I can't believe it, but last week I received an email that FINALLY our building application is ready to be picked up!! I had hoped to submit it to the town for February, but that obviously didn't happen. So we're going in to pick up all the forms and to meet with the person who is going to organize the entire building process. I still hope to be able to start by May, maybe June at the lastest. After our building application is (hopefully) being approved by the town council at then end of the month, it is going to be submitted to the district building council for approval. This month, all the trees and shrubs are going to be removed and the lot levelled. The soil samples will then be taken and evaluated, another step towards starting the whole adventure. Keep your fingers crossed they don't find anything dreadful there (WWII bombs are sometimes found around here).
Another little stepstone in our path to becoming home owners: we received a little form from the finance department trying to extort just a little more taxes from us. There's a little clause in the law referring to "related contracts", meaning that the sale for the lot and the contract for the house are linked (e.g. if the seller of the lot also builds the house). I have read up on it and don't think that our contracts are considered "related" in any way; even though they were all signed around the same time, the builder is in no business relationship with the seller of the lot, quite the contrary. However, I am still suspicious of all departments and my sleep is going to be somewhat impaired until we have the final notice on the taxation. Worst case scenario, we would have to pay another € 5k that we haven't planned in.
All in all we are glad that we are moving forward and try to stay positive regarding little obstacles along the way. Can't wait to be done with everything though!