Tips for finding a house

On-post lodging, like the room pictured above at the Panzer Hotel, may serve as a temporary home for families with civilian sponsors or for whom permanent on-post housing is not immediately available. A certificate of nonavailability will be offered for off-post lodging if applicable. Courtesy photo

USAG Stuttgart Housing Office

Prior to selecting a location

  • Verify internet strength and capability options through local internet providers.
  • Determine availability of adequate, nearby parking.
  • To reduce noise, consider whether there are the following within close proximity:
  • Major Industrial area
  • Ongoing or pending construction
  • Proximity to train station, railroad, or airport

Safety and security questions to ask

  • Ask local security agencies, such as Military Police, Antiterrorism Officers, or G2 / S2 about security concerns within selected areas.
  • Conduct a terrain walk of selected areas, looking for signs of attempted break-ins.
  • Does the neighborhood generally seem to be safe and well kept, or does it look run down and unsafe (check residence during daylight hours and hours of darkness)?

Dwelling layout considerations

  • Overall look and appearance; verify adequate general maintenance, such as broken windows or damaged doors.
  • If there is a yard, is it in good condition? Who is responsible for upkeep?

Test lighting inside and out

  • Check exterior community area lighting, if applicable.
  • Check residence interior lighting.
  • Check entrance ways, hallways, walkways, parking areas, and all common area lighting.

Items of consideration

  • Ensure the dwelling has multiple entry (most properties have one way in/one way out)/ exit doors to provide emergency escape alternatives.
  • Ensure all exterior doors have dead-bolt type or secure locks.
  • Ensure all doors and frames are heavy and solidly constructed.
  • Ask if lock cylinders can be changed and if the landlord will retain a copy.
  • Ensure windows can be secured from the interior.
  • Ensure the dwelling has fire or smoke detectors / alarms installed, and purchase fire extinguishers if not already present in the dwelling.
  • Good external lighting can provide additional security.
  • Fences may deter theft and add privacy.
  • Consult with personnel within your local housing office, security officials, and your local antiterrorism officer prior to, during and when making a final selection.
  • Is the property on the garrison non-referral list? If so, selection is not recommended.

What not to do

Don’t choose a dwelling near an industrial zone, power plant, or other hazards i.e., flood zones increase the likelihood of damage due to fallout from man-made/natural disaster.