Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Impossible is Nothing: Apartment Hunting in Copenhagen

So now that I know I will be living in Copenhagen, Denmark for the next year, I have started in earnest the long and grueling process of apartment hunting. From my previous experience apartment hunting in Stockholm, I know that this process is NOT going to be easy and apartments in the city center are definitely NOT cheap! I was very lucky during my Stockholm apartment search in the fact that I had a "sweet" Swedish friend in Chicago who aided me greatly in my search. After I nearly fell for several scams on Swedish Craigslist, my friend helped me compose an apartment want ad in Swedish and we posted it on Consequently, I was lucky to find an amazing apartment in central Stockholm, just 15 minutes via the tube to my work! However... I am not sure I will be quite as lucky this time in my Copenhagen apartment search :(

I have several things working against me this time:
1. Time- For Stockholm, I started my search 3 months in advance, while this time I only have 2 months total to find a suitable apartment, obtain a residence permit and pack and ship my belongings(and I have a massive amount of belongings, aka clothes...), and adjust to living in Denmark before school starts.
2. Budget- I am working with a smaller budget this time. In Stockholm I paid 1200 USD/month for an one bedroom apartment and this time, I am working with a smaller budget of 1000 USD. I am not sure that is enough for a furnished one bedroom or studio in central CPH.
3. Everything Danish- Sadly, I don't have any Danish friends living in Chicago, and my Danish language skills are all but non-existent. Additionally, while Stockholms neighborhoods were very distinct because each one was located on a separate island, I am still struggling to understand the unique dynamic of the various neighborhoods of Copenhagen.

My search this time will be further compounded by the fact that I do not know how to ride a bike... and this seems to be a major mode of transportation in Copenhagen. I know what you are thinking, how can I be Chinese and not know how to ride a bike?!(lowers head in shame) But in all seriousness, I am really not sure if I should be living near the tube stop? the bus stop? or .uh..a bike shop!? Also, I want to make sure I focus on the right neighborhoods. Last time in Stockholm, while both my apartment and neighborhood were beautiful, I unwittingly ended up in a very wealthy and very "old" part of Stockholm, and by old, I am not referring to the architecture, but rather to the fact that I was a good half century younger than the majority of my neighbors! So, this time in Copenhagen I would really like to live somewhere young and...dare I say hip!? :D

My apartment hunt has just begun and I already feel like I have gotten myself in over my head. I guess it doesn't help that I keep trolling Danish apartment hunting forums and reading horror stories of scams and fruitless apartment searches(yikes!). So dear friends and readers, any CPH neighborhood advice, transportation knowledge, and magical apartment hunting secrets will be deeply appreciated...anything to help a nomad like me to find an affordable, convenient and fun place to settle down (for a year)!

-Ran- the homeless

KĂžbenhavn-Can I afford to live here?

I am listening to:

**Thank you everyone for the support, here is a growing list of websites that have been recommended to me for apartments in CPH:


  1. Good luck finding a home! I suggest you make friends quick who can suggest you good rentals or ask your friends via social networking sites if they know someone living in the area who can help you find an affordable decent home. Also, you might want to hire a realtor who speaks English and Danish to help you secure a nice home.

  2. Reading forums may or may not be helpful, since the contributors are strangers to you. Also, you have no way of knowing how credible the sources are. I suggest you ask for professional help instead. It's not easy to do the apartment hunt yourself, considering how you are not familiar with the place. Of course, internet exists to make it easier to search for things like this. You can do the visit or ocular inspection once you have contacted the owner or a reliable agent.

    -Casandra Roberts @ GatewaySelect

  3. Casandra’s got a point there. People have subjective opinions about certain stuff. I think the wise thing to do is seek the help of professionals, so as to ease your worries about apartment hunting.

    Julio Oyola

  4. Hey guys ! Apartment hunting in CPH is really REALLY difficult. I am moving to my THIRD apartment in less than 8 months of living here :(

  5. It’s bad that you had to move again after all the effort and headache you got for finding the perfect apartment. You have to go back to the very start! So, what was wrong with the most recent one? I hope you found the next one with little effort, and that this one lasts for at least a year, this time. Good luck!

    Juana Adams @ Manage My Property

  6. you should make sure and the focus only on right neighborhoods .
    you are so lucky because you got your dream house and this is not easy to get Aim of life.

    Student accommodation close to Manchester University | Student accommodation close to Manchester


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