House Hunting in Bavaria
There is adequate off-post housing: apartments, penthouses, maisonette apartments (which are two-floored apartments), townhouses, duplexes and free-standing houses.
The square meter prices are high and, therefore, some units will be priced higher than the Overseas Housing Allowance rate (OHA). Apartments, townhouses and duplexes are generally less expensive and are easier to find.
Large homes or free-standing single houses, with multiple bathrooms, large yards and 5+ bedrooms are more difficult to find and are usually located outside school zones.
Use German real estate agencies (immobilien) at your own risk. These agencies charge hidden fees and verbal agreements can be binding.
Off-Post Referral Services
> Off-Post Housing Website
The Off-Post Housing website, HOMES.MIL contains the housing referral listings in Bavaria. Search "USAG Bavaria".
Aspen Consulting Contractor is the Community Home Finding, Relocation and Referral Service office. Services are free to military and U.S. government civilians. They do not serve contractors.
All homes listed on the website are equipped with a furnished kitchen and light fixtures, and managed by landlords that accept the housing contract rules.
Prior to arrival, and only if eligible for off-post housing, visit the HOMES.MIL website to get an idea of the types and sizes of homes in Bavaria. This may also help customers determine the amount of furniture to ship and leave in storage.
Please keep in mind that German homes can be a lot smaller compared to homes in the U.S. Average room sizes are smaller, and may be spread out over 2-4 floors. The yards are usually small to medium-sized and some homes do not have closets.
Free-standing, single-family homes are significantly more expensive and harder to find than apartments. Large apartments near all the bases in the Bavaria area are available. Some are spread out over two floors, giving the feeling of a house.
> Off-Post Referral Forms
U.S. Government Civilians: The housing brief is a mandatory requirement. Please bring a copy of PCS orders and a completed DD 1746 FORM to the housing brief.
The housing office will use the DD 1746 to update or create the customer housing record.
Reminder: Service members and U.S. government civilians should not enter into a rental contract (written or verbal) in advance of the housing brief or in-processing step.
Contract, related forms, regulation
- Furniture and appliance agreement
- Army in Europe Pamphlet 750 - Domestic Appliance Repair and Replacement
Garrison off-post rental contract review procedures:
- Prospective tenant and landlord or property manager complete and sign the contract cover sheet.
- Prospective tenant schedules contract review with the housing office within two business days from the date the landlord signs the contract for a date not to exceed four work days.
- The contract review appointment takes an average of 60 minutes.
Notice to service members and U.S. government employees on TDY or deployment orders: In the absence of the sponsor, a power of attorney is required for the HSO to approve a garrsion off-post rental contract.
Notice to Prospective Landlord, Property Manager and/or Real Estate Agent.
- The prospective tenant will notify property agent of the contract review appointment date and time.
- Request all property agents to be available via telephone for the duration of the contract review appointment.
OHA for Military Off-Post Residents
While stationed overseas and living off-post, military personnel will receive OHA instead of Basic Allowance Housing (BAH).
Rent caps for off-post housing are established by rank. A service member will either receive OHA based on rent or the rent cap, whichever is less. Service member will also receive a monthly utility allowance that will help offset utility costs.
Move-In Housing Allowance
Move In Housing Allowance, or MIHA, is an allowance for off-post rentals for military personnel only. There are several types including miscellaneous and in special cases the realtor fee.
Miscellaneous allowance is a one-time payment designed to defray the setup cost for an off-post rental, such as transformers, curtains and other items.
MIHA for realtor fee reimbursement: Realtor fees may be authorized for service members that have special housing needs. For example:
- Five or more bedrooms
- ADA compliant home for handicapped family members
- Family members enrolled in the Exceptional Family Member Program
- Circumstances that are deemed unique and unusual by the Housing Chief or Garrison Commander
Advance Housing Allowance – Army Only
Take a signed copy of the USAG Bavaria rental contract to your unit personnel administration (S1) to request an advance Advance Housing Allowance form to pay the first month rent and security deposit, that typically equals two months rent. For details, contact your unit finance office
All military reservist on per diem for six month or more must contact the UPH office for assistance with short-term furnished off-post apartments.
Inspections for Military and Civilian personnel
It is highly recommended that all military and civilian personnel have an assignment (in-check) and termination (out-check) home inspection.
Initial in-check and final out-check inspections will be conducted with the service member or employee (tenant), the Landlord and one of the Aspen inspectors.
Schedule all inspection appointments with Aspen at least 2 weeks in advance.
All pre-out Inspection requests have to be approved in advance. It's recommended to identify any outstanding issues or deficiencies in enough time to correct them prior to scheduling the final out-check inspection.
The pre out-check should be completed in the presence of the landlord or the landlord's property manager.
German Laws & Quiet Hours
Landlord rental law
Landlords in Germany have the right to choose their tenants based on personal preference. A Landlord or property manager may interview potential tenants and then choose their tenants.
German rental law allows for landlords to request to assess pets for behavioral concerns and fit in the neighborhood. For example, a landlord may ask the prospective tenant to meet his/her dog and then both landlord and tenant may take a walk with the dog. If the dog appears untrained or aggressive, the landlord may decide not to rent the building to the tenant. A landlord may ask for a pet deposit.
- German law places limits on noise levels. Evening quiet hours are from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.
- Daytime quiet hours are from 1–3 p.m.
- The use of lawn mowers and other gardening machines,or any noise making machine is from 7 a.m.–1 p.m. and from 3–7 p.m.
- On Sundays and German Federal holidays, quiet hours are 24 hours - all day and night.
- Special occasions, such as the World Cup or a wedding are the exceptions to the quiet hours law.