Are you one of the many people looking to rent a room or apartment in Madrid right now? When deciding where to live in the Spanish capital, it can often be difficult to find the perfect mix of the right location, an affordable price and the type of flat you’re looking for. We know everything there is to know about where to live and how to find the right ‘piso’ (Spanish for apartment) when moving to Madrid and here we give you a guide to how to find the perfect flat.
What you will need:
- Access to a computer
- A separate email account from your personal account
**Not essential, but we recommend it because you will be getting a lot of emails through this process and it may get confusing when they’re mixed up with your personal email. It’s also a good idea so you can use it as your go-to email for teaching English as well.
- A Spanish phone and phone number with credit (you will need to contact landlords and they will need to contact you)
** You can walk into any phone carrier store here and pick up a cheap and simple phone for about 15 euros. When you buy them, they come with 10 euros of credit already on them. No phone plan is necessary.
Where to live in Madrid
First, you will need to figure out where you’d like to live. Take a look at our guide to downtown neighborhoods to live in Madrid.
Popular websites to find apartments in Madrid
Idealista is one of the main platforms that are used to find apartments in Madrid and is super easy to use.
This is what you will see when you first log in:
Here we have searched for ‘alquilar’ (to rent), habitación (room only) and the region of Madrid, which is likely to be what you are looking for. The next screen shows you all the flats that are in the entire Madrid region, which includes the outskirts. To see the apartments in the center, click the “Pozuelo/Madrid” section in the center, as you can see in the middle of the screenshot below:
From the map below you can choose the ‘barrio’ (neighborhood) of Madrid you would like to search. If you would rather see all of the results, just click the ‘ver las ______ habitaciones’. Results can be viewed in either list or map view. You should already have an idea of where you want to live from our list of neighborhoods above.
Search criteria can be narrowed by price, number of roommates, smoking/ non-smoking, pets/ no pets, etc.
When you search by map view, you will be brought to a page that looks similar to this. Click on the dots to see a small photo and some info on the piso. Click on ‘detalles y fotos’ to see more photos and information about the flat:
This website is available in English and for accommodation for mid to long stays. The great thing about Spotahome is that they visit the flat and take photos and videos so you can get a full idea of what the apartment is like without having to step foot in it. You can get your apartment sorted (and not just a few days in a hostel or hotel!) before you even arrive!
If you’re looking for a short-term rental, just during the first 6 weeks of your stay (four weeks of TEFL and two weeks afterward so you can look for somewhere more long-term without panicking), then Airbnb could be the answer. Airbnb is super easy to use and often has great prices for short stays.
Remember, if you go through a website like those above, only send money through the official Airbnb and Spotahome sites and check all of the conditions for your stay. DO NOT send money privately or (unless through Spotahome which doesn’t allow you to physically view the apartment beforehand) before you have seen the apartment. If a flat seems too good to be true – the price is really low for the area or condition of the apartment – it probably is and there are lots of scams doing the rounds on all platforms.
There are plenty of groups for people living in Madrid so make sure you join as many as you can as there are adverts posted throughout the year. Search for’Madrid’ on Facebook and tons of pages related to the capital will come up. TtMadrid has a Facebook page for its new students that are looking for flats. Ask to be invited and you can see what offers there are among the TtMadrid community.
As always, TtMadrid is here to help you with anything you need! You can contact firstname.lastname@example.org and our housing expert will answer all your questions and advise you on finding an apartment in Madrid.
Ready to get looking? Take a look at our follow-up post, which will give you all the vocabulary and details you need about looking for a flat in Madrid.