediately. Of course you can practice your religion.
In most flatshares each flatmate buys and prepares their own food. Sometimes you might also cook together. A lot of flatshares have a cleaning plan that all flatmates nees to stick to. This only relates to the communal areas and defines whose turn it is to clean. Keeping your room tidy and clean is your own responsibility. Normally there will not be a cleaner.
Yes, you can maintain your eating habits and do not need to eat anything that you don’t like or that doesn’t conform with your faith or conviction. Many people in Germany decide to not consume meat (vegetarians) or any animal products (vegans) for ecological and political reasons rather than religious beliefs.
Many flat shares will have a kitty where each flatmate pays in a small amount so you can buy communal goods such as toilet paper or cleaning products.
As most refugees live in a very uncertain situation, you should be relatively flexible with regards to your plans. Refugees often have a hard time making long term plans. It might happen that you only get to know your new flatmates days before he or she moves in. According to experience, preparatory communication with us takes 2 – 4 weeks and assures that important questions and major issues are clarified in advance.
No, we are happy about any kind of residential accommodation e.g. families, couples, singles, etc.
This is, first of all, up to you. For the refugee not to have to remain in another state of uncertainty and be able to plan ahead to a certain degree, we arrange placements only for a minimum period of three months or more. For shorter periods of time, we can possibly forward you to other facilities or institutions. Placements with a cost coverage by responsible public offices can only be managed by us for a placement time of 6 months or more.
We think that the refugee should live under the same conditions as the rest of the flatmates. For this reason we will only accept accomodations which can offer the refugee his or her own room. Understanding that placing refugees into homes is about living together, we do not arrange placements in vacant apartments.
Generally, refugees should finance themselves, or in certain cases they may receive support by the government.
We are happy to help you find a suitable way of raising the money for the rent.
In this case the same will happen as in any other shared flat: You try to find a solution together – if necessary we will help out. A buddy accompanies each placement process as an additional contact person. If this does not work, there is the possibility to dissolve the housing situation.
If he or she “legally“ resides in Germany it depends on your federal state how difficult or easy it will be for him or her to move from a mass accommodation to your flat. However, we want to encourage you also to welcome “illegal“ refugees.
This depends on many factors. The best scenario is that you decide to continue living together after the planned time and the flatmate begins to feel settled in Germany. It would also be great if the refugee could use new language skills to increase their options in accomondation and employment. Hopefully, sharing your home with a refugee will help broaden their prospects and welcome them to the country.
No, “Refugees Welcome“ is a non-profit organisation. Our core team is paid by donations. However, you can support our work with a donation to the association Mensch Mensch Mensch which carries this project. Our bank details are:
Mensch Mensch Mensch e.V.
We can provide donation receipts.
Here you can support flats financially: Donations for the rent of flatshares matched by “Refugees Welcome”