Looking for Accommodation: Tips & resources for finding your new home!

Are you still looking for a place to live? We have some tips and resources for finding accommodation in Portugal!

Housing Portugal

The housing situation in Portugal has been really critical in the last few years, it is becoming more and more complicated to find a room or apartment, and being an international student the search becomes even more difficult. OLS is here to help you in any way possible in this journey!


1. YOUR MOBILITY COORDINATOR OR SUPERVISOR IS YOUR BEST FRIEND!

When you do a mobility program you will have a supervisor in your home city and in the city where you will do the Erasmus+ program. Talk to both of them. These people have helped many students to find accommodation and they will be your best friends. They are also people with lots of contacts with universities, residences, and former students who went to the same city as you!


2. KNOW ABOUT THE TYPES OF ACCOMMODATION IN PORTUGAL 

University Accommodation:

● Universities offer residence halls for students at excellent prices, but spots are more limited.

●  Because the number of international students is growing every year, we recommend that you start looking with as much time as possible

●  You can find the Student Hall lists on all university’s websites (if you have any questions about this send me a message, and I’ll help you!).

Rooms and Apartments:

●  In the city center, most students live in rooms rented out separately to the owners or agencies.

●  Alternatively, you can also rent a room (shared or individual) in a private-owned residence or apartment with shared common areas with other international students.


3. KNOW MORE ABOUT OWNERS AND FLATMATES! 

Owners:

●  It is still relatively common for owners to rent their apartments without a contract. This is illegal, so it is up to you to decide if you accept this type of arrangement or not;

●  It is also illegal, according to Portuguese law, to rent out rooms without windows;

●  It has also become a standard for owners to rent out the living rooms of the house as a bedroom;

●  Some of them will ask you for a monthly deposit, and then you will not have to pay for the last month of your stay;

Flatmates:

●  It's normal for people to share a house with five or more people;

●  If it’s your first experience abroad, remember that living with new people can be a very enriching experience, and a good chance to learn about your host country or many others, by trading experiences, sharing culture, cooking together, and much more.


4. CONTACT YOUR LOCAL ESN (ERASMUS STUDENT NETWORK)

The Erasmus Student Network (ESN) is one of Europe’s largest student associations whose goal is to support international students before, during, and after their mobility program. There are 15,000 active members who are ready to be your buddy to ensure that your experience abroad goes well.

Not only can you find a mobility buddy to help you navigate your new life in your new country; someone can help you with your housing search. Get started by finding your local ESN section here: https://esn.org/sections 


5. GET YOUR ESNCARD (YOUR ERASMUS MEMBERSHIP CARD)

The ESNcard is the membership card of the Erasmus Student Network. It is proof of membership in an ESN section. It gives you access to a lot of discounts and some of them regarding accommodation, check everything here: https://esn.org/accommodation and on the website of your local section (some local sections have partnerships with residencies in the city and apartments for international students).


6. TALK WITH EACH OTHER

Talk to current and former mobility participants and ask them to help you, try to figure out students that went to the same city before you! You can also find people that are going to the same city as you in our communities:

 ☞ North of Portugal Community (Porto, Aveiro, Viseu, Guarda,Braga, Vila Real, Viana do Castelo)

 ☞ Center of Portugal Community (Lisboa, Coimbra,Santarém, Leiria, Castelo Branco, Portalegre)

 ☞ South of Portugal Community (Algarve, Évora, Setúbal, Beja)

 ☞ Portuguese Islands Community (Açores and Madeira)

Get an ESN Buddy -> https://academy.europa.eu/mod/forum/discuss.php?d=8349


7. AVOID SCAMS

  • Know everything about how to avoid scams HERE, feel free to ask questions and for help :)


8. THINGS TO ASK FOR!

Contract: A contract makes the renting arrangement legal and you will have some protection if some issue comes up. We encourage you to look for rooms with a contract!

Heating: Check about this in advance (especially if you will stay in the city during the winter).

Does the room have a window?: It is very illegal to rent rooms without windows, so try to avoid this kind of room.

What does the price include?: Get a clear picture of what is included in the price. Location: The location of the apartment also has some influence on its price. If you are not planning to go out much, you can afford to live further away from the city center.

The number of flatmates: The bigger the apartment the noisier it can be, however, this should be compensated in the price. Compare the price/flatmates/quality ratio before making a decision.

The number of bathrooms: Consider the number of toilets/room ratio.

Can I bring a friend: Some landlords are strict in letting you bring visitors to your house. Check this before renting a house, especially if you are planning to have many visits during the semester.


WHAT ABOUT YOU? ARE YOU STILL LOOKING FOR ACCOMMODATION?

Let the community know if:

●  You’re still looking for a place to stay

●  Already found a place and someone helped you. Tell us how.

●  You need help with other information, tips...

●  Your experiences with Portuguese landlords, scams, living in Portugal


Whatever it is, we would be glad to hear about it in the “Living Abroad” forum.

Good luck everyone! :) 

Juliane (Ju) OLS Community Manager 


Последња измена: Monday, 23. January 2023, 13:28