Real Estate acquisition: politics for the old

The SPD's intention to exempt house buyers from brokerage fees is overdue. The union wants to prevent this – with arguments that have been pushed forward.

Real Estate acquisition: politics for the old

Young people and families find it increasingly difficult to buy a house or an apartment in Germany. Even in rural areas, real estate prices are rising rapidly – almost all parties have now recognised this as a problem.

That is why it is right that black-red coalition has identified tense housing market as a top issue. The latest initiative is by SPD federal minister Katarina Barley, who wants to lower incidental costs of a real estate acquisition in particular. So far, peculiar practice is that seller commissions a broker to find a buyer for his house – but he does not have to pay for this service himself. Instead, House buyer or buyer must absurdly pay for it.

Barley now wants to reverse principle, as it has already been done in rental shop a few years ago: Whoever orders broker must pay broker.

It is a long overdue reform that informs Barley, after all, incidental costs make a considerable part of purchase of building. The real estate agent brokerage can make up to 7.14 percent of purchase price depending on federal state, in addition basic purchase tax with up to six percent and furr costs for notary and land register entry. In case of a property for 400,000 euros, purchasers often pay more than 50,000 euros in costs – and more than half of m pay to broker.

Sellers are already demanding maximum

The problem especially for young families is that y cannot finance se costs through a loan. Banks usually require that incidental costs be disputed from equity. That, however, is missing for actual financing of house. So you have already saved or inherited a lot of money to be able to finance your own house or apartment. Wher SPD, Greens, left, even FDP: y all want to minimize incidental costs of buying a home.

Strangely enough, CDU and CSU have been vehemently opposed to introducing Bestellerprinzip. The CDU argues that it must be prevented "that sellers n simply turn Commission on purchase price." But that is hardly to be expected. Given huge price increases, especially in large cities, it can be assumed that sellers are already demanding maximum.

It is possible that many sellers, after reform, tend to dispense with a broker. The search for buyers is much easier today through online portals than before, you can also save brokerage costs quite by giving up an advertisement. In addition, it is expected that brokerage commissions will decline, after all, sellers would appear with a completely different negotiating position towards brokers: y have a choice between different providers.

So why is union resisting reform in such a way that at beginning of year it even prevented it from being enjoined in Coalition Treaty? A look at structure of electorate of CDU and CSU can help. More than two-thirds of union supporters are older than 50 years, and y also have a higher income than electorate of all or parties. Figures from Federal Statistical Office also show that most real estate owners in Germany are 50 years and older. On or hand, ownership rate has been steadily declining for several years in 30-to 40-year age group.

Apparently, union does not want to impose on its majority wealthy and older voters that y pay costs for broker when se people sell ir homes. And that is what y are increasingly doing in this age group. Especially in old age ownership rate decreases. Older people sell ir homes because y cannot or do not want to entertain m anymore. Or because y finance something else from proceeds, a smaller apartment. The Union makes a mistake if it only looks at interests of old and wealthy. That is not what future-oriented policies look like.

Date Of Update: 16 August 2018, 12:00

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