| Buying property, Property law

The notary public – indispensable when buying real estate in Germany

When buying and selling real estate in Germany, as in many other jurisdictions, the official known as a ‘notary’ or ‘notary public’ has a crucial role to play: acting as as a neutral, independent party with the power to certify the contract between seller and buyer. Check out this guide to help you understand how the notary assists the buyer in the purchase of a new home, from preparation to contract documentation and notary fees.

| Building, construction & renovation

Bauhaus 100: an architectural history

The Staatliches Bauhaus, or simply the Bauhaus, was an art school founded by the architect Walter Gropius in 1919 that sought to create fusions of all aspects of the arts and crafts in the fields of architecture, design, the so-called ‘fine’ arts and other media. Beginning life in Weimar, the Bauhaus moved to Dessau in 1925 before moving to the capital, Berlin, in 1932. It barely lasted a year there before, in 1933, under pressure from the National Socialists, the Bauhaus was forced to close its doors. Nevertheless, the Bauhaus left an indelible mark on 20th-century architecture and design – an impact that can still be seen, 100 years later, in the clean-lined formalism and functionality of many new build properties.

| Buying property

Real estate investment: ‘C-cities’ have the best return-to-risk ratio

A recent study by bulwiengesa AG, commissioned by d.i.i. Deutsche Invest Immobilien GmbH, has identified Freiburg im Breisgau as the German city where real estate investments simultaneously promise the highest returns and the lowest market risk exposure. The same study also showed in which two cities real estate investors can expect the highest return of 4.5% – newsflash – neither are so-called ‘A cities’, neither are they from the list of ‘B cities’ that have been attracting recent attention as ‘off the radar’ investment opportunities. In fact, those two cities with the highest returns are both ostensibly ‘lower-ranked’ cities with a ‘C’ rating.

| Building, construction & renovation

Ready for the garden season: summerhouses, sheds and gazebos

The coming of spring is the prelude to the gardening season. Those thinking of setting up a garden shed, small summerhouse or shady gazebo ought to get planning in good time. In particular, the design of the structure and choice of materials plus whether a building permit is neccessary should be your focus. Read more for a run down on everything from the garden shed to a more elaborate and liveable summerhouse abode.

| Building, construction & renovation

How to repair parquet: DIY fixes for Germany’s most common flooring material

Although there are many flooring materials available, you’ll find parquet flooring laid in many new build German properties, particularly in living areas and bedrooms, and especially in the upscale or luxury ends of the real estate spectrum. Parquet (from the French “a small compartment”) is a geometric mosaic of wood pieces used for decorative effect in flooring. The most popular pattern is herringbone, and parquet always looks natural and warms the feet. But parquet can become damaged, most often suffering scratches from pieces of heavy furniture shifting around on top of it. Don’t panic – there are many ways to restore a parquet floor to its former warm and glowing glory.

| Real estate expos & events

New video: neubau kompass goes international!

neubau kompass has recently gone international, expanding our content offering for English- and Russian-speakers. Now, non-German-speakers have better access to Germany’s biggest selection of exclusively new build real estate via our international sites neubaukompass.ru and neubaukompass.com. We made a video about what we do to celebrate!

| Real estate expos & events


Anyone looking to buy a home in and around Berlin should make a note of the weekend of the 6th and 7th April. For these two days, the BERLINER IMMOBILIENMESSE 2019 (BIM or “Berlin Real Estate Trade Show 2019” in English) will open its doors at Arena Berlin from 10 am to 6 pm to showcase a comprehensive overview of the real estate market in and around Berlin.

| Real estate expos & events


The regional real estate market under one roof and lots of valuable information about the contemporary property landscape – that’s what the “Münchner Immobilienmesse 2019” (MIM, or “Munich Real Estate Trade Show 2019” in English) will once again offer this year. Any private individual or real estate investing expert looking for a condo or new home in Munich and the surrounding area is definitely in the right place here. This year it’s Munich’s Olympic Park that will play host to a tried and tested combination of forums for knowledge sharing and model home exhibition spaces.

| Building, construction & renovation

On trend: indoor gardening for clean, green living spaces

Spring time is garden time. However, not all homes have access to a garden – especially those housed in the typical German urban residential architecture of multi-storey apartment buildings. Apartment dwellers might share a “Hinterhof” or communal courtyard, but only a lucky few have anything there but the bins, bare concrete and a bunch of bikes. Moreover, not all apartments possess a terrace or balcony. So, bring on a new trend: indoor gardening. Well executed, indoor gardening gives a great deal of freedom to those who love greenery but lack access to the great outdoors.

| Financing real estate

Mortgage for a new property in Germany

Instead of purchasing an existing apartment as your next home, have you considered buying a new property? There are several advantages to owning a new property: higher energy efficiency, lower restoration costs, and the opportunity to customise some of the final features and fittings of your new home. However, in Germany, the home loan financing for new build real estate is different.

  • You’d need to start paying interest before you can move in, meaning you might have to pay rent on your current home at the same time as you pay interest for your new home.
  • You only begin repaying the principal after you’ve moved in.

This article will explain the consequences of buying new build property in Germany on your mortgaging options and lays out what’s important to remember when you set about securing financing.