Living in their own four walls and still enjoying the big city flair – that is the dream of many building owners in Berlin. Unfortunately, finding suitable building land in the capital is not that easy. Those who still want to take on this challenge will find all the important information, price examples and tips here. So building in Berlin may yet be possible.
It is no secret that housing in Berlin is becoming increasingly expensive. In addition to increased rents, the cost of owning a home is also rising. At the same time, a house on the outskirts is usually less expensive than a condominium in the inner city. However, since building land is also becoming increasingly scarce on the edges, there has also been a sharp rise in prices here in recent years.
Builders have to dig deepest into their pockets for a plot in Steglitz-Zehlendorf and Charlottenburg. One square meter here costs an average of €1,000 to €2,000. Throughout Berlin, the average price for a square meter of building land is around €400.
Nevertheless, there are still significant price differences within the city. At Kleiner Müggelsee in Treptow-Köpenick, plots are available for €170 per square meter. In the most expensive area of Berlin, on Pariser Platz right by the Brandenburg Gate, a square meter of building land costs €60,000. In districts such as Dahlem, for example, where land has long been unaffordable for normal earners, an end to the price rise is now in sight. Here, a square meter of building land already costs €2,100. And regions in which it was previously possible to buy a property relatively cheaply are following suit in terms of price. Building in eastern Berlin is thus becoming increasingly expensive.
Pure construction costs increased by 5.5% last year
In addition to rising land prices, construction itself is also becoming increasingly cost-intensive due to high demand. The Berlin-Brandenburg Statistics Office announced that pure construction costs in Berlin rose by an average of 5.5 percent from February 2017 to February 2018. The last time construction costs rose this much was 10 years ago. The reason for the price increase, however, was not price gouging by the companies, the Berlin-Brandenburg Construction Industry Association rejected the often raised accusation. Rather, he said, the sharp rise in raw material prices for oil and steel and rising personnel costs due to the shortage of skilled workers were responsible for the high construction costs. Criticism is also levelled at local authorities, which would hamper construction with bureaucratic and time-consuming tendering and award procedures.
Building in Berlin as a desire of many builders
Nevertheless, living and building in Berlin, including in their own home, is still a great desire for many people. The city’s transport links are excellent, cultural offerings lurk around every corner, and if you’ve lived in Berlin before, you’ll be reluctant to part with your circle of friends and acquaintances. For those who would find it all too difficult to move to the outskirts of Berlin, a house on the outskirts is probably the best alternative. Although prices continue to rise here as well, builders with limited budgets should look primarily to the east and southeast of Berlin.
Why it can pay off to build in Berlin
Despite a shortage of building land and rising prices, there is also good news for those looking to build in Berlin. Berlin will not lose its appeal as a capital city in the coming years, which is why owning a home here is a great financial investment, even in the longer term. In addition, building in Berlin is currently particularly worthwhile due to the low interest rates. Building your own home is therefore often cheaper over a longer period of time than living permanently in rented accommodation. And house prices in Berlin are still relatively moderate compared with other major German cities such as Hamburg or Munich. In addition, outstanding architects and construction companies are bustling about Berlin, competing for the favor of those interested in building.
Choosing the right construction company
To ensure that building owners, even outside Berlin, are not surprised by a cost explosion, the choice of the right construction company is essential. In the worst case, the developer could file for insolvency during the construction phase. Dubious companies also try to keep the construction and service descriptions in the construction contract as vague as possible. The building owners then have to pay for the subsequent improvement work due to inferior products.
Important indicators by which prospective builders can recognize a reputable construction company are many years of experience and positive references. In addition, builders should make sure that the company specializes in the construction of single-family homes. Some builders also prefer the company to be local.
In Berlin, in addition to the large and well-known construction companies, there are also numerous smaller ones with which cooperation can be worthwhile – for example, if the building owners have particularly individual wishes for their new home.
Of course, it is important to have confidence in the construction company. It can help to reach out to former customers and ask them about their experience.
In addition, future builders should in any case have the construction contract reviewed by an expert, such as a lawyer.
For more information on this topic, see our construction company checklist.
The service of Almondia
Owner consulting means that we are there to help you with any questions you may have. We can advise you at every stage and on every aspect of building a home – including all the necessary documentation at the planning stage. In particular, we can help you with the calculation of construction costs. Because this is where most gross planning errors occur, causing high additional costs.