REALWorld Law

Sale and purchase

Registration of title

Is real estate registered/does a reliable register of land ownership exist? Are transfers of title recorded? Is title insurance common?



Real estate is registered in the land register which is kept by the local courts. Information is not publicly available and is only accessible to those who can demonstrate a legitimate interest. Also, access to the registers can be gained by a notary, who is always deemed to have a legitimate interest, if instructed to carry out notarial work regarding the property.

Are transfers of title recorded in this country?

Every transfer of title must be registered in the land register and title only passes to the buyer once registration is complete. The information registered relates to the premises, the owner, easements and similar encumbrances, land charges and mortgages.

Does title insurance exist in this country?

Title insurance is neither common nor necessary in Germany since buyers can rely on the accuracy of the land register. Title to property can only be acquired via registration in the land register, actual possession of the land is not sufficient. As long as a buyer does not know about a specific inaccuracy in the contents of the land register, ownership is acquired in good faith (bona fide).