Housing Help

Part of having a great summer or year at Pardes is having a good living experience in an apartment in Jerusalem. It can be challenging to find an apartment, especially from abroad, but you can do it!

  • Pardes is located in the Jerusalem neighborhood of Talpiot. If you want to live near Pardes, you will want to search for an apartment in Talpiot, Arnona, Mekor Haim, Baka, the German Colony, Katamon, Katamonim, or Rechavia/Talbiyah (a little farther away).
  • If you live with roommates, you can expect to pay $600-$800 per month, not including utilities.
  • Before signing a lease and/or moving in with a roommate/s, it is important to be very clear about all the conditions of the rental: what the landlord is responsible for and what you are responsible for financially. If possible, ask for references (names of former tenants or roommates), people whom you can approach and ask about the apartment in general and the landlord/roommate in particular.
  • Clarify if the rent is to be paid in dollars or shekels and how it is to be paid. For example, will you have to physically go to the landlord’s bank branch on the first of every month? Will you need to have an Israeli bank account in order to do a direct deposit?
  • Note that apartments are described in number of total rooms – not just number of bedrooms.
  • The price of rent most likely will NOT include the monthly fee to the va’ad bayit (building upkeep committee), the yearly arnona (city property tax), or utilities.
  • Unfurnished could very well mean no refrigerator or oven – clarify with the landlord.
  • Some landlords will ask you to pay 3-6 months rent up-front, in one lump sum.
  • Some landlords will require a security deposit.

If you do not have a place to stay once you arrive in Israel, there are a few options for temporary housing (some much more expensive than others!).

  • Arnona: The annual city property tax based on size of the apartment can range from 3000-6000 NIS per year. It can be paid monthly or yearly. Some students are able to obtain an 80% discount but many are unsuccessful.
  • Va’ad Bayit: A monthly fee paid to your building’s committee of residents. This money covers general maintenance of the building and central heating if you have it.
  • Agent fee: If you find your apartment through an agent you might be charged an additional month’s rent.
  • Washer and dryer: Most apartments don’t have dryers; you’ll need to buy a drying rack if the apartment does not have a window laundry line.
  • Heat: Many apartments don’t have central heat. During the winter you will most likely need a space heater which, besides its own cost, will significantly raise your electricity bill.
  • Hot water: Be aware of the source of your hot water. In newer buildings, water is solar heated, which cuts down on expenses and is environmentally friendly. If your water is solar heated, you will need to pre-heat it in the winter, on cloudy days and sometimes on summer mornings by flipping the “dud shemesh” switch.
  • MOLD is very common in Israel and you will be expected to take care of it yourself (as opposed to calling the landlord, though you can always ask…). Solutions: Leave windows open a crack, even in the winter, and use bleach to wipe down problem areas.

For people for would like special assistance, “Protexia Plus” provides a range of services:

  • A short-term furnished apartment in Jerusalem
  • A stocked fridge for your apartment upon arrival
  • Car-rental
  • V.I.P. airport pickup with no hassle at Israel’s Ben Gurion Airport
  • A cellular phone available at the airport upon arrival, with the phone number issued to your family or office in the USA before you leave for Israel
  • Communication services, fax or computer use arranged in advance
  • Your kids registered in advance of your arrival in summer camps, travel programs, museum classes, sports and swim centers
  • A housekeeper or babysitter arranged in advance of your arrival in Israel
  • Tours, experienced family guides and travel accommodations
  • Concert tickets or special passes in advance to the cultural events which occur during your visit to Israel before they are sold out
  • Bar/Bat Mitzvah celebrations and touring for families/event planning

Contact: mailto:shari@protexsiaplus.com or protexia@netvision.net.il.