House Hunting in Germany at a Distance, aka Mission Impossible

If you are considering house hunting at a distance–a considerable, oceans-apart distance–just stop right now.  It is impossible.  We’ve spent weeks trying to do the same.  And we should have known better.  We did this years ago before moving to England, and I found the perfect house.  A beautiful, stately, Victorian row house that was huge and elegant.  We didn’t put the money down, but we booked an appointment to see it within a day of landing in the UK.

What we saw online looked vaguely  like this:

classic brit kitchen


And the angels sang.

What we saw in person looked more like this:

classic brit kitchen


Only smaller.

(The angels broke into a mournful dirge while I wept.)

It was still adorable, but any hopes of getting our four poster bed through the front door were futile.

Nevertheless, we’ve tried to peek at houses online again before this move to Germany.  Just to get a feel for what will/won’t be out there.  We’ve been told that the housing market is tight where we are moving.  We’ve been told, leave furniture at home, the houses are small and there are no closets.  We’ve been told, no worries, there are plenty of large, great houses.  We’ve been told dogs are no problem.  We’ve been told dogs may be a problem.  The sky is blue; the sky is orange.  Take your pick.  It’s truly impossible to do this at a distance.

Nevertheless, we look at online ads.

Here’s what we hope to browse through:









But you wouldn’t believe how many German sites post mostly these photos:

german bathroom


This worries me only slightly less than it baffles me.  If the owner is proud of his bidet, I’m happy for him.  However, I can’t understand why we are shown so many bathroom photos and so few living room photos, so few exterior photos.  Does that famous German orderliness beget a national obsession with bathrooms?  I’d rather not think about that.  And I’m sure there is a simple, and more appealing, reason for all of these bathroom photos.

My theory:  it’s a sign from God that house hunting at a distance is a potty-brained idea.  *Sigh.*

So, here’s the plan.  We wait until our feet are on the ground in Germany in mid June, and we scramble as fast as we can to find a place.  It’s worked for us in the past–here’s hoping the luck holds.




10 thoughts on “House Hunting in Germany at a Distance, aka Mission Impossible

  1. I wish you luck on your house search 🙂 Germans are big on having real daylight in bathrooms and that might be one reason for the photos, just a thought. In general Germany is very dog friendly, something I’m thankful for.

      1. I bet you’re excited! Stores are kind of an iffy thing, usually a good rule of thumb is if they carry groceries then it’s no dogs allowed. I love being able to take Heidi places, it makes it so much easier to go somewhere for the day 🙂 If I can help with anything let me know.

  2. You’ve got it right: online house-hunting in Germany from an ocean away-forget about it! Our experience: hubby is on the ground in Germany running around to check out houses I find online because I’m still in Colorado trying to sell the current house. Oh, and hubby is fitting this in while actually trying to go to work meetings! Bottom line: he found a great house in a great location…and it was never posted online. 🙂 Fingers crossed that you will find what you need, AND that you don’t have to spend too long in temporary housing waiting for the current residents in your house to move out!

Leave a Comment/Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s