Well that seems to be the question for us. Is 2011 the year we venture into international property ownership?
As a closet addict of Rightmove.co.uk, I'm no stranger to 'internet house-shopping' - indeed I'm a dab hand at widening search criteria to get just the right thing..... so anyway, scroll forward 3 years from our last property search (for the rented house we're in) and 5 1/2 years from our last purchase - and we're thinking about taking the plunge again.
Househunting in Germany is a little different than in the UK - for starters just setting your criteria is very odd - no 'preferred' number of bedrooms etc, but instead you're searching x-quadratmeter or the total number of rooms - but this in itself is not straightforward. Your room count does not include kitchens, bathrooms, cellars etc - not are you limited to round numbers....in the world of German bureaucracy, for a room to be a room it must be bigger than a certain square meterage otherwise it only counts as a half-room!
Then, there's plot size and 'stadt'-regulated prices per sqm. It's a minefield for the unsuspecting (foreign) buyer to negotiate.....still will be having plenty of fun dreaming about what my Euro could get me if I could just tweak those specs a little more!
For the time being though - I'll just have to be content with lurking on immoscout and immonet in the hope that my dream house pops up (within my search criteria of course!)
Watch this space for further posts about German Makler (estate agents to you and me - and as a buyer I need to pay them too......), Still it can't get any more embarrassing than George telling today's agent that the house was no good because the swimming pool was too small!