The brokerage commission pays from now on the client

The brokerage commission pays from now on the client

There is good news for all tenants: Since June 1, 2015 applies in Germany a new brokerage brokerage law, because the so-called ordering principle has come into force. This means that always the party pays the costs for the broker who actually commissioned him. This results in many advantages for tenants, but also risks.

A real estate agent usually facilitates only the landlord's work

When real estate is to be sold or rented, the owner usually turns on a broker. He takes care of everything related to the sale or rental of the property. Thus, he acts as an intermediary between the tenant and the landlord in houses, apartments or land in both the private and commercial.

He inspects the real estate and describes the apartments in a synopsis. Advertising on the internet or posting advertisements in newspapers is also part of his job. In addition, he must advise interested parties and perform the inspection of objects. Thus, it makes it much easier for owners and landlords, in particular, to work if they want to sell a property or rent an apartment.

Of course, no broker would like to forego the payment for this service. The amount of his brokerage usually amounts to between three and six percent of the purchase price. For rentals, up to two net cold rent plus sales tax are payable to the broker. The commission is due as soon as the contract has been successfully completed. Previously, the landlords usually put the costs largely on the tenant. However, thanks to the new ordering principle, this is over, because now it is up to who has placed the order.

The regulation only comes into force for arranging rental contracts. It does not apply to buyers of condominiums, single-family homes or land.

This means that in the future the buyer will in most cases have to pay brokerage commissions when signing a purchase contract.

Tenants pay only if you order the broker yourself

The orderer principle is to prevent tenants from having to bear the costs of a service from which they hardly benefit. For apartment seekers, it makes little difference whether the rental is carried out by trained brokers or by the owner himself. Only the landlords have the advantage that a large amount of work is eliminated. Therefore, it is only fair that the following rule of thumb applies from June:

Who orders, who pays.

The tenant only has to pay the broker's commissions in future if he has written to him in search of a suitable apartment and he / she decides to rent this property later.

Tenants have the option to deduct the brokerage fees from the tax if the move is necessary for professional reasons.

It is also worthwhile for some tenants in the future, to hire a private broker privately. This is especially true in the following cases:

  • Moving over a large distance
  • Concrete ideas for the new apartment
  • Time pressure
  • Moving to cities with a tense housing market

Real estate agents are professionals for the respective market. They help with housing inspections, point out possible defects in the object and ensure that fair leases are negotiated. In addition, communication with the owner is usually faster and more professional. Even those who want to buy a property, is well advised with a broker.

Most of the brokerage fee will be paid in the future by the landlord

Who in the future, however, concludes a lease for an apartment, the mediation was at the request of the landlord by a broker, does not pay the commission anymore. For a long time it was customary that the costs were completely transferred to the tenant or that landlords and tenants raised the money together. From 1 June, the brokerage fee in this case must be fully borne by the landlord.

The law does not apply to leases, but only to brokerage contracts. If you have signed a contract with a broker before June 1, 2015, you must pay the commission, even if you sign the lease after the deadline.

In this case, tenants unfortunately do not get around the brokerage fee due.

Brokers wanted to overturn the law

Two real estate agents had made an urgent application in Karlsruhe shortly before the entry into force of the new tenancy law in order to overturn the law. They failed, however, about which the German Tenants' Association was very relieved. The Federal Constitutional Court was of the opinion that the brokers did not sufficiently prove why the law poses an economic threat to them and to the entire profession.

According to calculations, housing brokers are expected to lose about 310 million euros. Converted to the approximately 37,900 professional real estate agents in Germany, this results in an annual loss of about 8,200 euros. The judges ruled that, with an average annual turnover of € 451,000 per business, there would be no threat to the profession due to this small loss.

Buyer Principle Risks

Many critics of the new ruling fear that tenants will not really get paid by the new law can save. Finally, to pass the costs on to the tenant, the purchase and rental prices could eventually be increased. In fact, landlords will not be able to settle the costs completely on the rent, because a too high premium is prevented for example by the rent brake. The rent for new lettings may therefore only be set up to ten percent above the local comparative rent. However, this law only applies to areas where there is a tense real estate market.

Alternatively, landlords have the option of recovering brokerage fees from the tenants through excessive transfer payments. For example, they can calculate any costs for a fitted kitchen. But here, too, the law limits, because the Housing Act explains compensation agreements as ineffective, if the "disproportionate to the value of the institution & ldquo; is too big. Such a mismatch is when the transfer fee is over 50 percent higher than the actual value of the piece of furniture. Uncertain tenants should therefore inform themselves about the value of the furniture and, if necessary, contact the German Tenants' Association to have the situation checked.


Previously, it was a common practice for landlords to hire a broker and to pay the due Brokerage fees paid by the tenant. Thanks to the new ordering principle, this procedure no longer works. Now pay who has appointed the broker, which usually applies to the landlord. Critics fear that the owners will find another way to redirect the brokerage fee to the tenant. However, such attempts and other breaches of the ordering principle are punishable by large fines.

Answers to the most common questions

What is the ordering principle?

While the brokerage commission used to have to be borne mostly by the tenant, although the broker from the landlord In the future, the one who commissioned the broker will always pay with the new ordering principle. This applies in most cases to the landlord or owner.

Who is affected by the ordering principle?

In a negative sense, owners and landlords are the most affected. If you were able to let the brokerage fees paid by the tenant after a successful mediation, you have to pay for the costs yourself. However, the law only applies if leases for apartments are brokered. When brokering buyers for land or condominiums, the brokerage fees are usually borne by the buyer in the future.

Who benefits from the ordering principle?

Above all, the tenants benefit from the orderer principle. Brokers may charge up to two net cold rent plus VAT. This amount can be saved by the tenants in the future. However, it remains to be seen whether the apartment seeker will really benefit from the new rules, because experts are critical that the landlords redirect the costs to the tenants in a different way.

When does the ordering principle come into force?

The new ordering principle will come into effect on 1 June 2015 and is therefore already valid. There is no transitional period.

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