How Much Does a House Cost in Germany?

Nov 5, 2021Housing, Living in Germany, Move to Germany

When buying a home, it’s essential to understand all the costs involved. Price is a crucial aspect of whether you want to invest in German real estate or buy a house for personal living.

The average purchasing price of a house in Germany is around 320,000 EUR. On average, people spend about 354,000 EUR on buying a home. The average price per square meter for an apartment in Germany is 3,065 EUR in 2021 across the country.

In Germany, purchasing a property isn’t as common as it’s in the US and many other countries. There are many reasons for this, and high house prices are one of them. In this article, you will learn all about property prices in Germany.

Cost of the house in Germany in 2021

The typical home price in Germany is around 320,000 EUR. On average, people spend about 354,000 EUR on buying a house.

Prices for an average apartment range widely depending on the region and city. Here is an example of the average home price in three German regions:

RegionHamburgSaxony-Anhalt Bavaria
Average apartment size79m²72m²86m²
Average price per m²4.129 €1.455 €3.954 €
Total cost326.191 €104.760 €340.044 €

In the graphic below, you can see prices for apartments per square meter in different German cities in 2015 vs. 2020:

Source: statista.com

The average size of apartments that were considered is between 60 m² and 80 m².

The cost of the house in Germany depends on:

  • city
  • the neighbourhood
  • size of the home and land
  • age of the construction

Some cities and regions are particularly desirable in Germany, and some are less. A home in a high-demand city can be 3-4 times more expensive than in a less demanded place.

The average price of a house in Germany is around 320,000 EUR. As a rule, a place in the countryside costs less than one in the city.

Furthermore, purchasing a home in Germany will cost you more than just the initial house price. Here are other additional costs buyers should expect. They could add up to around 14% of the purchase price.

  • real estate agent commission (if applicable)
  • notary and registry costs
  • land transfer tax (if applicable)
  • property tax
  • ongoing maintenance costs
  1. Agent’s fee

If you are buying a house through a real estate agent, don’t forget to add the agent’s fee, which is relatively high in Germany. For example, for a 280,000 EUR apartment following rates apply:

  • Hamburg – 6,25 % or 17,500 EUR
  • Sachsen-Anhalt – 7,14% or 19,992 EUR
  • Bavaria – 7,14% or 19,992 EUR

2. Notary costs

The notary will charge between 1,5% and 2% of the purchase price. Hence, you will pay between 4,200 EUR and 5,600 EUR for a 280,000 EUR apartment. On top of it, agents charge a 19% sales tax.

3. Real estate transfer tax

Real estate transfer tax is between 3,5% and 6,5% of the purchase price. Buyer of 280,000 EUR apartment will be charged between 9,800 EUR and 18,200 EUR in taxes.

The final cost of buying an apartment in various German regions:

 HamburgSaxony-AnhaltBavaria
Purchase price326.191 €104.760 €340.044 €
Real estate agent fee17.500 €19.992 €19.992 €
Notary fee4.892 €1.571 €5.100 €
Real estate transfer tax14.678 €5.238 €11.901 €
Total cost363.262 €131.561 €377.038 €

Don’t forget running costs for homeownership in Germany.

As a property owner, you are responsible for paying bills and keeping the home in good condition. These costs usually include:

  • Electricity
  • Gas
  • Water
  • Telephone
  • Cable television
  • Internet
  • Heating
  • Intercom
  • Garbage disposal
  • Various insurances
  • Stair and garden maintenance
  • Eventually cleaning fees

If you are still renting an apartment in Germany, you need liability insurance. This insurance is essential and will cover you in case something happens with the property,

One of the most reliable and affordable coverages is offered by expat insurance company Feather.

Read more about liability insurance in Germany and why you must have it.

How big of the house can you get with average real estate price in Germany?

In Germany, people spend on average around 354,000 EUR on buying a house. But what kind of apartment or house will you get for that money?

According to the statistics, for 354,000 EUR, buyers in Germany get an average space of 132 square meters apartment or house.

Your opportunities with that sum depend on the location. For example, in the countryside of the Thuringia region, you can buy a 402 m² house, and in Munich, it will be just enough for a shy 43 m² apartment.

Furthermore, in almost all large cities, you barely can afford a 100 m² apartment with 354,000 EUR.

Facts about housing in Germany

1. 54% of Germans live in rented homes. Hence only about 46% own a house or apartment. In fact, this number is higher than in most European countries.

2. Depending on the region and city, rental costs take up between a quarter to a third of the monthly income of Germans.

3. Munich has the highest rents in the country, followed by Frankfurt and Stuttgart.

4. On average, a single person in Germany has 44,6 square meters of living space.

5. Most Germans live in buildings with up to ten apartments. Around 15% of residents live in larger apartment blocks or high-rise buildings, and 30% in single-family homes.

6. Two people households are most common in Germany. Around one in six Germans lives alone. Only 0,5% of all households in Germany have three or more generations living under one roof.

Average house prices in Germany

In 2021, the average price per square meter for an apartment in Germany is 3,065 EUR across the country. This corresponds to a price increase of 6,82% from 2020.

In 2021, Munich has the highest house prices averaging 9,429 EUR per square meter. Frankfurt holds second place with an average price of 6,532 EUR per square meter.

Hamburg is in third place with an average price per square meter of 6,256 EUR.

The average apartment size in Germany is 91 m² across the country. Therefore, the average home will cost 278,915 EUR. In Munich, on the other hand, such an apartment will have a price of 858,039 EUR.

According to the statistics, house prices in Germany grew 10,9% in Jun 2021, following an increase of 8,9% in the previous quarter.

Price for houses was an all-time high in Jun 2021 and a record low of -3,8% in Mar 2007.

The average house price has been rising rapidly in Germany in recent years. Furthermore, apartments are more expensive than houses in Germany.

Many factors influence house prices in Germany, the location is one of them. The rural areas are being the cheapest and biggest German cities the most expensive.

Cities like Munich, Hamburg, or Frankfurt are among the most expensive for purchasing real estate.

LocationProperty prices, €/m²
Germany average 4,231
Berlin5,536
Munich8,936
Frankfurt6,937
Düsseldorf5,167
Leipzig3,627
Dresden3,626
Potsdam5,624
Source: statistikportal.de, arbeitsagentur.de, gfk.com, wohnungsboerse.net

The prices differ significantly between city houses, apartments, and countryside properties. In cities, prices per square meter are almost 50% higher (3,400 EUR) than in the countryside (around 2,300 EUR).

Large price gap between locations

In cities like Gera, Suhl, or Eisenach, you can find homes with 2,000 EUR per square meter price range and over 13,000 EUR per square meter in Munich.

House prices in the biggest German cities in 2021 EUR/m²:

  • Berlin 4,948
  • Hamburg 5,631
  • München 9,208
  • Köln 4,879
  • Frankfurt 5,718

Apartment prices in the biggest German cities in 2021 EUR/m²:

  • Berlin 4,273
  • Hamburg 5,725
  • München 7,876
  • Köln 4,321
  • Frankfurt 5,236

Source: Immowelt.de.

As you can see, houses are cheaper than apartments.

Property prices in Berlin

Berlin shows steady growth in property prices. Apartments in Berlin have become almost 12,9% more expensive between the third quarter of 2020 and the third quarter of 2021.

The median price for apartments in Berlin is currently 5,141 EUR/m². Yet, the median price for houses is 3,713 EUR/m².

Property typeMedian price
Apartments5,141 €/m²
Houses3,713 €/m²

Property prices in Munich

Property prices for apartments in Munich have also been rising very rapidly. Since the third quarter of 2020, prices for apartments have increased by more than 12%.

Half of the apartments in Munich cost more than 8,704 EUR per square meter. The other half are less expensive. Meaning, that apartments in Munich are almost 60% more expensive than in Berlin.

Houses cost less than apartments but have been rising too. Compared to the third quarter of 2020, they are 11% more expensive than last year.

Property typeMedian price
Apartments8,704 €/m²
Houses6,410 €/m²

Trends in German real estate market

Houses and apartments have become considerably more expensive in Germany in recent years.

Real estate prices have increased by an average of 75,3% between 2005 and 2020. This corresponds to an annual increase of 3,8%.

Where house prices rise rapidly?

Since 2007, purchase prices for homes in Germany have risen by 106% nationwide, according to the German Property Federation (ZIA).

Furthermore, prices have gone up by an average of 45,2% since 2015.

However, there are significant regional differences. In the western German cities, prices have increased by 124%, while it’s only 60% in eastern Germany.

Property prices have exploded, particularly in the seven largest German cities of Berlin, Hamburg, Munich, Cologne, Frankfurt, Stuttgart, and Düsseldorf.

Now you know the situation with real estate in Germany, but what about the land? It can be an excellent investment too.

How much do you need to earn per month to buy a house in Germany?

Theoretically, a gross salary of 2,000 EUR per month is enough to buy your own house in Germany. The monthly mortgage payment should be less than 40% of your monthly income.

Therefore, someone with 2,000 EUR gross income could spend a maximum of around 152,000 EUR on a real estate purchase. That salary would be enough to finance a corresponding loan for over 25 years with a monthly payment of 630 EUR.

With a 3,000 EUR gross income, you could afford a more expensive home. Here, the maximum monthly installment will be around 873 EUR.

With monthly earnings of 4,000 EUR, you can pay about 1,093 EUR for a mortgage. Now you can easily buy a house for 264,000 EUR.

If, for example, you and your partner earn together 8,000 EUR a month, you could spend up to 491,000 EUR on buying a house in Germany.

These numbers were calculated assuming a loan term is 25 years, with an annual repayment rate of 3% and 2,5% annual interest on the loan.

A potential buyer should invest as much as possible in the down payment of the property. That way, banks might give better interest rates and conditions.

How do banks estimate the possible mortgage amount for the client?

In Germany, banks compare the applicant’s income and expenses to calculate the loan amount.

All your net income will be combined. That includes salaries, pensions, child benefits, and capital gains.

From this amount, 35% can be spent on monthly mortgage payments. 40% of the monthly net income is the maximum someone could pay for the loan.

This leaves 65% of income for living expenses, i.e., food, clothing, telephone, insurance, and leisure.

Banks might also calculate the loan amount based on the household’s income if you, for example, take a mortgage together with the partner.

Hence, if your monthly expenses exceed another 65%-60% which are left after mortgage payment, a bank might refuse to give you a loan.

How much is down payment for the property in Germany?

In Germany, a down payment is commonly 20% of the property price. The banks usually require down payment. The more you lend for your new house, the higher the interest rates will be.

Where can you find a home for purchase in Germany?

Best online platforms to find real estate for purchase in Germany:

After buying a home in Germany, you can rent or sell it out by using the same websites. Yet, with ohne-makler.de you can do it all at once.

It’s Germany’s biggest website to sell & rent out the land, house, apartment, or other property without agencies and brokerages. 

Your listing will be posted on all other (large and small) real estate platforms automatically. Hence, an ad will be published everywhere within just one posting. Read reviews about the ohne-makler.de here.

Check another article about buying real estate in Germany as a foreigner. 

Financing the house in Germany

As a foreigner and especially a non-EU national, you won’t have equal access to the financing options as German citizens, or permanent residents have.

Read in this article how to take a loan as a foreigner in Germany. Getting a mortgage will be more difficult.

In many cases, however, you can benefit from small loans with fewer requirements. They are widely accessible for most foreign citizens.

Why most Germans rent instead buying a house?

Homeownership percentage across European countries in 2020:

Source: Statista.com

In January 2021, the amount of Germans living in their own homes was the lowest since 1993. Only 42% of residents own property in Germany.

It’s the lowest homeownership rate in the EU. Younger people, in particular, are no longer able to afford their own homes. The main problem you need to have enough savings for a down payment, which is 20% of the property.

Moreover, in addition to the purchase price, buyers have to pay taxes and fees, which make up around 14% of the purchasing costs. These numbers are higher than in many other countries.

According to a recent study, 90% of German residents who rent instead of owning have less than 50,000 EUR in assets.

Hence, if you don’t have a very high income or parents who can help to finance, it’s challenging to buy a property in Germany.

Furthermore, rents aren’t rising that rapidly as house prices. And you have higher flexibility by being a tenant. It’s a significant factor for Germans under 40.

One-third of people don’t want to give up their lifestyle in order to pay monthly margate payments and take responsibility for the property.

In Germany, it’s a hard job to be a landlord. The laws are always on the tenant’s side. Even if they don’t pay the rent, it’s almost impossible to extract them.

Berlin has the lowest rate: only 14,2% of residents own a home there. In Saarland, on the other hand, the homeownership rate is 62,6% – the highest in Germany.

Generally, people in large German cities don’t own property; almost everyone rents a place to live.

Recommended products and services in Germany:

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