Prof. Dr. Jan Kehrberg von der Kanzlei GSK Stockmann

Real Estate Projects

Plans are
our speciality.
No matter the scale

Prof. Jan Kehrberg, lawyer

GSK Stockmann is a leading one-stop for legal advice regarding real estate project developments. Our lawyers in this sector are well-connected, we cover all relevant fields of law.

Your partner through each and every phase of project development.

For years now, the market for real estate developments has been booming across all of Germany. Naturally, the demand for each of the components involved in such projects has risen at the same rate. These include:

  • Greenfield and brownfield sites
  • Planning and construction services
  • Financing and investments
  • Advisory services

People and companies who work in the real estate industry face the challenge of mastering an increasingly complex market situation. On the one hand, we see record turnovers juxtaposed with political instability (Brexit, economic sanctions). As a result, market players naturally seek safe investment opportunities and new niches for building projects (co-living, co-working, data

centres). On the other hand, market players face a shortage of suitable land, bottlenecks in the planning and construction industries, rising prices for materials and labour in the building industry, stagnating net yields in the most sought-after locations, rising demands for smart infrastructures in district development (ECS, connectivity, sharing communities) and a decrease in the number of approvals granted for planning permission.

Walking the tightrope of profits, the environment, social aspects, digitalisation and governance has never been trickier. Our team can lend you support in all the different phases of your project development: from analysing the location and preparing development strategies to financing and establishing joint ventures. Demand, risk and cost management are also part of our repertoire, besides contracting, guarantees, dispute resolution and tax optimisation. While well acquainted with all relevant market players from the public and the private sector, we also have specialists on our team who like to delve into the latest trends. The reliable yet innovative legal advice we offer is based on a detailed understanding of the market. Our claim: Your goals are our benchmark. Your perspective.

Plans are our speciality.
No matter the scale.

Markets in focus

If you want to make the most of every opportunity for growth across the board, top-notch support is a crucial ingredient. Our bundled expertise in all sectors and markets is the answer.

One of the greatest challenges facing investors in Europe’s real estate market is finding quality assets. Primarily, the German real estate market offers investors stability (capital preservation, a safeguard against inflationary developments) rather than a prospect of colossal profits. As such, we examine real estate projects closely to ensure the property in question is suitable for investors, banks, transactions and approvals, and that it can later be managed and used adequately. We also specialise in communicating with local populations to ensure environmentally and publicly relevant projects are well received.

Thanks to our expertise, market experience and integrated approach – one which takes the entire development process into account – we are on the same page as our clients and can offer advice at eye level on all popular asset classes such as residential properties, office or retail premises, logistics facilities and hotels.

We are well aware of the current investor focus on project developments in niches such as co-living, logistics, nursing homes, co-working spaces, healthcare and student residences. Our market niche specialists offer discerning and insightful advice and support – always keeping one eye on the ever-changing sea of regulatory demands.

Your goals are our goals: to minimise sales risks, and create a legal framework to contain cost risks. Whether you are engaged in classic project development (geared towards a profitable transaction), or in developing your own portfolio (to create new usage models) or a new joint venture model – we know exactly what is needed. We negotiate successful and effective financing solutions and help you establish functional risk management structures and an uncomplicated compliance management system. We also provide advice and support with tax structuring, tax optimisation, sales structuring and process digitalisation.

Residential project developments play an essential role in economic prosperity and stability, catering to the very human need for living space. Increasingly, the shortage of adequate housing in conurbations is placing pressure not only on the market, but also on the government. Our Real Estate Project Development team is ready to help you navigate your way through these troubled waters.

We offer innovative and sustainable answers to the latest trends in project development – whether for offices, hotels, premium properties, logistics facilities, data centres, environmental engineering projects or other sectors. We also offer targeted advice on spatial planning, urban development planning, sectoral planning, planning permission procedures and building regulations, urban development contracts, contractor and site development contracts, and compliance with conservation laws, emission protection laws, other environmental laws, and procurements laws.

Increasingly, governmental and cooperative housing associations focus on developing residential portfolio properties, while federal authorities focus on developing office properties. The general public looks to such housing associations to press ahead with the development of affordable apartments. Accordingly, the pressure to expand and grow is immense. Expansion, however, is currently hindered by the complex framework for urban planning – associations face increasingly strict constructional requirements, complex planning and approval processes, limited governmental and administrative resources, rising building costs and their own finite reserves.

Our experts for building projects in the public sector will guide you safely through this complex and entangled field. In doing so, we focus particularly on creating a legally watertight structure for architectural design competitions, engineering contracts, planning permission applications, building contracts (general contractor, subcontractor, GMP and consortium agreements) and comprehensive legal advice and support throughout the entire construction phase – including potential crises (disruption to building work, insolvency of parties involved in the building work, etc.).

On top of general laws, special federal, regional and local budget requirements apply to public sector projects. Contracts must be awarded in line with procurements laws, and financing must comply with state aid laws. In cases where the public sector – as often happens – deploys subsidiary companies which fall under private law (housing associations, real estate companies and property management companies), projects must comply not only with general company law requirements, but also with special requirements for public-private partnerships, e.g., with federal, regional and local budget laws, participation regulations and corporate governance principles. The interaction between publicly appointed supervisory bodies (government committees and supervisory boards) and the operative management and executive boards must also be taken into consideration.

Having worked for many years in the field, we have gained considerable legal and political experience in handling these requirements – experience which ultimately benefits our clients. 

You plan to build a new production site, factory, test centre or even headquarters? You would like to repurpose a vacant property or piece of land? Germany remains an attractive business location! The EU as well as federal, regional and local governments offer numerous incentives to encourage companies from all industries to settle in Germany. We support your in-house developers and lawyers in identifying and handling all relevant tasks – procuring planning permissions, creating a framework for awarding contracts, and negotiating building, planning and rent contracts in line with your company policies.

We offer comprehensive legal advice from a single source – helping you avoid the time-consuming confusion caused by communicating with multiple external consultants. To ensure your project management runs smoothly, we provide regular reporting and a fixed point of contact.

You are not interested in short-lived trends or overpriced properties? You would like to take responsibility for future generations, and preserve and increase the value of your assets by investing in sustainable initiatives? Thanks to our expertise in this field, we can help you increase the value of your building leases, or assert your interests when planning regulations threaten to interfere with your assets. Countless clients rely on our excellent networks and our reputation for legal assessments and appraisal processes. We consistently act with the utmost discretion.

Your contacts.

Understanding your perspective. And finding the best solution.
That is our mission (from left to right):

Key areas of advice

The right experts for every challenge, the perfect team for every client: we focus on the elements that drive your success.

We advise on complex project developments by providing in-depth expertise for all types of use, with a strong focus on:

  • Legal structuring and development strategies
  • Procuring building rights
  • Defining and documenting project goals
  • Drafting project agreements, joint ventures
  • Measuring performance against targets; managing all agreements
  • Legal management

Complex processes require diligence and foresight. We develop individual solutions for:

  • Analysis of potential and risk
  • Approval procedures
  • Urban development planning
  • Regional planning, expert planning
  • Environmental requirements and processes
  • Public law contracts
  • Political and participation processes

Private building law is one of the core competencies of our law firm. Our solutions are cost-efficient, practical and customised:

  • Contract design
  • Structuring and developing cooperation models
  • Providing legal advice and support during the construction phase / anti-claim management
  • Dispute resolution
  • Multi-party contracts and partnering agreements

Our key advisory services include all aspects of architect and engineering law. We have particular expertise in the
following areas:

  • Contract design
  • Liability and compensation law
  • Protecting architectural copyrights
  • Architectural design competitions

Our many years of experience in the following fields are of great value when financing complex real estate project developments:

  • Drafting and negotiating loan agreements, collaterals and other finance agreements
  • Ongoing advice in credit relationships
  • Advising on breaches of loan agreements, syndication, debt rescheduling or transferral of contracts
  • Advisory services in the field of investment law
  • Financial due diligence
  • Checking and aligning to the requirements of state aid law (where the public sector is involved)

First and foremost, we aim to help all parties involved to avoid time-consuming and costly court cases. We provide support in:

  • Administrative court proceedings
  • Arbitration proceedings
  • Alternative dispute resolution methods
  • Interim legal protection

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       Local Partner: not a partner within the meaning of the partnership company law.
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