The market for micro-apartments in Germany is booming mainly due to the country’s large student population, which makes up for the popularity of this particular property type. In 2016, the volume of student property transactions reached €750 million, almost five times higher than in 2015.
Typically, investors buy micro-apartments to lease them to students, business travellers, seasonal employees, young professionals or tourists. These tenants want private, comfortable and affordable accommodation. In other cases, buyers purchase such properties for their own use.
Micro-apartments are cheaper compared to other types of residential property due to their smaller size. In large German cities (Berlin, Munich and Nuremberg), fully finished and furnished micro-apartments cost between €120,000 and €300,000 and parking lots sell for €15,000 to €30,000.
Investors can buy micro-apartments using loans. Foreign nationals can take out up to 50% LTV loans at 2% per annum in Germany. The mortgage arrangement fee is about 1% of the loan amount.
Buyers should factor in transaction costs of 10–15% of the property value, which include a purchase tax (3.5–6.5%), notary fee (1–1.5%), real estate agent’s fee (3.6–7.1%) and property registration fee (0.8–1.2%).
Taking into account all the expenses and mortgage costs, the minimum amount an investor needs to buy an apartment is €70,000. If the buyer already has a bank account in Europe, he or she does not need to visit Germany to complete the purchase.
The buyer pays in instalments when purchasing an off-plan micro-apartment. If the payment is delayed, the developer has the right to terminate the purchase agreement.
The average yield rate for micro-apartments in Germany is 3.5–4.5% per annum. This is higher than the yield for conventional long-term rental flats (2–3% p.a.). The rent for a 20 m² micro-apartment reaches €500–600/month in Berlin and €750–900/month in Munich.
Sample payment schedule
|Share of total purchase price, %||Payment deadline|
|Foundation laying||30||December 2016|
|Substantial completion||28||May 2017|
|Roofing, drain-waste-vent and window installation||12.6||August 2017|
|Heating pipes, bathroom equipment and electrical installation, room plastering||10.5||November 2017|
|Floor screening, bathroom tiling||4.9||May 2018|
|The completion of facade finishing and the remaining works||10.5||July 2018|
|Final completion||3.5||November 2018|