Buying a Loft in Berlin
Loft apartments in Berlin: An overview
What is a loft?
A loft is a former warehouse or factory space that has been converted into a flat. Lofts usually feature open floorplans; aside from the bathroom, the entire apartment consists of a single large space without partitions. Loft-style living originated in New York and London in the 1940s, when artists flocked to vacant industrial spaces that they could occupy for little money. The open layouts of lofts provide ideal conditions for uniting working and living, something many artists cherish. Traditionally, lofts were only minimally renovated, creating the raw and no-frills style they’re known for today. If you’re looking to buy a loft in Berlin, you’ll find favourable market conditions; the city is full of former factory buildings that could be or already have been renovated and converted.
Let your imagination run free
The greatest advantage of a loft lies in its generous size, largely free of partitions or walls. Large and opulent furniture can look particularly stunning in this type of space – a magnificent wood table, for example, arranged as the centrepiece of the apartment. Lofts are also ideally suited to open-plan kitchens, which have become essential to contemporary living. That said: should you one day find yourself tired of the single open space, installing additional walls is always a possibility. Buying a loft means buying maximum flexibility.
A perfect work-life balance
Lofts offer a generous size and plenty of flexibility, making them a great fit for artists, creatives, and anyone else looking to fluidly combine living and working. They are, in short, a perfect choice for seamless integration of work and personal activity. Fancy a coffee break in your very own open kitchen? A power nap on the couch before getting back to work in your home office? In a loft, working and relaxing go hand in hand for an optimal work-life balance.
Expect higher purchase and running costs
The flexibility of a loft comes at a price. Though once affordable alternatives to traditional housing, lofts are now on the slightly pricier side. That’s because nowadays, most lofts are fully refurbished before going on the market; this drives up initial costs but lowers maintenance fees down the line. On top of that, lofts usually come with higher heating costs because large open spaces do not store heat effectively. This can to a certain extent be remedied by investing in an underfloor heating system, which will require a one-off instalment fee but bring down energy costs in the long run.
Privacy not included
Privacy can be hard to come by in traditional lofts, which tend to lack partitions, including for bedrooms. Potential owners should ask themselves if they’re ready to sacrifice privacy for that special loft feeling, particularly if the space will be shared by more than two people.
Is a loft the right fit for you?
With its flexibility, open living space, and opportunities for creative interior design, a loft is particularly suitable for singles and couples. Families with children, on the other hand, might fare better in a more traditional apartment. Lofts may also be optimal for seniors; often located on the ground floor, they contain few stairs and interior doors, making moving around easy, even with limited mobility.
A checklist for loft buyers:
1. How much do I need to invest in renovations?
Will you need to install new walls or water and gas pipes? Do existing walls need plastering or painting?
2. Who’s going to cover most of the renovation costs?
Both tenants and owners will usually have to pay at least some of the renovation costs out of pocket. So if you’re thinking about buying a loft in need of refurbishment, remember to factor in those costs as an additional expense – and decide how much you’re willing to invest before signing any contracts.
3. What’s the neighbourhood like?
Since lofts are usually located in former factory buildings, you’ll often find them in industrial areas outside the city centre. This can mean a lack of infrastructure, including access to public transportation, commerce, kindergartens, and schools.
4. Will the floorplan accommodate my aesthetic vision?
If you want to retain your existing home interiors, you’ll need to make sure that your furniture and decor can be seamlessly integrated into the new open space. If, on the other hand, you want to buy new furniture, be sure to factor this into your budget.
5. How eco-friendly is the loft?
If you’re committed to living in an environmentally conscious way and are looking to keep additional costs at a minimum, you should pay particular attention to the door and window insulation and the state of the heating system.
If you have a passion for upscale living, you may also want to browse our offers for more properties in the luxury sector, including maisonettes, atelier apartments, and penthouses.