Not so easy when you're only on a 12-month visa, don't know the normal process for renting in the country, and haven't signed a lease agreement before!
Let me skip to the end and tell you that we did in fact find an apartment, but boy - we were getting desperate.
Our search began before we left for Germany. We applied for literally hundreds of apartments in Munich and got invited to half a dozen viewings that would take place after we arrived.
The plan was to get a hotel until the end of February to give us time to go to these viewings and speak with the landlords in person. We ended up going to three not-so-promising viewings in the area between February 14 and 25.
With the threat of having to spend another month in a hotel, we decided to expand our search outside of Munich. Nuremberg, Augsburg, Darmstadt, Frankfurt, and a small town called Langen were all on the table. All of these locations have top-tier climbing gyms in their immediate vicinity and would all be wonderful places to plant ourselves.
As soon as we started looking outside of the big cities, the response rates from landlords was much higher, and it seemed as if every place we applied to was immediately on the table.