Choosing a shared apartment for your internship in Spain
Spain has many resources to attract students who wish to do an internship abroad. Beyond the sangria, the tapas and the good weather, rents are generally lower than in many other European countries.
Are you about to start an internship in Spain? Then you are looking for accommodation! But again, it’s not that easy… In Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia and many other cities in Spain, there are many options available to you. What if you choose to share a flat to live your Spanish experience to the fullest?
What is the principle of sharing a flat in Spain?
Sharing a flat (“piso compartido” in Spanish) is a very common way of life for students living in Spain, whether they are Erasmus students, interns or even native, as it allows them to share costs and meet new people. Indeed, by sharing accommodation, you live 100% with foreigners, so your international experience is lived to the full!
The principle is simple: several people share the same accommodation, a room is allocated to each tenant and the common areas (bathroom, living room and kitchen) are shared.
Sharing a flat is both an economical and rewarding solution. You will probably be familiar with Cédric Klapisch’s famous film, “L’Auberge Espagnole”, which tells the story of several students of different nationalities who move in together in a shared flat during their Erasmus program. An experience like theirs is a dream come true!
Although an internship offers a little less freedom than the Erasmus life – because yes, it is still more constraining to party every night when you have to get up early the next day to go to the office and be operational – the flat share offers many other advantages. Meeting new people, learning foreign languages, discovering new cultures, making friends, sharing household chores… and above all sharing the rent and utilities which is not negligible when you are a student and want to save money!
Good reasons to choose a roommate for your internship in Spain
In Spain, sharing a flat is in vogue and you will surely not escape this fashion !
A better rent: housing without breaking the bank!
In Barcelona, there are very few small apartments (studios) available at low prices. Unless you have a high budget, it is very difficult to find a place to live alone. Sharing an apartment is therefore a way of finding a place to live at a lower cost while enjoying the comfort of the apartment by dividing the rent between the tenants. Moreover, you will avoid agency fees and the deposit will be reduced. You should count on a budget of 300 to 500 € /month depending on the area.
Simple and fast rental procedures
In general, a simple visit of the apartment and the common areas as well as an interview with the tenants already on site will be sufficient. You can even do these procedures from your country of residence and take care of everything remotely. In addition, notice periods are often shorter and negotiable which is advantageous if you are coming to Spain for a short internship.
A multicultural experience
Doing an internship abroad means discovering a new culture! Sharing a flat is the best way to create a group of friends and to practice foreign languages in your daily life. You will even be able to share your different cultures and learn a lot about the country of your roommates, the different dishes, music or activities that are practiced in different countries.
How to look for your future flat share
When looking for a roommate, it is important to start early if you want the accommodation to meet all your criteria. Indeed, since there are many students in Spain, whether it is for their studies, their internships or their first job, the good deals and the best placed apartments are taken by storm. So, as soon as you have decided to go to Spain, start looking actively, even if you have time! You can find your accommodation from your couch or even on the spot, but keep in mind that it is more prudent to do so in advance so as not to come across a scam or an apartment that does not correspond to the photos once you arrive… Moreover, this will save you a lot of stress and you will be able to start your internship calmly and comfortably at home!
When choosing your home, it is best to find out which neighborhoods are closest to your internship and close to public transportation. But don’t worry, thanks to the metro and the numerous buses, you will be able to go from your accommodation to your place of work without worrying. Of course, it would be more pleasant for you to live in a place that meets your criteria: are you more calm or lively? Beach or city? Close to work or to friends? It’s up to you to think ahead and see what suits you best.
To give you an example, in Barcelona, students usually live in the neighborhoods “El barri Gotic” or “Esquerra de l’Eixample”.
To find the best accommodation for you, you can rely on your friends and family, word of mouth, and former students of your school who have also done an internship in the same city as you. This will allow you to get feedback on apartments, neighborhoods to avoid or on the contrary those to favor. Facebook groups are also a good way to get information about housing, find good deals for roommates and access different ads about available housing in Spain.
Maybe you prefer to go through agencies or specialized websites because it reassures you. You can then find many ads on the web in many cities in Spain. You will be able to refine your search according to your criteria, i.e. if you are looking for a room, an apartment, a shared apartment, the number of rooms in the apartment, the number of bathrooms…
To do this, there are many sites. Here is a non-exhaustive list:
– Pisocompartido: for a single room or a shared apartment, the site offers a large number of ads updated every day with very specific filters to find the housing that is closest to your criteria!
– Idealista.com: This site is very easy to use and allows you to rent a room, an apartment, etc. in any city in Spain. You can start by searching directly for the area you like best and you will find the accommodation available in that area according to your criteria.
– Uniplaces: This site is available in French and this is the advantage! It allows you to find a room at an attractive price according to your favorite neighborhood. With different filters, you can customize your search and choose the accommodation that suits you best. The best part is that the site offers very affordable housing!
Now you know how to find the roommate of your dreams, but have you already found your internship in Spain?
Frequently asked questions about sharing a flat in Spain
What is the budget for a roommate in Spain?
Living in a shared apartment in Spain is less expensive than in other European countries. However, Barcelona is the second most expensive city in Spain, after Madrid. The average rent for a shared room in Madrid is 470 euros. In second place is Barcelona with 399 euros, followed by Bilbao with 384 euros. Other cities are more economical, such as Valencia with an average monthly rent of 318 euros or Murcia with 243 euros.
How to pay the rent in Spain?
Unless otherwise specified in the lease, as a tenant you must pay your rent monthly for the first 7 days of the month. The landlord must provide you with a rent receipt, unless otherwise stipulated in the lease. Also, the landlord cannot require more than one month’s rent in advance.