Prolongation of residence title in Hamburg

The process duration for a new residence card, the “elektronischer Aufenthaltstitel” or “eAT” is approximately 6 to 8 weeks. Going without appointment is possible but takes 5-6 hours wait, with appointment there is no waiting time at all, however, be aware that there is also a lead time of approximately 4 weeks for the appointment. […]

Understanding Germans – No. 4: Life is risky and a risk should be insured.

Pic by Rainer Sturm / Pixelio.deThis is an extraxt from a most awesome article published by Adam Fletcher:”Everyone knows it’s a jungle out there. Hence why we created the phrase. So, before you go out into the jungle and start swinging from its high branches, it’s wise you be sensibly insured. Germans, being imaginative people, […]

How to…pregnancy in Germany

Pic (c) JMG PIXELIOAs I am writing this, I’m now 37 weeks pregnant and enjoying my Mutterschutz (maternity time) from the sofa at 6am. I keep thinking, how on earth would I have been able to manage this pregnancy in the US – if I’m lucky I sleep around 6 hours a night, sitting for […]

Understanding Germans – No. 2 Breakfasting

Photo: Heike-Fischer / PIXELIOIn Germany it’s a break”feast” not a break”fast”This is an extraxt from a most awesome article published by Adam Fletcher:”Coming from England, I was very surprised to see how important the kitchen is to the German people. The English tend to treat it purely as a room of function, like the toilet, […]


Christmas goose (Weihnachtsgans) (c) Jürgen Howaldt CC BY-SA 2.0 DE Thanksgiving is called „Erntedankfest“ in Germany. And whilst it is no public holiday in Germany it is still a popular period of the year. Mostly, it is celebrated by the churches and less within the families, but the history and the meaning is taught in kindergarten […]

The perfect German resumé

When applying for a job in Germany you need to provide two documents:a so-called application letter (“Bewerbungsschreiben”) anda CV.And copies of your qualifications of course.Both follow local custom and German application letters as well as CVs look different than other nation’s CVs. What they all face is: they need to reveal the sought for information […]

Real Estate Agent Commission: impacts of the change in law

Here’s a little report on what we have experienced since the change in law back in June this year.In general, the change in law said that from that point in time, ie. June 2015, the real estate agent is no longer allowed to charge a tenant his commission. The amount he usually charged in the […]

International Schools  in Germany


pic (c) Rainer Sturm / PIXELIO.deThe so-called “Einschulung” in Germany is a BIG thing! The “Einschulung” is the very first day a child goes to school as a 1st grader. It’s always on the first day after the summer holidays, and 2 or 3 days after school has started. It is therefore on a different […]

Necessary repairs when moving out in Germany

Aesthetic repairs

The BGH (“Bundesgerichtshof” = Main Court in Germany) just recently had to decide on a tenant’s obligation to renovate the apartment he lives in. The decision has been made in the tenant’s favor and gives him a significantly better position than in the past. It is valid for all rental agreements independent of when they […]

Side cost calculation – obligations of the landlord

Side cost may only be requested to be reimbursed by the tenant – the landlord is not allowed any kind of margin on top of the actual cost.But what are side cost?Sure – we are in Germany, so there is a law for it, the Betriebskostenverordnung. Actually, there are two. The Heizkostenverordnung also applies.The first […]