All you need to know to buy a title

Posted: 5th November 2017

Buy a Title.

Legal Definition of the Purchase of a Noble Title:

According to the legal essay "Compendium of noble titles for sale in the eighteenth century", compiled by the Baltic nobleman Valerian von Folkersam, of Riga, "buying a title can be defined as obtaining the possession and property of an ancient noble and feudal dignity, through a legal or customary form".

The Three Step Method to buy a title:

According to the official catalogue "Acquisition of Noble and Feudal titles", commented and described by XIX century Italian author Paride Zajotti as "a guide to buy a title," an important manual with land registry regulations of the Italian parts of the Holy Roman Empire, and all the bylaws regarding nobility purchases through auctions and private sales, mentioning three very important steps that all buyers of titles should follow:

  1. Choose the Rank of the Title you want to purchase: This is a very important decision. It is the responsibility of the buyer to choose a title fitting to his personality, tradition or wishes. Baronies have always been a classic rank, very much appreciated, a title that never fails to satisfy. The titles of Count and Viscount were also valued, and the higher ranks, such as Marquis, Duke or Prince were considered rarities.
  2. Investing in research is a good idea. To enter the world of nobility is to have the privilege of being different from others. Therefore, it is always positive that a title provider is able to carry out a historical, legal and heraldic research of excellent quality, so you get the necessary info to make an informed decision about the title you wish to acquire.
  3. If you buy a title, it is good to pay in three instalments. A small amount always should be paid to the researchers, and then, when the price is agreed, 50% is always paid up front, and the remaining 50% when the legal work is finished and successfully completed and the title documentation is ready to be delivered.

There are many other valid methods, but this one is the best for the client if he wants to buy a title from France, Italy or Germany, as important research and legal works have to be carried out. Our company has followed this legal and procedural approach for many years with total success and satisfaction for us and our clients.

Who should buy a title? Is it for you?

"The perfect title buyer should value the idea of privilege, honour and tradition", as the Polish lawyer Karol d'Abancourt de Franqueville affirmed, as this makes people "suited to the aristocratic concept of nobility". If you have a rooted interest in the past, revere history, appreciate the finer things of life, and you are a cultivated spirit, a title is definitely for you, as titles have not only snob value, but actual historical meaning and worth.

Can your life change if you buy a title?

The great German Jurist Theodor Ludwig Lau used to say: "Yes, purchasing a title through a legal procedure can certainly change your life for the better". We research titles from Italy, Germany and France, so, if you have a connection with these countries through genealogy, family, business, friends, or you like history and these nations, you will have the opportunity to cement your ties with these lands through the titles. You may also find it fulfilling if you are engaged in charitable activities. Some characters of historical importance and relevance in the fields of war, military, politics, literature and history were famous also for being holders of noble titles, as nobility is always a sign of success. To buy a title is in many cases the successful culmination of a whole life.

How much does it cost to buy a title with us?

Our French, Italian and German Lordships have a cost of 1500€, though you can find sometimes special promotions with Feudal Lordships at 1300€.

Barony Titles have a standard price of 7000€, but it is frequent to locate in our site Baronies from France, Germany and Italy between 4000-6000€.

French Viscount Titles usually sell for 9000€. However, in some occasions it is possible to obtain these titles for 5000-6000€.

Count Titles are very much appreciated and normally go for 10000€. However, it is not rare to find these titles for 6900€ in our site.

Marquis Titles are one of the top titles you can acquire. Italian or French Marquisates have a 12000€ cost, but they can be researched and transferred for 7000-8000€.

Duke Titles: have a cost of 15000€, but you may find that there are some rare opportunities where you can get Italian Duchies for 10000€.

Principalities and Prince Titles go for 20000€, but sometimes there are special promotions with costs and prices starting at 12000€.

The best option is always to enquire with us and find out for yourself, and get updated and current information.

Are there any restrictions to buy a title by gender, race, nationality or age?

Gender: no limitations

Nationality: All nationalities are welcome

Race: no limits

Age: you cannot be under age. If you are of age and are capable of legal consent, you are welcome.

Urban Legends about the exorbitant price of buying a title

The Feudal and Noble Titles market has always been elitist. To obtain a title is always costly and expensive, and it has always been for a minority. However, there are some myths that we need to dispel.

Some titles are expensive because they are sold by celebrities or have links to well-known geographical locations: for example, Charles Edward Maurice Spencer, 9th Earl Spencer, and brother of the late Princess Diana of Wales, sold the Lordship of the Manor of Wimbledon for 171000 sterling pounds in 1996, as he was running out of funds to support his stately home of Althorp in Northamptonshire.

The Scottish Barony of Macdonald was sold for 1 million pounds together with Knock Castle and four acres of land in 2002.

An Italian Principality and a medieval castle near Lombardy was bought for nearly 1 million US dollars by an anonymous Russian Oligarch in 1999, and another mysterious businessman with family ties to France and Germany acquired the property and rights on a portfolio of nearly 18 French and German titles.

However, the exorbitant prices of some titles happen only when large acreage and expensive real estate is involved, such as castles, towers, etc. Otherwise, the prices, while not exactly cheap, are far more favourable.

Loans and Mortgages to buy a title:

In the past, if you wished to secure the property of a title, you could indeed finance its purchase. According to an official report and appraisal commissioned by the famous Court Jew and Banker Wolf Breidenbach in 1797, "the most valuable titles you could buy by perceived prestige, average age of their concession dates, quality and history, coats of arms, geographical location and other factors such as intrinsic value and historical importance, were by far the titles with the rank of Count".

In that age and day, with feudal laws still alive and well, lenders gave money to people who acquired landed titles, and title holders could sometimes mortgage their titles and lands to obtain cash. It was not uncommon to find financiers that would lend money to titled 'people', or that loaned funds to prospective title buyers. These operations were not always liked by the historical nobility, as interest rates tended to be abusive, and it was extremely expensive to buy titles at that age. This type of operation, with the end of the feudalism, and the new European laws has ceased to be possible for more than a century.

The Bank of the Nobility: "Hofbank" was the informal nickname of the financial institutions specialized in granting loans for the acquisition of titles of nobility. "Sulkert" was the trading name of one of these institutions, still working in the XVIII century, that functioned through a rare, peculiar and short-lived German consortium of moneylenders, which operated in Bavaria, the northern territories of France and Italy in the last third of the eighteenth century. This venture was linked to some family and business partners of Wolf Breidenbach and Abraham Neustadt.

The Business of Lending Money to Buy Titles of Nobility:

As Johannes von Widenmayer, mayor of Munich, admitted, "There was a time when it was impossible to buy a title without the intermediation of bankers". From time immemorial, existed in all the courts of Europe the business of lending money to kings and nobles, developed by Jewish bankers known as "Hoffaktors". Another part of this lesser-known business was to lend money to powerful members of the bourgeoisie so that they could finance the purchase of noble and feudal titles and thus make a transition to the noble class.

Interest rates for buying a title before the French Revolution: historical examples (*)

Year Interest Rate Period Amount Title Rank
1768 18.5% 9 years 3000 Ducats ** Lord
1769 21.0 % 7 years 4300 Ducats Baron
1770 17.8% 8 years 5400 Ducats Count

(*)This historical example is in reference to Italian feudal titles in the last part of the XVIII century. As we can see, it was extremely expensive to buy a title those days.

(**)Amount is in Golden Ducats from Venice, valid currency till 1794. Interest Rates and prices quoted in letters and correspondence from the descendants and partners of family of Viennese Bankers Samson Wertheimer and Samuel Oppenheimer. In order to understand the context, an artist such as Leonardo da Vinci was paid 400-500 Venetian Ducats per year by the King of France. The example is valid as a mere illustration because prices did not change at all in Venice from the XVI to the XVIII century regarding nobility. Golden Ducats from Venice and Florins from Florence were normally accepted in all Europe and weighed 3.5 grams of gold.

Presenting a legal way to buy titles of nobility:

As the Belgian Nobleman and politician Charles de Brouckère has said, "Legal research is necessary to buy a European title of nobility". Our company always respects the law. We are an organization with a strong legal and historical vocation, always interested in scientific publications on aristocracy, nobility law, genealogy, heraldry, and sociological issues related to the privileged orders of society.

Our company has a vast library with rare and valuable treaties and ancient nobility manuals at the same time as modern and rigorous databases and archives. Our principles of historical and legal research have a high level and our work methodology is of archival and scientific inspiration.

Our company is able to offer to our clients the possibility to purchase from a choice of 15 different types of titles of nobility. All our noble titles are registered and recorded in nobility and history books, and are usually hundreds of years old, and you always get the legal rights to use the titles. In our company, you indeed can buy genuine and hereditary titles with all the confidence that a well-informed client deserves.

Legal Researchers and Purveyors of Titles

It is a good practice to procure a title of nobility from experienced legal researchers and Purveyors of titles such as our company.

Useful Advice to buy a nobility title

"Nobility and feudal titles should never be considered investments", as the 19th-century Polish documentalist and historian Oswald Marian Balzer said.

How easy is to buy a title?

The booming market of nobility titles is always attractive. If you want to buy a title now, you must know that our company has been for many years a place where you can purchase safely and with confidence. Our legal titles are always explained. How does one buy a title? We do advice you to read carefully our website and you will have a pretty good idea.

Explanatory notes on the purchase of English titles

It is true that authentic and genuine English Lordships of the Manor have a resale value, and can increase or decrease in price. Sometimes these titles have fishing or mining rights. Reputable vendors such as the Manorial Society provide these type of titles. We are a company specialised in French, Italian and German titles, and we are not engaged in the sale of English or British titles, so we cannot help people interested in this titles. Therefore, we do not buy or sell Scottish titles of nobility or titles of Laird. In fact, we do not sell any type of English, Irish, Scottish or British Title. Also, we do not sell Scottish Feudal Baronies.

Also, as it is obvious, we do not work with English peerage titles, which are illegal to sell, and therefore conform to the Honours Act of 1925.

Likewise, we are not in the Gift Title Industry associated to the sale of souvenir land plots, or other types of titles normally associated to changes of name, or the production of title packages, premium deeds, title deeds and certificates seated and non-seated titles or products marketed as royal titles.

Benefits of buying a title: Is it worth it?

The countless advantages of owning a title:

Baron Nicholas de Gunzburg, the French-Russian aristocrat that would become a fashion icon in New York and "godfather" of legends such as Calvin Klein, Billy Blass or Oscar de la Renta, used to affirm that "Champagne tastes better when you are titled". However, one must be extremely cautious and prudent when talking about the advantages of having a noble title. It is impossible to guarantee that the owner of a nobiliary title may have a set of predefined advantages.

We can tentatively offer a list of advantages that are often cited. However, we always advise clients to have a realistic and pragmatic perspective, and to be always cautious and prudent, as well as not to fall into the dangers of ostentation, arrogance and bad taste. In the end, you always must balance the scales and decide whether a title is worth it or not. It is indeed a personal decision and choice.

  • Useful for Business and charities
  • Recover your family’s noble heritage
  • Connection with your family history and roots
  • Expand and boost social profile
  • Networking
  • Tradition
  • Honour
  • Sense of historical belonging
  • Freedom
  • Elitism
  • Be unique and different
  • Immersion in a different social class
  • Respect and boost in self esteem
  • Development of a new conscience of class
  • Culmination of a successful life
  • Improvement of living standards
  • The appreciation and respect that normally it is given to aristocracy in the service industry: the experience of bargain hunting in luxury shops, the ever well-mannered attitude of hoteliers and restaurateurs in hotels and restaurants, and also those in the hospitality industry or airlines. Boutique shopping, etc. Especially useful for collectors of antiques.
  • Improves the relation of the titleholder with sports traditionally associated with nobility, like Falconry, fencing, Hunting, Shooting, horse-riding, etc.
  • Exclusivity
  • Political and government authorities may treat you better
  • A more courteous attitude from managers in the banking industry
  • Enjoyment of property in a feudal sense
  • Immense differentiation
  • Join the life of privilege of the few aristocratic ones
  • Unusual way to enhance your social status
  • VIP and celebrity treatment for life

Conclusion:

The best advice that can be given to a future buyer of titles of nobility is that one must be patient, have an open attitude, and always have an outlook of receptivity towards the forgotten worlds of glory, tradition and aristocracy. Caviar looks better if you own an ancient noble title.

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