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RENTING

Which Austrian state has the cheapest rent based on your salary?

Cost of living is always a question of wages versus expenditure. So where in Austria combines the best salaries with the lowest rents?

Salzburg
STR / AFP

The Chamber of Commerce in Salzburg is calling for more affordable housing as rents have soared over the past twenty years.

Rents in the Salzburg region have increased by 60 percent in 20 years, according to a housing and rental price survey by the Salzburg Chamber of Commerce (AK). 

The Chamber is calling for more 1,000 subsidised apartments to be built annually after comparing the 2000 costs of a 70-square-meter apartment in the city of Salzburg (€680) to the 2020 outlay (€1,100).

Rural areas have also seen a 60 percent rise over the past 20 years, 20 percent higher than inflation in the same period, the survey shows. 

READ MORE: Ten tips for finding an apartment in Austria

By contrast, in Burgenland, the cheapest state in Austria, rents recently fell.

Here’s what you need to know. 

How do rental prices compare to wages across Austria?

The Local took a look at some 2019 statistics compiled by the company Stepstone showing how average earnings compare across the country, which was reported at the time by the Kurier newspaper.

Obviously things are a little different at the moment during the pandemic, but hopefully wages will return to normal soon.

READ MORE: The words you need to know before renting a flat in Austria

Burgenland

Housing in Burgenland costs only €650 euros for a 70 square meter apartment. 

According to Stepstone, people on average earn approximately €45,138 a year in Burgenland as opposed to €47,176 in Salzburg.

However, once cheaper rents are taken into account people living in Burgenland may feel better off.

Vienna

Vienna is where people earn the most money in Austria according to the survey, with a gross average salary of €53,948. However, perhaps surprisingly, this is not the most expensive state to rent in.

Due to the large amounts of subsidised government housing in Vienna, it is only the second most expensive state in Austria. 

Despite this, rents increased sharply in Vienna in 2020 – by €15.8 per square metre (4.8 percent). Another thing to bear in mind is there is a big difference between the cost of renting in Vienna’s different districts.

Prices in the capital city range from €19.30 per square metre in the city’s First District (the most expensive district in Austria) to €12.60 in Vienna’s cheapest district – Simmering.

REVEALED: The best districts to live in Vienna

Tyrol

The most expensive state to rent in Austria is Tyrol, which recently saw an increase in rents of €16 per square metre (5.1 percent) in 2020.

This area includes two of the most expensive addresses in Austria: Innsbruck at €18.50 per square meter and Kitzbühel at €17.30 per square metre. 

READ MORE: Six things to expect when you move to the Austrian mountains

However wages here are significantly lower than Vienna’s, averaging out at €45,408. 

Vorarlberg

Wages are higher in Vorarlberg, averaging out at €50,816, with correspondingly high rental costs, at €15 per square metre in Bregenz and only slightly lower in neighbouring Feldkirk and Dornbirn.

Upper Austria

In Upper Austria, wages are also good, averaging at €47,383. However rental prices are lower than elsewhere in Austria, with rents averaging at €11.6 per square metre in Linz.

Lower Austria

In Lower Austria, the average salary is lower, averaging €44,985. However, rents are also lower, averaging €9.2 per square metre in Krems for example.

And many towns have fast rail connections to Vienna, meaning commuters can take advantage of the higher wages in Vienna’s capital city while enjoying lower rents outside its boundaries.

READ MORE: Why do so few Austrians own their home?

Carinthia and Styria

Carinthia and Styria may be in demand for second homes, but also have average wages above €45,000 per year and rentals averaging at €11.8 in Graz and a little above €10 per square metre in Villach and Klagenfurt.

So where can I stretch my rent euro the furthest? 

Perhaps surprisingly, your ‘rent euro’ stretches further in Vienna than you might think – given the high wages and the fact the rent is not the highest in the country.

Vienna’s size and extensive public transport network also means you may win out in the end by choosing an ‘up and coming’ neighbourhood where you might be able to find a bargain. 

Tyrol on the other hand is perhaps the toughest, as while rents are the highest in the entire country, wages are lower than all but a couple of states.

So if you’re fed up with your shoebox apartment in Salzburg, perhaps it’s time to look further afield to find a better deal in Burgenland, Lower Austria or Styria. 

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LIVING IN AUSTRIA

EXPLAINED: Everything you need to know about recycling in Austria

Austria is keen on recycling, but the many different types of waste cans are sometimes confusing to newcomers and foreigners. Here's what you need to know.

EXPLAINED: Everything you need to know about recycling in Austria

Recycling is very much a part of Austrian culture. You will also find different bins for different waste items in almost every household in the country.

Every year, in Vienna alone, about 100,000 tons of recyclable organic material is collected in over 80,000 containers and processed into compost. This, in turn, can be collected by citizens in household quantities – so you can use your own trash to grow your plants.

Glass is also collected in separate containers, at over 2,500 public locations and at the dung places in the city. However, as they can be noisy, people should only dispose of glass waste between 6am and 10pm, according to the City of Vienna.

READ ALSO: How to dispose of unwanted furniture or whitegoods in Vienna legally

There are several containers throughout the cities where you can dispose of your waste. Still, it is crucial to do it right – and your neighbour will knock on your door if the things you are putting your paper together with your “common” trash.

Here are the main types of waste cans you will find in Austria – it is worth pointing out that these are based in the capital Vienna and might look a bit different depending on your region.

Waste paper

The Altpapier Karton, a red-coloured waste carton, is where you should dump your newspapers, magazines, catalogues, brochures, books, writing paper, letters, copybooks and telephone directories, as well as clean frozen food boxes, paper bags, and cardboard boxes (folded or filled with paper).

This is not a place to drop any composite materials, such as milk and beverage cartons, carbon paper, dirty papers, or receipts.

Organic waste

Also known as Biomüll, it usually has a brown colour. This is where you should throw away your lawn, tree and hedge cuttings. Weeds, shrubs, windfall, leaves, water plants, unseasoned and uncooked fruit and vegetable scraps, stale bread, coffee grounds, or tea leaves.

Organic waste disposal is no place for plastic, eco plastic bags, or eco plastic products. You should also not throw away meat, bones, food leftovers, large branches, eggs, dairy products, content from vacuum cleaner bags, cat litter, varnished or laminated wood, hazardous waste, composite materials such as nappies or milk cartons, or soil.

READ ALSO: Why does Vienna’s waste department have a helicopter and a military plane?

Clear glass

The clear glass (Weissglass) container, a grey one, will hold clear non-returnable glass bottles and pickle jars (they should be empty but not necessarily cleaned). You can also drop clear, condensed milk and soft drinks and any clear glass containers and transparent wine and liquor bottles.

Do not throw in any coloured glass, bottle caps, corks, lead seals (such as champagne bottles), screw tops, plastic bottles, mirrors, window glass, flat or wired glass, light bulbs, china, crystal glass or drinking glasses.

Coloured glass

The green container is reserved for Buntglass or coloured glass. This is where you should throw your coloured non-returnable glass bottles, such as slightly coloured glass, wine, soft drinks, and liquor bottles.

Brown and green glass can go in here together, along with other non-clear glasses. 

READ ALSO: Austria to challenge EU nuclear green label in court

Just as with the clear glass, it is essential not to throw bottle caps, corks, lead seals (such as the ones from champagne bottles), screw tops, plastic bottles, mirrors, window glass, flat or wired glass, light bulbs, china, ceramics, crystal glass or drinking glasses.

Plastic bottles, drink cartons, cans

The yellow collection container will receive any plastic bottles, drink cartons and cans (Plastikflaschen, Getränkekartons, Dosen). This includes all plastic bottles for drinks (PET bottles), for supplies such as vinegar and dairy products, detergents and household cleaners, and plastic containers for cosmetics and toiletries.

READ ALSO: Hasta la mista, baby? How to vote for your favourite Vienna trash can joke

You may also add other plastic bottles, beverage cans, food cans, metal foil, metal tubes, metal tops of jars, and bottles.

Do not turn in any plastic bottles, engine oil bottles, lubricant and adhesive bottles, plastic cups, plastic foil, plastic bags, meat trays, styrofoam, rubber foam, wood, textiles, canisters, buckets, cookware, tools, cables, wires, bathroom or kitchen taps, pipes, steel straps, paint, varnish, and spray cans, etc.

Other waste

The black box will receive all your other waste (Restmüll) and any other residual waste that shouldn’t be thrown in the recycle bins and is not hazardous or bulky.

Hazardous waste or bulky trash

It is illegal to dispose of hazardous or bulky waste in these containers. Instead, there are several collection points in Vienna and other cities where you can leave them. City services will also collect bulky waste for a small fee.

Do you have any more questions about recycling and waste separation in Austria? Get in touoch at [email protected] and we will find the answers for you.

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