Renting In Norway
Before I moved to Norway I was living in rented accommodation in the UK and didn’t own my own property. So it was easier for me to just give my notice at my rental agency and move anywhere I wanted. However, this also meant that if I did want to move abroad long term I would have to rent somewhere again as I couldn’t buy anywhere and settle down, not having the capital.
As my ex-girlfriend was Norwegian, it was easy for me to leave this up to her to sort out, as she knew the system on how to find a house or flat, what deposits to pay, the legal system etc. When I first moved over the Norway, we stayed in my ex-girlfriend’s parents house in Langhus for a few months, while I adjusted to the change and then we could look for work.
So we lived in one of their spare rooms in their big wooden house and it was a nice experience for me, to get to know her family more and get the feel of how living in Norway would be. I really appreciated that they let us stay and gave us space to adjust to new ways, so it was nice of them.
I had many experiences there, like my first Norwegian Christmas (Xmas day on the 24th for some reason I still don’t really know)… social events and it was there that I saw the 9/11 attacks in the US.
After we had both got jobs, we decided to move into our first place together. We had a look at some flats and houses but finally we chose a ground floor flat in Kolbotn. The flat had easy access to the train station which I needed to get to my jobs in Oslo, and was a nice area to live in.
However, we didn’t have the money to get furniture yet so had to rely on the help of friends and family for that. Unfortunately the lack of furniture was the main problem with the flat, even though it was a nice place and the neighbours were quiet.
We lived there for a while, but I was finding being away from the UK and my family and friends hard so there were a few evenings where I struggled to cope with the change, especially now that things had changed so vastly from my previous life, only a few months before.
I hadn’t really put much thought into what type of place I would be living in when I moved to Norway, but I was used to a little luxury in the houses and flats I lived in, in the UK, so going from that and a good job, to no job and no possessions was difficult.
The cost of living was pretty much the same as the UK, with rental prices about the same, however the choice of property was limited as most Norwegians own their homes and there was not a great deal of choice to rent. Once we had got a little more money together, we decided to move to a town called Ski, to move closer to our friends and a nicer fully furnished house.
This was a bit more expensive, but having furniture and living closer to the main town was much better, as there were a lot of things to do in Ski, with easy access to the train and bus and not far from our friends.
I found that the cost of renting flats and houses in Norway to be fairly comparable to the UK, where the average for our house was about £750 per month and flats were about the same as the UK. Fuel bills and other bills were also similar, so there wasn’t anything out of the ordinary to worry about (that I can remember now).
How To Find Somewhere To Live In Norway.
So, how did my girlfriend find these places to rent in Norway? Well, she heard about a couple of places from her friends, but I remember her looking through a newspaper (I think Aftenposten) at the house listings there. The best way for you is if you know someone out there already, as they will be able to help you, but if you don’t then you will need to do your research, or stay in a cheap hotel while you look whilst over there.
On the Norway.org.uk website http://www.norway.org.uk/Embassy/faq/moving/ there is information about how to find somewhere to live in Norway:
“Housing costs in Norway are lower than in the UK. A list of estate agents is available on the Norwegian Yellow Pages at the Norwegian Yellow Pages – search for ‘Real Estate’. An electronic property search can be made on www.finn.no/eiendom (in Norwegian only).
Most newspapers, e.g. the Oslo-based Aftenposten as well as local papers, have a property column (‘Eiendommer’/ ‘Eiendomsmarkedet’). Click here for a comprehensive list of Norwegian newspapers available on the web.”
I am sure now that you could use the internet to find a property as there must be resources online to find places to live in Norway and if anyone reading this knows of any such sources, please feel free to contact me with the details and I will add those in here.
One of the best ways to find somewhere is to “Google it“, as you will find websites with jobs and accommodation but it may be best to ask someone official in Norway. So perhaps when you are filling out your Norwegian Visa application forms it would be best to ask then.
One thing I would recommend is to move over to Norway in the Summer months, as if I had to move during the dead of the Norwegian Winter I think it would have been hard to carry around boxes, furniture and fight through the snow and elements, trying to move home. It can also be a little depressing in the dead of the Norwegian Winter and this may affect your adjustment to the new country.
So, to sum up, there are places to rent in Norway, prices are comparable to the UK for a deposit, rent and bills but if this is something you can research more on the internet from your own country then I would recommend it, to be prepared. If I find more information or sources, or if you know of a rent agency in Norway then I will place that content here in the future… maybe.