Everything you need to know about registering your address in Germany
When relocating to Germany or staying for business trips longer than three months, you may encounter the unpleasantries of the German bureaucratic system.
The Einwohnermeldeamt, or the Resident’s Registration Office, will be the first exposure to this system for many. At this office, you must register your new address within 7-14 days of arriving in Germany. We recommend getting this done as soon as possible, as you will face many limitations in the country without this confirmation paper.
Relocation to a new country is stressful enough for even the most seasoned business travellers. We’ve created this guide to prepare you and ensure you won’t have to make a second trip to the Einwohnermeldeamt.
1. Yes, you must register your address to live in Germany
Registration of address is the most important thing you have to do after your move to Germany.
Whether your business trip lasts longer than 3 months or you’re settling in Germany for good, your family and you must register your address with the local authorities of the German city where you will live. Even German citizens have to register their address.
2. Where should you register your German address
Once you find a home, make an appointment with the Bürgeramt While it does seem like a hassle to have to physically wait at the Bürgeramt instead of just registering online, you’ll soon learn that this may be one of the simplest steps of German bureaucracy, and it’s also free of charge. Completing this step promptly after arriving in Germany is important since you need it to start a bank account, take out health insurance, apply for a resident permit, and more.
3. Documents required to register your address in Germany
It’s important to go prepared to your registration appointment if you don’t want to end up making a second trip. Documents required may vary by city, but most registration offices ask for the following.
5. What to do if you haven't found accommodation in the first 2 weeks
It’s important to note that you cannot list a hotel when registering your address in Germany, as you need to submit a proper tenancy or sublet contract from a landlord. For business trips lasting longer than a month, a temporary apartment is both a comfortable and practical choice.
However, if you have not found accommodation before your trip to Germany or within the first 14 days, we’ve created a smart and easy solution to find temporary accommodation completely online. With Homelike, it is super easy to find temporary furnished accommodation where everything you need is already set up.
6. What to do if you move to a new address
Any time you move to a new address in Germany, you must go to the Einwohnermeldeamt and register your new address. This is known as the Ummeldung. Thankfully, the process is the same and since you’ve already completed the process once, you’ll know exactly what to expect.
8. What to do about your address if you move out of Germany
When your business trip ends or you move abroad, you will need to go back to the registration office one last time to deregister your address—this is known as an Abmeldung.
This process is absolutely necessary, especially if you need to cancel contracts like phone, internet, gym membership, or the Rundfunkbeitrag.