SIGNING THE CONTRACT
Make sure, that the notary public (Notar) is chosen by you and not by the estate agent and not by the seller of the property.
Although the notary public is asked to give neutral advice, if any parts of the contract might be harmful for one or the other side, this might not happen carefully enough, if the seller has chosen the notary public, with whom he is cooperating so often.
The date for signing the deed has to be agreed upon by both sides.
The notary public will read the deed aloud for both parties. He might ask, if a translator is needed.
He will read all the text - word by word - and he might do so very fast, so that you would need a translator or a well German speaking help.
Generally all persons involved have to be present. Under certain circumstances they can send an assignee. The involved persons show their legal papers (foreigners: valid passports!).
If a company is buying, the persons, which sign the contract, need to bring their legalization papers (authorization and an excerpt from the Chamber of Commerce, declaring the legal status within the company).
The notary public reads the buying contract out loud. If the buyer does not understand German, it will then be read in English by a qualified translator.
It is the task of the notary public to ensure that all parties understand what they sign. Any questions that come up need to be answered.
Very often the parties agree, that a translator is not needed, although the niceties are not understood. I recommend strongly to have a good translator with you.
The terms of the contract can be very variable.
Besides legal obligations there also legal finesses and subtleties which can be harmful to the buying party. Therefore a contract needs to be checked before by a lawyer experienced in sales of Real Estate in Germany.
If within the negotiations at the notary public suddenly mayor changes are asked for, don't hesitate to ask for time for consideration or another date.
After making any changes or additions the deed is signed by both parties and the notary public. This contract is now irrevocable. What is written here is the agreed. Only in case of fraudulent misrepresentation this contract might be cancelled afterwards.
The notary public who will execute the next actions needed. He will initiate f.e. the applications in the land title register (Grundbuch).
This registration might take some weeks. With signing the deed, you became the owner, but for to prove your rights (with respect to third parties) you need this inscription into the Grundbuch.
The fees for the notary public follow a legal scale of fees.
They might differ nevertheless, related to some specifications you might have chosen for the contract.
The average fee will be about 1% of the buying price.