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    Buying residential property in Germany

    Conveniently located in the centre of Europe, Germany offers something for everyone, from the avant-garde art scene of its forward-thinking cities to the fairy-tale castles, wonderful forests and amazingly diverse landscape of its countryside. The appeal of Germany has not gone unnoticed internationally, with a reputation for reliability and stability reflected by the power of the German passport, the strongest in the world. Throw in a high-standard of living, an excellent standard of education, good air quality and a sturdy nation of straight-talking, straight-forward, well-travelled and educated individuals and it is no wonder people are choosing to buy property in Germany.

    Buying as a Non-EU Citizen

    There are no specific restrictions on non-EU citizens when buying property in Germany.

    Buying property in Germany – what to expect

    The following information has been complied as a guide for potential purchases for property in Germany. It does not seek to provide or replace legal advice which you should obtain, nor is it intended to have any contractual effect.

    German domicile is not necessary for purchasing property in Berlin. It suffices to provide your home address.

    In Germany, an international buyer has the option for 55 – 70% of the buying price to be financed through a loan.

    The purchase of property in Germany is subject to clear regulations. The purchase contract of a property must be certified by a notary. Both parties can be represented by their notary upon signing.

    When purchasing a property in Germany, the buyer bears the additional costs. This includes the property transfer tax (6% of the buying price in Berlin), the notary costs around 1 to 1.5%), registry charges for property (approx. 0.5% of the buying price).

    The German Property Market

    Plunging mortgage rates and foreign investment from the inflow of international people serve to liven up Germany’s previously flat property market. Over the past five years, house prices have increased by 5.6%, despite the German penchant for renting. Apartment prices in particular have been rising in major German cities such as Berlin and Frankfurt as young people strongly gravitate to urban areas, increasing the demand exponentially and making Berlin in particular Europe’s leading city for property investment.  Ongoing price increases are also expected as Germany proves more and more popular and supply chases the demand for housing. On the whole, property prices are lower than those of other major European cities and with interest rates comparably low, a shift towards home ownership in Germany looks to be on the horizon.