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Law & Finance: The Tips in May
Law & Finance: The Tips in May
Video: Law & Finance: The Tips in May
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Our tips for the month of April 2018: Learn the latest about the correct measurement of the apartment, household-related services, costs for unauthorized tree felling and why children should get extra money for shopping.

Commute without frustration

30 kilometers to work every morning and the same way back in the evening? No problem, say 62 percent of citizens in North Rhine-Westphalia who were interviewed on behalf of the LBS. Commuting becomes the norm - everywhere in the Federal Republic. An hour's drive is not uncommon: According to surveys by the Federal Institute for Building, Urban and Spatial Research, over 60 percent of all employees now live in a different municipality than they work. The 18.4 million commuters in Germany have an average commuting time of 69 minutes. There are good reasons for the long journey: Not only are many families moving to the countryside, couples and singles also prefer increasingly rural regions. The advantages are clear: home ownership is easier to realize there and rental prices outside of the city are also cheaper. The researchers found that anyone who freely chooses to commute and is only on the road for about an hour does not perceive the longer journey as a burden.

Feast instead of shopping

Genuss mit Stäbchen
Genuss mit Stäbchen

More and more cafes and restaurants are opening in the city centers. In many places, the city becomes an adventure mile.

/ prostockstudio

City centers in Germany are changing. Because more and more people shop online, many shops close on the shopping streets. Initially, experts feared that the pedestrian zones would become deserted. The Cologne Institute for Trade Research is now giving the all-clear: New leisure activities are emerging in many centers - especially gastronomy. Where the fashion retailers withdraw, coffee bars, restaurant chains and gourmet temples open up. Experts also expect a revival of downtown cinemas. In the future, people will not only go to the city to shop, but above all to experience something.

Internet is a must in every apartment these days

A recent study by the LBS shows which questions are important about your new home.

Most young people prefer to live in the centers of a large German city, where life pulsates? You might think so, but that's not true. Leisure activities or not, almost every second person prefers to live in a quiet part of the city - only 19 percent of people up to 35 years are actually drawn to the city centers. This was the result of the study "Housing wishes 2017", which was carried out on behalf of LBS West in NRW. Despite the regional nature of this survey, the fundamental results should be transferable to the majority of the German population.

Better surf than drive a bus! What is not missing in any apartment or house today is a fast internet connection. 80 percent of the households surveyed attach importance to this. This means that network access today has almost the same status as good shopping opportunities - of central importance for 81 percent. Why leave the house when a lot can be done online? A fast connection to the information superhighway has become even more important for many people than a good connection to public transport (70 percent).

Don't go to the skyscraper! Large residential complexes are unpopular. This applies to tenants as well as to people who want to buy their own home. Most popular are three- to four-room apartments in buildings with a maximum of twelve parties. Owners prefer to live on the upper floors, tenants on the ground floor.

Schnelles Internet
Schnelles Internet

80 percent of those surveyed in a current LBS study say: Internet in the house and apartment is essential.

Photo: fotolia / xiaoliangge

Children buy what they want

The advice service of the Sparkassen-Finanzgruppe "Money and Household" advises parents not to control their children's spending - because handling money needs to be learned. Children and adolescents who receive pocket money regularly and in a fixed amount develop financial independence. They practice correctly dividing the amount and putting something aside if they want to make larger purchases. Since pocket money should be a reliable measure, it is not suitable as a punishment or reward.

Parents and children should discuss wishes and financial options together. But the youngsters decide themselves what to buy with the pocket money, according to a recommendation by the advisory service "Money and Household". The experts also advise parents to hold back on spending comments. If necessary, they can offer help so that your child can make better use of the amount. Older children usually want to buy clothes and other things for everyday needs independently. Pocket money is not intended for this. Parents can pay a fixed extra budget for young people aged 14 and over.

kinder kaufen was sie wollen
kinder kaufen was sie wollen

Children who shop for clothes themselves should receive extra budget money.

/ Halfpoint

Your right - current judgments

Dispute about the apartment size? Please measure yourself first

The question of whether the apartment size was measured correctly often leads to disputes between tenants and their landlords. Because the exact number of square meters is the basis for the calculation of operating costs and rent increases. In the present case, the tenant of an attic apartment in Mainz resisted a net rent increase from 738 euros to 799 euros. The tenant denied that the apartment had an area of ​​almost 93 square meters and asked the landlord to prove the opposite. The Federal Court of Justice ruled that this was not the case. It would be the responsibility of the landlord to present the actual living space. However, if a tenant has doubts, he has to reach for the yardstick himself and measure it - even if only roughly. This can also be expected of a tenant if sloping ceilings make it difficult to measure (file number VIII ZR 18/16).


Dispute about the apartment size? Please measure yourself first!

Photo: fotolia /

Service charge settlement: Landlord must show household-related services

Elevator maintenance, garden maintenance or caretaker service are household-related services, and tenants and owners can deduct them from the tax. But what do you do if the landlord's service charge statement contains flat rates that do not show the amount of the deductible amounts? The Berlin Regional Court recently made it clear that the landlord has to make improvements and break down the expenses accordingly - free of charge, because the additional effort is small for him. The landlord is not obliged to issue a tax certificate or to explicitly name individual items as household services. However, its accounting must be so detailed that the tax-relevant amounts can be determined (file number 18 S 339/16).

Insurance does not pay for tree felling

The fine print has it all: whether a building insurance company has to pay depends on the wording of the policy in individual cases. A property owner felled a tree that had become so inclined after a storm that it threatened to fall on her house. The insurance company did not want to reimburse the costs, around 1, 500 euros. The Munich District Court rightly decided. According to the wording of the insurance agreements, the insured event did not occur because the tree had not completely fallen over and had not damaged the structure. In principle, insurance companies also have to pay for measures that homeowners take to prevent acute damage. However, the applicant was unable to prove that the tree was in imminent danger (file number 155C 510/17).


Let yourself be assured beforehand that a lopsided tree threatens your home - insurance does not always pay.

/ Zoran Kompar Fotography

Cracks in the house due to the adjacent new building: The construction company has to compensate for the damage

The building next door is being built so eagerly that the walls in the house are shaking. For a couple from the Lower Saxon community of Nordhorn, this situation was more than disturbing. An apartment building with underground parking was to be built on the neighboring property. After iron girders were rammed into the ground just 60 centimeters from the property line, the couple discovered cracks in their own house, a building from the turn of the 1900s. The damage: 20, 000 euros. The construction company must now reimburse it, the Oldenburg Higher Regional Court decided. Damage from vibration work would have been predictable, the judges said. The construction company violated duties of care and protection (file number 12 U 61/16).

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