Grants and subsidies to help you buy your own home
Government backed grants for home ownership
Buying your own property takes a considerable amount of money. However, support is available to aid in the construction and purchasing of one’s own home. Real estate grants or subsidies offer a chance for a portion of the cost to be covered through government or other incentive programs, to receive special loans, or to benefit from tax breaks. We present the best-known grant and subsidy options here, since who is eligible for various real estate grants depends on various factors.
Grant programs by type
Grants for home ownership are awarded by various institutions and agencies. Depending on who oversees the grant program, you can receive a grant for the purchase of real estate from the state, political, church or regional authorities.
The most important government real estate incentives are granted to purchase a house, build a house, build and renovate in an energy-efficient manner, as well as for age-appropriate remodelling and burglary protection. The best-known offers are the KfW real estate subsidy, the social housing subsidy and the "Wohn-Riester" housing subsidy, which can be used for building a house or as state aid for buying a house. Grants for the renovation of old houses are also offered by the federal government.
In addition to state subsidies for buying a house, there are also offers at the municipal and state level that enable the construction or purchase of real estate with the help of grants and loans. The conditions vary, but it is worthwhile to inquire with your local authority. Similar to KfW funding for home purchases, there are often development banks at the regional level that have their own programs.
Environmentally and climate-friendly construction and real estate projects are strongly promoted by the federal government. There are also offers in the form of KfW funding or the Federal Office of Economics and Export Control (BAFA), which support energy-efficient and climate-friendly real estate construction or the corresponding renovation.
Many people are often unaware that there are offers of support for families when buying a house and financing construction from the Protestant and Catholic churches. This is mainly done by granting a plot of land with hereditary building rights. In this way, a family can build on the land without having to buy it, and thus reduces the cost of acquisition. Thanks to this real estate promotion for families, more equity remains that can be invested in the construction of the house.
Real estate incentives per life situation
The form of support always depends on the individual life situation of the applicant and the individual plans to purchase real estate. Subsidy programs support the purchase, construction as well as the renovation and modification of real estate.
Buying real estate
For the purchase or construction of real estate, there are subsidies from the KfW or the possibility to obtain “Wohn-Riester” subsidy. The purchase price itself, the ancillary purchase costs and the expenses for the land transfer tax are eligible for subsidies. In the case of purchase and construction, the requirement must be met that the property is to be used by the owner.
Selling real estate
If a property was financed with a housing subsidy, for example, it is still possible to sell it. In principle, the subsidy entitlement expires, but there are exceptions. For example, the KfW loan can be transferred to the new apartment or house. It is also possible to transfer the loan to the buyer. The “Wohn-Riester” subsidy can also be transferred to the new property or to the buyer's own account “Reister-account” when the property is sold.
Renovating for energy efficiency
The purchase of a property is often associated with the obligation to renovate it in terms of energy efficiency, for example if the roof or the pipes are in need of renovation, or an old heating boiler needs to be replaced. KfW also offers various subsidy programs for measures to achieve results that exceed the requirements of the Building Energy Act (Gebäudeenergiegesetz, GEG). The switch to renewable energies such as photovoltaics, biomass systems or heat pumps is also subsidized by the state. This KfW funding is available for capital investors and owner-occupiers.
As people get older, the demands made of their own homes often change, making remodeling measures necessary. Modifications to one's own property that serve age-appropriate living and also burglary protection are subsidized by low-interest loans or investment grants.
KfW grant for energy consulting in new construction
In addition to subsidies for the purchase of apartments or the construction of houses, KfW support with regard to the energy-efficient design of real estate is one of the most frequently used government subsidy offers. Anyone who wants their own home to be highly energy efficient needs expert support. Energy consultants show exactly which measures are necessary to receive certain KfW subsidies. In these cases, KfW will cover up to 50 percent of the costs incurred for energy consulting, with a maximum subsidy of up to 4,000 euros.
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