When searching for a flat to rent you will very often come across this mysterious price: 1500 zł + media. If you think to yourself: What on earth is it? How would I know how much that is? How much should I budget for a flat then?
In general, a single person living in a studio apartment will have to spend about 300-350 zl a month on additional costs. For a family of four the costs might be twice or even three times higher, especially if they live in a big flat or a house.
How to calculate how much you will be paying?
First of all, you need to find out what kind of media and admin fees the landlord talks about.
Under media we understand the following:
- water (hot and cold)
Admin fees are:
- maintenance of the building and common areas
- waste disposal
- repair fund
It might be that in the flat you like there is no gas. Or no phone. Or maybe no repair fund. Also, it happens sometimes that some of the above fees are included in the rent, e.g. all admin fees are included, and the only additional fees you need to pay are for water, heating and electricity. It’s only down to the landlord to decide which fees they want to include or exclude from the rent.
Once this is settled, you need to find out about the heating in that apartment. Watch out for ogrzewanie elektryczne: electric heating. That’s the one that, if not used carefully, might cost you up to a few hundred zloty a month and not even give you the level of warmth you are expecting.
Then think about the following:
- how big is the apartment you’re about to rent?
- what’s the condition of the apartment?
- how many people will live there?
- what do you think will be the monthly usage of media?
If you want to rent a flat in an old kamienica that hasn’t been renovated for years, then expect to pay a huge bill for heating. There is usually electric heating in these old buildings, and sometimes, when the state of the flat is not right (bad isolation, as well as leaky or drifty windows) you will be freezing cold despite paying huge money to warm the place up!
If you’re a single person living on your own in a small studio or one bedroom apartment you can obviously expect to pay less than a 4 people family living on 120 m2! What if you are 4 students sharing a flat? The total you will have to pay will be higher, but when divided, your individual bills will be a lot lower. It’s everything: the heating, gas, water, electricity, everything depends on how big is the flat and how many people use the media.
Electricity – once a month the electricity read is converted into a bill for the month’s kilowatt-hour consumption. Cost of gas and water is calculated per used cubic meter m3, heating in GJ. The rates depend on the supplier and therefore can differ per city, or even per building in the same town.
What you can do is ask your landlord how many people lived in the apartment before you. They might even show you the bills. This will give you a better idea of how much you should budget.