Expats in search of accommodation in Kraków will find a variety of options available to them. When considering where to live, a number of factors should be taken into consideration, including budget, size and lifestyle.
Working expats will want to make sure there’s an easy way to commute to the office, while parents will benefit from living close to their children's school. Living in an area well served by public transport makes getting around easier, but prices tend to be higher in these areas due to this convenience.
Types of accommodation in Kraków
There is a range of accommodation in Kraków. Expats will find everything from modern studio apartments and older Soviet-era flats, to villas and freestanding houses with gardens.
Both furnished and unfurnished accommodation is available in Kraków, but most accommodation comes unfurnished.
Many expats moving to Kraków for the first time opt for short-term accommodation initially while they get to know the city. It may be difficult to rent an apartment on a short-term basis, and expats may therefore have more luck with a guest house, hotel or serviced room.
Finding accommodation in Kraków
There are a number of ways to get started on searching for accommodation in Kraków, even from a distance. Online property portals and websites of estate agencies can be a good way to learn about the various areas and what to expect in terms of pricing. That said, expats should never agree to rent a property or pay any money towards it without having seen it in person.
Once in Kraków, the easiest route is to enlist a real estate agent, preferably from an agency experienced with expats. Hiring a bilingual agent who can speak both English and Polish will go a long way towards easing any communication difficulties. These agents will also have a good knowledge of the various areas in the city and can guide expats through the leasing process.
Renting accommodation in Kraków
Once an expat has found their ideal new home, they will need to go through the process of signing the lease, paying the deposit and finally moving in.
Signing the lease
Leases in Poland are most commonly signed for 12 months, or sometimes longer. Before signing, expats should be very sure of their length of stay as they may not be able to break the lease if they need to leave the country suddenly.
If the landlord presents a Polish lease, it is strongly recommended to ask for an English translation, and be sure to read it carefully.
A typical deposit in Poland is one month’s worth of rent, though some landlords may charge a double or even triple deposit. As long as the property is returned in a good condition at the end of the lease, the deposit should be returned to the tenant in full.
Utilities such as electricity, water and gas are not usually included in rental prices in Poland. To avoid later disputes, expats should always ensure that they have full clarity with their landlord on this matter. It should also be stipulated in the lease.
►Learn about the job market by reading Working in Kraków.
"Well, this has developed since I first came here. There are plenty of options now and you can find the info in English, unlike 10 years back. You can choose to live in a dorm, if you are a student. There are also private student houses, or you can choose to rent an apartment with other people. I recommend looking at the Facebook expat groups. You will often find there are people looking for rentals or advertising apartments or rooms to rent." Read more about Anda's expat experience in Krakow and she's adjusted to life in Poland.
Are you an expat living in Krakow?
Expat Arrivals is looking for locals to contribute to this guide, and answer forum questions from others planning their move to Krakow. Please contact us if you'd like to contribute.
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