Housing in Heidelberg

The admission for Heidelberg University does not automatically come with a reservation for a room. On this webpage, newly admitted students for Scientific Computing may find instructions and helpful tipps for applying for a room in Heidelberg. We can only direct you to where you can look for a room on your own.

Please be aware that there are 36.000 students enrolled at Heidelberg University and competition for cheap, central and nice rooms in Heidelberg is highest in October and April, the months in which semesters start and during which all new students are arriving.

We advise you, to read our tipps carefully and follow the instructions.

[Student Dormitories]   [Free Housing Market]   [Temporary Accommodations]

Student Dormitories

The most convenient kind of accommodation especially for foreign students who are new in Germany are the students dormitories run by the Studierendenwerk (Student Services).

We cannot make a reservation for you, so you must apply on your own.

The application and admission for a student dormitory of the Studierendenwerk Heidelberg can be made online or in written form with the form. This is possible soonest 9 months ahead of the desired contract start. 6 months after receipt the application is invalid. Before the expiry date, the application can be extended for further 6 months.

How to Apply

There is a service packet, which comes with various bonuses and most importantly an early response if your application is successful. You will find all necessary information on the homepage of the Studierendenwerk (students dormitory office). Please note that you will have to pay the rent for one whole semester at once. The number of rooms available this way is severely limited, so apply as early as possible.
Remark: While the pricing of the ServicePaket (2.500.-) seems high at first glance, it adds up to the value offered: 6 months of accommdation (6x 300.-) plus semeser ticket (185.-) plus Campus card with initial credit (100.-) plus the weekend-excursion to Munich (250.-) -- but the most important aspect is that it is a no-hazzle way to get your accommodation and all initial stuff while you are still abroad *and* all dormitories in the package are located on the new campus - within walking distance of MATHEMATIKON.

For a regular application for a students dormitory room you need to fill out an application with the Studierendenwerk. You can give three preferences in which house you would like to live. The dormitories are listed here.
You can also choose the desired type of room. We recommend you to choose all four options.
To increase your chances of being accepted please also fill in at "notes", you are open for any kind of type of room and house.
After clicking send, you must confirm your application via a confirmation link that you will receive by e-mail. If you do not get an e-mail with a confirmation link or if you fail to click on the link within 7 days, your application will not be processed! Therefore, please check your Spamfolder or try a different e-mail address if you do not get this confirmation e-mail with the link!!!

Important Deadlines

The deadlines stated on the Studierendenwerk homepage for application to the dormitories are January 15 for the summer semester and July 15 for the winter semester. When you apply, your name will be put on a waiting list. You can send a scan of your admission letter later. Do not wait for your admission letter to arrive in order to apply.
Note that an application is not a reservation! There is no guarantee that you can be offered a room and whether any room offered to you will be located at either of your preferred addresses. We have no influence on this process. Placement depends entirely upon availability of rooms and the number of rooms is unfortunately severely limited.
The only advice we can give you is to apply as early as possible.


The admission follows the chronicle order of entrance of applications. If the number of applicants is higher then the number of available places, the applicant will be put on a waiting list. This waiting list is crucial for the placement, if a room in the student dormitory gets vacant. Therefore, students will not get a rejection mail, once all rooms are assigned. It is always possible, that a room gets vacant and you get it. Therefore, please inform the Studierendenwerk regularly, that you are still interested in renting a room. This also applies the other way round. If you have found another accommodation, please inform the Studierendenwerk as well, so they can take you off the waiting list.

A priority placement is possible in a case of hardship. For example, if one or more of the following circumstances applies:

  • Particularly difficult financial situation.
  • Difficulties of foreign students to find an accommodation at the free housing market.
  • Physical disability or severe illness.
  • Return after a study related internship or stay abroad.
  • Allocation of a university place by succession move-up procedure (Nachrückverfahren).

A subordinate placement is made:

  • By admission of a second degree (excludes consecutive courses of studies).
  • If standard period of study is exceeded.
  • If the age limit of BAföG is exceeded.

Applicants can be rejected, if:

  • Their tenancy in a student dormitory of Studierendenwerk Heidelberg has been terminated once before.
  • They have rejected an offered place in the student domitory.

The Studierendenwerk is entitled to make a selection by certain personal characteristics to guarantee a socially stable structure of the residents and a balanced structure of the residential estate. The admission of foreign short term students within a frame of an exchange program, a partner program or a cooperation program is made on the basis of a contingent agreement with the respective Universities. The selection of students in this case is made by the Universities under their own responsibility.

In any way, please do not rely on the application for student dorm and apply also for other places. The competition for affordable rooms in Heidelberg is highest when semester starts (April and October).

Free Housing Market

Private Student Dormitories

There are also private student dormitories that are not run by the Heidelberg University Studierendenwerk. You will find a list posted under the following link:

Some actively want to increase their number of international residents so check their homepages and call or write them. They have application deadlines too, so the earlier you contact them, the better your chances.

You have not gotten a reply by the Studierendenwerk by mid-February or mid-July or a reservation in a private students dormitory... What now?

You should start searching online for a private accomodation!

Private Flats and Rooms

Private rooms are offered on different websites, depending on what you are looking for. We highly suggest to make use of all given links while looking for a room or an apartment.

Heidelberg is very well served by local public transport. So you can also look for a room outside of Heidelberg. Therefore, cities and towns outside of Heidelberg are also attractive as places to live and are often cheaper. To name a few:

  • Dossenheim
  • Schriesheim
  • Mannheim
  • Schwetzingen
  • Eppelheim
  • Wiesloch-Walldorf
  • Neckargmünd
  • Ludwigshafen


If you are searching for a flat (Wohnung), you can look here: A one room flat is 1-Zimmer-Wohnung.


Appartment sharing is very common for students in Germany and there are a lot of room offers in WGs (Wohn-Gemeinschaft - shared appartments). One very popular homepage is the following:

There are others of course too:

You can also join the following group on facebook:
„WG-gesucht | WG Zimmer & Wohnung Heidelberg“

Check the listings and contact the people who are offering a room if you like the ad. Please be aware that usually the rent shown first is only the one without utilities (Kaltmiete). In order to know how much the flat/room costs alltogether, look for "Warmmiete" or "Gesamtmiete". Carefully read what they are searching for (male/female, non-smoking/smoking...) and what they offer (furnished room, non furnished, size of the room, location of the apartment...). As you will be sharing an apartment with strangers, introduce yourself, give them some details about you and tell them, how you prefer shared living to be like. (Quiet or lots of partys for example. They usually describe life in their WG. Compare their description to what you want.)
Ask for an interview via Skype as people will want to get to know you before offering you to move in.

While you are still abroad, it is most difficult to find a room this way, as most people want to get to know you in person before offering you to move in. Also you should if at all possible visit the apartment and have a look at the room and flat mates to see what it is like before signing any leasing agreement!

In any case: Please be aware that there may also be scam offers. Don't wire transfer any money in advance if you have not seen the room or met the people living there! Be weary of keywords like "landlord is living abroad", "sending the money in advance" or "getting the key/leasing agreement sent via mail/UPS...". If you are unsure, copy parts of the email and google it or check https://www.scamwarners.com/.

If you are asked to wire transfer any money in advance, offer to pay cash upon arrival when you move in. If your landlord absolutely refuses, this might be a scam. If they ask you to pay via Western Union or Money Gram it is definitely a scam!

Scam Example

you really sound great......never mind i can reserve the apartment for you till your arrival date, since there is a perfect procedure that we both have to undergo before you can proceed with the payment,However If you really have interest in renting the apartment just let me have your -FULL NAME,YOUR -EXACT ARRIVAL DATE, -YOUR DEPARTURE DATE,-YOUR CURRENT ADDRESS -SCANNED COPY OF YOUR PASSPORT ID, So that i can quickly instruct our family lawyer to prepare the tenant agreement form for you, to see the terms and condition of the contract and if you are okay with the terms and condition then you can proceed with the rent and security deposit to my mother through Western Union Money Transfer so that the apartment can be reserve for you till your arrival date because there are alot of people that also have interest in renting the apartment,but my mother prefer the most serious person who pay her first.. The signed agreement form will be send to you first through attached mail(with the scanned page of my international passport).for you to read and understand that you re dealing with right person,after which you proceed with the payment ,i'll now send you the original copy through a registered courier to your address for you to sign and bring along with you when moving in. Have a nice day,Looking forward in hearing from you.
Best Regards"

It is easier to find an apartment and avoid scam offers once you get to Heidelberg, as then you can visit the flat, meet potential flatmates and check out the apartment. This however will take time! Do not expect to find a good room within a few days.

Therefore, if you haven’t found a permanent accomodation before you get to Heidelberg:
Make a reservation in a temporary place to stay for at least a month!


When deciding for or against an apartment or a room, do not only consider the physical distance to the universiy when looking at google maps!

The public transport in Heidelberg is very reliable, offers many connections and is quite fast.
You can get a "semester ticket" (ticket for the public transport in the Rhein-Neckar Region including Heidelberg, Mannheim and surrounding areas) for about 155€. It is valid for the full semester i.e. 6 months.
If you want to check the connection between your prospective apartment and the university, ask for the closest train, tram or bus station(s). The Mathematikon is located in the Neuenheimer Feld next to the tram and bus stop "Bunsengymnasium". Then head to the following homepage, enter your departure and arrival stations into the search fields and check how long it would take to get from a to b. Please remember to adjust the day and time of the day so you are not looking for connections sunday night 3am.

Also consider getting a bicycle. You can get around town very fast that way as well.

Finally join our facebook group: „Master Scientific Computing (Heidelberg University)“
That way you can get in contact with students already studying Scientific Computing and ask them for their experiences and advice.

Temporary Accommodations

If you do not have a reservation for a permanent accommodation by the time you will get to Heidelberg, make a reservation in a temporary place for at least a month. This is very important! If you get lucky and find a good room fast, you can cancel your remaining reservation. But if you just make a reservation for a few days and do not find anything, the youth hostel may be booked and you might not have a place to sleep! Remember, there are thousands of students coming to Heidelberg and looking for a permanent accommodation at the beginning of every semester.

These are some options of temporary accommodations:

  • Youth Hostels
  • Jugendherberge Heidelberg
  • Steffi’s Hostel
  • Lotte Hostel
  • Boarding House Heidelberg
  • "Gästezimmerzentrale"

Their rooms can be somewhat expensive, but their service is great, you will get a response quickly and most importantly you will not be homeless!

At the beginning of every winter semester the situation is most dire as most students start their studies then. For this reason the Studierendenwerk offers temporary emergency quarters during this time. You can find the details here: www.studentenwerk.uni-heidelberg.de
Do not rely on this service however! The number of beds there is limited as well and if they are occupied, you cannot get one.

Once You Arrive in Heidelberg

Once you arrive in Heidelberg, there are other options besides the websites mentioned above to find a permanent accomodation.

There are pinboards all over the university offering rooms for rent. Keep your eyes open everyday for new postings.

Go to the Triplex or central lunch hall (Mensa): There are display cases administered by the Studierendenwerk with room offers. There usualy are new offers every day so check regularly. Write down the numbers of offers you are interested in, go to the accommodation service counter in the „InfoCenter“ or „InfoCafé International“, present your student ID or admission certificate and print out the address, telephone number and name of the landlord at the counter.

You can also check for new listings online but you will get the contact data only in person.

Try the private dormitories again after the first week of the lectures are over. Sometimes students with a room change their plans, so there may be sudden unexpected vacancies.