Through its history, the German capital has experienced several cultural, economic and political influences that have shaped and influenced the urban landscape of the city.
Walking through the capital of Germany, one changes the era at the turn of each street and is seized by the contrast between the architectural styles and influences of each era in Europe.
Given the diversity of construction styles, the type of the property and building becomesa central criteria, on which depends the price, whether it's to rent or to buy a property in Berlin.
The period properties in Berlin
The period properties (“Altbau” in German) are buildings that were mostly built between the end of the 19th century and 1930. The Altbau homes were built in the Art Nouveau style (Jugendstil) with different levels of sophistication.
In addition to coloured glass windows of the period, the common areas of the Altbau buildings are distinguished by the presence of ornaments, decoration in stucco and ancient faience.
In some buildings, notably in the district of Charlottenburg, Kreuzberg and Prenzlauer Berg, there are prestigious Altbau buildings with marble entrances, period frescoes and sometimes charming period lifts with bench seats.
The interior of an Altbau property is distinguished by sub-ceiling heights up to 3,50m for the lowest floors (the height generally decreases with the upper floors) with interior stucco decoration. Some apartments are with a well-preserved period parquet floors (Dielen) made of solid pine boards up to 10m length each.
The plan of the apartments is characterized by the large size of the rooms often around 20m2.
In recent years, many of attics of Atlbau buildings have been converted into Penthouses (by removing parts of the roof and replacing it with a terrace) and have become very popular properties.
Berliners have developed an almost affective relationship with Altbau apartments which are the most sought-after properties, although most of them have no elevators.
An Altbau property for sale in a good location in Berlin would have a sale price of 4300 to 6000€/m2.
The new build apartments in Berlin
The new buildings in Berlin, called Neubau, are distinguished by their elegance and sobriety. As German urban planning regulations are particularly strict, they are often built at the same height as period buildings (5-6 floors maximum). The Neubau are also energy efficient (Standard Kf-70) and are equipped with modern lifts and parking spaces, which makes them appreciated by business and expatriate clientele. Usually th ground floor are commercial units or apartments with private gardens.
The no man’s Land around the Berlin Wall location (notably between the central station and Chausseestraße or south of Mitte towards Spittelmarkt), a time disgraced by the inhabitants of the city have now become a real growth driver the Berlin real estate market. New central neighbourhoods emerge from zero like the Mittenmang area.
The Neubau are particularly appreciated by international investors because they do not obey the rents. Seekers of high-end real estate could enjoy exceptional penthouses with oversized terraces, or even private gardens on the roofs. A new build apartment for sale in Berlin good locations would have a sale price of 5000 to 7000€/m2 depending on location, floor and number of bedrooms.
The industrial-style properties and lofts in Berlin
The lofts are probably the type of property currently the trendiest and sought after in Berlin. This is due to the rarity of the buildings and also to the charm of industrial design knowing that Berlin is a very dynamic city in the field of design and at the forefront of interior decoration trends.
The lofts in Berlin are housed in buildings often made of red brick, formerly used as artisanal factories, old administrations or hospitals of the early 20th century, such as the Joli cœur project in Berlin Charlottenburg or the Metropol Park project in Mitte.
The apartments are distinguished by ceiling heights of up to 8m allowing mezzanines to be built (Galerie Wohnung).
The lofts in Berlin have become the playground for interior designers and enthusiasts of retro design furnishings, which cover the city's countless flea markets in search of furniture and period fixtures.
The sixities’ properties in Berlin
The so called “Plattenbau” are buildings that were built in the 50s to 70s. Unlike other cities, they have the particularity of having been built in very central locations like Schöneberg after the destruction caused by the war.
These apartments have good quality services, particularly in terms of insulation and functionality and often benefit from large loggias, lifts and common areas serving gardens and shared parking which is an advantage as the parking space price in Berlin is currently trading between 20,000 and 60,000 euros.
The particularity of the stalinian properties in Berlin
Imperial Stalinist-style buildings can be found in a single area of Berlin, in Friedrichshain around the Karl-Marx Allee in which military parades were held during the DDR era.
These buildings, classified as historical monuments (Denkmalschutz), were built in the "classical socialist" style (Sozialistischer Klassizismus) for the nomenclature and the elite of the East German communist party.
These buildings are reputed to be very solid constructions and are distinguished by large entrances and common parts and ceiling heights of about 3m, well-preserved period parquet floors. They are actually authentic pieces of history and are recognizable by the bright earthenware faience that decorates their facades.
The properties types in Berlin are very diverse and depend on the area of search, so at the end, it's more on personal criteria, price and location ones that everyone could say what would be the best mix for his ideal berlin property!