People moving to more urbanised areas like Lima and Arequipa normally choose to live in rented apartment houses. However, there are other options too: high-rise apartment buildings, smaller suburban housing and single-family homes.
Due to the shortage of housing, most of the apartments offered for rent are unfurnished and without kitchen appliances. The prices might not include electricity, hot water, or Internet. If the apartment is furnished it will most likely be quite expensive. The rent will be very high too if the property is in a nice area in Lima. However, it is possible to find a bargain in Lima.
Finding a property to rent can be quite challenging, hence many expats tend to use a realtor when trying to find a new home. Additionally, the real estate section listings in local newspapers and magazines can be extremely helpful, however basic knowledge of Spanish is necessary for this.
When looking for housing online, the real estate section of the website Peru this Week is a good option for properties to rent. The following websites are preferred by many expats looking for housing in Peru:
Renting an apartment in Lima tends to be very costly compared to other Peruvian cities. According to statistics from 2012, the average monthly rent in US$ for 75 sq. meters is $444; for 120 sq. meters is $790; for 200 sq. meters is $1,342; and for 425 sq. meters is $3,090.
Renting a property in Peru tends to be very cheap compared to other countries in South America - El Salvador and Ecuador are the only countries that are cheaper. In comparison, it is cheaper to rent a property in Peru than in Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Panamá, Nicaragua, Uruguay, Colombia and Costa Rica.
Contracts and general common conditions
Rent contracts in Peru tend to be pro-tenant. The landlord and tenant can normally freely agree on rent, and the contract signed is usually very secure for the tenant. The agreed rent sum can only be revised if there is a clause in the contract that allows that, or if the two sides agree on doing so. The landlord and the tenant can also agree on a deposit that both are happy with. Usually rent prices don’t include utilities such as water, electricity and internet and the tenant has to additionally pay them. However, it is possible to find housing, the rent price for which includes utilities, even though this is quite rare.
In terms of tenancy contracts, there are two types in Peru: time-limited contracts and indefinite period of time contracts. The maximum period of time for the time-limited tenancy contract is 10 years, however, if the property is owned by the Peruvian state or an incapacitated person, then the maximum period of such contract is 6 years. In the case of an indefinite period of time contract, the one who wants to terminate the contract has to notify the other party in advance. The notice period would either be stated in the contract, or if not, it is normally a 30-day period. When the contract terminates, the tenant has to return the property to the owner, and if failing to do this on time, the owner can claim for compensation.
Normally expats in Peru buy home insurance when they purchase a property, however in some cases it is possible to get home insurance whilst renting too. The requirements to purchase a home insurance as a foreigner don’t seem to be too complicated, however you should make sure you know what your insurance covers and what each different provider needs from you in order to sell you a home insurance. The listed home insurance providers are welcoming to expats: