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Aker Brygge in Oslo, Norway

Real Estate in Oslo, Norway

By Joshua Wood, LPC

Last updated on Feb 01, 2023

Summary: Expats and retirees talk about real estate in Oslo, Norway? How do you find a home in Oslo? Should you buy or rent? What is the cost of housing?

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How do I find a place to live in Oslo?

We asked expats how they chose their neighborhood and found a place to live. They answered:

"When looking for a place to live in Oslo, it is important to consider your budget, what type of accommodation best suits your needs, and the neighbourhoods or areas of Oslo where you would like to stay. It is recommended to research the different neighbourhoods and what they offer to get an idea of where you would like to live before starting the search. Once you have narrowed down your preferred area and know whether you prefer to rent or purchase, you can start looking at different properties that are available on listing sites such as Finn.no, Toroms and Hybel.no. You can also look into estate agents and real estate companies in Oslo. Additionally, joining Facebook groups such as BoligOSLO – Leiligheter og Hus (Rent, Buy and Sell houses in Oslo) can be a great source of information and can provide access to listings. Keep in mind that finding a place to live in Oslo may require a lot of patience, as the demand is high and locations can be competitive," remarked another foreigner who made the move to Oslo.

"We live in the center of Oslo because it is close to the train and bus stations for us to get to work- it also has a great balcony. We also wanted two large bedrooms, and a w/d in the flat which can be tricky to find in older flats," explained one person living in Oslo, Norway.

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What is a typical expat home or apartment like in Oslo?

"A typical expat home or apartment in Oslo can range from modern apartments in the city center to traditional wooden houses on the outskirts. Most apartments come with high ceilings, hardwood floors and a balcony with a view of the city. Kitchens are generally equipped with appliances such as a refrigerator, dishwasher, oven and stove, while bathrooms may feature separate shower rooms. Many buildings offer shared laundry facilities in common areas and some may even have a sauna. Most buildings come with secure access, such as card access and security guards. Utilities, such as water, electricity and heating, are usually included in the renting cost," said another expat in Oslo.

"Most of our expat friends have slightly larger places, but none have as nice a patio or w/d. I think overall they are comparable," remarked another member in Oslo.

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What is the average cost of housing in Oslo?

If you are thinking about moving to Oslo, cost of living in probably a key consideration. Expats commented about the cost of housing:

"The average cost of housing in Oslo varies depending on location and type, but generally speaking it is more expensive than most other cities in Europe. On average, rental costs are quite high, ranging from around 9,000 to 16,000 NOK (around 900-1600 EUR) per month for a one or two bedroom apartment or house in the city centre. Prices for buying a property in Oslo are also much higher than in most other European cities," said another person in Oslo.

"To be honest I don't know what we pay, but I would estimate it to be around 3,500 dollars/month, which is certainly higher than I would expect to pay in the center of Houston," added another expat who made the move to Oslo.

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Should I buy or rent a home in Oslo?

If you have not spent a lot of time in Oslo, you should rent before even thinking about buying. We asked expats there about the buy vs. rent decision:

"Buying or renting a home in Oslo depends on many factors such as budget, desired lifestyle, and future plans. If you have enough savings, you may consider buying a home because it is a worthwhile investment that increases in value and provides stability. You will have more control over renovations and ownership of the property. On the other hand, if you don’t have enough money to make a down payment or have short term needs, then renting may be the better option. It may also provide more flexibility to relocate with ease in the future. Ultimately, your decision should be based on your preferences and financial situation," remarked another member in Oslo.

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About the Author

Joshua Wood Joshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000 and serves as one of its Co-Presidents. He is also one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. Prior to Expat Exchange, Joshua worked for NBC Cable (MSNBC and CNBC Primetime). Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Mr. Wood is also a licensed counselor and psychotherapist.

Some of Joshua's articles include Pros and Cons of Living in Portugal, 10 Best Places to Live in Ireland and Pros and Cons of Living in Uruguay. Connect with Joshua on LinkedIn.

Aker Brygge in Oslo, Norway

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