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For me, an apartment, bitte
LIVING. We also now have a German brick in the stomach: since January 2017 bought Flemish for ten million apartments in Germany. They're not going to live on, but to collect only the high rent. “German ‘betongoud’ has a return of 5 %. That is more than a savings account.”

real Estate abroad has always been popular with the Flemish. We buy a holiday home in France or a villa on the Spanish costa to in the first instance itself the holidays and possibly later on go to move. But the buyers of German apartments are absolutely not planning to go and live there - some go up to one times look. It comes to them, only to rent. According to the specialized real estate company Rendimmo bought Flemings in the past two years for 10 million euros in real estate in the border regions of North rhine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate and going to that amount this year even double. The company expects this year a hundred apartments at Flemings to sell.

The real estate in our eastern neighbors is seen as a good cost-effective and safe alternative to the savings account. Germany has a huge rental market - much bigger than the Belgian one. While in our country a quarter of the people are renting - and the rest is the owner, is that in Germany the half. And in the border regions is even 60 % the tenant. The demand is enormous and exceeds supply. Since 2011 rise in the rents by 4.5% per year. “As soon as there is a rental available on the market, there will be immediately 20 people. We now have a project with 27 buildings on the market. In one week's time we already have 110 prospective tenants reported,” says Luc Dewulf of Rendimmo.


German apartments are to Belgian standards small. “Because Germans now once small live four in an apartment of 50 m2 is quite normal. Our target group of tenants is also not the upper class. Germany has in recent years a large influx had new residents that also shelter in need”, says Dewulf.

A apartment of 53 m2, you have all for 67,000 euro, a slightly larger flat of 81 m2 cost 102.000 euro. The gross rental yield per year, 5,70 %, respectively 3.819 and 5.814 euros. But there is still something from. “The owner pays in Germany itself taxes. There is going to be 8 to 15 % of the gross amount. A yield of 5.5 % than 5 %. The tax is imposed in Belgium have to pay on that property, is negligible”, says Dewulf. The schrijfgeld - overdrachtskost, in Germany - amounts to 5% to 6.5%, depending on the region, and the notariskost of 2.5 %.

Not only the large demand for housing explains the success of Flemings. Landlords in Germany are also well protected against defaulters. As a tenant, the rent does not pay, comes to his name in a database. “He can have no property to rent. It is an extreme form of the well-known German ‘grundlichkeit, but you can still ask questions of whether this is socially responsible. It offers the investor, of course, a lot of security, because he will rarely, if ever, defaulters to get,” explains Dewulf.

Passive income

Three-quarters of the Flemish owners of German real estate are vijftigplussers who are looking for an alternative to a savings account, that still, on average, a 0.15 % gain. One of the first buyers of German real estate is Katrin Of the Water from Antwerp. She was two years ago for 80,000 euro to the owner of an apartment in North rhine-Westphalia. “I had already an apartment in Antwerp bought as an investment, but that was not a good decision. At first I had a tenant who did not pay and then has the apartment for nine months leeggestaan, making the return below zero.”

“All the disadvantages of the property in Antwerp, I have not in Germany: it is immediately rented, is never empty, and the efficiency is much higher, at five to six percent. So I get each month 450 euros on my bank account, a textbook example of “passive income”. I don't have to worry about that. Everything is done for me.”

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