ASK AN EXPERT: Navigating the Czech rental maze when securing a home from abroad

We asked the Head of Residential Rentals at Engel & Völkers how adapting the right approach can help your chances. Staff

Written by Staff Published on 11.06.2024 13:02:00 (updated on 11.06.2024) Reading time: 2 minutes

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Moving to a new country can be an exciting adventure, but there are challenges, too, especially when finding a place to call home. For families planning to relocate to Prague or other cities in the Czech Republic, securing a rental from abroad can be daunting.

The amount of online information may seem overwhelming, so many people recommend turning to rental agencies for guidance. Understanding the nuances of the Czech rental market and adopting the right approach can significantly increase your chances of landing a comfortable living space before setting foot in the country.

We asked Ondřej Hlaváč, Head of Residential Rentals at Engel & Völkers Prague, how to make securing a rental here a smooth and painless experience.

Understand the challenges

One of the main challenges many foreigners face when looking for a rental is the language barrier. While English is widely spoken, especially in urban areas like Prague, navigating rental agreements and negotiations will go smoother if you have someone in your corner who speaks Czech. Additionally, the Czech rental market operates differently from what expats may be accustomed to in their home countries. Understanding local customs, legal requirements, and rental procedures is essential to avoid misunderstandings and potential pitfalls.

Seek assistance from rental agencies

Many expats turn to rental agencies for help. Agencies can offer valuable insights into the local rental market. They can streamline the search process by providing access to a wide range of properties that meet your specific criteria. Rental agencies can also assist with negotiations, lease agreements and navigating legal requirements.

Research and prepare

Before starting your search, figure out your needs ahead of time. Familiarize yourself with the different neighborhoods and districts in Prague or your desired city. Consider factors like proximity to schools, amenities, public transportation and safety when evaluating potential locations.

Next, set a budget and preferences regarding the type of rental you’ll need. Whether you're looking for a furnished apartment, a family-friendly neighborhood or specific amenities like a garden or parking space, clearly defining your criteria will help narrow your options.

Utilize online resources

Online resources can be valuable tools in your rental search. Numerous websites and platforms cater to expats and provide detailed listings of available properties. Reputable agencies like Engel & Völkers Prague are popular for expats seeking rentals throughout the Czech Republic. It’s important to remember that you shouldn’t enquire about a rental property more than two months in advance because landlords will usually not hold a property for longer than one month. The rental market moves quickly, and landlords will often give preference to potential tenants who are ready to sign a contract immediately.

Building relationships with local contacts can also be beneficial. Reach out to expat communities, local forums and social media groups for advice, recommendations and firsthand experience from others who have navigated the Czech rental process. Networking with expats already living in the country can offer valuable insights and potentially lead to rental opportunities that may not be advertised online.

Don’t hesitate to contact Engel & Völkers at We will be happy to advise you and help you choose the ideal apartment that meets your requirements and is in line with your particular living situation.

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