What is what?
Visa and residence permit
Start getting the residence permit immediately after you arrive! It takes a very long time
To complete the formalities associated with your stay in Germany, you will first need to obtain a rental contract from your landlord. The contract is your legal protection against unlawful actions from your landlord. Here you can find information about the most important terms used in rental contracts and about your rights and obligations as a tenant.
Finding accomodation in Erlangen
A public institution called Studentenwerk provides low-cost services to students, including housing, childcare, and cultural activities. You can use their online services in English to find an apartment in Erlangen. You can also search for accommodation on your own, e.g. at WG-gesucht.de, which provides offers of apartments and shared accommodation.
Registration at the town hall (Anmeldung)
With the contract, you will need to register in the City Hall. You can see an overview of the services available to you as Erlangen resident in this video. With a document confirming your registration, you can open a bank account. Health insurance is obligatory for students. In case you find accomodation in another settlement, you need to register at its respective offices.
Most Germans speak english (especially the younger generation int the bigger cities), which makes it possible to live in Germany with only English language skills - but the experience will not be streamlined. Getting to know the basics of the German language can definitely help with your life in Germany.
FAU also provides German courses for a small fee.