The Anmeldung - How to register your address in Berlin

After you move to Berlin, find a place to live and move in, you must register your address at the Bürgeramt. This is called the Anmeldung. This guide explains how to do it.

Why you must register your address

All residents must register, it’s the law.28 If you can’t register, it makes your life harder.

You must register your address to…

You don’t need to register your address to…

People who don’t need to register

You do not need to register if…

  • You visit for less than 3 months
    If you visit from another country, and you stay in Germany for less than 3 months, you don’t need to register your address.30
  • or you will move in the next 6 months
    If you are already registered somewhere else, and you will stay at your new address for less than 6 month.30 For example, if you are registered at your parents’ house, and you live with a friend for a few months.

How to register your address

1. Get a Bürgeramt appointment

You must do your Anmeldung in person at the Bürgeramt. You can go to any Bürgeramt in Berlin. You need an appointment. It must be after your move-in date.2 You have 14 days to register, but in Berlin nobody cares. You can do it months later.20

Connecting to the appointment finder…

Checking again in {{ secondsToNextMessage }} {{ secondsToNextMessage > 1 ? 'seconds' : 'second' }}.

Looking for appointments...

Other ways to get an appointment

If you can’t find an appointment, try again later. New appointments appear during working hours, mostly in the morning.3

You can register multiple people with one appointment if you lived together and move together. For example, you can do the Anmeldung for your whole family at the same time.

You will get an appointment number (Vorgangsnummer). You need it when you go to your appointment. If you lose it, ask for it at the Bürgeramt reception, or call 115.26

2. Prepare your documents

Bring these documents to your appointment:

  • Wohnungsgeberbestätigung
    You get it before you move in. You can’t register your address without it.4 Bring the original if you can, not a copy.5 You can get this document from…
    • Your landlord
    • The main tenant of your sublet or WG. They need permission from the landlord.6
    • Your spouse if you move in with them.
    • Your boyfriend or girlfriend if you move in with them. They need permission from the landlord, but the landlord can’t really refuse.7
  • Anmeldung form
    Fill the form online, print it and sign it. To register more than 2 people, use multiple forms.
  • Passport or EU national ID
    You can use a Personalausweis from any EU country.8

You might also need these documents:

  • Residence permit
    If you have a residence permit, bring it. Your residence permit has your old address on it. They will put a sticker on it with your new address.9 That sticker is not important.16
  • Vehicle registration papers
    If you have a vehicle, and it’s registered at your old address, bring your Zulassungsbescheinigung Teil 1. They will put a sticker on it with your new address. It costs 10.80€ per vehicle.
  • Cash or a Girocard
    The Anmeldung costs nothing, but if you have vehicles, it costs 10.80€ per vehicle. You can only pay with cash or a Girocard. Some Bürgeramt locations accept Visa and Mastercard.10

If this is your first Anmeldung, you must also bring:

  • Your marriage certificate
    Bring the original or a notarized copy.11 If it’s not in German, you might need a certified translation.31 Certificates in English are usually accepted.

When you register an underage child’s address, you might need a letter of consent from their legal guardian.12

  • Letter of consent from the legal guardians (Einverständniserklärung)
    • If you are separated, and your child is moving with you, you need a letter of consent from the other parent. For example, if the child lived with their mother, and is moving with their father.
    • If the child does not live with their legal guardian, you need a letter of consent from their legal guardian.
  • Your child’s birth certificate32
    Bring the original or a notarized copy.11 If it’s not in German, you might need a certified translation.33 Certificates in English are usually accepted.

If you don’t speak German, bring a friend or a translator. Some Bürgeramt employees only speak German. The Anmeldung is simple, but sometimes they ask more questions.

Hire a translator

You can also pay someone else to do it. They will book your appointment, collect your documents, and go to the Bürgeramt for you. It costs 250€. The Anmeldung is easy. You probably don’t need this service.

When you send someone else to do your Anmeldung, they must bring:

3. Go to your Bürgeramt appointment

Go to your Bürgeramt appointment. Bring all your documents. Arrive early.

At the Bürgeramt, find the correct waiting room. When they call your number on the screen, go to the office number on the screen.

Sit at the desk, give your documents, and get your Anmeldebestätigung. They will put a sticker with your new address on your Personalausweis, residence permit and vehicle registration papers. That sticker is not important.16

The appointment takes 5 to 15 minutes.

Meldebestätigung
You get a registration certificate (Meldebestätigung)

4. Verify your documents

Check the information on your Anmeldebestätigung. Bürgeramt employees often make mistakes.13 If you find an error, email the Bürgeramt.

5. Wait for your tax ID

If this is your first Anmeldung, you will get a tax ID by post 2 to 5 weeks later.14 You can also get a tax ID without registering your address.

If you did not get your tax ID after 2 months, ask for it again. It happens to a lot of people.

German tax ID letter
You will get your tax ID by post. The letter looks like this.

If you can’t register your address

When you look for an apartment, check if they let you do your Anmeldung. Some places don’t give you a Wohnungsgeberbestätigung, and don’t let you register your address. This is usually illegal, but you can rarely fight it. Find another place.

Homelike, HousingAnywhere and Wunderflats show you if you can register your address. Those furnished apartments are very expensive, but they let you move in and focus on other problems. That gives you more time to find a better, cheaper apartment.

Can the landlord refuse to let me register?

No. The landlord must let you register your address, but there are exceptions:

  • You don’t have permission to live there
    For example, someone sublets their apartment to you, but they don’t have permission from their landlord. If the landlord learns this, they can kick you out with a 3 month notice.38
  • It’s a commercial accommodation
    The rules are different for hotels and commercial apartments.29 Some hotels and Airbnb apartments don’t let you register.
    • If you are already registered in Germany
      If you live there for more than 6 months, the accommodation must let you register.18
    • If you are not registered in Germany
      If you live there for more than 3 months, the accommodation must let you register.19

The landlord can refuse to let someone sublet their apartment. There are exceptions:

  • Spouse, parents and children
    They do not need the landlord’s permission to move in.36
  • Boyfriends, girlfriends and life partners
    They need the landlord’s permission to move in.35 The landlord can’t refuse without a good reason.41 For example, because the apartment is too small.
  • Guests and visitors
    You have the right to have guests.34 Your landlord can’t forbid guests. Your guests can’t register their address at your apartment, because they don’t live there.
  • Legitimate interest
    You can rent part of your apartment if there is a legitimate interest. The landlord needs a good reason to refuse. Examples of legitimate interest:
    • To replace a room mate who moved out40
    • To rent your apartment while you work or study in another country39
    • Because you really need the money37

If you have questions, talk to a tenant association, or use your legal insurance to talk to a lawyer.

If your name is not on your mailbox

German apartment buildings rarely have individual door numbers. You have the same address as everyone in your building. If your name is not on your mailbox, you won’t get mail addressed to you.21 You must add “c/o” or “bei” to your address. Write your address like this:

[your name]
bei [name of person on the mailbox]
Musterstraße 123
10115 Berlin

When do your Anmeldung, add “c/o” or “bei” to your registered address.22 My Anmeldung form filler helps you do it. The name on the mailbox must be a real person, not a business.23

If your name is not on the lease, your landlord can refuse to put your name on the mailbox.27 This often happens with temporary apartments.

Questions and answers

Do I need to deregister my old address?

No, you only need to do deregister when you leave Germany. If you just change your address, your old address is deregistered automatically.

Who needs to deregister?

Do I need to speak German?

Maybe. Some Bürgeramt employees speak English, but many don’t. You should bring a translator or a friend who speaks German.

The Anmeldung is easy, but the Bürgeramt employee can ask you a few questions in German. For example, which floor you live on, or how many people live with you.

Translators like Red Tape Translation can go to the Bürgeramt with you.

Do I have to pay church tax?

It depends. When you register for the first time, they ask you what your religion is. Depending on your answer, you might start paying church tax.

Church tax is 8% or 9% of your income tax (not 8-9% of your income).24 It’s taken directly from your paycheck. A single person earning 50,000€ a year would pay 800 to 900€ per year in church tax.24

Calculate your church tax

If you were baptised in your home country, they might collect church tax even if you register as an atheist. Watch your paychecks for unexpected church tax payments.

How to stop paying church tax – Settle in Berlin

How much does the Anmeldung cost?

It’s free. If you must update your vehicle registration papers, you must pay 10.80€ per vehicle. You can only pay with cash or with a Girokarte. Some Bürgeramt locations accept Visa and Mastercard.10

How many people can register at the same address?

In Berlin, every person needs 9 m². Children up to 6 years old need 6 m². For example, 10 people can register in a 90 m² apartment. Two adults and a 5 year old child need at least 24 m².25

What to do next

Change your address

You must tell everyone about your new address. When you register your address, the Bürgeramt tells some people, but not everyone.

How to change your address

Other steps

When you register your address, the Bürgeramt tells the ARD ZDF Deutschlandradio Beitragsservice. They will collect the TV tax at your new address.

What is the TV tax?

You should get liability insurance for your new apartment. After health insurance, it’s the second most important insurance. Most Germans have it.

How to choose liability insurance

When you move into an apartment, you must do a few things: lower your rent, get your name on your mailbox, deduct your moving costs, and more.

Moving into a new apartment

Sources and footnotes
  1. t-online.de 

  2. Confirmed by multiple Bürgerämter (April 2023), reddit.com/r/berlin 

  3. nicolasbouliane.com 

  4. promietrecht.de, toytowngermany.com, marialupandina.com 

  5. facebook.com 

  6. promietrecht.de, berliner-mieterverein.de 

  7. berliner-mieterverein.de 

  8. reddit.com/r/berlin 

  9. facebook.com, facebook.com, facebook.com 

  10. reddit.com/r/berlin 

  11. reddit.com/r/berlin, reddit.com/r/berlin 

  12. berlin.de 

  13. reddit.com 

  14. Screenshot 

  15. Kathleen Parker, relocation consultant (March 2024), Elliot Herman, relocation consultant (October 2023), multiple relocation consultants (October 2023) 

  16. Kathleen Parker at Red Tape Translation (March 2024) 

  17. eu-gleichbehandlungsstelle.de 

  18. frag-einen-anwalt.de, blog.wunderflats.com, gesetze-im-internet.de 

  19. community.withairbnb.com, blog.wunderflats.com, gesetze-im-internet.de 

  20. §17 Abs. 1 BMG, Senate Department for the Interior, Digitalization and Sport, reddit.com/r/berlin, reddit.com/r/berlin, reddit.com/r/berlin, reddit.com/r/berlin, Kathleen Parker at Red Tape Translation (March 2024), multiple relocation consultants (February 2024) 

  21. giga.de, focus.de 

  22. reddit.com/r/berlin, frag-einen-anwalt.de, Screenshot 

  23. Screenshot, Screenshot, Reddit 

  24. steuerberater.com 

  25. §7 WoAufG Bln 

  26. reddit.com/r/berlin 

  27. reddit.com/r/berlin 

  28. §17 BMG 

  29. §29 BMG 

  30. §27 Abs. 2 BMG 

  31. nomadenberlin.com, iamexpat.de, email to the Bürgeramt (May 2023), Kathleen Parker at Red Tape Translation (May 2023), reddit.com 

  32. Kathleen Parker at Red Tape Translation (October 2022), reddit.com, Facebook, Facebook 

  33. nomadenberlin.com, iamexpat.de, email to the Bürgeramt (May 2023), Kathleen Parker at Red Tape Translation (May 2023), reddit.com 

  34. Kuhlen Rechtsanwälte, Berliner Mieterverein 

  35. Kuhlen Rechtsanwälte, Berliner Mieterverein 

  36. Kuhlen Rechtsanwälte, Berliner Mieterverein 

  37. VIII ARZ 2/84, Berliner Zeitung 

  38. Kuhlen Rechtsanwälte 

  39. Berliner Mietergemeinschaft 

  40. Berliner Mietergemeinschaft 

  41. VIII ZR 371/02