When we were nosing around the real estate offerings in Berlin, we found out some interesting things.
Less than 15% of Berliners own. So the sales pitch we were given was that Berlin is a great place to invest in. So much so, most real estate we saw offered came with tenants and you are guaranteed an annual yield of 5.5 - 6.8%.
For those of us who are interested in actually using the apartment, it took a bit of time to sift through the newer developments. We never found out exactly why owning isn't very popular.
My guess is that there are a lot of people who have moved to Berlin to find work rent first. We were told that banks require 30 - 40% down for a purchase with interest rates in the 4.5% range.
Berlin is also a fairly young city population wise with women making close to what men earn and at the end of the month, lots of disposable income. You'll need it if you are hoping to own one of those Maseratis!
There is a lot of value in Berlin real estate. The cost of an average 1 bedroom apartment around 55m2 would buy you a 20m2 apartment in Nice France. Property tax is differs according to the area of city.
The process of purchasing is similar to France as you'll need a notary as well as a lawyer and you will need to be present for the final signing. We feel Berlin would be a great and exciting European home base. The year round climate is also quite reasonable.