How many teams do we work with?
Private client team, company service team, field staff, graphics and back office team, photographers, marketer, managing director. That adds up.
Once a start-up in the 80’s, today we are experts for temporary living in Hamburg. It is hard to imagine that we were able to found our agency without fax, e-mail or internet. Working from a basement office, we helped people find roommates for shared apartments: by students for students. In the nineties, the internet made it possible for people around the world to find a temporary home away from home in Hamburg.
Live and let live
Everything started with the motto "Live and Let Live." In 1987, Frederick Wencke and Ingrid Markusse started their agency for temporary accommodation. Its initial name was “Die Mitwohnzentrale.” Highly motivated, no start-up capital, and a small team. Most of those team members were - what else - students. Some employees from the very beginning are still with us today. They are now in responsible positions as senior consultants for our corporate clients.
A temporary home
The students from the eighties grew up quickly. As the students became professionals, the student rooms were replaced by fully furnished apartments. Companies and professionals liked our concept as it was the perfect, cost-effective alternative to a hotel or boarding house. They especially liked the individual ambience you get when you rent a "home away from home".
Today it is unimaginable that we ever worked or communicated without computers, the internet, or e-mails. When we started in the '80s, we actually used a Commodore 64, but we also used good old-fashioned index cards. You just couldn’t be sure if you could really rely on a computer... Letters still had to be typewritten (and corrected with a lot of whiteout)!
Interim housing – a new term
In the late 90s we stopped offering rooms in order to specialize in furnished apartments. The term "Mitwohnzentrale" no longer fit and was replaced by “agency for interim apartments.” We now call ourselves Wencke und Partner. The term "Wohnen auf Zeit" (interim housing) is now an industry term.
2007 – Defining quality standards
Major changes are pending. Together with one of the oldest Berlin agencies for temporary living, we found City-Wohnen Deutschland. From now on our name is City-Wohnen and we are represented in Hamburg and Berlin, although we remain independent agencies. Together we developed our website and high quality standards for brokering furnished apartments.
With combined energy, we tackle major issues such as the introduction of the new laws regulating fees in 2015. Whereas the lessees had paid our commission up to that point, now lessors must pay the service fees.
The term shareconomy sparked a wave of advertising platforms that focus on self-administration instead of service. We are convinced, however, that security, quality and individual service is what people are looking for and need when it comes to housing. This is what you still find at City-Wohnen Hamburg.
Today as always - everything is changing
In 2019, our partner agency in Berlin sold its business to an equally highly qualified agency for temporary living: coming home.
Meanwhile, here in Hamburg our team has reached 20 employees. We are still fully committed to our work. There are still major issues to deal with: the right of withdrawal even for rental contracts, the new data protection regulations, energy passes, etc. We never get bored!
We are very proud to have brought our very "alternative” idea into the main stream world of “serious business.”