The Danish Rental Market

It won’t take any newcomers to Copenhagen or Aarhus long to realise that the rental market here is incredibly complex, competitive and completely crazy! That’s why we are here to help you navigate the madness. The following are some important things to be aware of in relation to the market and rented accommodation here in general.

  • You are likely already aware that rent levels in this city are incredibly high and the competitiveness of the market means that things change very fast. Especially at the lower budget levels, you need to be prepared to act very quickly in order to secure accommodation that suits your needs.
  • Even unfurnished rentals in Denmark have kitchens with fridges (often freezers) and often also other large appliances such as washing machines, dryers, dishwashers. So an unfurnished apartment is not totally empty! Furnished rentals are often more expensive, but if you are only staying for a short period of time (less than 1-2 years) it can be the cheapest solution. This is because unfurnished, time-unlimited tenancies must be taken over as “newly renovated” meaning that moving out will cost you a lot in renovation costs. This can be avoided with a furnished option. But if you are staying for many years, money can be saved by renting unfurnished!
  • In Denmark rentals are always listed with gross area e.g. for apartments parts of the common areas, staircase, lift and even the walls are included in the area! The actual living area – the net area can be substantially smaller than what you expect.
  • Rent is often listed excluding utilities. However, usually heat and water are paid directly to the landlord every month along with the rent. A fixed amount (aconto) is charged and when the landlord gets the bill from the heat and water company, the difference between what has been paid and what has been used will be calculated and settled between landlord and tenant. In most cases electricity is paid directly to the supplier by the tenant.
  • The only legal leasing contract is in Danish. Have a colleague, friend or us help you go through it.
  • In Denmark often 3 months deposit plus 3 months prepaid rent (used for the last 3 months of your rental) plus the first months rent is charged up-front. This comes to a total of 7 months rent, which can easily amount to 100.000 kroner or more. This is not always the case but it is important to be aware that this is very possible when renting here.
  • Due to the extreme pressure within the rental market there are MANY scams on the various housing portals and elsewhere. If you’re looking at a rental property that looks too good to be true, it probably doesn’t exist. We have many clients saying that ”they see plenty of apartments to rent in central Copenhagen for 8, 9 or 10.000 kroner per month” but unfortunately often they don’t exist in reality. In Aarhus the rent level is slightly lower in general, but not much!
  • At the same time, while these advertising scams do exist, in reality there is very little corruption from landlords and agents within the industry. At Copenhagen and Aarhus Housing we only work with reputable landlords and companies, which means that you can put your trust in us and who we work with. It is particularly important to realise that, unlike in many other countries, it is completely normal to conduct all business over email and online, and it is not necessary to meet face to face in order to establish trust.