Purpose: Since the introduction of the German states double bookkeeping the awareness of local governments increased, that the municipal inventory of real estates should be managed actively. The active management of real estates requires a deep knowledge of the property itself, its area, costs and return. However, in small and middle size municipalities there exist rarely any such strategies. The active management of a whole life cycle of state owned real estates is often perceived as a side activity of the construction division in many municipalities.   Various property-related tasks, especially during the utilisation phase, are perceived reactive instead of active or even proactive.

Additionally investment in human resources and financial means is essential, but for which usually funds are not available. Though, looking at the saving potential of an estimated 10 – 20% per year if a professional strategic real estate management is applied, it should be questionned, why the public real estate management is still given comparably little attention.

This article addresses following questions: What is the situation on strategic management of municipal real estate today? What kind of strategies, structures and systems do they have? How are they going to decide?

Design/methodology/approach: To work out foundations and develop a theoretical background an intense literature study is conducted. Participating municipalities for the case studies are already selected and confirmed. In those case studies interviews will be conducted with a standardized questionnaire.