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15 04 2021
Rental Growth Slowing a Bit

The upward trend of rents proceeded at breakneck speed in recent years. In some of Germany’s metropolises, rent rates have more than doubled. Now though, the latest edition of the F+B Rent Index shows that the extreme growth rates are beginning to level out. While the reference rents still rose by 2.2 percent between 2018 and 2019, the pace was down to 1.7 percent in 2020.

Here is another highlight: Even moving out of the city and into the ...

08 04 2021
Number of Planning Consents Hits Second-Highest Level since Turn of the Millennium

No one would deny that Germany suffers from pent-up demand for new-build housing construction, but at least as far as planning consents go, it is heading in the right direction, as the latest stats confirm: Rarely has the number of approved new flats been higher than in 2020, notwithstanding the coronavirus crisis – 2016 being the only year since the turn of the millennium with a yet higher year-end total. Year on year, the number of planning ...

01 04 2021
Buildings Sector Misses Climate Protection Targets over Coronavirus Crisis

The European Union intends to be carbon-neutral by 2050, the interim target for 2030 being the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 55 percent. Germany made serious progress on its way toward carbon-neutrality last year: By the end of 2020, carbon emissions had been reduced by more than 40 percent relative to the benchmark year of 1990, so that the country cleared yet another milestone. The figure is far above expectations, even if it is ...

25 03 2021
Steady Decline in Flats in Detached and Semi-Detached Homes

Germany’s residential property market is booming, despite the coronavirus crisis, and this hardly qualifies as news anymore. Yet the building activity keeps trailing demand, and the fact is reflected conspicuously in the percentage of dwellings in detached and semi-detached homes. This was confirmed by a recent analysis done by the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis), which shows that the new-build construction of detached and semi-detached ...

18 03 2021
Berlin’s Rent Cap Causes Housing Supply to Shrink

Capping Berlin’s residential rents was supposed to prevent unchecked rental growth. But an analysis by the ImmobilienScout24 real estate portal just found that the total number of rental housing listings in Berlin declined by 41.5 percent year on year. The period covered by the analysis extends from September 2019 to September 2020.1 Under the rent cap, landlords in Berlin are obliged to freeze their base rents for the next five years after ...

11 03 2021
Homeownership Becoming More Affordable Despite Rising Prices

In spite of the unchecked price growth on the country’s real estate market, homeownership in Germany has become more affordable lately. But German apartment seekers continue to prefer renting over owning their homes. This is the upshot of a survey recently conducted by the IW German Economic Institute.1 According to the survey, it is most notably the low level of interest that drastically improved the affordability of homeownership lately, ...

04 03 2021
Germany’s Housing Supply Increases despite Coronavirus Crisis

New-build housing construction stands a good chance to top the mark of 300,000 newly-built flats this year despite the coronavirus crisis – if it did, it would be the first time in more than twenty years. The background to this is that the construction backlog of residential units which, while approved, were not completed in 2020 is likely to exceed 750,000 now, according to KfW Research. Last year, the total number of newly-built flats ...

25 02 2021
New Initiative Wants to Increase Housing Construction and Homeownership Rate

It hardly qualifies as news anymore that Germany’s housing market has been unimpressed by the coronavirus crisis so far. Property prices have nowhere to go but up, and buying a condominium is a paying proposition. The real estate market is “going great guns,” in a manner of speaking, and there is nothing to suggest this could change any time soon. Apart from a lack of investment alternatives because of the low interest rate environment, ...

18 02 2021
Rising Demand for Energy Refurbishments

Germany’ buildings sector plays a key role in the effort to achieve the country’s climate targets: It accounts for nearly 40 percent of the German energy consumption. The Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs just announced that the number of funding applications for the energy refurbishment of buildings began to soar last year. In fact, the sum total of applications filed nearly doubled year on year, climbing from 326,000 applications for ...

11 02 2021
Condominium Prices Set New Records despite COVID-19

Germany’s real estate market proved decidedly robust during the coronavirus crisis year of 2020. Selling prices for condominiums surged noticeably in 75 out of 81 major German cities last year – in some instances by more than 30 percent. This is the gist of an analysis that the Immowelt real estate portal conducted, examining flats between 40 and 120 square metres in cities of 100,000 or more residents. “In contradistinction to other ...

04 02 2021
COVID-19 Causes Flat-Hunting Priorities to Shift

The coronavirus crisis has also changed the preferences among those Germans who are seeking to buy apartments. Against the background of the pandemic, the majority of apartment seekers currently rate financial feasibility as the one factor with the highest relevance, or so a recent survey suggests that was commissioned by PSD Bank Nord and the DeinNeuesZuhause real estate portal. For the survey, a total of 1,500 people aged 18 or older were ...

28 01 2021
Residential Rent Growth Despite COVID-19

German housing rents continued to increase unchecked even during the coronavirus crisis. The latest survey by the Immowelt real estate portal shows that new-tenancy rents kept climbing in most major German cities in 2020. The survey’s authors registered price hikes in 67 out of a total of 80 cities with populations of more than 100,000 residents.1

The upward trend is visible in all of Germany’s metropolises. New-tenancy rents increased by ...

21 01 2021
No Slowing Down for Residential Investors in 2021

The coronavirus crisis had virtually no adverse consequences on Germany’s residential property market in 2020. Nor is 2021 likely to see any change in the status of real estate as a coveted commodity: According to a recent survey, the number of investors planning to buy real estate in 2021 has actually increased year on year.

In fact, 80 percent of the market players intend to enlarge their real estate holdings in 2021. A year ago, only 48 ...

14 01 2021
Germany’s Declining Homeownership Rate

Although building finance rates are at an all-time low, the homeownership rate in Germany is in decline. As a survey shows that was compiled by the Empirica research and consultancy firm in collaboration with state-owned home-building and loan associations, roughly 42 percent of all German households were owner-occupied in 2018. This is roughly one percent less than in 2013, just five years earlier. A conspicuous contrast between West and ...

07 01 2021
Rapid Price Growth for New-Build Condominiums in Berlin

Two surveys conducted by the Bulwiengesa research institute in late 2020 revealed that prices for new-build condominiums in the inner city of Berlin have soared drastically. For the purpose of the surveys, Bulwiengesa analysed 25 residential construction projects in the western end of Berlin’s inner city and 16 projects in the eastern downtown districts. Year on year, square-metre prices increased by 16 and 18 percent, respectively, as the ...

31 12 2020
Which Cities will Keep Growing after the Crisis?

The coronavirus crisis has changed the world in many ways. International migration flows, for example, have slowed down significantly in 2020, and this in turn is likely to have drastically slowed the demographic growth in Germany this year. But chances are that the population total will principally keep going up in the years ahead – especially in certain regions of Germany, as the GEWOS Institute for Urban, Regional and Housing Research ...

25 12 2020
Fastest Price Growth for Residential Real Estate in Four Years

During the third quarter of 2020, prices for residential real estate went up at a rate of 7.8 percent over prior-year period. It is the fastest price growth since the end of 2016, when prices rose by 8.4 percent year on year, according to the latest data released by the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis). Between the second and third quarter of 2020 alone, residential real estate became 2.6 percent more expensive in Germany, or so the data ...

17 12 2020
The Highest Returns are Paid in the Suburbs

Suburbia is Trending. As supply is drying up fast in Germany’s metropolises, many apartment seekers roam farther afield, flat-hunting on the periphery of the major cities, as do investors. For some time now, prices on the outskirts have also been soaring as a result – and in some cases, the price hikes were even steeper, as an analysis of the IW Economic Institute and the Association of Sparda Banks revealed.1

The findings show, for ...

10 12 2020
Number of Condominium Planning Consents Takes Nosedive

The number of planning consents issued for condominiums in Germany has plummeted lately. Between January and September 2020, the construction of 5,992 condominiums was approved nationwide, which implies a decrease by 21.7 percent over prior-year period.1 But since demand for condominiums remains very high, it is reasonable to assume that the price trend for condominiums will keep pointing upward as available supply dries up.

There is also ...

03 12 2020
Berlin’s Rent Cap Puts a Dent in Housing Supply

Between September 2019 and September 2020, the number of rental flats available in Berlin has decreased by 41.5 percent. This is the upshot of an analysis run by the ImmobilienScout24 real estate portal.1 The fact that so few rental flats are offered in Berlin is apparently attributable not to the coronavirus pandemic but primarily to the effects of the rent cap imposed by city hall.

As it so happens, the contraction in flat listings is ...

26 11 2020
Berlin Takes Top Spot among European Real Estate Locations

No other real estate location in Europe offers investors long-term opportunities as robust as those in the German capital. This is the gist of a joint survey annually conducted by PwC and the Urban Land Institute. According to the survey, headlined “Emerging Trends in Real Estate: Europe 2021,” Berlin has taken over the lead position from the French capital, Paris.1

The top 10 list of cities with the brightest prospects includes another ...

19 11 2020
Drop in Number of Households Overburdened by Housing Costs

For many years, housing costs have been the subject to very intense public debate. Lawmakers introduced a flurry of new regulations in recent years, especially in the area of landlord-tenant law, thereby encouraging the impression that housing costs keep exacerbating the financial strain on German households. Yet the truth of the matter is that the trend has reversed itself, as an analysis by the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) just ...

12 11 2020
German Real Estate Keeps Trending Internationally, too

Investors face difficult decisions at the moment. COVID-19 has caused economic cutbacks in a number of sectors around the world, forcing investors to adjust their strategies. Even the real estate market has not been spared these jitters. As the “Active Capital Report” of international real estate consultancy Knight Frank shows, investment activities on the real estate market have taken a nosedive. Worldwide, transaction volumes dropped from ...

05 11 2020
Majority Assumes that Condominium Prices Won’t Soften

In spring of this year, mere weeks into the coronavirus pandemic, many in Germany still believed that condominium prices would deteriorate, whereas few people still think so now. According to a YourGov poll conducted in October, only 29 percent of the German population believe that selling prices for apartments will soften in the wake of the crisis. In a similar poll done in May, roughly one in two respondents still held the opinion that prices ...

28 10 2020
Professional Investors Opt Increasingly for Residential Real Estate

The transaction volume on Germany’s residential investment market increased significantly during the first three quarters of 2020 compared to the prior-year period. According to real estate service provider CBRE, the nine-month period saw 15.1 billion euros in residential real estate sales – which is 25 percent more than the same period last year did. The figures include only residential property sales involving at least 50 ...

22 10 2020
Conversion of Rental Flats into Condominiums Remains an Option

The contentious condominium conversion ban for rental flats which the Federal Minister of the Interior, Horst Seehofer, had proposed some time ago will apparently not be written into law after all. Although the idea is still under discussion within the German government, the controversial measure has, for now, been taken out of the draft bill for the release of development land, which previously contained the condominium conversion ban. Under ...

15 10 2020
Shortfall of 300,000 Flats

The stated goal of Germany’s grand coalition government in early 2018 was to ensure the construction of 1.5 million new flats nationwide by 2021. It has been evident for some time now that this goal will not be achieved. By just how much the goal will be missed was quantified at a recent conference of German construction ministers. Undersecretary Anne Katrin Bohle of the Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Community stated that she ...

08 10 2020
Expert Opinion: Housing Market Entirely Unimpressed

Many observers agree that the German housing market has remained remarkably unaffected by the coronavirus crisis so far. This assessment has now been confirmed by the so-called Immobilienweisen expert panel of the ZIA German Property Federation1 – which is not exactly known for glossing over the situation. On the contrary, the panel issued repeated warnings with respect to the housing market in recent years.

In 2017, for instance, Harald ...

01 10 2020
Regions in North Rhine-Westphalia and East Germany Follow Upward Trend

The housing markets of several major cities in North Rhine-Westphalia and in the eastern German Länder stood out last year with a particularly robust performance. According to the latest ACCENTRO Homeownership Report, the city with the steepest growth in home prices in 2019 was Dortmund – where condominiums were 38.53 percent more expensive than they had been a year earlier.1

The city with the second-fastest price hike nationwide (30.33 ...

24 09 2020
Homeownership Report: Growth in Prices and Sales Figures

The values of condominiums and homes have kept on rising in 2019, too. The year seamlessly continued the trend of previous years, as the ACCENTRO Homeownership Report 2020 just confirmed. Prices rose by a national average of 6.35 percent in 2019. The increase thus matches almost exactly the growth rate of the year before, when prices went up 6.82 percent nationwide.

The majority of the 82 largest German cities, whose market action IW German ...

17 09 2020
Housing Shortage Drives up Rents in Berlin’s Gravy Belt

The consequences of keen demand for housing in Berlin are increasingly felt in the districts surrounding the city. This is the upshot of a recent analysis conducted by the Immowelt real estate portal.1 Its findings show that rent rates in the greater metro area of the German capital increased by 17 percent during the first six months of the year – much faster than the average in the eastern German Länder. To compare the development of ...

10 09 2020
Sentiment Brightest in the Residential Property Sector

Roughly six months on since the outbreak of the coronavirus crisis, the mood among German residential property investors remains upbeat. The Real Estate Climate in the residential sector was better than the climate of any other property class. Sentiment among real estate market players is periodically polled by Deutsche Hypo and bulwiengesa, who use the survey evidence to compile a climate index.1

The August climate index for the residential ...

03 09 2020
Survey: Homeowners Less Exposed to Old-Age Poverty

Owning your home is generally considered a sensible contribution to your personal pension scheme, and a particularly effective protection against old-age poverty. A recent survey conducted by the Pestel Institute just confirmed that this is indeed the case. According to the survey, old-age poverty is tenant poverty more than anything else. The survey concludes that homeownership should therefore be more actively sponsored.1

The survey ...

27 08 2020
Residential Floor Space Consumption on the Rise

The average dwelling floor area available to every German in 2019 was 47 square metres. The per-capita floor space consumption has been going up steadily over the past years. In 2018, the dwelling floor area per resident equalled 46.7 square metres, up from just 45 square metres in 2010. This implies a 4.4-percent increase in the per-capita consumption over a ten-year period. The dwelling floor area per household has increased as ...

20 08 2020
Real Estate Gaining in Popularity in Wake of Crisis

Real estate is considered a particularly safe type of investment. This is probably one of the main reasons why the experience of the corona virus crisis has made it even more popular among private investors than it was anyway. In a recent poll, YouGov asked about 2,000 people what they considered a sensible investment type – with real estate coming out on top, having been cited far more often than bullion, equities or savings accounts. The ...

13 08 2020
German Housing Market the Most Desirable Investment Target in Europe

The German housing market has become Europe’s most coveted investment destination for residential real estate investors. During the first quarter of this year, assets in Germany accounted for around 70 percent of all rental apartment buildings traded in Europe. According to an analysis done by Savills, this translates into a transaction volume of approximately eight billion euros in Germany. While lagging far behind, the second-most important ...

06 08 2020
Suburbs Getting more Popular, Liveability Gaining in Significance

Both living and working reality have shifted in decisive ways in the wake of the corona virus crisis. Many of these shifts are probably here to stay. In what ways they could impact the demand for housing was recently examined in a survey by real estate service provider JLL. Its findings suggest that private outside areas and the working areas in homes have gained in significance more than other aspects. Since new requirements go hand in glove ...

30 07 2020
Nearly a Quarter-Million Applications for Child Tax Credit

For more than a decade after the end of the nationwide homeownership subsidy in 2006, no central public subsidies worthy of the name were available in Germany – until the child tax credit for first-time home buyers was introduced in September 2018. The idea behind the instrument is to pay families with children an equity grant of 12,000 euros per child toward the acquisition or construction of an owner-occupied dwelling. Demand for the child ...

23 07 2020
Residential Rents just Keep Going Up

Notwithstanding the coronavirus crisis, rent rates for flats in Germany, rather than softening during the first half-year of 2020, continued to rise. According to the Immowelt real estate portal, new lettings showed rent hikes in three out of four German cities. Analogously, average asking rents in the largest metropolises increased – by six percent in Düsseldorf, by five percent in Cologne, by four percent in Berlin, by three percent in ...

16 07 2020
German Savings Ratio Is High, Homeownership Rate Remains Very Low

Compared to other countries, private German households show a higher-than-average savings ratio. A comparison of the 18 OECD member states by the IW Economic Institute found that Germans tend to consume only 89 percent of their disposable income – whereas the median value across all countries studied was 95 percent. Moreover, the German savings ratio is relatively stable and has more or less maintained the same level since 1995, whereas the ...

09 07 2020
Up-and-Coming Regions Concentrated in East Germany

The IW Economic Institute conducted a survey to find out which regions in Germany achieved above-average growth over the past decade. The survey returned four up-and-coming regions characterised by a particularly robust performance, and all four of them are located in the eastern part of the country.

The fastest growing region was Havelland-Fläming in Western Brandenburg, the largest city being the state capital of Potsdam. Runner-up was ...

25 06 2020
German Housing Market Continues to Show Impressive Crisis Resilience

As recently as March, some forecasts projected a serious set-back for the German housing market due to the corona virus crisis—with the Empirica institute, for one, talking about a dip of up to 25 percent—but it is now becoming increasingly clear just how valiantly the housing market has stood its ground during the crisis. The latest figures released by the F+B real estate research company suggest as much because they show persistently ...

25 06 2020
Rising Demand for Real Estate Loans

There was every reason to expect demand for private construction finance to take a nosedive at the height of the corona virus crisis. What actually happened, however, is the exact opposite, meaning that the volume of private building loans approved by the Bundesbank in April increased over prior-year month, and substantially so at 5.2 percent, up to 24.3 billion euros.1 This is remarkable insofar as April was a month particularly hard hit by the ...

18 06 2020
Survey: Rent Cap Slows Climate Protection

One of Berlin’s climate protection targets is to make the German capital carbon-neutral by 2050 – and refurbishing the residential building stock will be a key factor in achieving this goal. A recent survey determined the scale of the investments that the refurbishment of residential buildings will require if carbon-neutrality is indeed to be achieved by 2050. To get the job done, a total of 91 billion euros between now and 2050 or about ...

11 06 2020
Industry Insiders Expect Demand for Real Estate to Remain Stable

A survey conducted among real estate industry insiders found that two out of three respondents believe that the fundamental demand in the largest German cities will maintain its level despite the coronavirus crisis The survey was commissioned by Dr. Lübke & Kelber, a company in business as property developer, estate agency, investment manager and asset manager.1

The defining trends on the real estate markets are intact, or so the ...

04 06 2020
Private Owners the Leading Group of Landlords in Germany

Political and public debates keep circling back to the subject of major housing companies and their behaviour, and this even though these companies own merely a small fraction of the rental flats in Germany. By far the most prominent group in the German occupier market are not big companies but private owners: More than 60 percent of all rental flats, or roughly 14 million dwellings, belong in this category. This is one of the findings of the ...

28 05 2020
Owner-Occupiers Live Far Cheaper than Tenants

The cost advantage of inhabiting a condominium rather than a comparable rental flat equalled 48.5 percent in 2019 – this is the upshot of this year’s ACCENTRO Housing Cost Report. For the purpose of the Housing Cost Report, now already published in its fifth edition, the IW Economic Institute compares the housing costs paid by owner-occupiers with those paid by tenants. According to the survey, owner-occupiers pay less for housing in ...

21 05 2020
Greater Allowances would Entice Majority of Germans to Go for Homeownership

Less than half of all German households live within their own four walls, and this even though most of them actually crave homeownership, as numerous survey and polls show. But what would it take to entice households to act upon their desire and to put their money where their mouth is, in a manner of speaking? In a representative Statista survey, 57 percent of the respondents stated that government allowances would be one reason to get more ...

14 05 2020
More Rental Flats under Construction in Berlin than Condominiums

For many years, condominium prices in Berlin have been going up swiftly and steadily – which is unsurprising in the sense that pent-up demand in Germany’s first city is massive and more pronounced than elsewhere. Supply keeps trailing the keen demand, and nothing suggests that this chronic trend on Berlin’s condominium market is about to change any time soon. In fact, the latest Residential Market Report by CBRE and Berlin Hyp shows ...

07 05 2020
Despite Coronavirus Crisis: Condominium Prices Remain Stable

Naturally, it is yet too early to assess the overall ramifications of the coronavirus crisis for the German economy in general and the real estate market in particular, but—for what it’s worth—it is safe to observe that the residential property market has remained stable so far. The latest housing index compiled by the F+B research institute reveals that neither condominium prices nor residential rents have softened in the wake of the ...

30 04 2020
Digitisation Push in Condominium Sales?

Necessity is the mother of invention: These days, the corona pandemic and the associated lockdown restrictions have prompted the digitisation of many situations and interactions that used to be done in person, on site. There is more to this than the home office which many employees have been working, and will continue to work, from and the various corporate investments in digital and mobile work amenities. The digitisation push also extends to ...

23 04 2020
Insiders Expect Level of Mortgage Lending Rates to Remain Stable

Due to the low-interest policy pursued by central banks at the moment, interest rates have been in more or less steady decline over the past years. For a brief time in 2016, it seemed as if the interest level had already bottomed out and that real estate buyers would have to get used to higher lending rates again, before the interest curve unexpectedly declined further and hit its all-time low, for the time being, in March 2020.

For many ...

16 04 2020
Planning Approval Figures on the Rise in Germany, but Declining in Berlin

The housing shortage in Berlin remains high. The German capital now lacks around 145,000 flats, said Jürgen Allerkamp, CEO of the IBB Investment Bank Berlin, as he presented the latest IBB Housing Market Report.1 Yet despite the huge supply gap, the number of planning consents issued in Berlin in 2019 declined by seven percent year on year. The number of planning consents both for new flats in multi-unit dwellings (-6.7 percent) and for flats ...

09 04 2020
Experts: Residential Remains Attractive Asset Class

For weeks now, the coronavirus pandemic has been the number one topic not just around kitchen tables, in the media and in politics, but also in the real estate industry, of course. Subject to particularly intense debate are the potential ramifications of the pandemic for the real estate market. While these are still hard to gauge at this time, the asset class of residential real estate is credited by many with a high degree of stability in times ...

02 04 2020
Unexpected Rise in Planning Consents

The news communicated by the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) in mid-March are cause for optimism – in a surprise development, the number of planning consents actually increased in 2019. The construction of 360,600 dwellings was approved, which represents a four percent increase year on year and, for what it’s worth, the highest figure since 2016.

A particularly reassuring piece of news is that the construction of multi-unit dwellings ...

26 03 2020
Rapid Rise in Condo Prices Continued in 2019

As in prior years, the selling prices for condominiums in Germany continued to soar in 2019, growing at an average rate of 9.3 percent (inflation-adjusted). The price dynamics actually accelerated year on year, as the latest “housing atlas” (“Wohnatlas”) shows, which Postbank compiled together with the HWWI Hamburg Institute of International Economics. What is more, the price growth was not concentrated in a few major cities but ...

19 03 2020
Political Measures Could Bring Germany’s Homeownership Rate up to 58 Percent

Germany’s body politic has long been confronted with the demand to quit stalling and take effective steps to boost private homeownership. The Bundesbank, Germany’s central bank, just published a survey in which it calculated the ways in which various political measures could affect Germany’s homeownership rate. The findings are serious food for thought.1

The Bundesbank conducted three experiments for the sake of the survey. Its authors ...

12 03 2020
Number of Private Households Likely to Keep Rising

Although Germany’s population is expected to decline by around one percent before 2040, the number of private households could keep going up until then. This is the outcome of a recent forecast compiled by the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis). According to their figures, the statisticians assume that there will be 42.6 million private households in Germany 20 years hence, an increase by around three percent compared to 2018 ...

05 03 2020
Another Record in Real Estate Transfer Tax Receipts

The revenue from the real estate transfer tax for the German Länder increased by 12.1 percent in 2019, making it the tenth consecutive year of growth. But while state level finance ministers are pleased, home buyers are frustrated – as they are among the primary sources of the tax boon. The sums paid by residential property buyers and collected by the states in 2019 add up to 15.8 billion euros, yet another record.1

The real estate ...

27 02 2020
Healthy German Mortgage Market

The mortgage broker Interhyp published statistics on the volumes and ratios of loans it brokered, and these are quite interesting in the context of the ongoing, and lately intensifying, discussion of potential real estate bubbles. According to Interhyp, the amounts borrowed on loans it brokered in 2019 increased by around eight percent on average, which is mainly explained by an analogous rise in acquisition costs, including incidental ...

20 02 2020
European Investors Have their Sights on Germany’s Secondary Cities

Germany’s second-tier cities have become extremely popular among real estate investors – and not just among domestic ones. As a survey by Union Investment among 150 institutional investors in Germany, France and the United Kingdom revealed, many French and British market players consider it by all means conceivable to spend their capital in German Class B cities.

More than half of all respondents from France and the United Kingdom, and ...

13 02 2020
In Stockholm, Rent Cap Created Booming Black Market

On 30 January, Berlin’s House of Representatives passed the law enacting the rent cap with the votes of the governing parties, these being the Social Democrats, the Left Party and the Greens. Regardless of whether or not it will stand up to a review by the Federal Constitutional Court, there is plenty of speculation about the ways in which this instrument might change Berlin and its housing market. To get an angle on the issue, one could ...

06 02 2020
Regulatory Efforts Continues even as Housing is Already Becoming More Affordable

Few other areas have seen such a whirlwind of political activity as the housing issue. Over the last few months alone, the body politic extended and tightened the existing rent freeze (“Mietpreisbremse”) but also decided to move ahead with the rent index reform, whose consequences will include a lengthened observation period for calculating the local reference rent and a decline or slowed increase of rent index levels on the ground. The ...

30 01 2020
Child Tax Credit for Home Buyers Barely Used in Major Cities

The child tax credit for first-time home buyers introduced in 2018 appears to have met with a lively response so far – a total of 171,510 applications for homeowner subsidies were submitted to the KfW development bank between early 2018 and November 2019. The applications represent a combined funding volume of c. 3.6 billion euros. As recent evaluations show, the bulk of these funds appears to flow primarily into rural regions and smaller ...

23 01 2020
Market Insiders Anticipate Further Price Growth for Residential Real Estate

Germany in the 2010s was defined by booming real estate markets. Indeed, the price hikes continued right through the final year of the decade: During the third quarter of 2019, for instance, condominiums in the “Big Seven” metropolises sold for 9.0 percent more than during the prior-year period. This is the upshot of figures released by the Institute for Urban, Regional and Housing Research in Hamburg (GEWOS)1 and by the Federal Statistical ...

16 01 2020
Will Condominium Buyers Soon Benefit from Negative Interest Rates?

Due to the monetary policy of the central banks, interest rates for construction finance dropped to a new all-time low in 2019. It is quite possible that interest rates for condominium buyers who take out mortgage loans will drop even further – and perhaps even dip into the negative range. The KfW development bank, for one, already announced its intention to pass the negative interest rates at which it borrows on to private borrowers and ...

09 01 2020
Prospering Metro Region Berlin-Brandenburg

When Tesla announced in late November that it would build its so-called gigafactory in the greater Berlin area and simultaneously set up a design and development centre in Berlin proper, it caused a bit of quarrelling over who deserves credit for the achievement – the State of Berlin or the State of Brandenburg. Of course, the quarrel reflects a political vanity contest that has little to do with the decisive piece of news, which is that the ...

02 01 2020
Will Interest Rates Maintain their Low Level for Decades Yet?

Although everyone assumed for the longest time that the European Central Bank (ECB) would start raising their lending rates no later than 2020, the sluggish economy has prompted the European bankers to put the interest rate reversal on the back burner until further notice – in fact, they actually eased their monetary policy further. Real estate service provider Savills therefore believes that interest rate hikes should not be expected before ...

26 12 2019
Pressure on German Housing Markets Keeps Rising

Between 2012 and 2018, Germany’s population increased by a total of 2.5 million residents. At the same time, a disproportionate number of younger people moved to the country’s major cities, as the Federal Statistical Office recently disclosed. On balance, cities with populations of more than 100,000 gained 1.2 million residents of the ages 20 through 40 while losing only 120,000 residents over the age of 40. This implies a general trend of ...

19 12 2019
Serious Worries about Old-Age Poverty

The question how secure the government pension scheme is has preoccupied the German public for quite some time. As early as 1986, ahead of the general elections, the Federal Minister of Labour, Norbert Blüm, tried to reassure the public, and he did so again during a parliamentary debate in 1997. But today, Germans are no longer convinced that their pensions are secure, and a recent poll conducted on behalf of Deutsche Bank revealed a low level ...

12 12 2019
City Ranking: Berlin is Germany’s Most Dynamic City

For more than 15 years, the Cologne Institute for Economic Research (IW) has compared the major German cities and published its findings in a number of differentiated rankings. This year, Berlin took the top spot as most dynamic city for the first time. The city fittest for the future, according to the survey that the IW Institute conducted on behalf of the WirtschaftsWoche business weekly and the ImmobilienScout24 real estate portal, is ...

05 12 2019
Still No Signs of a Real Estate Bubble

Whether or not a real estate bubble is looming or indeed about to burst on Germany’s housing market has been subject to public debate for years. Warnings of looming dangers have been voiced off and on—but inevitably qualified by the admittance that there is currently no bubble in sight. It happened again a short while ago, when Bundesbank presented its latest financial stability report.1  

No Evidence for Debt-Driven Speculative ...

28 11 2019
Reasons Why Germans Find it so Hard to Build Wealth

Since 2011, Germany’s homeownership rate has flatlined somewhere between 45 and 46 percent, which means that nowhere else in Europe, apart from Switzerland, do so many households rent their homes. Despite the fact that interest on mortgage loans is at an all-time low, wealth-building through homeownership is not getting off the ground in Germany. While this can be blamed—at least to some extent—on demographics, the household income ...

21 11 2019
Fewer and Fewer Planning Permissions in Berlin

While the enormous demand for housing in Berlin persists and while this will be another year of demographic growth for the city, housing construction in the German capital is rapidly running out of steam. During the first three quarters of 2019, the number of flats approved dropped by 10.7 percent over prior-year period.1 Planning approval figures had already followed a downward trend in 20182 and 20173 but at minus 2.1 and 1.2 percent, ...

14 11 2019
German Homeownership Rate Perks up

Between 2014 and 2018, the homeownership rate in Germany rose by one percentage point from 45.5 to 46.5 percent of the private households. This is one of the findings quoted in the microcensus supplementary survey that the Federal Statistical Office published in October 2019.1 In 2010, the homeownership rate equalled 45.7 percent according to the Statistical Office.

Since the start of the real estate boom and the rapid rise in condominium ...

07 11 2019
Steady Increase in Single-Person Households and Micro-Apartments

The number of households in Germany is growing, which is explained, on the one hand, by demographic growth, but also by the continuous decline in the number of persons per household, on the other hand. The Federal Statistical Office reported this summer that the number of single-person households has increased by 46 percent since 1991 and the number of two-person households by 29 percent, whereas the number of larger households has decreased by ...

31 10 2019
Climate Policy Reversal in the Housing Sector Requires Billions Annually

In addition to the housing issue, climate protection is one of the key subjects that are at the very centre of the public debate in Germany. That the housing issue and climate protection are closely connected is easily overlooked in the context of the climate debate, which is dominated by the transport sector; yet energy savings in the buildings sector represent a key component in the effort to achieve the German climate targets by 2030 and ...

24 10 2019
Still Plenty of Potential in Class B Cities

The most attractive German cities for investments in existing residential buildings are Lüneburg, Fürth and Pforzheim. Parameters in the new-build property segment, by contrast, are most advantageous for residential property investors in Fürth, Kempten and Bamberg. These are, in any case, the findings of the latest Risk-Return Ranking by real estate service provider Dr. Lübke & Kelber. The ranking, which is updated annually, ...

17 10 2019
Germans have Misguided Notions about the Housing Market

The housing issue is currently one of the most hotly debated topics in Germany’s politics and media. The housing shortage and the rise in rents and prices have caused the public debate concerning adequate housing policy measures to become increasingly polarised, prompting discussions even of extreme measures like rent caps and expropriations or, in the case of Berlin’s rent cap, their actual adoption. But according to a recent survey, the ...

10 10 2019
Berlin and Munich among the World’s Finest Investment Destinations

German metropolises don’t quite play in the same league as the “Big Seven,” these being London, New York, Paris, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Singapore and Seoul. That said, the latest JLL survey “Demand and Disruption in Global Cities” suggests that Munich and Berlin count among the expanded circle of the so-called established world cities and thus among the 20 best destinations for real estate investments worldwide.1 Another German city that ...

03 10 2019
East German Housing Markets Keep Catching up

While the number of condominium sales in the major German cities declined overall in 2018, average selling prices increased noticeably, as the ACCENTRO Homeownership Report 2019 shows. Another finding is that the performance of several cities in the East German states was particularly positive.

The fastest price growth rates among the major cities were registered in Halle (Saale) in Saxony-Anhalt with an increase of 35.56 percent over prior ...

26 09 2019
Condominium Prices Soaring, Sales of New-Build Units Plummeting

While a number of experts have been predicting that residential property prices will level out or even decline in Germany’s major cities, condominium prices just keep on rising nonetheless. Indeed, they appear to have gathered considerable momentum lately, as the recently published ACCENTRO Homeownership Report 2019 shows.

According to the report findings, the average selling price for condominiums in major German cities was 253,674 euros, ...

19 09 2019
Majority of Tenants Desire Homeownership

Germany has traditionally been a country of tenants – the majority of households here rent their homes, whereas the homeownership rate has flatlined at 45 percent for many years. But a recent survey by the Interhyp financial services provider suggests the reason for this situation is not that Germans simply love renting. According to its findings, two out of three German tenants actually dream of owning their homes outright one day.1

The ...

12 09 2019
Child Tax Credit for Home Buyers more Effective than Assumed

When the Federal Government announced the child tax credit for first-time home buyers last years and eventually introduced it in September 2018, it triggered a lively debate as to whether the subsidy program is comparable to the homeownership subsidy program that was suspended in 2006. The purpose of the child tax credit for first-time home buyers provides that families who acquire or build a condominium or home for owner-occupancy will be ...

05 09 2019
Hamburg Leading the Way in Housing Construction

Among Germany’s seven biggest cities, Hamburg stands out as the metropolis with the fastest housing development, relatively speaking. This is the gist of a comparison that the IW German Economic Institute in Cologne conducted. According to the survey, 58 flats were completed for every 10,000 residents in Hamburg in 2018, which is almost ten percent more than in Munich (53), the runner-up, and over twenty percent more than in third-highest ...

29 08 2019
How a Reform of the Real Estate Transfer Tax Would Provide Relief to Home Buyers

A reform of Germany’s real estate transfer tax has been demanded for the longest time in order to encourage more people to seek homeownership. At 45 percent, Germany’s homeownership rate counts among the lowest anywhere in Europe. Reforming the real estate transfer tax by lowering the tax rate or waiving it altogether for first-time buyers of private homes would clearly facilitate homeownership because it would effectively reduce the capital ...

22 08 2019
Younger Households Go for Homeownership Less and Less Often

Interest on mortgage loans has been at an all-time low for years, and yet Germany’s homeownership rate appears to be frozen in place at 45 percent. And it is not likely to increase significantly any time soon, because the number of first-time buyers is actually regressive, as the IW German Economic Institute in Cologne determined in a recent survey.1 While as many as 700,000 German households bought their first homes annually in the early Zero ...

15 08 2019
Housing Construction in Major German Cities far too Slow

The number of flats built in Germany is currently far too low to keep up with demand, and most conspicuously so in the country’s metropolises. This is the gist of an analysis recently conducted by the IW German Economic Institute in Cologne.1 The institute developed a housing demand model that uses demographic forecasts, among other data, to determine the building demand for all of Germany’s 401 districts. If you compare the demand thereby ...

08 08 2019
Housing Comparatively Affordable in Germany

Housing Comparatively Affordable in GermanyThe affordability of housing is a topic that has dominated societal and political debates in Germany for a number of years now. In response to the rise in rents and prices, especially in the country’s major cities and metro regions, the body politic has increasingly intervened in the housing market by introducing measures like the so-called “rent freeze” or the “rent cap.” However, a look ...

01 08 2019
Germany Lacks 300,000 Family Homes

While the public debate revolves primarily around the blatant supply shortage in the rental housing sector, a recent survey found that the supply of condominiums and detached or semi-detached homes in Germany falls well short of demand as well. According to calculations done by research institute Empirica, the annual demand for new construction is 151,000 units, which contrasts starkly with the actual completion figure of 104,000 homes annually ...

25 07 2019
No Relief for the Housing Market

Nearly a year and a half after it was formed, the incumbent German Government presented its first housing benefit and rent report – and thereby documented how ineffective the housing policy of recent years has been. The situation on the German housing market was “clearly strained in the economically strong regions during the reporting period,” the report says. The reporting period extends from 2016 through 2018, as the Federal Government ...

18 07 2019
German Ministry of Justice Seeks to Regulate New-Build Rents as Well

So far, there had basically been a political consensus that red tape and amendments to the landlord-tenant law would be applied to existing properties only while sparing new-build ones as much as possible. This was true even for the “rent freeze” rent control measure that became effective in 2015 and that exempts new-build flats. The waiver was meant to ensure that housing construction, which is so urgently needed in Germany, does not stall, ...

11 07 2019
Low Homeownership Rate Causes Great Differences in Wealth

The steep price growth over the past years has drastically increased the wealth of many property owners. Between 2011 and 2018 alone, the assets held by German owners of residential property owners grew by 2.8 trillion euros, as the economists Till Baldenius, Sebastian Kohl and Moritz Schularick recently determined in the context of a survey.1 While this should actually be a piece of good news, it also hides a problem – because only a ...

04 07 2019
Building Offices Preferable to Housing Construction in Berlin

Excessive red tape in Berlin’s housing construction sector prompts property developers to focus increasingly on office development instead. This was reported by two of the city’s dailies, Tagesspiegel and Morgenpost, as they discussed the property developer survey that bulwiengesa published in mid-June. According to the articles, the real estate consultancy firm’s head of the Residential Berlin unit observed a “shift toward commercial ...

27 06 2019
Rent Freeze Exemptions Fail to Encourage New-Build Construction

Contrary to the Federal Government’s plans, the exemptions from the rent control measure colloquially called the “rent freeze” (“Mietpreisbremse”) have failed to stimulate new-build housing construction. This is the upshot of a survey by the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg that the German Society of Property Researchers (gif) commissioned. As the Immobilien Zeitung real estate trade paper reported, the exemption of new-build rents ...

20 06 2019
Housing Demand to Keep Rising for Decades

The demand for housing in Germany will keep increasing for decades to come – in spite of the prospective long-term decline in population. This is the upshot of a survey conducted by Bernd Raffelhüschen and Roman Witkowski at the University of Freiburg. Reasons for this development include the rise in residential floor space consumption and the growing number of single- and two-person households, as the survey “Socio-Demographic Change and ...

13 06 2019
Building Finance Rates Have Never been Lower

As recently as last year, it was generally assumed that interest on mortgage loans had long bottomed out and would inevitably rise in the short-, medium- or long-term. Now, at the start of summer 2019, an entirely different situation presents itself. Not only did the building finance rates fail to go up, they actually dropped to an all-time low in late May. According to a statement by mortgage broker Interhyp, the average interest rate for ...

06 06 2019
German Ministry of Justice Plans to Further Tighten Landlord-Tenant Law

Katarina Barley (Social Democrats), the former Minister of Justice who just resigned her brief for a seat in the European Parliament, submitted a draft bill for far-reaching amendments to the landlord-tenant legislation to the federal cabinet before leaving office. Its purpose, inter alia, is to prevent or slow rent increases and to limit the rights of landlords even further. One of the draft bill’s proposed measures is to ban the advertising ...

30 05 2019
Rising Land Prices Jeopardise Housing Development Targets

There is a real chance that the shortage in development land could stall the construction of new-build housing in Germany in the medium term. This is the upshot of a survey compiled by the Prognos research institute on behalf of the Wohnungsbau alliance of building industry associations whose members include the IG Bau industrial union, the GdW Federal Association of German Housing and Real Estate Companies and the DMB German Tenant Union.1 ...

23 05 2019
Homeowners Keep Getting Wealthier

The net assets of private German households have been making hefty gains, as a recent survey by the Bundesbank noted. While this is generally considered welcome news, a parallel trend has been a cause for concern – because the wealth growth within the German population is unevenly distributed and extremely so. The main reason cited for it is the low homeownership rate in Germany. A particularly wide gap was found in the distribution of ...

16 05 2019
Berlin’s Periphery Getting Seriously Expensive

Selling prices for condominiums in Berlin increased at an average of 12.0 percent in 2018, which is nearly as fast as the year before when an average growth of 12.7 percent was registered. This is the gist of the latest Housing Market Report that Berlin Hyp and CBRE publish annually.1 According to the report, the highest prices are paid in the borough of Mitte, where the median value is 5,188 euros per square metre. The highest growth rates, ...

09 05 2019
Fewer Germans Inclined to Save Money toward Homeownership

Just over one in three Germans is putting money aside for the purpose of buying a home – this is the upshot of the latest spring poll by the VPB Association of Private Building Societies.1 The survey outcome implies a drop by five percentage points since the previous poll in fall of 2018 and the lowest score since 2013.2 Many savers evidently ceased to consider it realistic to seek homeownership because they see no way to achieve this goal. ...

02 05 2019
Homeownership Still Worth it Almost Anywhere

In 94 percent of Germany’s cities and districts, homeowners pay lower housing costs than tenants. This is the gist of the new ACCENTRO Housing Cost Report 2019 that was compiled by the IW German Economic Institute in Cologne. According to the report findings, average owner-occupiers across Germany pay 40 percent less than tenants in comparable flats. The experts consider the persistently low level of interest rates the main reason behind it ...

25 04 2019
Germany 2035: Leipzig the Fastest Growing City

The urban centres in Germany will continue to see demographic and economic growth in the coming years, whereas the more rural regions will keep shrinking rapidly – this is the result of an extensive survey done by the Berlin Institute for Population and Development that analysed the long-term viability of Germany’s regions through 2035 and made corresponding forecasts. The national population total will be more or less the same it is today, ...

18 04 2019
Further Price Increase Forecast for the Coming Years

For years, there have been speculations that the time of major price hikes on the German housing market would come to an end soon. The debate picked up considerable momentum in early 2017 when Prof. Harald Simons predicted in the Spring Report of the ZIA German Property Federation that prices in the metropolises were about to take a nosedive. Alas, it is not what happened – and in the latest Spring Report, published in February 2019, ...

11 04 2019
Zoning New Building Land in Berlin Has High Hurdles to Jump

The shortage in zoned development area is generally considered one of the main reasons that prevent the rapid creation of new residential accommodation. Especially in Germany’s major conurbations, the focus is therefore on infill densification and the addition of extra floors to existing residential buildings. In Berlin alone, according to calculations done by Berlin’s Senate Administration, there is potentially enough space to create ...

04 04 2019
Housing Construction in Germany’s “Big Seven” Becoming Less Attractive

Germany’s metropolises are plagued, across the board, by housing shortages – and yet investing in newly constructed buildings is becoming less and less attractive from a property developer’s point of view. This is the upshot of the latest Property Developer Survey compiled by the real estate consultancy bulwiengesa.1 It suggests that, after years of growth, the total floor area of new-build flats in Germany’s seven largest cities has ...

28 03 2019
Schleswig-Holstein Trailblazing New Housing Policy Approach

At a time when the rent control measure colloquially referred to as the “rent freeze” (“Mietpreisbremse”) is being tightened on the federal level and the state of Berlin is seriously discussing expropriations, the state of Schleswig-Holstein has opted for a housing policy approach that is increasingly at odds with the federal stance. The state government in Kiel, composed of Christian Democrats, Liberals and Greens, recently passed ...

21 03 2019
Adding Extra Floors and Converting Buildings Could Deliver 2.7 Million New Flats

The lack of development land is one of the biggest obstacles hampering efforts to combat the housing shortage in Germany. Especially in the conurbations, where the housing shortages are most pronounced, undeveloped land is extremely hard to come by and very pricey. The high relevance of urban infill densification has therefore been the subject of frequent discussion, and all the more so after a survey published by the University of Technology at ...

14 03 2019
Prices in Greater Metro Areas Skyrocketing

Prices in the housing markets of Germany’s major cities have continued to soar in 2018. Especially the metropolises reported another steep price hike – condominium prices in the “Big Seven” cities went up by anywhere between 9.6 percent (Düsseldorf) and 15.2 percent (Berlin) year on year, as the latest Spring Report by the Immoblienweisen expert panel shows.1 The supply shortage and the high demand have ensured that the price pressure ...

07 03 2019
Berlin Builds Fewer Flats than Planned

Berlin’s Senate Government, composed of Social Democrats, Left Party and Greens, originally promised the new-build construction of 30,000 state-owned flats before the end of the parliamentary term in 2021. But as Katrin Lompscher (The Left), Senator for Urban Development, had to admit just now, actual completions will fall well short of the mark.1 Instead of 30,000 new flats, the new target will be to complete at least 25,000 municipal flats ...

28 02 2019
Historic District Protection Areas Jeopardise Investments in Residential Accommodation

Berlin is well known to have a penchant for zoning more and more sub-districts as historic district protection areas. In a historic district protection area, all capital improvements require approval while conversions of rental units into condominiums are virtually impossible. On top of that, the city may exercise a general right of first refusal with respect to any real estate transaction. For municipalities, the main purpose of declaring ...

21 02 2019
Affordability of Residential Real Estate Remains on High Level

In a recent survey, Commerzbank predicted the continuation of the real estate boom through the end of this year.1 The main reason underlying its assessment that prices for residential real estate keep surging is the persistently high level of affordability. Admittedly, 2018 proved to be another year of brisk price growth for the housing market with a rate of 6.8 percent nationwide and 7.9 percent in the metropolises, according to the latest ...

14 02 2019
Unexpected Drop in Building Finance Rates

In late 2018, an interest rate reversal seemed to loom on the horizon—many analysts agreed that rates would start climbing again in 2019.1 A recent report by the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung suggested that quite the opposite happened to building loan rates at the beginning of the year.2 Mortgage interest has softened slightly and by the end of January was below the level it had been at year-end 2018, on average.

The most affordable case ...

07 02 2019
Rent Freeze May be Extended

In their coalition agreement, the Christian Democrat bloc and Social Democrats had agreed to evaluate the rent control measure commonly known as “rent freeze” in regard to its effectiveness—a promise the governing Grand Coalition just made good on. The German Institute for Economic Research (DIW) was commissioned by the Federal Ministry of Justice to analyse whether or not the rent freeze actually influences the development of rents.1 The ...

31 01 2019
Child Tax Credit for Home Buyers, while Popular, Fizzles in the Big Cities

The German Government set itself the goal to promote homeownership, a decision it had been urged to make for a long time, given the fact that Germany’s homeownership rate is a low 45 percent. So far, the main measure toward this end has been the child tax credit for first-time home buyers passed by the governing Grand Coalition. Since September 2018, families have had the chance to apply for subsidies that amount to 1,200 euros per year for ...

24 01 2019
Agenda-Setting for Accelerated Housing Construction now Initiated

In September 2018, the housing summit organised by Germany’s Federal Government took place at the Chancellery. It was supposed to be something of a starting signal for the “housing offensive,” as the coalition agreement of Christian Democrat bloc and Social Democrats called it. The housing summit was also attended by representatives of the German Länder, and legislative impulses to jump-start or speed up the housing construction process ...

17 01 2019
In Many German Cities, Rents have Become more Affordable

Whenever the subject of housing comes up in the media or in politics, the discussion will often turn to the fast rise in rents over the past years. However, this angle fails to take into account that wages and salaries have gone up as well—and outpaced the rent growth in large parts of Germany, as a recent survey conducted by the IW German Economic Institute in Cologne found. The latter suggests that rents have become more affordable in ...

10 01 2019
Social Democrats Lay Axe to Recoverability of Property Tax

Germany’s property tax legislation must be re-enacted by the end of 2019 at the latest, or so the Federal Administrative Tribunal ruled. Olaf Scholz, the Federal Minister of Finance and a Social Democrat, therefore presented a draft concept for reforming the tax in late November 2018—yet it has met with consternation in the real estate industry. For its consequence would be that, of all households, those already shouldering high rental costs ...

03 01 2019
Some Endorse Homeownership whereas Others Hamper It

While the Germany’s governing Grand Coalition is still discussing ways to sponsor homeownership for private households, some of the German Laender have already moved ahead. The State of Saxony, for one, just passed a guideline for the promotion of homeownership in rural areas. It specifies that Saxony will grant state-sponsored loans to private home buyers and home builders.1At currently 0.75 percent interest, these loans over 10,000 to 80,000 ...

27 12 2018
Even an Interest Rate Hike would be Unlikely to Trigger a Deterioration of Prices

Property prices in many German cities are the highest they have ever been. This is to some extent explained by the current level of lending rates, which is extremely low, historically speaking. A concerned question on the minds of homeowners who bought their property in recent years is therefore whether their home would be threatened by a sudden loss in value if key lending rates were to rise. Experts have now sounded the all-clear signal for ...

20 12 2018
Berlin’s Government Lacks Overview of Gap Sites

The housing shortage in Berlin is becoming more and more dramatic. For years, rents1 and prices2 for residential real estate in the German capital have been on the rise, with no end to the trend in sight so far. Even for average earners it is becoming increasingly difficult to find a place to live. The situation could be remedied by a focused housing construction strategy the governing coalition of left-wing parties and Greens wrote into their ...

13 12 2018
Economy Experts Criticise Landlord-Tenant Law Regulations

In its latest annual expert opinion, the German Council of Economic Experts (SVR) has criticised the housing policy of Germany’s Federal Government. The five so-called “Economy Sages” analysed both the measures already passed and the ones planned, and found harsh words for some of the decisions made by Germany’s policymakers—the rent freeze being one example.1The economy experts call rent caps a “limited therapy to combat ...

06 12 2018
Middle of Society Ignored by German Housing Policy

Going forward, residential living will become a good deal more digital and smarter. This is the—admittedly unsurprising—gist of the survey “Wohntrends 2035” the GdW Federal Association of German Housing and Real Estate Companies conducted to determine housing trends between now and 2035.1 But far more interesting than this insight is another aspect—the parallel emergence of a polarising trend on Germany’s housing market.2The survey ...

29 11 2018
Public Realm Benefits from Germany’s Real Estate Boom

The German real estate markets have prospered quite handsomely since 2010. Low levels of interest as well as positive economic and demographic growth have fuelled demand, while available product clearly remains in short supply to this day—resulting in a steep rise in property prices that has persisted for the past nine years. Few if any have benefited from the brisk market development as much as Germany’s public realm. Tax revenues ...

22 11 2018
Homeownership Becoming Increasingly Elusive for Young People

Fewer and fewer young Germans get to live within their own four walls, or so a survey by the Handelsblatt Research Institute suggests. The institute’s findings show that the percentage of young Germans who own their homes outright has been declining for years. As recently as 2013, the number of first-time buyers of condominiums and detached homes totalled 800,000—by 2016, that figure was down to 600.000. The homeownership rate among 25- to ...

14 11 2018
No Signs of Relief on Berlin’s Housing Market

With the supply shortage as extreme as it is, the housing market in the German capital remains severely strained. According to the “Housing Market Barometer 2018” published by IBB Investment Bank Berlin, the main obstacles hampering any meaningful relief to the situation in Berlin include the short supply in building land but also the resistance to construction projects.1 IBB asked 200 experts about their assessment of the market ...

07 11 2018
Is a Real Estate Bubble Looming over Germany?

Not just because real estate prices keep going up, but also because the peak of the last financial crisis recently had its ten-year anniversary, the possibility of a real estate bubble in Germany once again became the subject of intense debate. On 15 September 2008, the US bank Lehman Brothers filed for insolvency, with dire consequences for the global financial system. Among the triggers of the financial crisis at the time was the bursting of ...

01 11 2018
Rent Growth – Downward Spiral for Low-Income Groups

People in lower income brackets suffer greater hardship from the strained housing market than high earners. This is the gist of a survey that Humboldt University in Berlin conducted in collaboration with the University College London.1 The scientists had compared the housing costs of 100,000 people between 1993 and 2013 and were surprised by what they found. For the 20 percent at the lower end of the income scale, housing costs rose from 27 ...

25 10 2018
Class B Cities Show Best Risk-to-Reward Ratio

For residential real estate investors with focus on robust returns on equity, it generally recommends itself still to opt for the so-called “ABBA” strategy, which encourages investments in the Grade B locations of Class A cities, and inversely in Grade A locations of Class B cities. This is the outcome of the latest Risk-Return Ranking by Dr. Lübke & Kelber GmbH, an asset management consultancy firm specialising in residential real ...

17 10 2018
No Housing Policy Changes

Germany's housing summit had long been prepared for, and the date in late September was anticipated with great expectations—it had been touted, after all, as a prelude to the so-called housing offensive by the Federal Government. Moreover, the summit was attended by the most senior stakeholders. Chancellor Merkel herself was hosting it, with other members of the Federal Government in attendance, specifically the Ministers of Finance, ...

11 10 2018
Berlin’s Lord Mayor Wants to Intensify Focus on Tenant Protection

Michael Müller, the Lord Mayor of Berlin, went public recently with a comprehensive catalogue of housing policy needs. In an opinion piece for the Tagesspiegel, one of Berlin’s dailies, the Social Democrat mayor argued that it is high time to give the “needs of tenants” unambiguous “priority over lobby interests”.1Müller wants his party, the Social Democrats, to side with the tenants and therefore demands that the “government use ...

04 10 2018
German Government Moves ahead with Special Depreciation Allowance and Rent Freeze

In the run-up to the housing summit that is scheduled to take place at the German Chancellery on 21 September, the governing Grand Coalition agreed on two housing policy draft bills. The Federal Government laid the ground for a special depreciation allowance in rental housing construction and passed a draft bill that seeks to tighten the rent control measure called the “rent freeze” (German “Mietpreisbremse”) and to cut back the ...

27 09 2018
Housing Shortage Slows Market Dynamics in Berlin

The market for condominiums in major German cities lost some of its momentum in 2017. Even as selling prices continued to go up, both the number of flats sold and the revenue total declined. However, the market performance differed considerably from one region to the next, as the ACCENTRO Homeownership Report 2018 shows.

Leipzig and Dresden now Count among Germany’s Largest Housing Markets

Although Berlin remains by far the most important ...

20 09 2018
Condominiums: Price Growth Continues but at Slower Pace

After years of brisk growth, both the number of condominiums sold in Germany’s major cities and the generated revenues suffered a modest decline in 2017. This is the upshot of the new ACCENTRO Homeownership Report that was presented on 17 September. It appears that the number of transactions went down by 5.62 percent compared to 2016, whereas the total revenues decreased by 1.32 percent. Although the ACCENTRO Homeownership Report had ...

13 09 2018
Government Advisers Call for Housing Policy Shift

The Scientific Advisory Council of the Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs has sounded a wake-up call for the Federal Government with an expert opinion on Germany’s housing policy. The committee of 34 economists believes that nothing short of radical turn-around is necessary to get on top of the issues plaguing the country’s housing market.1 The reactions from the body politic have been fierce—which was to be expected because the expert ...

06 09 2018
Vast Majority of Germans Crave Homeownership

84 percent of all Germany would rather be living in their own abode instead of renting. This is the gist of a poll conducted by the Civey public opinion research institute on behalf of the Spiegel Online news magazine.1 Included in the 84 percent are tenants who would love to own a home outright as well as owners who do not regret their decision.

According to the poll, 16.4 percent of the respondents stated their intention to buy a condominium ...

30 08 2018
Surge in Revenue from Property Tax

The property tax is one of the most important revenue streams for German municipalities. What is more, they co-determine the flow of revenues into their coffers since municipalities set their own assessment rates for the property tax. In 2017, German municipalities collected c. 13.9 billion euros in A and B class property taxes. This is up from 11.3 billion euros as recently as 2010 or an increase by 23%, as the Ernst & Young (EY) ...

23 08 2018
German Government Considers Lowering Incidental Acquisition Costs

Homeownership is becoming an ever more important topic for Germany’s grand coalition government. With the child tax credit for first-time home buyers, the Christian Democrat bloc and the Social Democrats already passed one measure to promote homeownership. Now, they are evidently considering additional ways to lower the incidental acquisition costs for home buyers. The Federal Minister of Justice, Katarina Barley (a Social Democrat), ...

16 08 2018
Rents in Germany are Surging, Especially in Berlin

Rent rates in Berlin showed a 7.9-percent increase over prior-year period by midyear 2018. No other metropolis in Germany reported a steeper rent growth than its capital city. This is the upshot of the latest JLL analysis which examined the asking rents in the “Big Seven” cities and in Leipzig.1

However, the growth in Berlin has actually slowed. In the two previous years, rents in Berlin had increased by 12,8 percent and 9.1 percent, ...

09 08 2018
German Chancellor to Host Housing Summit

Ever since the coalition agreement between the Christian Democrat block and the Social Democrats was passed, it was understood that a housing summit would be convened before the end of the year. Having previously been announced for sometime this fall, a date was set recently—21 September.1 Chancellor Angela Merkel will host the housing summit at the Chancellery itself, which suggests that the Grand Coalition does take this agenda item serious ...

02 08 2018
Majority of Surveys Take Dim View of Child Tax Credit for Home Buyers

The child tax credit for first-time home buyers that the German government introduced recently has proven highly controversial both in the body politic and in the real estate industry. Several surveys on the subject of the subsidy program have been released lately, and these, too, have mixed feelings about the child tax credit. The most recent survey comes from the CRES Center for Real Estate Studies and passes a rather favourable ...

26 07 2018
No Sign of Bubble Forming on German Housing Market

Despite hefty price hikes for residential property, there is no indication that a price bubble might be forming on the German real estate market. This is the gist of a recent survey compiled by the LBBW state bank of Baden-Württemberg. Going forward, the survey authors expect prices to keep rising, albeit at a slower pace.1

In 2017, purchase prices for residential real estate in Germany increased by an average of 8.3 percent year on year, ...

19 07 2018
It Takes Longer and Longer to Build

Although the housing demand in Germany is enormous and although the Federal Government announced a “housing offensive,” new build construction is barely gaining momentum. Germany is a far cry from the target mark of 375,000 new flats per year—with only 285,000 flats completed in 2017.1 One of the reasons to explain the phenomenon is that the process of housing construction is getting more long-winded. As the GdW Federal Association of ...

12 07 2018
Senate of Berlin Falls Well Short of Housing Construction Target

In its coalition agreement, Berlin’s state government of Left Party, Social-Democrats and Greens agreed in late 2016 to raise at least 30,000 council housing flats before 2021. Just a year and a half later, the Senator for Urban Development, Katrin Lompscher (Left Party), recently admitted that the Senate will miss the mark. Instead of the planned rate of 30,000 completions by 2021, the city’s six municipal housing companies will build only ...

06 07 2018
It Takes Longer and Longer to Build

Although the housing demand in Germany is enormous and although the Federal Government announced a “housing offensive,” new build construction is barely gaining momentum. Germany is a far cry from the target mark of 375,000 new flats per year—with only 285,000 flats completed in 2017.1 One of the reasons to explain the phenomenon is that the process of housing construction is getting more long-winded. As the GdW Federal Association of ...

05 07 2018
Declining Number of First-Time Buyers in Germany

In 2016, nearly 600,000 households in Germany acquired residential property for the first time. This is the upshot of a recent survey published by the IW German Economy Institute in Cologne. It means that the number of tenants who opted for homeownership suffered a drop compared to previous years. As recently as 2013, the number of first-time buyers equalled 800,000 in Germany.1

The number of tenants who manage to make the transition to ...

28 06 2018
Federally-Owned Land in Germany Includes 971 Undeveloped Plots in Major Cities

The shortage in building land, especially in metro areas, is one of the main reasons why housing construction in Germany has lagged far behind demand for some years now. It has recently come to light that the Federal Government, represented by the Institute for Federal Real Estate (BImA), owns no less than 971 undeveloped plots or a combined area of 230 hectares in the so-called “Big Seven” cities alone, building land that is vacant at a ...

21 06 2018
New Construction Slower than Expected

In 2017, a total of 284,800 flats were completed in Germany. This implies an increase by 2.6 percent over prior year and is the highest level since 2002, as the Federal Statistical Office reported.1 Nevertheless, the number of new flats coming on-stream falls well short of actual demand and of the annual target set by the Federal Government. The stated goal of the governing Grand Coalition is to ensure an annual completion rate of 375,000 new ...

14 06 2018
Poverty Risk among Tenants Rising Significantly

The poverty risk rate among tenants in Germans has nearly doubled since 1991. While only 16 percent of Germany’s residential tenants lived below the poverty line in the early 1990s, the figure was close to 29 percent by 2015. This is the upshot of a recent survey made by the DIW German Institute for Economic Research. Conversely, Germans living within their own four walls made the record with a poverty risk rate of only around four percent in ...

07 06 2018
Real Estate Boosting Wealth Formation in Germany

Household wealth in Germany showed an 8.3-percent increase over prior-year period by the end of the first quarter of 2018. This is the upshot of the latest Asset Price Index compiled quarterly by the Storch Research Institute (FvS). Definitive for the tremendous increase in wealth—the third-highest since the index was launched in 2005—is the massive appreciation of real estate in Germany. Its total value grew by 9.1 percent compared to the ...

31 05 2018
Germany Property Tax Reform Likely to Relieve some Households

A short while ago, Germany’s Constitutional Court of Justice declared the calculation basis for the property tax unconstitutional. The ruling cast final clarity on a fact that was basically common knowledge in the body politic, meaning that the German property tax needs to be reformed. Various property tax models have since been debated, but the body politic keeps emphasising that any reform chosen will have to be structured along ...

24 05 2018
Surge in Residential Rents in Berlin

Rent rates in Berlin increased noticeably in 2017. Having stood at 9.65 euros per square metre as late as Q4 2016, the median asking rent went up by twelve percent to 10.80 euros per square metre by the end of 2017. Since 2010, median asking rents have gone up by around 71 percent. This is the upshot of the latest Housing Market Barometer published by IBB Investment Bank Berlin, which the IBB presented together with Berlin’s Senate Department ...

17 05 2018
Grand Coalition Draws up a Package of Housing Policy Measures

In the short time remaining before the parliamentary summer recess, the new German Government intends to write its first housing policy resolutions into law. In a closed coalition meeting on 7 and 8 May, the heads of the coalition’s two parliamentary groups passed a package of measures to that effect. It includes the child tax credit for first-time home buyers, meaning a fiscal allowance to promote housing construction, along with further ...

10 05 2018
Senate of Berlin Moves to Toughen Landlord-Tenant Law

The Senate of Berlin is planning a legal initiative in Germany’s upper house, the Bundesrat, that would drastically tighten existing landlord-tenant legislation. Berlin’s state government passed a draft bill to that effect on 25 April. The bill is to be discussed in the Bundesrat in July.1

The idea behind the initiative floated by the left-wing senate coalition of Social Democrats, Left Party and Greens is to add several severe constraints ...

03 05 2018
Shrinking Residential Development Volumes in Germany’s Metropolises

Although German metro areas are plagued by acute housing shortages, the scale of residential developments in the so-called “Big Seven” cities is actually contracting. This is the upshot of the 2018 Property Developer Survey published by the economic research institute bulwiengesa.1 The survey suggests that the floor area created through residential property development in 2017 declined by 2.0 percent or roughly 350,000 square metres year on ...

26 04 2018
Survey: Reforming Germany’s Real Estate Transfer Tax Preferable to Child Tax Credit for First-Time Home Buyers

Germany’s new government has set itself the goal to support families in the acquisition or construction of family homes, and thereby to boost homeownership in general. One key measure that the Grand Coalition seeks to introduce before the end of the year is the so-called child tax credit for first-time home buyers (“Baukindergeld”). However, a survey compiled by the IW Economic Institute in Cologne just presented a highly critical ...

19 04 2018
Living in a Condominium is Far more Affordable than Renting a Flat

Owning your home outright remains considerable more attractive than renting it, as a new survey just reaffirmed. For one thing, tenants bear a greater cost burden. On the other hand, homeownership helps to build up capital, and is therefore an important mainstay of your retirement scheme. Especially for young households, buying property is a great way to start building capital because they can stretch their payments over a longer period of time. ...

12 04 2018
Number of Planning Permissions in Decline

With the new German government barely in office, it has already become quite obvious what one of the most pressing issues will be during the parliamentary term now under way. On 14 March, Angela Merkel took her oath of office as German Chancellor, and the very next day, the Federal Statistical Office published the number of planning permissions approved in 2017.1 According to the stats, the number of approvals in the Federal Republic dropped by ...

05 04 2018
Economic Research Institute Suggests Cities Sell off Their Housing Stock

At a time when municipal housing companies in many of Germany’s major cities, including Berlin, are prompted by city hall to beef up their property stock, the IW Economic Institute, Cologne, has joined the debate on the issue of public housing with an idea that implies the exact opposite. In a recent survey, the IW’s real estate expert, Prof. Michael Voigtländer, suggests that German municipalities are well advised to divest themselves ...

29 03 2018
Housing Deficit Keeps Deepening

The stated goal of the Grand Coalition that was just voted into office as Germany’s next government is to raise 1.5 million new flats in Germany between now and 2021.1 This would break down into 375,000 flats annually, a figure not even remotely achieved in recent years. During the first eleven months of last year, only 275,000 new-build flats were completed.2 To make things worse, the number of planning permissions dropped year on year in ...

22 03 2018
Greater Berlin Still Has Land Reserves for 218,000 Flats

The housing development potential hidden in land reserves in Berlin proper and the greater Berlin area would suffice to create up to 218,000 new flats. The total volume breaks down into 153,000 flats in the German capital and 65,000 in the suburbs. This is the upshot of the latest housing market report for Berlin and its greater area (“Berlin und Umland”) that the IBB Investment Bank Berlin presented on 08 March.1According to the IBB, the ...

15 03 2018
Berlins housing prices are steadily increasing

Rents as well as purchasing prices increased heavily on the Berlin housing market in 2017. That’s the conclusion of the Housing report Berlin 2018 developed by CBRE and the Berlin Hyp.1 Therefore median asking rents in 2017 increased by 8.8 percent to 9.79 Euro per square meter and asking prices for condos by even 12.7 percent to 3.706 per square meter. So the price dynamic of the German capital grew strongly. Last year, asking rents only ...

08 03 2018
How the state could react with little money to increase home ownership

Despite the current low-interest phase and the real estate boom the home ownership rate in Germany stagnates since 2010 at 45 percent, EU-wide the lowest figure. That’s the result of the Socio-economic panel (SOEP) that yearly questions thousands of representative households and lastly got released in 2016. The Cologne Institute for Economic Research (IW) created based on those data a report on the current housing situation in Germany.1 The ...

01 03 2018
Berlin registers the strongest price increase for home ownership

In no other German metropolis prices for housing ownership are rising as strongly as they do in Berlin. This is shown by a current property price index of the association of German bond banks (vdp). Self-used housing in the German capital increased in price in 2017 by around 15.5 percent compared to the previous year.1 That’s the highest growth since the last 15 years, older data is not available. The increase in 2016 was at 12 percent, while ...

22 02 2018
Berlin senate wants to accelerate residential construction

Berlin state government is constantly reworking its housing policy. On the 13th February the senate determined a new procedure that speeds up the realization of construction projects.1 The new measure followed at the turn of the year after the current practiced housing policy in Berlin faced criticism from the SPD and the ruling mayor Michael Müller.2 The criticism is especially aimed at the urban development senator Katrin Lompscher from the ...

15 02 2018
Grand Coalition: Homeownership to be Promoted

With nearly five month gone since the general election for the German Parliament, a new government is about to be formed now. The Christian Democrat bloc and the Social Democrats finally settled on a coalition agreement, although it has yet to be approved by the Social Democrat party base. During the coalition talks, Christian Democrats and Social Democrats agreed on a number of measures in the housing sector. It is intended to promote ...

08 02 2018
Berlin and Leipzig register strong increases in rent

Rent prices in eight German metropolises (including Leipzig) increased less in the second half-year of 2017 compared to the previous year, according to a current JLL-survey. Exemptions are Berlin and Leipzig where yearly rents increased by 9.1 percent or rather 7.5 percent. Therefore both cities stand out, as rent prices in the other metropolises are currently stagnating.1 The reason for the strong price growth in Berlin and Leipzig is, ...

01 02 2018
City Hall Rethinking Berlin’s Housing Policy

Berlin’s Social Democrats are moving closer toward a realignment of the housing policy for Germany’s first city. In early January, Lord Mayor Michael Müller had already made a case for a more investor-friendly policy,1 and the Social Democrats in the state parliament just passed a resolution toward that end.2 The white paper, which the Social Democrats drafted during a closed three-day meeting of the parliamentary group, is quite outspoken ...

25 01 2018
Housing Construction Expected to Stagnate

The number of residential completions in Germany has been going up steadily in recent years, yet the momentum in housing construction is likely to start slowing as early as 2019. This is the upshot of the latest forecast made by the DIW German Institute for Economic Research in Berlin.1 While the volume of new construction will soar by another eight percent in 2018, according to the figures, the growth rate will slump back to four percent just ...

18 01 2018
More Housing through Closer Collaboration between Municipalities and Private Businesses

An alliance between public and private players in the real estate sectors has been set up in Cologne.1 Members of the “Kölner Wohnbündnis” alliance include the City of Cologne, the Workshop of Cologne Housing Companies (“köln ag”), the Housing Construction Initiative (“WIK”), the Association of Home and Land Owners in Cologne (“Haus und Grund”), the state chapter for North Rhine-Westphalia of the Federal Association of ...

11 01 2018
Berlin’s Mayor Champions a More Investor-Friendly Housing Policy

Michael Müller, Lord Mayor of Berlin and a Social Democrat, intends to lend his support to private residential property investors. Or so Müller said in an interview he gave the Berlin daily B.Z. in early January.1 “We need private investors, too,” he emphasised in the course of a dialogue that touched upon Berlin’s housing policy, among other subjects.In his interview with the B.Z., Müller backed a call for making it easier for ...

04 01 2018
Berlin Clearly Falls Short of Housing Construction Target

Only half as many state-owned flats as planned were completed in Berlin in 2017. As Senator Katrin Lompscher for Urban Development (a member of The Left) told the city’s Senate shortly before Christmas, only 3,000 flats were finished instead of the 6,000 flats that had been announced.1 It is the stated goal of Berlin’s governing coalition of Social Democrats, the Left, and the Greens to have the city’s six municipal housing associations ...

28 12 2017
German tenancy law prevents wealth creation

The homeownership rate in Germany with 45 percent is one of the lowest in the whole European Union.1 One of the main reasons is the German tenancy law. This thesis was looked at in detail by lawyer Tobias Scheidacker in the magazine “Das Grundeigentum”.2 The tenancy law in Germany is regarding the freedom of contract fundamentally different to the tenancy laws of other European countries. Scheidacker compared the legal situation in Germany ...

21 12 2017
Rent control to be presented at the constitutional court

The rent control violates the constitution according to the 67. Civil Chamber of the District Court Berlin. Due to this, the district court decided on the 7th December to present the rent control to the Federal Constitutional Court. This was announced on the 11th December.1 Prior to the decision were claims from two tenants in Berlin-Wedding who were taking action against, in their opinion, too high rents. The local court Wedding, where the ...

14 12 2017
Experts: Residential property creation declines

The formation of residential property is getting more and more difficult for private households. That’s the opinion of multiple real estate experts that discussed and held lectures at the housing policy forum by the German Association for Housing (DV) at the end of November.1 The most significant barrier that the experts identified in order to own property is the equity capital. With an assumed equity capital quote of 20 percent only about 5 ...

07 12 2017
Citizen participation is a growing barrier during construction projects

Berlins housing sector warns that stricter regulations due to citizen participation could lead to debilitating effects in the construction of new buildings.  Industry representatives expressed their concerns in a recent Tagesspiegel article.1 The reason for the concern is a participation guideline that a committee is preparing for the senate administration for urban development and that should be releasing in autumn 2018. The housing sector ...

30 11 2017
Expert opinion: Berlins housing policy not in accordance with state constitution

The highly on tenants focused housing policy of Berlin’s senate conflicts with the mission statement of the state constitution.  That’s the conclusion of a legal opinion of Prof. Dr. jur. Steffen Hindelang from the Freie Universtität Berlin on behalf of the Verein zur Förderung von Wohneigentum in Berlin.1 Hindenlang examined Art. 28 Abs. 1 of Berlin’s constitution (VvB) where it says: „Every human has the right of appropriate ...

23 11 2017
The majority of tenants do not see the possibility to afford a home

More than half of German tenants would prefer living in homes – while most of them believe that they are not able to afford it. Those are the results of a survey of the ING-DiBa, that was conducted in 13 European countries with roughly 13 000 users.1 Therefore 51 percent of German tenants would love to change into ownership. On the downside 56 percent agreed with the statement ‘I can probably never afford purchasing my own house’. Nowhere ...

16 11 2017
Eastern German real estate market gets more and more attractive

A current survey about real estate markets states positive evidence for numerous cities located in Eastern German states. According to the housing market report Eastern Germany 2017 from the TAG Immobilien AG Eastern German cities stand out due to increasing influx, higher purchase power and rising demand. This development is causing higher purchase- and rent-prices as well as sinking vacancies. The report analyzed 27 big- and mid-sized towns in ...

09 11 2017
Investments in homes very popular – however less people tend to buy

Majoritarian German savers think that self-used real estates are the best instrument to wealth creation. 54 percent support this opinion as a representative survey from the German Savings Banks Association, short DSGV, states. 1 With a little gap, security instruments like share-, investment- or real estate funds (28 percent), external used real estates (27 percent) and rent- as well as life insurances (each 24 percent) follow up. Thereby the ...

02 11 2017
Expert Opinion Finds Current Housing Policy Ineffective

What measures to take to curb the runaway rents and prices in Germany’s major cities has been subject to political debate for some time now. In its latest expert opinion, the IW German Economic Institute in Cologne examined the strategies applied so far in terms of their effectiveness, and unambiguously concluded: They are without exception far too ineffective.1 In particular, the IW Economic Institute took a hard look at the so-called rent ...

26 10 2017
Berlin Needs 20,000 New Flats Annually

No less than 194,000 new flats will need to be raised in Berlin between now and 2030 to cover the city’s housing demand. But so far, construction areas for only 179,000 new flats have been zoned. These figures were quoted by Katrin Lompscher, Berlin’s Senator for Urban Development, in mid-October as she presented the interim report for the residential urban development master plan.1 The new urban development master plan is supposed to be ...

19 10 2017
Biggest Price Hike in Construction Costs since 2008

While the construction costs for residential buildings have been going up steadily for years, they climbed faster in August than at any other time in nearly a decade. According to figures released by the Federal Statistical Office on 10 October, the one-year price growth in August 2017 equalled 3.1 percent.1 The previous price check in May 2017 had returned a positive growth of 2.8 percent year on year, and this was already up from 2.6 percent ...

12 10 2017
Leipzig, Dresden and Berlin Score Top Spots in City Ranking

Among Germany’s five most auspicious cities, three are located in the eastern part of the country – Leipzig, Dresden and Berlin. Or so the outcome of the latest city ranking by the HWWI Hamburg Institute of International Economics and by the private bank Berenberg Bank suggests.1 The ranking compares the competition- and location-related factors of the country’s 30 largest cities. The last ranking dates back to 2015. Munich took the lead ...

05 10 2017
Risk-Return Ranking: Germany’s Class B Cities Outperform the Metropolises

The parameters for investments in residential real estate are often much more attractive in the so-called Class B cities of Germany than in the country’s leading metropolises. This is the upshot of the 2017 Risk-Return Ranking of altogether 110 German cities that Dr. Lübke & Kelber GmbH, a real estate investment service provider, published in late September. For the purposes of the ranking, the returns on equity to be expected in a ...

28 09 2017
Berlin’s Residential Property Market has been Outperforming since 2006

Residential real estate worth 5.64 billion euros changed hands in Berlin in 2016. This is the upshot of the latest ACCENTRO Homeownership Report that was presented on 13 September. It suggests that revenues from residential property sales in Berlin almost tripled over the past ten years, up from just 1.97 billion euros in 2006. ACCENTRO assumes that revenues will cross the mark of six billion euros this coming year.


21 09 2017
Survey: Homeownership as Affordable as 25 Years ago

Homeownership is more affordable today than at any other time during the past 25 years. That is the upshot of the latest survey the empirica research institute conducted on behalf of the Schwäbisch Hall building society.[1] According to the survey findings, the debt burden for those buying property has significantly decreased between 1991 and 2015 – and this despite rising prices. The debt burden through homeownership dropped by 62 percent on ...

14 09 2017
Condominiums: Turnover increases while transaction numbers remain consistent

The number of sold new- and old buildings slightly decreased in German cities in 2016 compared to the previous year. This was determined by the recent ACCENTRO Homeownership report, which was published on the 13. September. According to the report, there were sold 135 551 new- and old buildings in the year under review, which was 2016, in a total of 82 analyzed cities. This is a decrease in 851 condominiums (- 0.62%) compared to the previous ...

07 09 2017
Real Estate Transfer Tax: German States Look Forward to Record-Level Revenues

The Germany states have reason to rejoice over record-breaking revenues from the real estate transfer tax, a state-level tax. This is the upshot of a forecast compiled by the IW German Economic Institute in Cologne, as the daily DIE WELT reported in its 27 August issue.[1] According to the report, revenues from the real estate transfer tax could add up to 13.94 billion euros nationwide by year-end – which would be a one-year increase by 9.1 ...

31 08 2017
Right of First Refusal to be Expanded for Berlin’s Boroughs

The Senate of Berlin – the city’s government – would like to see the boroughs’ right of first refusal in housing sales expanded. Senator for Urban Development Katrin Lompscher (of the Left) and Senator for Finance Matthias Kollatz-Ahnen (of the Social Democrats) presented a concept paper[1] that is meant to support the boroughs in their efforts to acquire residential buildings.

Boroughs wishing to act on their right of first refusal ...

24 08 2017
Rise in Housing Construction in Berlin, Drop in Further Densification

On 08 August, the Berlin-Brandenburg Statistics Office circulated a press release titled “Modest Growth in New-Build Housing Construction in Berlin during First Half-Year of 2017.” But the rather upbeat ring of the headline is somewhat misleading, and the main news published by the statistics office not quite as positive as it may seem.

On the one hand, the press release refers not to the actual construction of new homes, but merely to ...

17 08 2017
German Real Estate Industry Calls for Housing Summit

The “diesel summit” that was recently convened at the German Chancellery should be followed up by a “housing summit” – or so the IVD German Real Estate Federation suggested in the German daily Bild  a few days ago. According to the IVD, housing industry stakeholders, real estate experts and tenant representatives ought to meet at the Chancellery and hammer out a new housing policy strategy together with Angela Merkel, the ...

10 08 2017
Berlin Senate Hampers Subsequent Densification

Development strategies seeking to get on top of metropolitan housing shortages tend to include subsequent densification as a key component, and this is something most experts and many policymakers agree on. For it is virtually impossible to create sufficient housing in inner cities without filling gap sites and topping up existing buildings. But in Berlin, subsequent densification may get even harder and costlier than it already is. The reason ...

03 08 2017
Rocky Road ahead for Social Housing Construction in Berlin

The BDA Association of German Architects recently published a kind of philippic that criticised social housing development in Berlin. The BDA has diagnosed a “standstill” in the construction of affordable accommodation, blaming the fact on a misguided state policy – and it does have a point.

For one thing, there is the contingent of rent-controlled flats mandated for any major housing construction project whose scale requires a local ...

27 07 2017
Buying or Renting – a Foregone Conclusion

Many people in Germany still have misgivings about buying a home. Being strapped to a loan, tied to a property, burdened with major capital expenditures, and shouldering more responsibility – for more as any second Germans (52.4 percent of the population) it seems too daunting a proposition, and so they keep renting. Yet these assumptions are disproved by a number of surveys and analyses. While renting may look cheaper than buying at first ...

20 07 2017
Policymakers Promise Housing Summit

From “we need a housing summit” (IVD Federal Investment and Asset Management Association) to “housing must be given chief priority” (GdW Federal Association of German Housing and Real Estate Companies) – the interest groups of the German real estate industry unequivocally reaffirmed their demands vis-à-vis the body politic in recent weeks. And their cries have not gone unheard. Even the Christian Democrats’ government agenda, which ...

13 07 2017
German States Starting to Rescind Rent Freeze

Some of the German states have done their math at long last. They have finally realised that the rent control measure colloquially referred to as the “rent freeze” is not an adequate way to address the keen housing demand or the rent hikes it causes. Rather, the rent freeze has had the very opposite effect in recent years. Following the introduction of the rent freeze, rents have continued to push up while housing construction has declined. ...

06 07 2017
The Berlin Boom is Yet to Come

Recent weeks have seen a resurgence of press items discussing “initial signs of overheating” and “price plateaus” in Germany’s real estate market. Word has it, especially in regard to Berlin, that anyone still out to buy should be careful now – that further price hikes are hardly to be expected anymore. The converse argument would seem to suggest that property prices in Berlin are high, or indeed too high. But that is not actually ...

29 06 2017
Berlin: creative industries prosper like no other

The creative industry represents a dynamic sector of the capital’s economy and is regarded as an impulse for the growth and innovation of Berlin’s economy. This conclusion is reached by the current creative industry report of Berlin’s Senate, which summarizes the most important developments of this sector between 2009 and 2012.The success of the creative industries is indicated by the number of companies as well as their turnovers. ...

23 06 2017
Any Policy Seeking to Raise Germany’s Homeownership Rate Presupposes an Increase in Planning Permits

Rumour has it that new plans are on the table to stimulate Germany’s flatlining homeownership rate. At least some sections of the body politic seem to have realised that the German ratio of owner-occupied homes, which is far too low when compared to other countries, is harmful both in societal and macro-economic terms. Accordingly, policymakers have resolved to seek an increase in the homeownership rate in the coming years.

For the time ...

15 06 2017
Rent Index Forecast for 2019

Criticism of the rent freeze, new legislative proposals, and the inconclusive discussion concerning rental growth in the German capital are some of the issues at the centre of an ongoing debate. Berlin’s 2017 Rent Index, which was recently published, raised a number of questions, and indeed occasioned protest. In a statement released in response to the Berlin Rent index, the Berlin-Brandenburg chapter of the BFW Federal Association of ...

08 06 2017
Housing Shortage in Berlin despite Construction Boom

According to the latest population forecasts, the German capital is well on its way to become a metropolis of four million. The unchecked incoming migration has intensified the local housing demand, and the city is hard pressed to cope. Figures released by the Berlin-Brandenburg Statistics Office show that more than 13,500 flats were completed in Berlin last year. This is admittedly good news in the sense that completions appear to have gone up ...

01 06 2017
Dynamic Price Growth for Existing Condominiums in Berlin since 2013

The latest edition of the LBS Residential Property Price Index, which the empirica research institute periodically compiles on behalf of the LBS Nord state building and loan association, shows that prices for existing condominiums in the German capital have increased by more than ten percent annually since 2013. The researchers diagnosed a citywide price growth of 11.4 percent per year by the third quarter of 2016. For the purpose of the survey, ...

25 05 2017
Rising Rents: Rent Freeze Has No Effect

This coming June will mark the second anniversary of the rent control measure colloquially called the “rent freeze” (“Mietpreisbremse”). At the time, the Federal Government had initiated the measure in order to curb the rental uplift in areas with a strained housing market. Wherever the rent freeze is imposed, rents on new leases must not exceed the local reference rent by more than ten percent – these are the parameters. But the ...

18 05 2017
Private Home Owners as Landlords: Berlin Trailing the German Average

For owner-occupiers, buying a home is financially more lucrative than renting a comparable place into their old age. Homeownership will also spare them the worry over looming rent hikes. But aside from owner-occupancy, residential real estate is also a great private investment toward your retirement. Interestingly, statistical evidence suggests there are differences between private and commercial landlords. Renting from a private owner can have ...

11 05 2017
Berlin Reports Strongest Job Growth in Germany

A survey published by the Berlin-Brandenburg Statistics Office suggests that Berlin’s was the fastest-growing job market last year. Gainful employment in the city showed a one-year growth of 2.5 percent in 2016. The brisk growth rate put Berlin in the lead among the German states, the nationwide average being a job growth of one percent. More than by anything, the creation of new jobs in Berlin was spearheaded primarily by corporate services ...

04 05 2017
Keen Housing Demand in Metropolises Keeps Pushing up Rents

The robust growth dynamic of residential property prices’ in Germany continued unchecked over the past year. As late as Q4 2016, average rents and prices showed a quarter-over-quarter growth of 1.2 percent, according to the latest F+B Housing Index Germany. This brings the growth rate over prior-year quarter up to 5.2 percent. It should be added, however, that the national German index is kept on this high level by the country’s major ...

27 04 2017
Housing Market Report 2017 Shows Unchecked Price Growth for Berlin

For the purpose of their annual Berlin housing report, Berlin Hyp and CBRE evaluated 83,000 rental listings for new-build flats in 2016, and determined a mean rental growth of 5.6 percent year on year, which has pushed the net rent average up to 9.00 euros per square metre and month. According to Gero Bergmann, Member of the Management Board of Berlin Hyp, the market strain is explained both by increased incoming migration and by accelerating ...

20 04 2017
Buying Property is Financially Preferable to Renting

A recent survey by the empirica research institute in collaboration with LBS Research shows that buying a home is more lucrative for owner-occupiers than continuing to pay rent for a comparable flat indefinitely – into old age, as it were. The analysis is based on the latest sample survey of income and expenditure (EVS) carried out by the Federal Statistical Office. This is a survey that studies the housing costs of tenant and owner households ...

13 04 2017
Fears of Real Estate Bubble in Germany Unfounded

The current economic parameters, including the low building finance rates or rising property prices in Germany, have stirred fears of a real estate bubble among potential homeowners: At first glance, the facts and circumstances seem to manifest eerie similarities to the situation in the United States ahead of the financial crisis of 2007-2008, or so the argument goes. A survey compiled by the IW German Economic Institute has recently sounded the ...

06 04 2017
Strong Incoming Migration Brings Berlin's Population up to 3.67 Million Residents

The latest figures released by the Statistical Office of Berlin and Brandenburg show that Berlin's population grew by 60,500 new residents in 2016. It equals a year-on-year increase by 1.67 percent. As of year-end 2016, the German capital had a population total of slightly more than 3.67 million. Berlin's 2016 population increase alone roughly matches the population total of Frankfurt (Oder), one of the largest cities in the state of ...

30 03 2017
Demand Pressure on Berlin's Housing Market Fuels Continued Rental Growth

Despite the “rent freeze” rent control regulation that has been in effect since 2015, rent rates in Berlin averaged a year-on-year growth by more than twelve percent in 2016. The average net rent rose to 10.15 euros per square metre during the survey period. It is the first time that average rents on new leases in the German capital crossed the mark of ten euros. As recently as 2015, rents averaged 9.05 euros. This is the gist of the latest ...

23 03 2017
Demographic Forecast for Berlin Predicts 4 Million Residents by 2035

A recent survey by the IW German Economic Institute shows that several major German cities currently experience fast demographic growth through incoming migration from inside and outside Germany. The IW Institute ventured predictions for the demographics of three German metropolises between now and 2035, these being Berlin, Frankfurt am Main and Munich. The demographic forecast suggests that the positive trend in these cities will continue for ...

16 03 2017
Growing Number of Companies Relocating to Berlin Create New Jobs

Berlin Partner, the city's economic development sponsor, believes that the local labour market will benefit from a large number of companies setting up their business in Berlin or moving it here. In 2016, around 4,000 new jobs were created in the German capital as 123 companies established their principal place of business in the city. According to Berlin Partner, this implies an increase of roughly 40 percent in jobs created by incoming ...

09 03 2017
Start-ups and International Conglomerates Favour Berlin

A growing number of mostly young entrepreneurs have been drawn to Berlin as a good place to turn their business ideas into reality. Their reasons include the city's high livability paired with comparatively low costs of living, a vibrant cultural spectrum, and a cosmopolitan ambience. The inflow has gradually turned Berlin into the leading start-up hub in Europe over the past years. An average of 40,000 new businesses are founded here each ...

02 03 2017
German Real Estate more Affordable Now than it was 20 Years ago

Property prices in German metro areas have experienced a steady upward trend over the past few years. Nonetheless, Germany remains one of the few industrial nations worldwide where property prices are more affordable now than they were 20 years ago. This is the upshot of the Affordability Index published by, an online rating service for bank loans. The index shows the financial leeway that property buyers continue to have in ...

23 02 2017
Native Berliners now the Minority

Berlin is a growing metropolis. In 2015, the city's population reached the highest level seen in 70 years. The statistical yearbooks published by the Berlin-Brandenburg Statistics Office show that 3.52 million residents were registered in the German capital. According to the Statistics Office, the figures for 2016 are not yet available. But the statistics experts assume that it was another year of brisk demographic growth, not least because of ...

16 02 2017
Virtually No Vacant Flats Left in Germany's Big Cities

Available apartments became a rare commodity on the markets of major German cities in 2015. That year, vacancy rates in the metropolises Berlin, Hamburg, Frankfurt am Main and Munich dropped below one percent. But the supply in available accommodation was also drying up in other growing metro areas. The average share of vacant flats in Germany's major corporate cities was down to just 1.9 percent in 2015. And the downward trend continues. These ...

09 02 2017
Growth of Residential Rents and Prices in Berlin Has Gathered Momentum over the Past Three Years

Rents in Berlin have kept going up steadily for several years now. In 2016, however, the rental growth picked up steam, rising even faster than in previous years. Specifically, rents outpaced the average growth rate of two to three percent in 2016, climbing 6.7 percent to a rack rent of 8.00 euros (in standard locations) and 5.5 percent to 9.50 euros (in favoured locations) per square metre of residential floor area and month. This is the upshot ...

02 02 2017
Homeownership Enjoys Higher Standing than Ever Before

Never before have so many people in Germany held such a positive attitude vis-à-vis homeownership. Three out of four Germans consider real estate the best investment for their money. Well over 60 percent believe that detached homes and condominiums are the optimal way to prepare for old age. It stands to reason that the advantages of a home of one's own are magnified in retirement. The acquisition of a home is getting particularly popular among ...

26 01 2017
Berlin's Economy Shows Upbeat Business Sentiment While Willingness to Invest is at a Record High

According to a recent survey conducted by the Berliner Sparkasse savings bank, Berlin's economy is characterised by peak levels in business sentiment and willingness to invest. The findings of the mid-market survey further suggest that the sales and job expectations have also continued to go up among Berlin-based companies. Berliner Sparkasse polled more than 1,200 entrepreneurs, managing directors and senior staff of small and medium-sized ...

19 01 2017
Despite Recent Prices Hikes, Homeownership Remains Affordable

The findings of the latest price index published by the IVD German Real Estate Federation suggests that the upward trend in residential real estate prices, which started in 2010, continued throughout 2016. Prices for existing condominiums of medium amenity, for instance, experienced a one-year growth by over six percent nationwide. The year before, prices had gone up by barely five percent. Despite the trend, homeownership remains more than just ...

12 01 2017
Real Wages and Average Earnings Grow in Berlin and Brandenburg

According to figures released by the Berlin-Brandenburg Statistics Office, real wages – meaning the inflation-adjusted gross monthly income of all employees, including bonuses – experienced noticeable increases in Berlin during the second half quarter of 2016. Wages in the state of Brandenburg also recovered in a brisk growth spurt not seen in recent years. At the same time, average earnings made substantial gains in either ...

05 01 2017
Property Prices Rising in Every Suburb of Berlin

Prices for residential real estate in Berlin's metro region are going up steadily. The trend is primarily explained by Berlin's lasting appeal as the nation's first city. The high prices inside the city limits have motivated many residents to move to the suburbs just beyond – a trend that has in turn triggered a price growth on Berlin's periphery. As well it might, because there is plenty of price upside in the suburbs yet. This is the upshot ...

29 12 2016
Financial Investment Trends

Germany has a high degree of financial security, and the fact is reflected in the sentiment of the German population. According to the annual Wealth Barometer published by the German Association of Savings Banks and Girobanks (DSGV), 52 percent of the respondents considered their financial situation as sound or indeed very sound. However, the degree of contentment, while high, has declined in recent years. The share of respondents who are ...

22 12 2016
Towns in the Metro Region Benefit from Berlin's Growth

Berlin's population keeps growing steadily. At the same time, property prices are being driven up by strong demand on the one hand and short supply on the other. Berlin is now home to 3.5 million people, a number that is expected to rise to roughly 3.7 million by 2030. This makes it reasonable to assume that the city's housing market will remain strained and pricey for some time to come. Over the past ten years, asking rents in Berlin have ...

15 12 2016
Price Trend for Residential Property Remains Dynamic

According to the latest real estate analysis of the GEWOS Institute for Urban, Regional and Housing Research, it is now safe to expect new record levels on Germany's residential real estate market in 2016. According to the GEWOS figures, the increase in revenues is likely to be around nine percent. As far as the experts can see, demand for residential real estate in Germany remains strong, and so the dynamic price trend is here to stay.

The ...

08 12 2016
Berlin's Economy Expected to Grow by Three Percent in 2016

During the first six months of 2016, Berlin experienced the fastest economic growth the city has seen in some time. This is suggested by the “Berlin Trend” for September compiled by IBB Investment Bank Berlin. The economic growth of the German capital could actually accelerate further during the second semester, according to the IBB. At a projected three percent, it would easily outpace the national growth average of 1.2 percent. Unlike the ...

01 12 2016
A Comparison of Renting versus Owner-Occupancy Shows: It Pays to Buy

The price growth for condominiums and free-standing homes regularly becomes subject to heated public debates. But the discussion tends to focus mostly on the fear of a possible bubble on Germany's residential property market. Especially major cities and certain mid-size cities have experienced price hikes that admittedly exceed available empirical evidence, and substantially so.

However, the ongoing debate pays little attention to the trend in ...

24 11 2016
Berlin a Popular Fall-Back Location for British Start-up Entrepreneurs

According to Berlin Partner, the city's economic development sponsor, the number of British companies inquiring about the requirements for setting up a company in Berlin has increased. About two dozen young companies from the United Kingdom are thinking about relocating to Berlin, and requested information about the city from Berlin Partner. The main reason for the growing interest in Berlin is the availability of skilled professionals, a sought ...

17 11 2016
Investment Climate on Berlin's Housing Market Remains Positive

According to the latest Housing Market Barometer published by IBB Investment Bank Berlin, the climate for investments on the housing market of Germany's first city remains decidedly positive. In the eyes of the experts, market conditions are currently most favourable for the construction of condominiums. The investments climate for the development of rental flats and for modernisation and restructuring work is expected to improve.

IBB polls ...

10 11 2016
Berlin is Germany's Leading Innovation Hub

The new Innovation Index published by the German direct bank ING-DiBa commends Berlin for being Germany's most innovative business location. In most of the eight categories analysed, the nation's capital came out on top, ahead of the other 15 federal states.

The survey identifies several reasons for the great innovative strength of Berlin. Obviously, it plays an important role that its population has a particularly large share of young people. ...

03 11 2016
More Planning Permits in German Housing Construction

According to the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis), a total of 182,800 permits for the development of new flats were approved in Germany during the first half of 2016. This equals a year-on-year increase by 30.4 percent. In absolute figures, planning permits increased by around 42,700. Out of this total number of flats approved during the first six months of 2016, multi-family dwellings accounted for 18,900 units (an increase by 30.7 ...

27 10 2016
Millennials Take an Interest in Real Estate

It is often said that the younger generation in Germany spends little time thinking about the future. But a recent survey by Postbank found that this is far from the truth. Instead, it suggests that a large number of the so-called millennials are very much toying with the idea of major acquisitions. They often dream, for instance, of buying property, fancy furniture and fixtures, or high-tech gadgets. It appears that young people today know ...

20 10 2016
Boom Cycle of Berlin's Economy Confirmed by Local Players

A recent poll that Creditreform Berlin Brandenburg and IBB Investment Bank Berlin conducted among roughly 1,500 small and medium-sized companies revealed that the economy of the German capital is going through a robust boom cycle. The companies were asked to provide an assessment of their current business situation, among other things. The overwhelming majority (64.5 percent) of these enterprises rated the situation as “good” or indeed ...

13 10 2016
Berlin Benefits from Rise in Purchasing Power

Berlin has consolidated its position as thriving business location with fast-growing retail sales. The trend is particularly conspicuous in the eastern and western town centres of City West and Alexanderplatz, respectively.

In its annual report for 2015, the Berlin-Brandenburg Retailers Association (HBB) highlighted the rapid growth in retailing. Total retail revenues in Germany's first city equalled 15.58 billion euros. The year-end figure for ...

06 10 2016
German Condominiums as Popular as Ever

More and more people in Germany are making their dream of homeownership come true. Opting either for owner-occupancy or a buy-to-let investment, they have caused the German condominium market to shatter one record after another. This is confirmed not least by the findings of the ACCENTRO Homeownership Report 2016, which quotes a transaction total of roughly 135,000 condominiums sold in major German cities last year. This translates into a ...

29 09 2016
More and More Young People Fancy Homeownership

The majority of Germans aged 25 through 35 would like to become homeowners in the not-too-distant future. This is the result of a recent survey on homeownership and construction finance (“Wohneigentum und Baufinanzierung”) compiled by the IMWF Institute for Management and Economic Research. A total of 1,000 Germans above the age of 18 were polled for the survey on behalf of the PSD Nord Bank. The study concluded moreover that young people ...

22 09 2016
Property Sales in Berlin Shatter Next Record

Condominiums in the German capital are becoming more and more popular. Revenues generated by residential real estate sales in the city have lately increased by an amazing 40 percent year on year. It has made Berlin the first of Germany's metropolises where sales crossed the threshold of five billion euros. This is one of the findings of this year's ACCENTRO Homeownership Report. The impressive dynamic of Berlin's housing market has surprised ...

15 09 2016
Berlin's Finances Show Positive Trend

Having been more than strained for the longest time, the finances of Germany's first city are well on their way to recovery. Despite enormous social costs, Berlin's finances are finally showing an upward trend. This is the upshot of a recent survey conducted by the PwC auditing firm. In terms of sustainability, Berlin's budget moved up two ranks compared to last year, ascending from seventh to fifth place. This means that Berlin improved its ...

08 09 2016
Above-Average Property Price Growth in Potsdam

Potsdam, the state capital of Brandenburg and the only other major city within the Berlin metro region, is one of the areas where residential rents and prices have experienced particularly brisk growth lately. In 2015 alone, condominium prices in Potsdam rose by 6.1 percent. Indeed, Munich is the only other city in Germany that tops Potsdam's runaway costs of homeownership, which are on a level with those in Berlin or Frankfurt am Main. These ...

01 09 2016
Berlin is Prospering, and Has Accomplished Economic Trend Reversal

After long years of stagnation, Berlin has embarked on a stable growth trajectory. This is the conclusion drawn by the DIW German Institute for Economic Research in Berlin. For one thing, unemployment has almost been cut in half over the past ten years, from 19 percent down to barely ten percent. Inversely, the number of gainfully employed persons has increased by 290,000 due to robust job growth that actually outpaces the national average. ...

25 08 2016
Fast Demographic Growth in the Berlin-Brandenburg Metro Region

The population of Germany's capital Berlin is growing, but so is the number of residents living in its greater metro area in Brandenburg. Between the years 2000 and 2014 alone, many of the suburban communities around Berlin registered a population increase by far more than 20 percent. The top-performer in this context is the municipality of Dallgow-Döberitz in the county of Havelland, which expanded at break-neck speed: Its population more than ...

18 08 2016
Despite the Brexit Crisis, Berlin's Economy Keeps Going Strong

Berlin's economy is growing faster than expected, and this despite the UK's looming exit from the EU, or “Brexit” for short. This is the gist of the latest economic forecast released by the IBB Investment Bank Berlin. While Berlin's economy already grew by 2.8 percent during the first quarter of this year, the IBB projection foretells an economic growth of 3.2 percent for the second quarter. Its predictions for Q3 and Q4 are slightly lower ...

11 08 2016
Incoming Migration Hits New Record in Berlin

In 2015, the number of incoming residents reached its highest level in Berlin since 1989, the year the Berlin Wall came down. According to the IBB Investment Bank Berlin, nearly 183,000 people moved to the German capital. If you deduct the number of residents who left the city during the same period of time, you get a net immigration of just over 40,000 new residents. According to figures released by the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis), ...

04 08 2016
Housing Shortage in Germany, with Demand for Accommodation Rising Fastest in Berlin

Notwithstanding Germany's steady increase in demand, housing construction continues to lag hopelessly behind. This is the upshot of the latest report on immigration, housing demand and construction demand (“Zuwanderung, Wohnungsnachfrage und Baubedarfe”) published by the IW German Economic Institute in Cologne. The report examined the need for residential accommodation in German cities against the background of the swelling stream of ...

28 07 2016
Berlin – German Capital of Start-ups

The number of new businesses set up in Berlin over the past two years is higher than in any other German state. This is one of the findings of a recent survey on start-ups by the KfW development bank (“KfW-Gründungsmonitor”). Between 2013 and 2015, the average number of start-ups in Berlin equalled 26 for every 1,000 residents and year. That is twice the rate reported from Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg for the same period of time. Berlin's ...

21 07 2016
Where to Buy in Berlin and at what Price?

Condominium prices in Berlin have been rising steadily for quite some time now. According to the local land valuation committee which has access to all residential property deeds, the average price tag for condominiums was 2,800 euros per square metre in 2015. The committee's real estate experts are convinced that the steady appreciation of condominiums in Berlin will not only continue, but accelerate. One of the key reasons they cite is the ...

14 07 2016
Potsdam's Property Market Shows Dynamic Performance

Coveted Inner-City Locations

Investing in a condominium in Potsdam thus combines attractive yield opportunities with a low risk exposure, according to the experts. Meanwhile, the land valuation committee found that property demand is keenest in inner city locations. Condominiums with convenient transportation access and superb social and cultural amenities were particularly popular. In downtown locations, buyers favoured listed properties ...

07 07 2016
Berlin's Tax Revenues Growing Apace with its Economy

Berlin Benefits from Above-Average Growth

According to the latest forecast by tax appraisers, Germany is likely to see nationwide growth rates of 1.6 to 1.8 percent. The national capital, however, seems poised to outperform the country as a whole. The IBB Investment Bank Berlin predicts a growth in tax revenues to the tune of 2.5 percent this year. Financial experts also believe that Berlin's job market will continue to see positive growth. ...

30 06 2016
More and More Prospective Property Buyers Bank on Appreciation

With a view to the persistently low level of interest rates, buying real property is increasingly perceived as a lucrative, sound and affordable investment. More than one in two people contemplating homeownership are convinced that their property will appreciate significantly. This is one of the findings of the latest Real Estate Barometer (“Immobilienbarometer”) published by mortgage broker Interhyp and the ImmobilienScout24 real ...

23 06 2016
Buying Is Cheaper than Renting in Berlin

The costs of homeownership in Germany's first city have soared and are expected to keep rising. Specifically, the price dynamic seen since 2013 has averaged an annual growth rate of nine percent for existing condominiums. That said, keen pricing is matched by rock-bottom interest rates from which condominium buyers continue to benefit. This is the upshot of the latest residential property price index published by LBS-Nord, the state ...

16 06 2016
Berlin's Unemployment Rate Hits Historic Low

Berlin's demographic growth is matched by an increase in the number of jobs created in Germany's capital. For the first time since the Berlin Wall came down in 1989, the city's unemployment rate has dropped below ten percent according to the Berlin-Brandenburg branch of the Federal Labour Agency. In May 2016, the unemployment rate stood at 9.7 percent. This translates into 181,166 persons without a job in May, down 5,260 month over month, ...

09 06 2016
“Future Atlas 2016” – Berlin Keeps Going Strong

Berlin is facing a bright future, and will continue to experience dynamic and positive development. This is the upshot of a recent survey conducted by the Swiss-based Prognos Institute. Since 2004, Prognos has analysed the prospects of Germany's counties and cities in three-year intervals, and published its findings in the “Future Atlas” (German: “Zukunftsatlas”). The survey examines various key indicators in the areas of ...

02 06 2016
Owners are Happier than Tenants

German property owners are generally more content with their living arrangements than tenants. This is the upshot of a recent residential market survey (“Wohnen und Leben 2016”) that was commissioned by the real estate portal. In February 2016, one thousand platform users nationwide were polled for the representative survey. Participants were asked to rate the fairness of the price or rent for their apartments, the size of ...

26 05 2016
One in Four Gainfully Employed People Contemplates Homeownershi

Given the low level of interest rates, more than half of all gainfully employed persons in Germany (55 percent) do not feel like signing up for another pension scheme. Instead, one in four people (27 percent) is thinking about buying property, either for owner-occupation in old age or as a buy-to-let investment. If you project this ratio onto the overall market, it would imply a doubling of the homeownership rate. This is the upshot of a ...

19 05 2016
Residential Property Prices Keep Rising

The persistently keen demand for residential real estate in German conurbations will cause condominium prices to increase by three to four percent before the end of the year, according to an estimate by the LBS state-owned home-building and loan associations. The assessment is based on a recent survey the LBS and German savings banks conducted among 600 real estate market experts. Reasons the LBS experts cited to explain the unchecked ...

12 05 2016
Residential Property in Berlin Selling like Hotcakes

According to a recent survey by the ImmobilienScout24 real estate portal, the past eight years have not only seen a surge in demand for residential real estate in Berlin but also a dramatic shortening of the time it takes Berlin's market to absorb residential property listings. While buying a home would actually seem to presuppose a lengthy process of decision-making and deliberations, prospective buyers in Berlin are well advised not to ...

05 05 2016
Berlin's Residential Property Market Benefits from Start-ups and from the Sound Economic Situation

According to the Berlin-Brandenburg Statistics Office, Berlin's gross domestic product grew by three percent in 2015. This put Berlin right behind Baden-Württemberg, the state with the fastest growing economy at 3.1 percent, and far above the German average of 1.7 percent. An important role for the persistent economic upswing in Germany's first city is played by the burgeoning start-up scene. Berlin's business climate, which is defined by ...

28 04 2016
The Number of Property Inheritances is on the Rise in Germany – What to Do in the Event of Succession?

Wealth inherited in Germany will increasingly involve real property assets. A recent survey by the DIA German Pension Provision Institute suggests that more than four million properties will devolve onto heirs between now and 2024. The trend is owing not least to the fact that condominiums and family homes represent an important part of private pension plans whose stability of value make them the assets of choice for estates to be passed ...

21 04 2016
One’s Own Four Walls – A Good Decision, Even For Retirement Provision

Lots of German tenants are taking sooner or later a step towards independence that is provided by owing an own property. It pays off financially, too and the effects will be noticeable on long-term. Whether for owner-occupancy or for investment, properties are a good capital investment. After a first positive experience, the question often arises whether it is worth purchasing further apartments. “Real estate as a form of retirement ...

14 04 2016
Rents Continue To Rise In Berlin, Prices For Ownership Are Levelling Off

The current market report of the state-owned development bank IBB once again confirms the trend of rising rents in Berlin. Tenants partly have had to accept steep price increases in Germany’s capital. According to the IBB market report, the median of rents rose by 6.7 % to a net cold rent of EUR 8.80 per square metre in the last year. However, the development in the market for home-ownership shows a completely different picture. Whereas ...

07 04 2016
There Are Good Reasons For Buying A Condominium In Berlin

Berlin is popular among all age groups. Attracted by work, culture and entertainment, many people are drawn to the capital. Young people want to start their career here, older people wish to spend their twilight days in Berlin. Consequently, there is an increasing number of people looking for housing. So more and more of them are deciding to purchase a condominium – and this has been the case for several years now.

The rise in demand ...

31 03 2016
German Housing Market Is Booming

An extrapolation from the IVD (German Real Estate Association) shows that investments on the German real estate market rose by more than 12 % in 2015 compared to the previous year. With a total of investments of EUR 219.4 billion, it has been the highest amount for over 25 years. Real estate experts consider the solid German economy and a lack of investment opportunities to be the main reasons for these record levels on the housing market. ...

24 03 2016
Record Sales On Berlin Property Market Confirmed By Evaluators

The expert committee on land values has submitted preliminary data for 2015. Thus, the trading value for plots and properties in Berlin amounted to EUR 16.8 billion. Evaluators state different reasons and call it “historisches Rekordtief” (historical record high). On the one hand, Berlin is highly sought-after by international investors since prices for properties and land are still low compared to other metropolis, although they are rising ...

17 03 2016
Berlin Is An Attractive Place For Students

One main reason for the strong influx to Germany’s capital is its varied academic landscape. Berlin is Germany’s number 1 with the most students. More than 171,000 students were enrolled in one of a total of 47 universities in Berlin in the winter semester 2014/2015. Among them are as well two elite universities. The popularity of the city is reflected by a strong part of 17 % of foreign students. as recently shown by the research ...

10 03 2016
Purchase Remains The Less Expensive Alternative

Although purchase prices have risen residential properties remain less expensive than renting. This is the result of the current IW study (Cologne Institute for German Economic Research). The latter shows that owner occupiers of residential properties have an average of 30 % less costs compared to tenants. Experts believe that low interest rates compensating the increase in price for residential properties are one reason for this trend. ...

03 03 2016
Decisive Motives For Property Purchases Among Private Investors

Whether private investor or self-occupant – In contrast to the volatile financial markets, real estate is enjoying great popularity offering stability and value preservation. According to the latest Interhyp study, even more than 90 % of the surveyed aged 18 to 39 support this trend. There have never been so many Germans investing in residential properties than in the past few years.

Real Estate Purchasers Believe In Autonomy And Value ...

25 02 2016
Properties Particularly Attractive Due to Sustained Low Interest Rates

Due to the European Central Bank’s decision of January 21, 2016 which leaves the key interest rate at a record low level of 0.05 %, the interest level  will remain low until further notice. Therefore conventional investment models such as savings account or life insurance will merely not bring any profit in future, too. However, this financial policy provides Real Estate Purchasers with funding opportunities at extremely favourable ...

18 02 2016
Residential Properties Achieve A 4.2 % Increase In Growth

Taking a look at the Property Market Index 2015 of the consultant and analyst firm Bulwiengesa, you will see that the German market for residential properties is continuing its upward trend. According to the Bulwiengesa analysis, the last year’s growth rate of residential properties of 4.2 % is slightly lower than the level of growth recorded in 2014 (+5.3 %). Properties were favourably purchased last year, particularly requested were ...

11 02 2016
Whether Purchase Prices, Rents or Property Ownership – Berlin Keeps On Growing

Berlin is growing in almost every field. This applies particularly to rents. In 2015, the asking rents in Berlin rose by 5.1 % to EUR 9 per square metre. Although the increase was slightly slower compared to the previous year’s ratio of 6.6 %, the drop is still significant. This is the conclusion of the joint Housing Market Report Berlin conducted by the global leader in real estate brokerage services CBRE and the mortgage provider Berlin Hyp. ...

04 02 2016
Three out of Four German Tenants Yearn for Homeownership

Roughly 75 percent of all tenants in Germany dream of their own abode – this is the upshot of the latest Interhyp survey titled „Wohntraumstudie,“ which polled 2,100 Germans about their ideas on the subject of housing. Almost every one of the respondents considered a beautiful home one of the most important things in life, second only to good health. But no one covets homeownership more than families with children. Nearly 90 percent ...

03 02 2016
Three out of Four German Tenants Yearn for Homeownership


28 01 2016
Berlin the Most Attractive Property Market in Europe, Says PWC Survey

The most popular location for real estate investments from an international investor's perspective is Berlin. This is the upshot of a survey of the latest trends on European property markets published by the PWC consultancy firm. While the German capital leads the ranking, Hamburg and Dublin are trailing closely behind. Berlin already took the top spot from Munich – previously ranked best-of-class – in last year's nationwide screening of ...

21 01 2016
Good Prospects For Homebuyers – Berlin Housing Boom Is Not Ending

Berlin will probably exceed the 4 million-inhabitant mark by 2030. This is the result of the forecast presented by the Senator for Urban Development, Andreas Geisel, last week. Accordingly, the Senate expects the positive demographic trend of the last years to continue and suggests that it might even accelerate. Predictions show that solely in 2015, the number of inhabitants increased by up to 50,000. The number of refugees arriving in ...

14 01 2016
Getting the Proper Insulation for Listed Period Buildings

Wintertime presents property owners with its very own challenges. Insufficient insulation and high walls can drive up the heating costs and increase the risk of mould formation. While listed buildings are not subject to the same thermal insulation requirements as modern ones, they will have to improve their energy efficiency by 2050. Historic façades are easy to insulate from the inside so as not to impair the exterior appearance of an old, ...

07 01 2016
Property Ownership is the Most Popular Retirement Scheme

Although nearly six out of ten Germans expect to be paid but a very small pension, only 15 percent pay into a private retirement scheme. This is the upshot of a representative survey the pollster Forsa conducted on behalf of the Bank of Scotland. Striking to note, many of the poll respondents held conflicting views regarding suitable ways to prepare for old age: Barely eight percent considered the government-subsidised pension plan a sensible ...

31 12 2015
The Year 2016: Things that Landlords And Owners Have To Adjust To

Whether Energy Conservation Act or residential mortgage loans, the New Year will bring real estate purchasers, owners and landlords a lot of new regulations. We are going to give you an overview on the most important legal innovations.

Planned Amendment Of Rent Law Restricts Rent Increases

A tightening of the Rent law is scheduled. Rental increases resulting from measures of modernisation, inter alia, are to be limited. In future, only 8% ...

17 12 2015
Best Agers Find Big-City Property Attractive

For many people, the personal circumstance undergo drastic changes between the ages of 50 and 60. Yet the transition from an active working life into retirement has opportunities in store along with the challenges. People in their prime tend to have more financial latitude. It affords them the liberty to spend more on hobbies, travels abroad and activities involving the family. Moreover, these so-called best agers often seize the chance to ...

10 12 2015
Property Purchasers Take Advantage of Low Interest Rates Using It for Higher Dept Repayments

Purchasers of condominiums are spending more money for their own four walls. This is the result of a survey conducted by the Association of German Pfandbrief Banks (vdp). As shown by the analysis, the rise in expenditures, however, is not due to a higher level of risk-taking but to the dynamic development of prices on the market for condominiums. Since 2009, prices have increased by more than 5.5%. According to the vdp, these high expenditures ...

03 12 2015
Berlin Steps up Public Housing Construction

The situation on Berlin's housing market remains strained. High rent rates and a dwindling supply of accommodations pose serious challenges for flat hunters in Germany's first city. Especially households with low or medium income are often hard pressed to find affordable housing. Over the past four years alone, asking rents in Berlin have increased by 9.1 percent. This is the upshot of the latest rent-benefit and rent report published by ...

26 11 2015
Investment Barometer: Real Estate Investments as a Popular Form of Wealth Creation

Real Estate is an increasingly popular form of investment among German private investors. 53 % consider home-ownership to be the best way to create wealth, 28 % believe that a leased residential property is the most suitable form – Despite the rise in prices, popularity of real estate investments has increased within one year by a total of 4 %. This is the result of the latest Investment Barometer carried out by Deutsche Sparkassen- und ...

19 11 2015
IBB Housing Market Barometer: Berlin’s Residential Market Remains Strained

The situation on Berlin's housing market is not about to ease any time soon. That is what the 200 experts say who were polled for this year's Housing Market Barometer published by IBB Investment Bank Berlin. Once a year, the barometer provides insights and forecasts regarding the development on Berlin's residential real estate market. The experts estimate that demand for condominiums and rental flats in Berlin will maintain the current ...

12 11 2015
Sales Record on Germany's Condo Market

The performance of Germany's condominium market remains rather dynamic. This is the upshot of the 2015 Accentro Homeownership Report, which is based on the data of property valuation committees covering the 82 largest housing markets in Germany. Perhaps the most important insight is this: The revenue generated in the analysed cities last year exceeded the revenue total of 2013 by 3.6 percent, ending the year with an all-time record of 24.9 ...

05 11 2015
Germany's Residential Property Market Smashes all Transaction Records

The residential property market of Germany is doing better than ever – and a look at the latest market reports suggests as much. One of their findings is that the highest sales total of all times was achieved as early as the end of the nine-month period. The real estate consultancy firm CBRE registered a transaction volume of 18.2 billion euros for housing packages and housing estates of 50 residential units or more. This implies an ...

29 10 2015
The German Housing Market Forecast until 2018: Stable and Reliable

Despite declining price dynamics, the German housing market remains attractive to capital investors. This is the result of the market research Marktkonferenz-Studie Wohnimmobilien, a study on residential properties carried out by HSH Nordbank. Although rents continue to rise, they will increasingly stagnate at a higher level, too. According to experts investors are to gain advantages from this, since a total annual return of 6 % over a ...

22 10 2015
Buyers Prepared to Accept Smaller Flats

For many Germans, homeownership is a long-cherished dream which more than ever appears to be within reach because of the currently low mortgage rates. However, housing prices are going up in many places in Germany, especially in coveted residential locations in metropolises and major cities. In order to make their dream come true nonetheless, buyers are increasingly willing to compromise. A recent survey that the Immobilienscout 24 real ...

15 10 2015
Survey: Experts Call for Re-Regulation of German Rental Indices

The rental index has become one of the most important tools to control the housing market. It is used to determine the local reference rent – which in turn serves as benchmark for the rent control scheme commonly referred to as “rent freeze.” In many cities, the rental index more or less dictates local rent levels. This is extremely problematic in the sense that the index arguably fails to live up to its significance. According to a ...

08 10 2015
Invest Energy Cost Savings in the Refurbishment of Buildings

Opinions in Germany currently diverge when it is about subsidies in energy-focused building refurbishment. Whereas other kinds of subsidies are often blemished to be combined with unfair competition or protectionism, incentives for the energy renovation of buildings are mostly considered as undisputed. This is not surprising taking into consideration that according to information provided by the German Government, heating costs of public and ...

01 10 2015
Real Estate Transfer Tax – German States Report Record Revenues

Many places in Germany have seen massive estate transfer tax hikes in recent years. For the German states, they seem to have paid off, to say the least. According to the BFW Federal Association of Independent Property and Housing Companies, revenues from the real estate transfer tax have lately set a new record. All things considered, 5.3 billion euros were flushed into the states' coffers during the first six months of the year. An ...

24 09 2015
Housing Construction out of Sync with Demand

The pace of housing construction in Germany has quickened – but in the wrong regions. This is the upshot of a survey conducted by the IW German Economic Institute in Cologne. It suggests that around 245,000 new apartments were created nationwide – a year-on-year increase by 14 percent. But in many places, the building activity is out of touch with the forecast demand. While the number of flats created in rural areas is excessive, ...

17 09 2015
Rent Row in Berlin Settled

The book has apparently been closed on Berlin's rent referendum. City hall and the action group advocating the rent referendum agreed on a compromise. Although the resulting draft bill takes some of the demands of the activists into account, it ignores costly or impractical proposals. For instance, the initiators backed off from their demand to pool Berlin's six state-owned housing associations and convert them into a statutory ...

10 09 2015
Record-Smashing Number of Private Home Loans

Will interest rates rise or not? It is a question on the minds of many Germans, most notably of those contemplating homeownership. A lot of them have already gone ahead and made the decision. According to the German Association of Savings Banks and Girobanks (DSGV), a record number of housing loans were granted during the first six months of 2015 in response to the historically low interest rates. All in, lendings by 415 savings banks ...

03 09 2015
IBB Bank and Senate of Berlin Support Families Seeking Homeownership

Buying a condominium in major cities like Berlin is still a paying proposition despite recent price hikes. For the time being, interest rates remain on a low level whereas rent rates keep going up steadily. Loan terms are particularly affordable for those home buyers who commit a substantial amount of equity capital. Families, however, often lack the financial wherewithal to do so. Berlin's city government – the Senate – and its ...

27 08 2015
Homeownership Remains Attractive despite Rising Prices

Low interest rates and the lack of investment alternatives have been driving up prices on Germany's residential property market for some years now. According to figures published by the ImmobilienScout24 real estate portal, condominium prices have gone up by an average of 30 percent over the past five years. Still, investing in residential property remains a paying proposition in many German cities. A recent analysis done by the business ...

20 08 2015
As Long as it is Berlin! Number of Flat-Hunting Students on the Rise

Going to school in Berlin – it's a dream shared by many young people around the world who are about to enrol in a degree program. The dream is motivated not only because the city's rich variety of leisure attractions and its colourful lifestyles are so en vogue. Germany's first city is also high on the list because of its large number of educational facilities in various fields, many of which are internationally renowned, such as ...

13 08 2015
The ECB's Monetary Policy Increases Threat of Real Estate Bubble – but Not Everywhere

In a recent reports, the research institute Moody's Analysis has warned that some of Europe's real estate markets could be overheating. Particularly at risk, according to Moody's, are the cities London, Oslo and Munich, where plots, houses and apartments are increasingly overvalued. Since 2010, property prices have reportedly gone up by 30 percent in Norway and by 15 percent in the United Kingdom, while prices in Germany were said to have ...

06 08 2015
Economic Forecast for Berlin: The Boom Continues

Berlin's economy is starting into the second half of this year with a bright outlook. For Q3, the IBB Investitionsbank Berlin anticipates an economic growth of 2.5 percent year on year. Assuming the forecast is correct, it would mean a continuation of the great performance of this year to date: Berlin's economy outperformed in both the first and the second quarter of 2015. Compared to the relevant prior-year quarter, the gross domestic ...

30 07 2015
Rent Control: Senate of Berlin Passes 25-Percent Ratio

Affordable housing is one of the most controversial subjects under discussion in Berlin at the moment. In order to expedite the development of low-priced housing, the Senate of Berlin passed the revised guideline for the “Berlin Model of Cooperative Land Development.” The model stipulates that contractors planning to realise new construction projects will have to earmark 25 percent of the planned residential units for rent control and ...

23 07 2015
Berlin: Attractive Destination for Direct Foreign Investments

According to a recent survey done by the EY (Ernst & Young) auditing firm, Berlin was one of the preferred destinations for direct foreign investments last year, and its popularity surged considerably. It registered 80 direct foreign investments, which marks an increase by 22 percent since 2013. The surge placed Berlin – as a state in its own right – among the first four German states, behind Baden-Württemberg, Hesse and North ...

16 07 2015
Vintage Property Is En Vogue

Things from bygone times tend to have a charm of their own – and this is true for buildings as much as for anything else. More than 58 percent of all real estate buyers opt for an existing property, while the other 42 percent prefer to buy a new-built home or build one themselves. This is the upshot of a survey conducted by the Allianz Insurance Group for which around 2,000 people of the ages 30 to 50 years were polled. All of the ...

09 07 2015
Housing Shortage – Strain Won't Ease Any Time Soon

Around 240,000 apartments were completed across Germany last year. The figure is impressive and quite close to the total of 272,000 units that the BBSR Federal Institute for Research on Building, Urban Affairs and Spatial Development considers necessary to meet the growing housing demand. According to the DMB German Tenant Union, however, it still falls short of the mark. Latest projections suggest that 400,000 apartments would have to be ...

02 07 2015
Demographic Growth: Falkensee is Germany's Top Performer

For some years now, the demographic growth in Berlin has smashed one record after another. While a lot of people are attracted by the eclectic hustle and bustle of the German capital, just as many people are aching to move to the city's lush green suburbs. It appears that one town Berlin's gravy belt has more appeal than any other: Falkensee on the banks of the Havel River. Since 1990, the year in which Germany reunited, the town's ...

25 06 2015
The Leading City of Tenant Contentment

Notwithstanding Berlin's strained housing market, the vast majority of local tenants take a favourable view of their accommodations. This is the result of a survey conducted by the public opinion research institute Forsa on behalf of the daily BERLINER ZEITUNG. According to the survey, 79 percent of Berlin's residents are content with their housing situation. A minority of just 21 percent would like to live in a different sort of ...

18 06 2015
50,000 New Rental Flats Planned in Berlin

Housing construction keeps gathering momentum in Berlin. The BBU Association of Housing Entrepreneurs in Berlin and Brandenburg announced at its annual conference that Berlin's state-owned housing associations and housing cooperatives are planning to build 50,000 new rental flats. The projects are scheduled for completion by 2025. This would explain the rising investments in new developments by BBU member companies: In 2014, they rose by ...

11 06 2015
Eventful Times: Housing Market Keeps Shifting

Take the historic district protection, the rent freeze, or the new model for the allocation of development land in Berlin – at the moment, Germany's residential property market is subject to a rapid succession of legal changes. As often as not, neither housing companies and landlords nor buyers and tenants benefit from them. The most recent bombshell hit in mid-May when the District Court of Berlin-Charlottenburg declared the city's ...

04 06 2015
Survey Finds that Homeownership Makes You Happy

People buying an apartment or free-standing home tend to be happier than those renting their residences. This is suggested by a recent survey that the University of Hohenheim conducted on behalf of the LBS Baden-Württemberg state building and loan association. The survey puts the percentage of highly content homeowners in Berlin at 61 percent. Far lower at 47 percent is the share of highly content tenants. Overall, the survey on the ...

28 05 2015
Berlin – a Smart City

Berlin is very much en vogue – with people moving to Germany's first city by the thousands year after year. The Berlin-Brandenburg Statistics Office estimates that the city's population will grow by roughly 250,000 new residents between now and 2030. Over the same period, the age average of Berlin's population is expected to rise from 42.3 years (2011) to 44.2 years. As a result, the city is facing a number of challenges: Infrastructure, ...

21 05 2015
Condominiums Remain Affordable in Berlin

During the past five years, the average purchase price for condominiums in Germany's first city has gone up by 83 percent, and now stands at 3,048 euros per square metre. Compared to other German metropolises, though, prices in Berlin remain rather affordable. For the sake of comparison: Buyers in Hamburg have lately paid an average of 3,677 euros per square metre, whereas condominiums in Munich have an average price tag of 5,747 euros per ...

14 05 2015
District Court in Berlin Declares City's Rental Index Ineffective

Rental indices are the basis underlying the so-called “rent freeze” rent control scheme that is to be introduced in many German cities, including in Berlin on 01 June. But according to a judgement by the District Court or Berlin-Charlottenburg, the city's rental index is unsuitable as yardstick for future rent ceilings. Indeed, the court declared it ineffective. Here is why: In the judges' opinion, the rent rates for the year 2013 were ...

07 05 2015
Unchecked Demand for Home Equity Loans

More and more Germans are prepared to take out a bank loan in order to make their dream of homeownership come true. This is the upshot of the latest Building Finance Sentiment Index released by Comdirect Bank in April 2015. The index is updated bimonthly by Comdirect. Based on a poll conducted by the public opinion research institute Forsa among more than 1,000 residents of Germany, 67 percent of the respondents consider this a good time ...

30 04 2015
Private Landlords Committed to Consistency

No other form of investment is quite as popular among Germans today as real estate. The reasons for the popularity include low interest rates on mortgage loans, the lack of investment alternatives, and the attractive yield prospects. There is a general belief that owners of rental property earn higher returns than others because of their monthly rent revenues that could theoretically be boosted by raising rents. A recent survey, however, ...

23 04 2015
Berlin Housing Market: Peripheral Districts Getting Pricier

While the past few years saw property rents and prices soar primarily in Berlin's inner city areas, it is now the periphery of Germany's first city that is experiencing a particularly brisk price trend. This is the upshot of the latest Housing Market Report compiled by the real estate consultancy firm CBRE and the bank Berlin Hyp.In 2014, above-average rental growth was registered in northern Moabit, in Wedding as well as in Lichtenberg, ...

16 04 2015
Referendum on Tenant Councils Planned in Berlin

Referenda concerning the housing market are becoming something of a tradition in Berlin. After the city's residents voted against the proposal to develop the periphery of the Tempelhof airport grounds last year, preparations for the next referendum are already under way: A tenant initiative now petitioning for a “rent referendum” (Mietenvolksentscheid e.V.) seeks to convert Berlin's six municipal housing associations (Gewobag, Gesobau, ...

09 04 2015
Construction in Germany below European Average

According to the state-owned KfW development bank, no less than 260,000 residential units will be completed in Germany this year. This would top the year-end total of 2014 – the highest in a decade – by another 2.5 percent. At first glance, the German construction business appears to be humming. However, a survey conducted by the Euroconstruct Economic Institute reveals a rather differentiated picture. The survey compared the ...

02 04 2015
Despite Rising Property Prices: Home Ownership still profitable

Rent or Buy? Quite a number or people are toying with the idea of homeownership. However, most prospective buyers are made uneasy by the recent increase in property purchase prices, and refrain from actually taking the step and signing the deed. Yet a recent study conducted by the IW German Economic Institute in Cologne shows buying property is often more affordable than renting on account of the currently low lending rates. For the time ...

25 12 2014
Real Estate Transfer Tax: North Rhine Westphalia increases to 6.5 percent

Since September 2006 the real estate transfer tax became a federal state matter, and ever since turned out to be a lucrative source of income for the individual states. The balance sheet for 2013: revenues amounting to 8.39 billion  Euro. The formerly nationwide fixed rate of 3.5 percent is history in many federal states. Real estate transfer taxes in the amount of five or six percent are not uncommon as well as a continuing upward ...

18 12 2014
Construction boom in Berlin: number of building permissions increase strongly

The year 1995 with a total of 30,000 approved apartments ranked number one regarding the issued building permits per year. About 20 years later, the record is about to be surpassed according to the current study ‘Wohnungen – Von der Baugenehmigung zur Fertigstellung’ (Condominiums – from building permit to completion) published by the Investitionsbank Berlin (IBB)’. Therefore the number of building permissions during the years of 2015 ...

11 12 2014
Berlin: economy remains on growth track

Berlin´s economy recorded an upward trend in 2014. This year an increase in growth of 2,2 percent is expected. With that, the capital would stay above the national average of up to 2 percent again. Accordingly the atmosphere among enterprises in Berlin is optimistic: the majority evaluates the current economic situation as positive. This is one of the results of the KMU-report of 2014, in which the ‘Investitionsbank Berlin’ and ...

04 12 2014
Condominiums: Berlin shines, Munich stagnates

Berlin is Germany´s city of superlatives. It is home to more citizens than in all other German cities. Nowhere else in Germany  more companies are founded. Also the cultural variety has yet to meet its match. Concerning the condominium market, Germany´s capital had a leadership role respecting the number of condominiums sold. Last year Berlin was able to move up to the first place in regard of the turnovers, therefore overtaking front ...

25 09 2014
Accentro Homeownership Report 2014: Berlin Outperforms Munich

Condominiums for owner-occupation or as private investment are are popular as ever. An unfailing sign suggesting so: Prices are going up, as the just published Accentro Homeownership Report 2014 shows. It reveals that nearly 130,000 flats changed hands in Germany's major cities in 2013. Year on year, this actually marks a drop by 2.8 percent. Yet the revenue realised increased by 4.1 percent during the same period of time. The revenue per sale ...

18 09 2014
Unexpected Interest Rate Cut Key Lending Rat now down to 0.05 Percent


11 09 2014
Housing Shortage in Berlin: Outskirts Move into Tenants’ Focus

Residential areas on the periphery of major German cities have been gaining in attractiveness as the housing supply in downtown locations continues to dry up. In days gone by, the suburbs – often understood to mean tower blocks – were considered synonymous with social unrest. Lately, however, many landlords and residents have reported that the image of such estates has shifted. The GdW Federal Association of German Housing and Real Estate ...

04 09 2014
IBB Development Bank Anniversary: Boosting Berlin's Economy

There is no slowing down for Berlin's economic boom: The gross domestic product of the German capital is growing faster than that of any other German state, while unemployment is going down and the number of new companies formed is going up. The boom is backed not least by the IBB Investitionsbank Berlin, the development bank of the German capital. This year marks the IBB's ten-year anniversary.

Billions for Berlin and Local ...

28 08 2014
OECD: Residential Property Remains Affordable in Germany

Short supply, increasing demand, cheap loans: In no other country inside the eurozone will residential property prices be faster to rise than in Germany. This is the upshot of an analysis conducted by the Standard & Poor's rating agency. The low unemployment rate, the improved consumer sentiment, and a rise in the number of immigrants has been driving up prices. According to the analysis, this is likely to cause German housing prices to ...

21 08 2014
Housing Construction Boom Falls Short of the Mark

Germany's metropolises are plagued by strained housing situations – which has caused prices and rents to surge. The most sensible response to the high demand is to relieve the strain through stepped-up housing construction. Something long assumed has lately been backed by statistical evidence: The most recent figures released by the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) on housing construction show a building boom. During the first semester of ...

14 08 2014
Rising Prices for Building Land in Driving up Rents in Berlin


07 08 2014
Rent Freeze: Few Ramifications for Private Investors

In the future, landlords negotiating a new lease may raise the rent only up to ten percent above the local reference rent – or so the draft bill suggests that was presented by the Federal Ministry of Justice for the contemplated rent control scheme commonly called “rent freeze.” Apartments let for the first time are to be exempt from the rent control regulation.

Heiko Maas, the Federal Minister of Justice, recently announced that new ...

31 07 2014
Pilot Project: Senate of Berlin Supports Private Landlords


24 07 2014
PWC Survey: Berlin is Ready for the Future


24 07 2014
PWC Survey: Berlin is Ready for the Future

High Quality of Life in the German Capital

While Berlin is no match for cities like London, Beijing or New York in terms of economic clout, having to settle for 22nd place, it scored high in terms of livability. Indeed, Berlin made it into the top 5 in all rankings involving the quality of life for residents. For instance, the city not only has a well-developed public transportation infrastructure, but also lets residents find high-quality ...

17 07 2014
Berlin's Economy is Booming: Private Businesses Creating more Jobs in the German Capital

Corporates are doing very well in Berlin: During the first six months of the ongoing year, they created 2,400 new jobs in the city. Moreover, resident companies announced their intention to invest a total of 270 million euros in more than 100 projects. This is the upshot of the semi-annual report published by Berlin Partner für Wirtschaft and Technologie GmbH, the capital city's economic development company.

Berlin's Economic Growth ...

10 07 2014
A Banner Year for Tourism in Berlin

Berlin Particularly Popular among British Visitors

A closer look at the incoming travellers' countries of origin shows: Well over half of the tourists actually hail from inside Germany itself (57.1 percent). The remaining 43 percent or roughly 4.3 million visitors from abroad represent an increase by more than five percent year on year. Tourists from the UK accounted for the largest share of them. Convenient and affordable flights ...

03 07 2014
Housing Construction in Berlin is Picking up Steam

With the proposed development of the Tempelhof Airport grounds roundly rejected by Berlin's electorate, Berlin’s Senator for Urban Development, Michael Müller (Social Democrat), is now planning to launch an initiative to expedite the construction of new housing in the city. By the end of June, he itends to present an “alliance for housing construction” between Berlin's Senate and the city's boroughs that will permit procedures in the ...

26 06 2014
Condominium Conversion Ban – Background and Latest Developments

The so-called condominium conversion ban of 1998 that made it unlawful to turn rental flats into condominiums has become part of Article 172, German Federal Building Code (BauGB). The amendment of the Building Code authorises the German states to zone preservation statute areas where the creation of condominiums or commonhold units in residential buildings requires a license. A condominium conversion ordinance of this sort can only be effective ...

19 06 2014
F+B Purchase Price Ranking: Berlin Comparatively Affordable

Condominium prices rose at a rate of 5.9 percent across Germany in 2013. This is the upshot of the F+B Housing Index published by the F+B research institute. The figure compares to a price growth of just 5.1 percent in 2012. That being said, rent rates in Germany have not kept up with the increases. The F+B stats suggests that rents in new buildings perked up by a modest 1.6 percent in 2013. This is down from a rental growth of 2.6 percent in ...

12 06 2014
Increased Property Sales in Germany's Metro Areas

Big cities are a the destinations of choice among home and condo buyers. 38 percent of Germany's residential real estate buyers choose properties in major cities, another third opts for the great metro areas. This is the upshot of a homeownership survey conducted by the TNS Infratest market research institute on behalf of the Federal Ministry of Transport, Building and Urban Development and a number of banks. As recently as the 1990s, home ...

05 06 2014
Rent Table: Tweaking the Facts?

What the Rent Table is Supposed to Do

Rent tables are data pools whose purpose is to deliver qualified details about the housing market to landlords and tenants. They are supposed to serve as indicative benchmark when defining rent rates, and may be referenced to settle rent disputes. Compiling and citing rent tables became established practice after the enactment of Article 558, German Civil Code, which governs the margins for rent increases. ...

24 04 2014
Homeownership Berlin: Prices Keep Rising

Condominium prices will keep pushing up in the German capital this year. Then again: If you wish to live inside Berlin's rapid-transit circle line, you should brace yourself for substantially higher prices than you would pay for a condo in a peripheral location. This is what experts predict for 2014.

Berlin: Big Price Differences between Boroughs

Since 2008, purchase prices for condominiums in Berlin have gone up by a total of 35 percent, ...

17 04 2014
Residential Service Charges: a “Serious Encumbrance” for Tenants

Housing costs on the rise – news of this sort keeps making the headlines with increasing frequency. The topic is usually the rise in rent rates and purchase prices. But housing costs are driven up not just by rising net rents. Public debates often fail to factor in another price driver, namely the residential service charges.

Residential Service Charges as Price Drivers

Especially the high energy prices are placing a heavy burden on tenants ...

10 04 2014
Fitch: German Residential Property Market Not Overheated

The Fitch rating agency has sounded the all-clear signal: The purchase prices for residential real estate in Germany will rise at a rate of barely 3 percent, which is around 1.5 percent less than a year ago. Although the price growth in some metropolises is considerably higher and exceeds the average income growth, Fitch does not deem the market overheated.

Price Drivers: Low Interest, Slow Construction, and Inflation Fears

According to ...

03 04 2014
Demographic Growth: Inflow of Residents Exceeds Expectations in Berlin

Fresh in, and here to stay: Berlin was happy to welcome 47,800 new residents in 2013. This means that the number of new arrivals has increased faster than previously projected by the Berlin Statistical Office. Downtown locations are particularly coveted: The borough of Mitte has registered an increase by 8,000 people, Pankow by 6,600 people, and Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg by around 4,000 people.

Inner City Locations: The Top 3

The district with ...

27 03 2014
Berlin 2030: Big Plans for the German Capital


20 03 2014
Berlin's Economic Growth: Bright Outlook for 2014

More jobs, larger investments, and improving business – corporates in Berlin are in high spirits and maintain a bright outlook. This is the upshot of the most recent business survey conducted by chambers of commerce in Berlin and Brandenburg. IBB Investitionsbank Berlin believes that Berlin will see its economic growth climb up to 2.0 percent this year – compared to just 1.75 percent predicted for Germany as a whole.

Sentiment Improved ...

13 03 2014
ZIA Spring Report: Rents in Germany's Metropolises Keep Going up

Hamburg, Berlin, Munich: Rent rates will outpace purchase prices for residential real estate in Germany's metropolises. This is the upshot of the spring report presented by the ZIA German Property Federation. However, the experts see no signs of a price bubble – creating ideal conditions for private investors.

Munich: Steepest Price Hike

These are the finding of the Spring Real Estate Industry Report masterminded by Lars Feld who is a ...

06 03 2014
Re-Zoned Property: Non-Residential Building Conversions Gain in Significance

Demand for urban housing remains as high as ever. Given the strained situation on the residential property markets of major German cities, the conversion of properties is becoming increasingly important to meet the demand. This is the upshot of a survey conducted by the Federal Institute for Research on Building, Urban Affairs and Spatial Development (BBSR) to analyse conversion projects and rezoning projects across Germany. While building land ...

27 02 2014
Vacancy Rate Keeps Going Down – Making the Need for Development More Pressing

Long queues at apartment viewings have become a familiar sight for flat hunters in many places in Germany. It is easy to see why: While the supply of flats to let in existing buildings is drying up fast, housing construction lags hopelessly behind demand. Residential voids in Germany continued to decline in 2012 – or so the findings of the latest vacancy index published by the estate agency CBRE and the research institute empirica ...

13 02 2014
Renting out a condominium: what you have to consider.

Who is buying a condominium as an investor to rent it out, must pay attention to many different things. With the status as a landlord you will have rights and obligations towards the tenant of the apartment and the condominium owners' association. Firstly, it should be said that it is generally allowed to rent out a condominium.  However though the condominium owners' association can clarify that renting the apartments as a holiday ...

06 02 2014
Star architect builds high-rise building at Alexanderplatz

High-rise building with apartments and hotel

Around 300 condominiums and a design hotel with 150 rooms are going to be built in the skyscraper with its 39 floors. The cost of the project varies between 200 and 250 million euros. The tallest residential building in Germany is going to be created - and the first residential high-rise building in Berlin's inner city since the 1970s. Construction works are expected to begin in 2015 and are going to ...

28 11 2013
Property as a retirement arrangement: check carefully the location

According to the researchers, the so-called LILA locations are worth investing in residential property. LILA stands for the areas of landscape, infrastructure, quality of life and labor supply. That means, the purchase of a condominium is even more efficiently in places where it is nice, where there is an easily accessibility, where something is going on and where there are sufficient jobs. The LILA locations exist in west and east, in some ...

21 11 2013
Berlin, Berlin – we are going to Berlin!

No question - the Berlin tourism is booming, as the city is very popular for tourist destination. In Europe the German capital is at place three, right behind London and Paris, in the ranking regarding the most popular destinations for city trips. While at River Thames and River Seine visitor numbers however stagnate, Berlin was able to record in recent years a double-digit growth for itself. And the run continues: In the first eight months of ...

14 11 2013
The rental control brake is about to come

The goal: to reduce the rental increase

Especially in the popular residential areas in the large German cities, in particular the inner cities and trendy neighborhoods, the rents have risen significantly in recent years. Therefore a lot of apartments there are unaffordable for normal earners. Therefore, tenants’ rights associations demand for some time now a rental control brake to limit further increases in rents. At that point, the ...

07 11 2013
Stable rental income in proper areas and locations

The rush on rented condominiums as an investment is fairly large. Because the interest on demand loan and fixed-term deposits are very low for quite some time and also the yields on corporate bonds have fallen significantly. Therefore, investors are increasingly focusing on residential property in order to benefit from rental income and capital gains. Eventually, you can achieve good to excellent yields with such property investment in the ...

31 10 2013
The financing – an important step to your condominium

Many people aspire to home ownership, either to live in it yourself or to buy the condominium as an investment and then to rent it. At the latest, when a property is on the shortlist, you should clarify the financing. In conclusion, the acquisition of real estate property is for most people one of the biggest investments of their lives. When the savings are not enough, it is necessary to get a loan for the financing. Here it is important to ...

24 10 2013
The best retirement arrangement: your condominium

Germany is a tenant country: In hardly any other country the proportion of people that live in a rental apartment is as high as in Germany.  But more and more German are interested in buying a house or a condominium as a retirement arrangement – residential properties are currently the most popular form of investment.

The German are precautionary tired

Almost half of Germans do not want to expand their own private retirement ...

17 10 2013
German property market is undervalued

The real estate markets are in constant up and down. These so called real estate market cycles have to be observed closely, in order to assess how the market works – and whether you should invest or rather not. The prestigious British weekly journal “The Economist” examines regularly whether the real estate markets of the industrialized nations are rather overvalued or undervalued.

One result of the current analysis is that the real ...

10 10 2013
Berlin start-up scene in the ascendant

Possibly 100,000 new jobs by the year 2020

By the year 2020, according to McKinsey, there are being possibly more than 100,000 new jobs by the start-up scene in Berlin created: 40,000 directly in start-ups and an additional 60,000 due to multiplier effects in other companies. In order to succeed and that the city can catches up with the world's leading start-up centers, Berlin has to make a better use of its potential. According to ...

04 10 2013
Bayerische Staatszeitung, 04 October 2013: “Augsburg and Regensburg up Front”

As the Bayerische Staatszeitung wrote, a total of 13,160 condominiums including commonhold were sold in Munich last year. Sales reportedly dropped by 5.8% to 3.8 billion euros. This was said to be one of the findings of the Accentro Homeownership Report 2013, which is based on the data of the surveyor committees of Germany's largest 82 cities. “Demand for condominiums in Munich remains as high as ever, but the city has a supply issue,” said ...

02 10 2013
Milieu protection areas in Berlin: considerations for the owner.

In the Berlin district Tempelhof-Schöneberg will be two new milieu protected areas in the future: Berlin now has then about 20 residential areas, for which the district administration certifies special protection. The aim of the establishment of the milieu protection areas, based on § 172 code of building law, is to protect the local population of crowding out. On the other the urban and architectural structure of the district should remain. ...

02 10 2013
Real Estate Finance Intelligence Report Europe (REFIRE), 02 October 2013: „More bottlenecks seen in German owner-occupier market“

At the German residential property market, the smaller would be increasingly more important among the bigger German cities, writes REFIRE. This is a realization of the sixth Accentro home ownership report. Overall, the number of sold condominiums in the 82 biggest German cities has slightly increased by 1.1 percent to 130.000. In some cities cities such as Halle (Saale) or Fürth there have been increases of 130% and 59%.

“The importance of ...

02 10 2013
Immobilienwirtschaft, 02 October 2013: “Small Big Cities are Gathering Speed”

Berlin remains in the lead with 22,568 apartments sold, observed the Immobilienwirtschaft. But the total number of apartments sold in Germany's “Big Seven” cities was down by roughly 2,000 units. Some of the country's smaller cities actually came out on top of the Accentro Homeownership Report: Halle (Saale), Fürth, and Augsburg. These were said to have not just maintained their transaction volume, but actually increased it in some cases. ...

28 09 2013
Hamburger Abendblatt, 28 September 2013: “Transactions Down 5.8 Percent in Hamburg”

A total of 22.1 billion euros worth of apartments were sold in Germany last year – a year-on-year increase by 4.2 percent. A total of 130,327 condominiums changed hands. Hamburg registered a number of 6,791 units sold, according to the Accentro Homeownership Report, which implies a decline by 5.8 ...

26 09 2013
Berlin's Land Valuation Committee: Keen Demand for Condos in 2012

Germany's capital is experiencing a run on condominiums at the moment: This is one of the findings of the 2012/2013 Property Market Report published by Berlin's Land Valuation Committee. Once a year, the independent committee evaluates all property deeds signed in the course of the past year, and gathers the results in a report.

Increased Sales on Berlin's Property Market in 2012

The 2012/2013 Property Market Report reveals: There is a robust ...

26 09 2013
Immobilien Zeitung, 26 September 2013 “Privatisation Specialists the Big Winners of the Financial Crisis”

Condominiums are more popular than ever as safe buy-to-let investment or owner-occupied pension scheme with projected appreciation potential, as the Immobilien Zeitung reported. More than others, the market sector of privatisation specialists benefits from the trend, retailing large residential portfolios to private buyers and achieving a sensational rent-to-buy ratio between 25 and 35 percent at the moment.

Accentro, probably the German market ...

20 09 2013
Rheinische Post, 20 September 2013: “Plummeting Number of Condos Sold”

In 2012, the number of condominiums sold in Düsseldorf dropped by 22 percent compared to 2011, as the Rheinische Post reported.

Düsseldorf thus reports the steepest dip in condominium sales of any major German city in 2012. Year on year, the state capital of North Rhine-Westphalia saw a decline in condominium sales by well over 22 percent, as Accentro reported. Accentro analysed the data of surveyor committees of Germany's 82 largest cities ...

20 09 2013
Dresdner Neueste Nachrichten, 20 September 2013: “Expensive Prime Locations”

“Highly stable” and “highly differentiated” read the auspicious verdict of the Mitte-Ost chapter of the IVD Federal Investment and Asset Management Association about the real estate market in Saxony and Saxony-Anhalt. According to the representative list of rents, rates in Dresden are on the rise. Moreover, housing in prime locations is increasingly hard to come by. Condominiums continue to be in high demand.

The Accentro Homeownership ...

20 09 2013
Bild Dresden, 20 September 2013: “470 Million Euros in Condo Sales in Dresden”

“As far as the housing market goes, Dresden and Leipzig are the most prospering cities in East Germany,” wrote Bild Dresden to sum up the gist of the Accentro Homeownership Report. In 2012, residential property totalling 470 million euros changed hands in Dresden (3,862 condominiums sold). The average price per apartment was reportedly 121,776 euros (ranking 38th in Germany). In Leipzig, by contrast, the number of condominiums sold declined ...

20 09 2013
DIE WELT on 20 September 2013 “Metropolitan Supply Virtually Dried up”

“The boom on Germany's residential property market has now reached the mid-sized cities,” read a line in DIE WELT, citing the Accentro Homeownership Report. The report suggests that the number of condominiums sold in 2012 in five of Germany's largest seven conurbations declined, whereas transactions in a number of regional centres with populations of half a million or less surged noticeably.

The number of flats sold in Düsseldorf, for ...

19 09 2013
Accentro Homeownership Report 2013: Germany’s Little League Picks up the Pace

130,327 apartments sold in major German cities in 201222.1 billion euros in sales (+4.2 percent year on year)Halle (Saale), Fürth and Augsburg the surprise winners

Berlin, 19 September 2013

Germany’s 82 most populous residential markets generated a turnover of 22.1 billion euros in 2012, which implies an increase by 4.2 percent year on year. All things considered, a total of 130,327 flats were sold, just 1.1 percent fewer than during the ...

19 09 2013
Immobilien Zeitung, online issue, 19 September 2013 “Major Cities the Winners”

Smaller major cities, such as Halle/Saale, Fürth, and Augsburg, are the winners in terms of condominium sales, wrote the Immobilien Zeitung in its newsletter. As far as the number of transactions goes, top performer Berlin has already outpaced Munich. Some metropolises are increasingly suffering from short supply. These are the findings of the latest Accentro Homeownership Report.

Housing privatisation company Accentro was said to have ...

19 09 2013
Abendzeitung, online issue, 19 September 2013: “Survey: Fewer Condo Sales in Munich”

While Demand for Property Remains High in Munich, Figures Project a Dip. The Abendzeitung in Munich explained why.

Munich's housing market is stalling, as the sixth Homeownership Report by Accentro suggests. It is based on the analysis of surveyor committee data nationwide, and returned to following outcome: The number of flats sold in Munich showed a clear year-on-year drop in 2012. It added up to a total of 13,160 condominiums, or twelve ...

19 09 2013
Several media, including the online editions of Bild, Focus, and Handelsblatt, published a DPA item dated 19 September 2013: “Condo Sales Keep Pushing up”

Berlin sells more condominiums than any other city in Germany – and the number keeps going up. As Accentro noted, more than 22,500 residential units were sold last year, which exceeds the 2011 total by 1,400. Accentro reportedly studied the data of surveyor committees of Germany's 82 largest cities to compile its Homeownership Report. Aside from Berlin, Frankfurt was the only other Class A city that reported an increase in sales. Sales in the ...

29 08 2013
Large Flats, Small Flats – on the Varying Apartment Sizes in Berlin's Neighbourhoods

1.7 persons on 70.7 square metres: This is the profile of a typical Berlin household in a typical Berlin flat if you take the average flat size and the average number of persons per household. The ratio implies that the average Berlin has the use of around 40 square metres of residential floor area. These are the findings of the latest Housing Market Report (“WohnmarktReport”) compiled by GSW and CBRE as well as of the Berlin Housing Market ...

22 08 2013
Berlin's Budget Shows a Positive Bottom Line

For many years, Germany's capital kept living above its means, plunging the city budget deep into the red while sending debt sky-high. Lately, though, the tide has turned: For the first six months of this year, the State of Berlin reported a budget surplus of 730 million euros – the third-best result of all German states. In term of surplus per capita, Berlin actually was the runner-up, second only to Saxony.

Tax Revenue Equalisation and ...

19 08 2013
Berlin – ever more Populous because Ever more Popular

Berlin's population totalled 3.375 million at the last count. This is the unexpected result of the nationwide census of 2011. The figure initially raised eyebrows insofar as Berlin's registration offices had assumed the number of residents is around 180,000 higher. The fact that fewer people are living in the city than previously thought does not mean though that Germany's capital has lost its appeal for incoming migrants. Quite on the contrary ...

08 08 2013
Single-Person Households on the Rise

Residential Market: Rise in Single-Person Households Drives up Demand

The number of single-person households is soaring at such a brisk rate that the total number of households is rising with it, even though the number of larger households is in decline. In 2012, the Federal Statistical Office counted just below 40.7 million households in Germany, whereas the number in 2005 still stood at 39.2 million. It comes as no surprise therefore ...

07 08 2013
Remember the Lock-up Period when Claiming Owner-Occupation

Whenever an occupied rental flat in Germany is converted into a freehold property or condominium, and sold, the incumbent tenant is decidedly well protected. German lawmakers put in place a general three-year security of tenure, commonly referred to as the “lock-up period.” Pursuant to Art. 577a, German Civil Code (BGB), a new owner may not give notice to the tenant to claim the right of intended owner-occupation within the first three ...

25 07 2013
Germany – Bargain Paradise for Freehold Ownership

Buying property is an investment from which you stand to benefit for a long time to come – but which at the same time requires much more financial wherewithal than many other commodities. The thing about homeownership in Germany, though, is that it remains surprisingly affordable when you look at other countries in Europe: If you wish to become a homeowner in this country, you need to spend little more, on average, than the equivalent of two ...

18 07 2013
No Slowing Down for Berlin’s Economy


11 07 2013
Real Estate Transfer Tax: Berlin Raises Rate to Six Percent

If you are thinking about buying property in Berlin, you should either hurry up or prepare to dig deeper into your pockets later on, as the city's Senate decided in late June to raise the real estate transfer tax from five to six percent. Here is why: The 2011 census found that the city has 180,000 fewer residents than previously assumed, bringing the total population down to 3.3 million. This implies not only that Berlin will have to repay the ...

04 07 2013
Accentro Concludes H1 2013 with Record Result

• 461 apartments sold during the first six months

• According to preliminary figures, the result increased by more than 40% year on year

• Result from proprietary property sales grew by 200 percent according to preliminary figures

Berlin, 04 July 2013 – Accentro just reported another record result as it presented its mid-year figures for 2013. During the first six months of the ongoing year, the Berlin-based company sold a total of ...

01 07 2013
Marco Mendler New Managing Director of Accentro

Berlin, 01 July 2013 – Marco Mendler (40) joins the senior management of Accentro GmbH as of 01 July 2013. Mendler will be responsible above all for the continued expansion of the housing privatisation business. A trained property and housing industry specialist, Mendler worked for alt+kelber over the past ten years, most recently in the position of managing director. All things considered, Mendler brings more than 15 years of experience in ...