Finding suitable accommodation in the Faroe Islands can be difficult. It is advisable to start searching for housing as soon as plans for a research stay have become definite.
The Faroese rental market is quite limited. Apartments for rent are normally part of a family’s home set aside for a tenant.
At some host institutions special housing for international researchers is available.
The National Hospital in Tórshavn has a number of houses, apartments and rooms for rent for doctors and other staff members working for a limited period within the Health Service.
The University of the Faroe Islands has a house with three rooms available for researchers on a short-term basis. The university also has appointments with private houseowners who rent rooms to foreign researchers participating in summer institutes.
Other host institutions may also provide assistance for researchers searching for housing.
Houses and apartments for rent can be found in newspaper advertisement pages and web portals.
The main newspaper for advertising accommodation is Sosialurin (in Faroese). It can be bought all over the Faroe Islands and can also be accessed online.
Some landlords prefer to respond to advertisements placed by potential tenants. Therefore, it may be a good idea to publish an advertisement specifying your particular needs on websites and newspapers.
The rent for houses and apartments depends on location, size and standard. Electricity and heating is normally paid separately but can also be included in the rent.
Normally the landlord will claim a deposit in advance to the amount of up to three months’ rent which is returned to the tenant when moving out if the apartment or house is in the same condition as when the tenancy started.
The Faroese Tenancy Act provides that a standard contract specifying the rent and conditions for the tenancy must be filled in and signed by the landlord and the tenant. The notice period to vacate a rented flat is 3 months if the apartment is part of the landlord’s home and 5 months if the landlord does not live in the same house.
Buying and selling property is mostly handled by real estate agents and lawyers. The agents advertise houses and apartments on websites and in newspapers.
There two main real estate agents operating in the Faroe Islands are:
Skyn (in Faroese)
Betri Heim (in Faroese)
Houses and apartments can also be sold privately. Advertisements can be found in the newspapers and on websites.
An average house in Tórshavn costs around DKK 2,700,000. Houses outside Tórshavn are considerably less expensive.
The Faroese banks provide financing for houses and apartments. 35 per cent of the interest paid on mortgage loans for houses inhabited by the owner is refunded by the government.