I want to use the fixed landline phone to call home. What do I do?

In some apartments there are fixed landline phones installed, but some may not be set up for international calls, some are even limited to just the city. Ask the landlord to expand the service if you need it. For international

I have friends / family coming over for a visit and staying at my place. Anything I need to know or pay attention to?

Yes. First, ask your flat mates whether it’s ok having an extra person staying (potential conflicts over things like occupying the bathroom in the morning shouldn’t be underestimated!). Next, tell your landlord about the visit and how long your guest

Why do I have to register at the police station?

Just as in Germany or Denmark you are legally bound to register for residence in China as well. This has to be done within the first 24hrs of your arrival. Police inspections are not unusual and if you are found

I have to talk to my landlord. S/he only speaks Chinese. Is there helpful vocabulary?

Talking to landlords is a challenge at the start, but also an opportunity to test your language skills in a real life situation. Here you find a list of vocabulary which will help you here: 房间 fángjiān apartment 加热器 jiārèqì

I’ll soon return to Europe and want my deposit back. What do I do?

It goes without saying that when you’re leaving China (or at least your Beijing apartment) you’ll have to handover your keys to the landlord. Always inform your landlord in advance of the date you leave so that he/she can plan

How about throwing a party in my apartment?

Of course! There can be absolutely no objections against inviting a few friends over for a drink and a nice chat. But we seriously suggest you to leave it at that (a “few” friends and a nice “chat”)! If you

I can’t close my window. Can I leave over the weekend nonetheless?

No! Even in dry Beijing unexpected bad weather can ruin your room and adjacent apartments when open windows are left unattended. Call your landlord for help, don’t force it since the window might break.

I made a huge burn mark on my desk. Can I put a blanket over it and leave China?

No! Don’t try to cover up. The landlord trusts you and us and such a behavior  might damage this trust. If you inform the landlord a good solution will be found. If not, we will contact your university to get

I broke stuff in the apartment. Who has to pay for it?

Most repairs are rather cheap in China (windows, mirrors, etc), but for bigger equipment (e.g. a clogged toilet beyond any hope that needs to be replaced in full) you are required to have damage insurance, which you then should inform

My air-condition is broken. Who takes care of repairs?

When you move in, make sure to check all furniture and equipment, to see if it is damaged or inoperable and inform the landlord, since he/she can affect repairs.   If you break furniture, windows, mirrors, toilet seats, etc. during usage,