Living in: Berlin
Berlin is a renter's paradise. Around 85 percent of Berliners rent, and landlords are restricted in how much they can raise the rent and how fast they can evict a non-paying tenant. Because of this, landlords are sticklers for requiring a credit check, proof of income and references from the previous landlord - most of which is impossible for ex-pats to provide. "It's better to look for a shared flat or a sublet," advised Korte. "Or someone who wants to move out, but not break their lease."
For those interested in buying, property is still cheap in Berlin and a good investment, according to Korte. "The market is going up and if you compare it to any other Germany city, it is ridiculously cheap," he said. The process is relatively informal: you make an offer and go to a notary and sign, without closing dates and so on.
Many new condos are going up on the city's empty lots. These construction gaps, left by the war or reunification, are becoming luxury buildings with all the amenities you would expect, and it is having a knock-on effect. "It isn't the super cheap place it was and the slacker factor has decreased," said Bradley. "But there are playgrounds everywhere, lots of green spaces and a tremendous amount of affordable culture."