Real estate

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Real property ( real property ; colloquially also real estate ) is the property of land , land rights and limited real rights .


As immovable property ( real estate ), real estate is part of total property . Depending on the use of the property, a distinction must be made between undeveloped properties (forest, arable land, bodies of water, fallow land), residential properties and commercial properties . Owner of various properties were therefore reality owner called.

All economic subjects ( private households , companies , the state with its subdivisions such as public administration , state-owned companies , municipal companies or the church ) can own land . Strictly speaking, landowners are only the users of property as tenants , tenants , usufructuary or lessees ; However, the term landed property is also used here synonymously for landed property.


As people settled down, the idea of ​​real estate that would change society gradually developed in early agricultural society. Carel van Schaik and Kai Michel write:

“Agriculture required that certain things no longer belong to everyone. How can you harvest something if everyone has something to eat beforehand? […] Establishing the new concept of property […] required an enormous intellectual effort to establish the idea that there should now be things that belonged to individuals in a community . [...] With settling down one of the fundamental laws of human coexistence was undermined, one that had been an everyday commandment for half an eternity: Food must be shared! The idea of property undermines primeval human solidarity. Suddenly a common good - nature's food supply - is monopolized. [...] Here an everyday, vital act - collecting fruit - is not only prohibited; it is criminalized. [...] The settling down set processes in motion that radically changed the nature of human society. Because it was not possible for the hunters and gatherers to stock up, they had to invest in social relationships so that they could survive emergency situations with the help of mutual support. Cooperation was everything, solidarity a life insurance. This has now been reversed: the privatization of resources made the farmers independent of their neighbors. [...] "

- Carel van Schaik and Kai Michel

The Teutons were allowed to take possession of abandoned land with the throw of the holy thunderbolt , reported Jacob Grimm . The blow of the hammer was important for the Germanic peoples in all important events, with hammer blows milestones were set or settlement and tribal boundaries were marked. As a result, they did not acquire the land for their families, but for larger communities such as the clan ("pagi", " Gau "). With the Teutons, the mutually recognized property was called “Laga” (marriage, law, later Latin lex or “real property ”; afterwards Old High German “laga”, “lying, lying”), the warrior's property was called “were”. This resulted Gewere as the right of the warrior on his property and the free availability of this. Germanic peoples ascribed their own legal personality to the soil , whereas Fahrnis saw them as an accessory to the property. Cattle breeding and hunting required more extensive land holdings than agriculture. If several Germanic clans lived side by side in a Gau, no member of one clan was allowed to disturb the laga of the other or dare to attack it in order to wrest their possessions. The area allocated to the Teutons after their conquest by the Romans was called sors or “lod” (“ land yield ”) in Latin , from which the allodium later developed.

In the Roman Republic a distinction was made between state land ( Latin ager publicus ) and private ownership of land ( Latin ager privatus ). Gaius Licinius Stolo issued an agricultural law in 367 BC, which limited land ownership to 500 yokes ( Latin jugera ). This enabled the aediles to sue many landowners because they had more land than they were legally entitled to. These agricultural laws, named after Stolo ( Latin lex licinia agraria ), were intended to guarantee the Italian farmers rights and land on the latifundia . The Roman law knew immovable property ( Latin res immobile ), and with goods ( Latin res mobile ) and treated both as evenly as possible. Land ( Latin praedium ) and country estates ( Latin fundus ) with or without a manor ( Latin villa ) were considered real estate . Depending on the use, a distinction was made between bourgeois apartments and shops ( Latin praedia urbana ) and agricultural land ( Latin praedia rustica ). Land was considered state domains, private landowners only had a right of use .

In the Middle Ages landed property as part Staatsdomäne the State or as Kammergut emperors, kings, nobility or church ( church property ) that their often extensive real estate as part of the manorial leaving dependent farmers to use and purpose of the peasants levies and compulsory labor demanded. Farmers had to harvest so much that they could not only generate enough food for themselves, but also deliver agricultural products (taxes) to their lords . In many countries, the measure of wealth in the estates society was not only the size of the landed property, but also the number of serfs . The property of all free people was called allod , it was hereditary and belonged to the eldest son ( primogeniture ), who had to feed the other family members from the yield. This feudalization of medieval life, which began with landed property , also led to the rise of some merchant citizens to the landed gentry , because they were able to invest their wealth acquired through business and trade in landed property. Starting in January 1086, the Domesday Book was created in England as a register of real estate, but it remained unfinished.

In the early days of the German Empire , wealth was rare; all wealth consisted of lands . Soon, therefore, the real estate made up the largest part of the property, so that the administrations decided to enter it in a specially created public register. This first happened regionally in Cologne from 1130 with the shrine books , from December 1783 there were supraregional mortgage books , and since January 1868 land registers . With the introduction of a mortgage book, the Prussian mortgage order of December 1783 standardized the previously different regional forms. The General Prussian Land Law (APL) of June 1794 ensured that property was entered in the mortgage book (I 10, § 6 APL). The restrictions on the disposal of real estate in feudal law were only removed in liberalism through the liberation of the land . In Prussia, the legal basis for this was the edict of October 9, 1807 (on the free use of property as well as the personal circumstances of the rural residents), which brought with it an unhindered right to dispose of the property.

In 1867, Karl Marx propagated the change in social conditions by expropriating the means of production . On the way of the expropriation of the expropriators , the private ownership of the means of production should be converted more or less violently into social property in the interest of the working people with economic and political power. In Marxist economic theory , the means of production consisted, among other things, of the objects of work found directly in nature (for example the soil, fish) or the raw materials released from nature through work such as the mined ore or already processed intermediate products (such as wooden boards, Textiles); they are further processed and processed in the production process . For Marx, the abolition of private land ownership was the first step on the path to the complete expropriation of all property that yields rent , interest or profit . He saw real estate as a particularly blatant case of inequality . Marx called on to in the form of state property to private land ownership public ownership ( English common property ) of the bourgeoisie convert.

Which came in January 1900 in force BGB there was a systematic presentation of the substantive land register law , while at the same time released to Grundbuchordnung complementary to the formal legal dealt. For the first time, the legislature comprehensively regulated legally complex property. The Austrian General Civil Code , which came into force in June 1811, required the entry of a property acquisition "in the public books intended for this purpose" (Section 431 General Civil Code). The Swiss Civil Code came into force in January 1912 and deals with the formal land register law (Art. 942–957 ZGB) and the substantive land register law (Art. 958–977 ZGB) in one law.

economic aspects

Real estate belongs in the economics of production factor floor . He receives the rent in the form of rent , rent , usufruct , long lease , annuity or leasing fees . Freehold is now either state assets to the state, as the patrimony of the Church or as private property non-governmental and non-religious economic agents. In the context of common use, the state makes parts of its real estate available to the public in the form of streets, paths, rivers, canals, parks or public buildings . Only the general real estate is excluded from public use. Parts of the church property ( churches ) are also open to the public.

Business entities subject to accounting capitalize their entire property as property, plant and equipment ("land, land rights and buildings including buildings on third-party land"; Section 266 (2) lit. II 1 HGB ). In addition to the state, large landowners today also include large companies and private households who - often through land grabbing or inheritance - have large areas of more than 100 hectares. Real property subject in many states a substance control , in Germany real estate tax is named as the municipal tax levied. The acquisition of real estate is subject to real estate transfer tax , a transfer tax and countries control .

Real estate requires administration, which is ensured through real estate management or facility management . The land purchase , by self-financing and / or real estate financing ( mortgages ) financed are. As collateral available to the lenders (usually banks) the mortgages ( land charge , mortgage , mortgage ) on the loan collateral available. The market value of the property determines the lending value and lending limit and thus the loan amount .

Part of the state property is inalienable real estate ( Latin res extra commercium ) and consists of the facilities that directly serve the fulfillment of public tasks and public purposes, such as roads, parks, rivers, canals, parts of the sea, islands, administrative buildings, schools or hospitals.

Legal issues

The real property as has legal concept a legal definition of § 68 BewG , including land , the building , the other components and accessories , the ground lease , the apartment ownership , fractional ownership , apartment leasehold and part leasehold after the Condominium Act belong. Mineral resources as well as the machines and other devices of all kinds that belong to an operating system (operating devices ), even if they are essential components , are not included in real estate according to this provision for taxation purposes.


A distinction must be made between the infrastructure as a means of access to the property and the property of the property to serve as infrastructure. The transport connection of the property is already guaranteed through rights of way or can be established through development . These traffic routes are usually made available by the state through public traffic routes. As a public transport route , the roads, squares and bridges that are carried dedication are intended for use by everyone ( § 68 para. 1 sentence 2 TKG ). The use of private real estate as an infrastructure, on the other hand, occurs less frequently (e.g. private parking lots or multi-storey car parks), while the state mainly makes its real estate available as an infrastructure for the functioning of society and the economy as part of the common use .

Real estate abroad

Some states restrict the acquisition of real estate by foreigners. In Austria, for example, the foreigner land acquisition law of the individual federal states regulates the acquisition of real estate by foreigners. In Switzerland, the acquisition of real estate by people abroad is restricted and may require a permit, regardless of whether the real estate is already in foreign hands and for what legal reason the real estate is acquired - e.g. through purchase, exchange, gift, inheritance or the like. EU / EFTA citizens who have their place of residence in Switzerland are treated the same as Swiss people when purchasing real estate there.

In some countries, such as Turkey, foreigners cannot acquire land (in Turkey, however, there is an exception in the form of the “blue card” ).

Within the EU, a principle of non-discrimination and the fundamental freedom of the free movement of capital apply . However, upon accession, new member states are granted transition periods that allow them for a certain period of time to maintain or create new restrictions on the acquisition of real estate and agricultural land by EU foreigners. In addition, there may be employment restrictions that formally restrict both residents and foreigners to the same extent, but in fact primarily affect EU foreigners.

It should be noted that the acquisition of real estate and property does not normally result in a right of residence. Conversely, even a right of permanent residence does not mean a right to purchase land or real estate. In some countries, however, it is possible for foreigners to acquire a visa or even citizenship on the basis of a high financial investment , and this investment can in part also be a purchase of real estate or real estate.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Carel van Schaik, Kai Michel: The diary of humanity. What the Bible says about our evolution. Rowohlt Verlag, Reinbek bei Hamburg 2016, pp. 64 ff, ISBN 978-3-498-06216-3 .
  2. Jacob Grimm, German border antiquities in. Smaller fonts Vol II, 1843, p 121
  3. Hildegard Elsner / Hans Reichardt, Die Germanen , 2008, p. 27
  4. ^ Gaius Julius Caesar , De bello Gallico , Fourth Book, 55 BC, IV 1
  5. ^ Academie Impériale des Sciences, Bulletin de la Classe Historico-Philologique , Volume 10, 1835, p. 369
  6. ^ Arnold Wagemann, Unser Bodenrecht , 1912, p. 19
  7. George Phillips, German History: Volume I, History of the Teutons up to the founding of their kingdoms , 1832, p. 147
  8. Heinrich Honsell, Römisches Recht , 2015, p. 12
  9. Conrad Bursian, Annual Report on the Progress of Classical Classical Studies , Volumes 166–169, 1914, p. 218
  10. ^ Paul Jörs / Wolfgang Kunkel / Leopold Wenger, Römisches Privatrecht , 1935, p. 78 f.
  11. ^ Theodor Mommsen, Römisches Staatsrecht , Volume III, 1888, pp. 731 ff.
  12. Gaius 2, 7, and 21
  13. Hans-Werner Goetz, Life in the Middle Ages: From the 7th to the 13th Century , 1986, p. 117 f.
  14. ^ Johann Friedrich Hartknoch, Illustrated World History, The Middle Ages , Volume 2, 1846, p. 91
  15. ^ Alfred von Martin, Sociology of the Renaissance and other writings , 2016, p. 18
  16. Ludwig von Rönne, The Constitution and Administration of the Prussian State , Volume 9, Edition 1, 1854, p. 5
  17. Ulrike Köbler, Werden, Wandel und Wesen des German private law vocabulary , 2010, p. 205
  18. ^ Karl Marx, Das Kapital , 1867, p. 790 f.
  19. ^ Karl Marx, MEW Volume 23, p. 193 (Chapter Volume I)
  20. ^ Karl Diehl, On Socialism, Communism and Anarchism , 1920, p. 68
  21. ↑ Land acquisition. Federal Ministry of Europe, Integration and Foreign Affairs, accessed on May 26, 2018 .
  22. ↑ Acquisition of land by people abroad. Federal Office of Justice, July 22, 2010, accessed on May 26, 2018 .
  23. Acquisition of real estate by people abroad. In: Leaflet. Federal Office of Justice, March 28, 2017, accessed on May 26, 2018 . Section 3 “Purpose of the Federal Law and Fundamentals”.
  24. a b restrictions on acquisition. In: Deutsche Schutzvereinigung Auslandsimmobilien eV, July 2, 2009, accessed on July 28, 2018 .
  25. ^ Alison Millington: 17 countries where money can buy you a second passport or 'elite residency'. In: July 3, 2017, accessed July 28, 2018 .