A few useful things to know before renting a house/apartment in Israel. By Archie Leonard.
- Most apartments are rented without any furniture or appliances. This is because the average Israeli family moves with all their belongings.
- Some apartments are newly painted and the owner expects the apartment to be painted by the tenant at the end of the contract.
- Most owners use a standard contract, but some have their lawyer draft one up for them.
- Upon signing the contract, most owners request 12 post dated rent checks. These checks can be deposited only in the month specified on the checks.
- In addition, a tenant might have to provide a guarantee such as:
– Two cosigners
– A Bank check
– A cash deposit or
– An open check
All of the above are returned to the tenant a month or two after ending the contract. The Guarantee is in order to assure the owner that he will receive the apartment in the same state in which he rented it and that the tenant paid all of his bills.
4. Fees and Taxes:
In addition to the rent, a tenant would need to take into consideration a few other fees:
- Municipal tax-(Arnona) The city’s are divided into zones. Each zone has a different tax that is calculated per Sq. m. a year. In Jerusalem the tax can be up to 92nis a sq. m. a year.
- Water and electricity are paid to different authorities- the average family usage is around 120nis for water, and 230nis for electricity.
- Most of the apartment buildings have what is called a “building fee” which covers maintenance of the apartment complex. This fee is not always levied, and may vary greatly from building to building depending on the facilities offered (swimming pool, parking, garden, elevators and more)
This fee ranges between 0-1200nis a month.
5. Internet: the main provider is a company called Bezeq. They provide a modem with router for around 100nis a month.
Cable network: company called Hot- for around 300nis they will provide you with internet and cable TV.
6. Banks and money transferring:
You can open a bank account in almost every bank. Some are more adapted for English speakers than others. In Jerusalem, The adapted branches are in the center of town.
The bank is great for internal usage in the country – but for money transferring from abroad, i recommend using small transferring companies that work great and will save you a pretty penny.
Companies worth looking at for making the money transfer:
This is a guide to open a bank account: