Home Property in Germany
How to buy a house in Germany?
Here you will find the detailed information about real estate purchasing in Germany:
- the right way to choose the property and to effect the deal;
- property taxes and duties that should be paid;
- everything about home loans in Germany;
- home property management and renting;
- rental, commercial properties and related investment properties.
Real estate for sale
Most recent offers from house owners in Germany and from real estate agencies. Advertisements with the fixed price and auctions are listed here.
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Among real estate in Germany there’s a lot of bank property. It is mostly represented by objects confiscated by banks due to credit defaults of the previous owners. The price for such objects is usually lower than their market value. For the most part, bank real property in Germany is represented by 30–50 sq. m single-room apartments in Saxony and Bavaria. Prices for bank property usually vary between €13 000–€20 000. Prices for usual real property start at €20 000 per object. For example, a 60 sq. m apartment in Duisburg costs €23 000.
It is also possible to find relatively cheap houses in Germany. For instance, a spacious 220 sq. m. townhouse in Saxony can be purchased for €25 000. A small 45 sq. m. house in Bavaria goes for €30 000. A 115 sq. m. apartment in Thuringia costs around €37 000. An average price per square meter in Berlin is approximately €1500–€2300 for property in the East Berlin, built under Federal Republic of Germany, and €4500 for apartments in upscale districts.
Wealthy clients usually prefer buying houses and apartments in Berlin, Bavaria and Westphalia. A prestigious 90 sq. m apartment in Berlin is worth €600 000. A larger apartment with an area of 245 sq. m. will cost about €1.5 million. Also, a premium 353 sq. m. apartment in Saxony can be purchased for €1.2 million, while a quite spacious 980 sq. m. villa with 2000 sq. m. of land area goes for €400 000. As for real estate in the capital, a 400 sq. m. villa with land area of 1000 sq. m. is worth €1.8 million. Prices for luxury property in Berlin may reach €10 million, and even go higher.
Investors often pay attention to the commercial market segment. Prices for cheap commercial apartment buildings start at €40 000–€60 000. For example, a 400 sq. m. commercial apartment building in Thuringia with 300 sq. m. of land costs around €50 000. A house with the same area, but with 13 000 sq. m. of land is worth €80 000. Prices for premium hotels located in historic parts of large cities may amount up to several million Euros.
A 150 sq. m. trading space in Koln costs around €90 000. A small 50 sq. m. shop in Berlin goes for €120 000. A larger shopping center with an area of 206 sq. m can be purchased for €450 000.
Acquiring a small 60 sq. m. café in Bavaria requires around €55 000, while a large 1000 sq. m restaurant in Brandenburg is worth €180 000. Whereas a cozy 200 sq. m restaurant in Koln costs €210 000.
Real estate acquisition in Germany is a very good investment. It is also a good possibility to start or purchase a business in the most stable European country, and a first step in getting its citizenship. But there are many more advantages in purchasing German real property. One of them is that you don’t face any difficulties at all, when buying local property. The government does not put any limitations on foreign investors.
Sale and purchase agreement
Purchasing an apartment in Germany is simple. First, a buyer finds an appropriate object and negotiates the price with its owner. Then, a notary drafts a sale and purchase agreement. After that both parties study and modify it, if necessary. Signing a sale a purchase agreement in Germany must be performed in the presence of a state notary, who defends the interests of both buyer and seller. The notary opens a trust account for the transaction. Being a disinterested party, the notary checks an object for debts.
The buyer should tranfer the funds to the trust account within 20–30 days after signing the agreement. The seller will be able to access the account, after official property rights have been assigned to the buyer.
The next stage involves real property registration in Germany. State notary sends documents to the real property registration department – Grundbuchamt. Then, the buyer gets an excerpt from a real property registry. The buyer may only become a legitimate property owner, having paid a German real estate tax, also known as Grunderwerbsteuer. It usually takes about 2 months to acquire and register an apartment in Germany.
When purchasing real estate in Germany one should be ready to pay the following taxes:
- German real estate tax (Grunderwerbsteuer), which varies from 4 % to 5 %, depending on federal state;
- notary services – 1 %–1.5 % of object value;
- property rights assignment costs – 0.5 %–1 % of the object value;
- agent’s fee – 3.5 %–6 % of the object value.
Thus, as we can see, the expenses for real estate acquisition in Germany vary from 8.5 % to 12.5 %. In any case, it is a very tolerable rate throughout Europe. Real estate tax in Germany is equal both for its residents and foreigners.