Working in Germany: the official website
for qualified professionals

Settling in

To make sure that you feel at home in your flat and your neighbourhood, we have compiled a few helpful hints:

Introduce yourself. When you have settled in a bit, introduce yourself to your neighbours - this is not required, of course, but it is a way of getting to know people quickly and lets you know who your neighbours are.

Quiet hours. In general, noise is prohibited between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. so that everyone can get a good night's sleep. This means keeping music at a low volume and avoiding things like running your washing machine during those hours.

Pets. Under the law, you are allowed to keep small animals that are normally in cages, aquariums or terrariums. In the case of larger animals, such as dogs and cats, you need to obtain advance permission from your landlord. Whether a pet is large or small: If you want to get along with your landlord, make sure to give advance notice of any pet you want to bring into your home.

Cleaning responsibilities. Almost every German state has agreements specifying which tenant is responsible for cleaning the hallway or the walkway in front of the building. But don't worry - what may seem to be an annoying chore can quickly turn into a weekly opportunity to chat with your neighbours!

Tap water in Germany is carefully inspected, so it is normally perfectly suitable for drinking and cooking. In old buildings with old pipes, however, you should have the water tested.

Separating waste. Did you know? We Germans are the undisputed world champions in separating waste materials. With our blue, yellow, green and black containers, we collect, separate and sort our waste materials for recycling, which benefits the environment.

Albiruni from Indonesia

"Before I came to Germany, I’d never heard of sorting waste. Where I come from, rubbish is rubbish. The German waste-sorting system seemed complicated to me at first and it took a while for me to get used to it. The rules vary from town to town. The Internet was of great use to me in this case, as I found some useful information on the town’s website. It’s a nice feeling to be helping the environment at the same time."

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