New regulation of the broker’s commission: criticism and approval

New regulation of the broker's commission: criticism and approval

Several federal states want to support hamburg in its attempt to relieve tenants of brokerage costs. Jerks came from berlin and north rhine-westphalia. "At first glance, this is an interesting proposal," said daniela augenstein, spokeswoman for the berlin senate’s urban development department. "If this is the way to lower the cost of housing, then berlin will support such a measure."Critical voices came from bavaria and saxony, among others.

The exact content of the hamburg proposal is not yet known, it is currently being worked out in the department of urban development and environment. Talks have been held with housing industry associations about this, which are still ongoing, a spokesman said. The aim is probably that in the future, according to the orderer principle, the landlord pays the commission for the estate agent in the amount of a maximum of two net rents plus value added tax. Whether this should also apply to real estate purchases is still open, as is the question of whether tenants and landlords can share the brokerage costs.

The "bild" newspaper had reported on wednesday about a broad support of the hamburger plan. Many bundeslander have to the planned hamburger vorstob however still no fixed position, since still no request to the bundesrat is present. This is the case, for example, in lower saxony, saxony-anhalt and baden-wurttemberg.

However, there are also critical voices. The saxon ministry of justice, for example, declared that such a new regulation would mean an encroachment on freedom of contract. In addition, it is doubtful whether the planned regulations could have led to the intended success at all. "It is to be expected that the brokerage costs will then ultimately be included in the basic rent," said a spokeswoman. Bavarian justice minister beate merk (CSU) is also skeptical of the hamburger advance. "Such a regulation is well-intentioned, but it can easily be circumvented," she said in munich.

In fact, tenant associations in conurbations with a shortage of housing are already criticizing increasing violations of the law, such as excessive brokerage commissions paid under the table. The tighter the housing market, the more serious the outgrowths are. In shrinking cities or regions with a wide range of housing, on the other hand, tenants are often not burdened with real estate agent costs. The same applies to very expensive apartments in large cities.

SPD and grune had already tried in the bundestag to enforce the orderer principle for real estate agents, according to which the person who orders a service pays for it. However, the applications failed in the committees last year. CDU/CSU and FDP rejected statutory regulation. It represents an unjustified encroachment on freedom of contract and is misguided from a regulatory perspective. Who pays what part of the brokerage fee varies greatly depending on the region and market segment, especially in the case of properties for sale. The CDU/CSU argued in the legal affairs committee that these peculiarities, which are subject to change, should not be eliminated by a rigid uniform regulation. The FDP made a similar statement.

In other european countries, hiring a real estate agent is not as common as in germany. In great britain, the netherlands and belgium, tenants do not pay any commission, according to a survey by the austrian chamber of labor – the statutory employee representative body. For the buyer of a dwelling in these countries furthermore only courtage results, if he assigned the broker also. Ubliche are payments of a commission by tenants still in austria, finland, france and italy.

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