What exactly is a traditional Luxembourg Christmas?

In Luxembourg it can be hard to say what a truly Luxembourgish Christmas looks like. Over the past decades, in line with growing multi-culturalisation, traditions have disappeared or merged with others and new ones have formed. As a consequence, even the true Lëtzebuerger (in itself sometimes a difficult concept to explain) might find it hard to describe what a Luxembourgish Christmas entails.

Although the traditions tied to St. Nicolas are less in flux, the myth behind the Saint, Kléeschen, and his follower, Houséker, and how the Luxringer (still a Thüringer) plays a central role in the whole setup, might not be widely known.

The 4th century St. Nicolas, also known as Nikolaos of Myrra or as Nikolaos the “Wonder worker”, who would gladly fill shoes left outside with coins, is said to have found his obedient servant by accident.

Legend has it that a family on their way to the market became separated. The three boys wandered helplessly about until they met a seemingly nice man, a butcher by trade, who lured the children back to his shop where he was planning to kill them and make them into sausages.

As if by miracle, St Nicolas heard the children cry and promptly came to their rescue. He freed the boys, and, in order to punish the butcher, he condemned him to be his servant for the rest of his life (Nikolaos wasn’t a violent man) bearing the name: Houséker.

The story is still told on the evening before St Nicolas to remind children of how grateful they should be, and ensure that they will leave nice drawings, beautiful poems or other tokens of appreciation in their shoe for St. Nicholas to find and replace by a gift or two. Previously, St. Nicolas would be the only day in December when kids would receive gifts. Nowadays, December 25 is thought to be the big gift-exchanging day.

Interestingly, the Dutch St Nicolas is called Sinterklaas and is thought to be Santa Claus’ predecessor. In Luxembourg, Christmas presents are, however, not brought by Kléeschen or Santa Claus but by the baby Jesus, who will leave them under the tree during the night between the 24th and 25th, although the custom differs from home to home.

On Christmas Eve family and friends gather for an “apéro”, a talk and a light meal around the Christmas tree, which has often been part of the holiday decoration since St. Nicholas’ visit weeks before. On the 24th, some families go to Midnight Mass, and in certain homes the presents can be opened after returning from church.

Christmas Day is the central day of the holidays, allowing children to open their gifts and where families and friends gather for a large meal around noon. Tradition says that the meal should consist of “ Träipen mat Gromperenzalot” (a kind of black pudding with potato salad), but it’s just as often composed of a hare stew, venison or any dish the family sees fit.

Afterwards, it’s common to go for a long walk in order to prepare for next day’s Christmas lunch with friends and family.

But, maybe you disagree or have something else to add. Let us know what you think a traditional Luxembourg Christmas involves.

Ex-London brokers bet on marmite in Luxembourg’s Brexit haven Luxembourg

Ex-London brokers bet on marmite in Luxembourg’s Brexit haven.

Luxembourg has already become the nation of choice for several insurers, funds and bank

Luxembourg: Two former London brokers in Luxembourg have hit on an old-fashioned way to hedge against Brexit.

Briton Mark Hollis, 50, and his Irish business partner John Heffernan, 52, set up a grocery store, offering financiers fleeing the City a steady supply of UK staples such as Yorkshire Tea and Marmite yeast extract.

 

 

The pair say “Home from Home,” which also sells expat favourites such as Heinz baked beans in tomato sauce and Nestle chocolate milkshake mix, is already bustling ahead of the hordes of financiers expected to swap London for new lives in the Grand Duchy.

“We’ve been open a few weeks and we’ve had hundreds of people come through the door,” said Hollis, who moved from London with his wife in 1997.

In the race to attract London business after Brexit, Luxembourg has already become the nation of choice for several insurers, funds and banks. Insurance giant American International Group Inc, US insurer FM Global, RSA Insurance Group Plc and Lloyd’s of London insurer Hiscox Plc, as well as private-equity firm Blackstone and asset managers such as M & G Investments, all have chosen Luxembourg as their new EU hub. JPMorgan Chase & Co. also plans to move some London-based bankers to Luxembourg.

Contingency plans

While Hollis describes Brexit as “a joke,” he admits that “potentially, it does bring us more clients.”

“There are some financial companies, I think it’s over 20 now, that said they are going to relocate to Luxembourg. It’s mainly funds and insurance companies,” he said. “Coming from the finance industry myself, I know that a lot of banks have contingency plans in place,” said Hollis, who worked half his life as a broker, the last 16 years for Tradition SA.

Their shop is in the busy commuter town of Strassen, close to Luxembourg City, the nation’s capital. It served its first customers just before Halloween and with Christmas around the corner, its owners say the shop is paying its way. Traditional English sausages, bacon and crumpets are among the biggest hits.

Hollis and Heffernan are thankful for the financial backing of the Luxembourg government as well as their parents. They scraped together around €40,000 (Dh172,887, $47,100) of their own money to invest in the shop and got another €38,000 from the state, which had to approve their project first.

Luxembourg is the biggest fund market in Europe, and the second-biggest in the world after the US. Capital markets, wealth management as well as private banking and cross-border insurance and re-insurance remain some of the main specialities of Luxembourg’s financial centre. It’s also the base for several EU institutions, including the EU’s top courts, the European Investment Bank and the European Stability Mechanism.

Still, the country has a reputation as a place people either love or hate — rather like Unilever’s sticky brown Marmite that some, but not all, Brits like to spread on their toast.

Hollis and Heffernan, who have piled their shelves with the stuff, have both learnt to embrace life in the Grand Duchy and they expect enough like-minded financial workers to make the switch.

Heffernan, who worked as a foreign-exchange broker with Tullet Prebon before switching careers, said moving to Luxembourg from London in 2002 was “the best move I ever made.”

His three children went through the local school system and are finishing high school in one of several new free-of-charge English-speaking local schools that have popped up around the city over the last year.

Pretty countryside

On top of Luxembourg’s multiculturalism, the use of the English language has become more common. While French was the dominant language until not long ago, English can these days be heard almost as much in the country’s city centre, or even in its EU institutions.

Hollis and his family live in the town of Biwer, close to the German border, “because close to the city was too expensive.” While living further out has beautiful countryside all around, it also means a longer commute to work on increasingly clogged roads.

Besides stocking up on Christmas puddings and crackers (nearly as complicated to explain as cricket and definitely not something you smear with Stilton cheese), the duo is already busy planning a tea shop where families can come for cakes, crumpets and scones.

The UK and the EU struck a deal to unlock divorce negotiations in the early hours of Friday after months of stalemate.

Brexit may be good for his business, but Hollis finds it hard to hide his disdain for those who wanted to leave — including all of his family back home.

“I think it’s completely the wrong decision for the UK to have taken,” he said. “They voted for it, so they have to get on with it.”

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YOUS REAL ESTATE AND BUSINESS CONSULTING GROUP S.A.
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+352 691 22 57 57 OU 27 47 81 41
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Brexit boosts Luxembourg’s real estate prospects

The city for the first time entered the ranks of the most attractive cities in Europe, claiming ninth spot in an annual real estate forecast published jointly by the Urban Land Institute and PwC.
Luxembourg has been ranked in the top 10 cities in Europe for real estate investment and development in 2018, amid expectations it will benefit from Britain’s departure from the EU.

The city for the first time entered the ranks of the most attractive cities in Europe, claiming ninth spot in an annual real estate forecast published jointly by the Urban Land Institute and PwC.

Brexit underpinned Luxembourg’s place in the rankings, according to the report, which is based on a survey of 800 real estate professionals in Europe.

We see Luxembourg as a very attractive alternative for London. You can already see increasing construction activity there since the Brexit vote,” a Swiss investor said in the survey.

The city’s strong financial sector, its growing economy and major investments in industrial sites, data centres and logistics were all cited as positives.

However, the report said the city is expensive to live in and there are concerns around infrastructure capacity due to a lack of residential, retail and schools planned to accommodate an influx of new businesses.

Real estate investors also find it “hard to place capital” into Luxembourg and yields are low for a small market.

Yields for the best office buildings in prime districts like Kirchberg and Cloche d’Or stand at 4.35%, while in secondary locations in the suburbs yields are between 5% – 6.75%.

The Grand-Duchy’s capital was also ranked fourth overall for an expected increase in rents and capital values in 2018.

London, on the other hand, was expected to see a fall in values on both counts and was ranked 27th overall.

“There is not a lot of tangible evidence of Brexit’s impact on the markets we play in – except in Luxembourg,” said the head of real estate at a European insurance group.

POWERPOINT CLEF FILE3 FIND A PROPERTY

 

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YOUS REAL ESTATE AND BUSINESS CONSULTING GROUP S.A.
76/78 Grand-Rue L-1660 Luxembourg
+352 691 22 57 57 OU 27 47 81 41
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Finding a rental property in Luxembourg

 

How to find a property

Supply of housing in Luxembourg is low and demand high. Add to this the astronomical price of land, and you create an expensive landlord’s market.

Deciding on an area

Work and school locations are the two biggest influencers in deciding where you should rent. Whilst public transport is good in Luxembourg, journey times can quadruple during rush hour making even short journeys time-consuming. Check out schools locations and bus/train timetable routes. Generally speaking city centre locations tend to favour apartments whilst the suburbs have far more houses with gardens.

Budget will be a big factor in your location. The average monthly rental cost for an apartment in Luxembourg is 1,378 Euros and for a house 2,357 Euros.

Estate agents

Because it’s a renter’s market, you’ll find you’re chasing estate agents. If you’re coming from overseas for a pre-visit, you can line up house viewings in one day. Expect estate agents to find properties at the top end of your budget.

Remember that notice periods can be 2-3 months, so start your property search in plenty of time. Many estate agencies specialise in specific localities so if you know where you want to live, register with them (you can use the site below which aggregate other agency adverts).

Beyond estate agencies, private rentals are posted on http://yous.lu/en/ which is also an aggregator site. Don’t forget to ask around at work, someone might be moving or renting their property.

It is not impossible to rent furnished apartments but expect most places to be unfurnished, which also means no light fittings. Estate agencies will expect a month’s rent plus VAT in fees.

Utilities

Rental usually does not include gas (or oil), electricity, telephone, broadband, rubbish collection, and water rates, but some city apartments may include these in the rental price. Many properties will list energy ratings and you can ask the current tenants what the utilities cost. Expect to add a couple of hundred a month to your rental costs for these. You can find out about utility suppliers on the AngloInfo site or the Luxembourg government website.

Things to know before you sign

In addition to utilities you may have responsibility for other elements of the property. Contracts can include servicing the boiler, sweeping out chimneys and maintenance of the garden.

Contrat de bail à loyer (rental contract)

Contracts vary, but generally the standard is 3 years with a diplomatic clause. Be aware, that you literally have to leave the country to invoke this. It is getting easier to secure one-year contracts but specify this with the estate agent.

If your rental property includes some utilities, the landlord has the right to reconcile costs at the end of the year and it is not unheard of for people to receive quite hefty gas and electricity reconciliation bills.

Equally, repairs can sometimes take landlords an eon to conduct, so consider adding a clause that states the landlord must repair essentials such as heating, dishwasher or oven within a maximum time limit.

Guichet.lu has details on entering a rental agreement here.

Dépôt de garantie (deposit or bond)

A refundable deposit is usually required in cash or more commonly via a bank guarantee, which is paid into an account in the tenant’s name, but requires authorisation from both parties for money to be released.

A deposit cannot exceed 3 month’s rent and must be refunded minus cost of repairs or service charges within 6 months of the end of the lease – so expect to wait to get it back.

Etats des Lieux (Inventory)

Before or on the day of moving in, your landlord or the agent will go through a rental inventory with you, listing everything included in the property and the state of this. It might be extra stress, but be careful to go through this a room at a time, as you might find you are charged for damage that you didn’t make when you leave the property.

This is also a useful time to check you know how the oven, dishwasher heating, hot water etc work. Gardening equipment such as lawnmowers, and washing machines and curtains are usually not included in the rental.

You will both sign the Etats des Lieux and when you leave your rental property you will both need to sign this again to release deposit funds. For details on the rental inventory from guichet.lu click here.

Insurance

You will be contractually required to have household and fire insurance covering the building, and insurance to cover contents supplied by the landlord such as a fully equipped kitchen. Consider adding parquet floors to the insurance. You will obviously want to ensure your own contents too. The main insurers in Luxembourg are LaLux, and Foyer

Ongoing tenancy

If you have a problem with any of the equipment provided ie heating, dishwasher, oven, you should be able to call the estate agent or landlord directly to fix these.

Most contracts state that the property must be left in the condition you rented it. If your children have left sticky handprints all over the paintwork or scratched the parquet flooring, expect to be charged for these to be redecorated or repaired.

Giving notice

Notice on a rental property must be given usually 3 months before the end of the contract in writing and sent by registered post.

The landlord has the right to show prospective tenants your new property in the final three months. If you want to leave early and can find a tenant who is acceptable to the landlord, you might be able to circumvent the contract. The landlord also has the right to give notice on a property if s/he intends to sell it.

Guichet.lu has information on terminating a lease here. For details of what to do in a conflict, for financial aid and other rental matters click here.How to find a property

Supply of housing in Luxembourg is low and demand high. Add to this the astronomical price of land, and you create an expensive landlord’s market.

Deciding on an area

Work and school locations are the two biggest influencers in deciding where you should rent. Whilst public transport is good in Luxembourg, journey times can quadruple during rush hour making even short journeys time-consuming. Check out schools locations and bus/train timetable routes. Generally speaking city centre locations tend to favour apartments whilst the suburbs have far more houses with gardens.

Budget will be a big factor in your location. The average monthly rental cost for an apartment in Luxembourg is 1,378 Euros and for a house 2,357 Euros.

Estate agents

Because it’s a renter’s market, you’ll find you’re chasing estate agents. If you’re coming from overseas for a pre-visit, you can line up house viewings in one day. Expect estate agents to find properties at the top end of your budget.

Remember that notice periods can be 2-3 months, so start your property search in plenty of time. Many estate agencies specialise in specific localities so if you know where you want to live, register with them (you can use the site below which aggregate other agency adverts).

Beyond estate agencies, private rentals are posted on http://yous.lu/en/ which is also an aggregator site. Don’t forget to ask around at work, someone might be moving or renting their property.

It is not impossible to rent furnished apartments but expect most places to be unfurnished, which also means no light fittings. Estate agencies will expect a month’s rent plus VAT in fees.

Utilities

Rental usually does not include gas (or oil), electricity, telephone, broadband, rubbish collection, and water rates, but some city apartments may include these in the rental price. Many properties will list energy ratings and you can ask the current tenants what the utilities cost. Expect to add a couple of hundred a month to your rental costs for these. You can find out about utility suppliers on the AngloInfo site or the Luxembourg government website.

Things to know before you sign

In addition to utilities you may have responsibility for other elements of the property. Contracts can include servicing the boiler, sweeping out chimneys and maintenance of the garden.

Contrat de bail à loyer (rental contract)

Contracts vary, but generally the standard is 3 years with a diplomatic clause. Be aware, that you literally have to leave the country to invoke this. It is getting easier to secure one-year contracts but specify this with the estate agent.

If your rental property includes some utilities, the landlord has the right to reconcile costs at the end of the year and it is not unheard of for people to receive quite hefty gas and electricity reconciliation bills.

Equally, repairs can sometimes take landlords an eon to conduct, so consider adding a clause that states the landlord must repair essentials such as heating, dishwasher or oven within a maximum time limit.

Guichet.lu has details on entering a rental agreement here.

Dépôt de garantie (deposit or bond)

A refundable deposit is usually required in cash or more commonly via a bank guarantee, which is paid into an account in the tenant’s name, but requires authorisation from both parties for money to be released.

A deposit cannot exceed 3 month’s rent and must be refunded minus cost of repairs or service charges within 6 months of the end of the lease – so expect to wait to get it back.

Etats des Lieux (Inventory)

Before or on the day of moving in, your landlord or the agent will go through a rental inventory with you, listing everything included in the property and the state of this. It might be extra stress, but be careful to go through this a room at a time, as you might find you are charged for damage that you didn’t make when you leave the property.

This is also a useful time to check you know how the oven, dishwasher heating, hot water etc work. Gardening equipment such as lawnmowers, and washing machines and curtains are usually not included in the rental.

You will both sign the Etats des Lieux and when you leave your rental property you will both need to sign this again to release deposit funds. For details on the rental inventory from guichet.lu click here.

Insurance

You will be contractually required to have household and fire insurance covering the building, and insurance to cover contents supplied by the landlord such as a fully equipped kitchen. Consider adding parquet floors to the insurance. You will obviously want to ensure your own contents too. The main insurers in Luxembourg are LaLux, and Foyer

Ongoing tenancy

If you have a problem with any of the equipment provided ie heating, dishwasher, oven, you should be able to call the estate agent or landlord directly to fix these.

Most contracts state that the property must be left in the condition you rented it. If your children have left sticky handprints all over the paintwork or scratched the parquet flooring, expect to be charged for these to be redecorated or repaired.

Giving notice

Notice on a rental property must be given usually 3 months before the end of the contract in writing and sent by registered post.

The landlord has the right to show prospective tenants your new property in the final three months. If you want to leave early and can find a tenant who is acceptable to the landlord, you might be able to circumvent the contract. The landlord also has the right to give notice on a property if s/he intends to sell it.

Guichet.lu has information on terminating a lease here. For details of what to do in a conflict, for financial aid and other rental matters click here.

YOUS REAL ESTATE AND BUSINESS CONSULTING GROUP S.A.
76/78 Grand-Rue L-1660 Luxembourg
+352 691 22 57 57 OU 27 47 81 41
Facebook | Twitter | http://www.yous.eu

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Copyright © 2017 Yous Real Estate Group,
All rights reserved. –
contact@yous.lu

New real estate project comes to Luxembourg

Development includes 16,000 sq m of ‘next-generation’ office space to ‘respond to the specific demand of the the Luxembourg market.

A new office real estate project measuring around 16,000 sq m is set to be developed in Luxembourg City.

The site, in the ‘Am Bann’ economic area of Leudelange, close to Croix de Cessange and the A4 and A6 motorways, will include a “next-generation” development to “respond to the specific demand of the the Luxembourg market”.

Belgian developers, Atenor, added that the buildings will be linked to provide flexibility and communication for either multitenant or single tenant occupancy and said the site will offer an alternative in terms of quality, price and accessibility on a Luxembourg market in constant growth. The buildings will be completed in several phases.

The site is located around five kilometres away from the constructions being carried out at Ban de Gasperich, where hundreds of housing units, offices, the country’s largest shopping centre as well as a large park are being built.

L’imposition de la plus-value immobilière à seulement 1/4 du taux global jusqu’au 31.12.2017!

En matière des impôts directs, le revenu dégagé par la vente ou cession d’un immeuble du patrimoine privé est, en principe, imposable comme revenu net divers feuille D du modèle 100.

Est toutefois exempt de l’impôt sur le revenu, le revenu réalisé par la vente de la résidence principale appartenant au contribuable. Les détails d’une vente ou cession peuvent être déclarés dans le modèle 700. La date de la vente à titre onéreux est la date de l’acte notarié.

La vente est imposable:

1. comme bénéfice de spéculation, conformément à l’article 99bis LIR, lorsque l’intervalle entre l’acquisition (ou la constitution) et la vente ne dépasse pas 2 ans.

Le revenu net divers est égal à la différence entre le prix de vente (de réalisation) et le prix d’acquisition (de revient).
Le taux d’impôt maximal s’élève à 40% (tarif ordinaire).

2. comme plus-value, conformément à l’article 99ter LIR, lorsque l’intervalle entre l’acquisition (ou la constitution) et la vente dépasse deux ans.

Le revenu net divers est égal à la différence entre le prix de vente et le prix d’acquisition réévalué (par multiplication avec le coeeficient correspondant au tableau reproduit à la page 3 du modèle 700).

Le taux d’impôt maximal s’élève à 10% (quart du taux global) pour les revenus réalisés au cours de la période allant du 1er juillet 2016 au 31 décembre 2017 et à 20% (demi-taux global) pour les autres.

Confiez la vente de vos biens immobiliers à YOUS REAL ESTATE AND BUSINESS CONSULTING GROUP Luxembourg et profitez de notre savoir-faire!

YOUS REAL ESTATE AND BUSINESS CONSULTING GROUP S.A.
76/78 Grand-Rue L-1660 Luxembourg
+352 691 22 57 57 OU 27 47 81 41 ou hello@yous.lu
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astuce3-full-7825611

A LOUER PLUSIEURS STUDIOS MEUBLES RESIDENCE UNIVERSITAIRE ESCH/BELVAL Prix 650 € Surface: 20 m² Disponible: IMMÉDIATEMENT

APPARTEMENT
Prix 650 €
Surface: 20 m²
Disponible: IMMÉDIATEMENT

Descriptif :
1 hall d’entrée
1 pièce de vie avec lit et bureau / coin cuisine équipée
1 salle de douche avec wc
1 buanderie commune équipée (machines à laver et sèche-linges)

Caractéristiques : Résidence neuve / Entièrement meublé / Au 4e et dernier étage / Côté Sud / Vue sur arrière (calme) /Chauffage au sol / Ascenseur / Vidéophone

Environnement : Résidence universitaire Galileo Esch/belval / Entrée quartier Square Mile / Bâtiment de l’UNI / Centre commercial / Salle de concert / Restaurant / Cinéma

Commodités : A proximité de l’autoroute / Gare / 30 min de Luxembourg-ville / Lignes bus.

ATTENTION: CES STUDIOS SONT SEULEMENT LOUES A DES ETUDIANTSREF :

Notre référence CCA-LU003436/3437

Contactez l’agence par téléphone au +352 27 47 81 41 ou par mail à sales@yous.lu pour découvrir des biens similaires.

YOUS REAL ESTATE AND BUSINESS CONSULTING GROUP S.A.
76/78 Grand-Rue L-1660 Luxembourg
+352 691 22 57 57 OU 27 47 81 41
Facebook | Twitter | http://www.yous.eu

Add us to your address book

Copyright © 2017 Yous Real Estate Group,
All rights reserved. –
contact@yous.lu