Friday, 20 June 2008


I'm really excited! The Notar in Berlin has sent us a contract, and we've booked an appointment Thursday next week to sign it with the sellers!

In the meantime, we've enlisted someone to translate the contract for us from German into English. Apparently the meeting consists of the Notar reading the contract out (in German) and getting the assurance from both parties that they understand it before we sign. The Notar has told us to expect this to take between one and two hours! We could have given someone over there power of attorney to stand in for us, but as this is such a momentous occasion in our lives, we've decided to attend in person.

So, it's off to Berlin Wednesday, and if all goes well we will come back home Thursday night owning a property in Basdorf. Well, not actually legally owning it just yet; we become the legal owners when the Notar checks that there are no impediments to the transfer of land, then updates the local Grundbuch, which is like our Land Regsistry. This can take a few more weeks yet.

One thing I didn't realise, in Germany you are the outright owner of your piece of German soil. But in the UK the land always remains the property of the crown. That's why we talk about owning the freehold to land; really we are just lending it from the Queen. I wonder how they'll work it out if the UK ever gieves up the monarchy and becames a republic? The Queen might claim all her land back, evict everybody, and stick a big sign up at Calais saying "Keep of moi land!"

This morning we had a survey by a removal company of all our belongings we want to take to Germany. Now we've just got to figure out how to get the cats there!


  1. Hello and congrats!
    I have to admit, as a foreigner in the UK, I could never understand the concept of freehold and leasehold etc. I had never heard of it before I came here. By the way, I was reading some of your older posts and your German is really good! I hope I can improve mine soon.

    P.S. Did you see Rammstein when they came to Nottingham/Birmingham a couple of years ago? Are they EVER going to tour again?

  2. You're almost here!
    Pretty interesting about the Queen "lending" the people of the UK their land. Maybe she should pay the taxes on it too!

  3. @Maria
    YES we saw Rammstein at Nottingham.
    YES we saw them at Birmingham.
    We also saw them at the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre on that tour AND joy of joys at the Berlin Wühlheide where they premiered Benzin!
    They were supposedly going to bring out a new album and tour this summer, but seems like they are succumbing to the riches of a steady rock 'n' roll income and enjoying the fruits of their labour.
    Maybe next year, when Flake's vintage car-buying hobby starts biting the pocket, or Richard's Emigrate side-project goes belly-up?
    Whatever, it would be great to have the boys back giving such exhilarating shows.


I would be delighted if you wish to leave a comment!
Comments are moderated so there might be a delay before they appear on my blog.