The redecoration
It's not as bad as it seems. Essentially, you must fill in any holes in the wall that you made for light fittings or for pictures and you must paint everything that can be painted. I don't know if there are any rules about the colour but, you cannot go wrong if you paint things white and most people seem to do just that.

You should be a little cautious if the landlord says that you will not have to redecorate at the end. If this offer is made, then you really must get it in writing. The standard deal is that you will rennovate when you leave and what happens if you don't and the landlord says that you cannot have the deposit back? Will you sue him? If so will a German court belive you or him when the landlord is simply claiming the normal rental rules apply?

Buying the fixtures.
Personally, I think that this is a no go area for a contractor thinking of renting an apartment. OK, if you will be in the apartment for five or more years than it's not so bad. You are effectively buying the fixtures to keep and you are not really going to worry about resale values. After all, if you do get something for what might then be a ten year old kitchen, that's a bonus.

But, suppose that you are in the apartment for two years only and you fork out several thousand Euro for a kitchen. Then you are stuck at the end of the tennancy. You have to sell the kitchen and if nobody wants it, it could become a real millstone. Imagine the case where nobody wanted the kitchen you had paid for and you didn't just lose the money that you paid to the previous tenant, you actually have to rip the kitchen out and make good all the mess on the walls and perhaps have to retile the kitchen!

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