Everyone agrees: there is a lack of affordable housing in Germany.
But that's where the similarities stop.
Ideas from modern prefabricated buildings to rent freezes.
Berlin – Now the responsible minister has also admitted it.
The traffic light's ambitious housing target – it's too high.
At least currently.
"I do not assume that the number of 400,000 apartments can be reached in 2022 and 2023," said Building Minister Klara Geywitz (SPD) to the
This means that the federal government has to back away from one of its key housing policy promises.
Bad news for tenants and home seekers.
The market is already tight, especially in large cities and university towns.
Experts say: More new construction alone cannot solve the problem.
But at least take some pressure off the housing market.
But the prices continue to rise inexorably.
What is going wrong in German construction and rent policy?
Do we need more state intervention, a tighter rent control or a ban on the controversial index rents that rise with inflation?
Or maybe more incentives for builders to create living space faster and more cheaply?
Münchner Merkur from IPPEN.MEDIA
asked specialist politicians from the parties in the Bundestag and the Federal Ministry of Building - the positions: very different.
Even in the coalition.
SPD: Stricter tenancy law for existing apartments - digitization should help with construction
From the perspective of the SPD, construction must become faster and cheaper.
"Good, affordable housing for everyone has the highest priority," says Bernhard Daldrup, the SPD's housing policy spokesman.
This should be made possible by a modular and serial design, i.e. with prefabricated parts.
Planning processes would have to be accelerated and bureaucracy reduced.
A digital brownfield cadastre should show where building land is available.
In order to keep the rents affordable, the SPD would like to tighten the rental price brake and introduce an upper limit for index rents.
But Daldrup also knows that this is difficult to do with the Liberals.
"We hope for insight from the FDP, which is known to be a difficult partner when it comes to tenancy law issues," he told our editorial team.
Greens: better protect tenants, less new construction, but redistribute living space
Similar to the SPD, the Greens also want to strengthen tenant protection.
"In order to effectively protect tenants, old index leases must be regulated and new ones excluded," says Green housing market expert Christina-Johanne Schröder.
The party relies on social housing - and warns against too much euphoria in new construction.
"The most important thing is to leverage the existing potential for conversion, conversion and addition, because that makes more economic and ecological sense than a completely new building," says Schröder.
Another problem from the point of view of the Greens: The living space is wrongly distributed.
“Two-thirds of people over 60 live in their own property and have large square footage.
For this active senior generation, it is often not economically attractive to downsize,” says Schröder.
Their idea: Whoever moves out of the large single-family house and rents it out should have tax advantages.
FDP: Build more, build faster - and no further tightening of tenancy law
For the FDP it is clear: the housing problem is primarily a supply problem.
The solution is therefore: build more, build faster and, above all, build with less bureaucracy.
"With thousands of standards, regulations, different building codes and eternal approval processes, we stand in our own way," said construction expert Daniel Föst to our editors.
2023 must be the year of construction acceleration.
Quarters could be densified, roofs increased and gaps closed.
The FDP thinks nothing of a ban on index rents or a stricter rental price brake.
That would not change anything about the basic problem – too little living space.
There is support for people with little money.
"It is correct that the traffic light government has mobilized 14 billion euros for social housing," says Föst.
In addition, the housing allowance has been increased and the group of recipients has been expanded.
CDU/CSU: Criticism of Chancellor Scholz - "Building must be a top priority"
Jan-Marco Luczak, construction policy spokesman for the Union parliamentary group in the Bundestag, speaks of a "solid crisis on the housing market with far-reaching consequences".
The traffic light is "miles away" from the target of 400,000 new apartments per year, it is "just waste".
Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) is now being asked to build, says Luczak.
What helps in the short term on the tense housing market?
CDU and CSU see "strong social guidelines" in tenancy law, only: "We will not solve the problem of rising rents with more and more regulation alone," Luczak told our editorial team.
It would be better to support people in a targeted manner – for example through housing benefit.
And: The CDU and CSU also see an opportunity for rural regions in the exploding rents.
At least if certain requirements are met: fast internet, public transport offers and the right infrastructure, i.e. roads and motorways.
Left: Nationwide rent freeze, a "breathing" rent cap and priority for cooperatives
There is a lack of apartments, especially cheap apartments.
That's what the left says.
"It has to be built.
But the right thing,” says Caren Lay, spokeswoman for rent policy.
The party wants to focus on social housing.
In addition, municipal housing companies and cooperatives should be able to create affordable housing.
The left wants to mobilize 20 billion euros a year for all of this.
The left relies on a much stricter tenancy law in the existing building.
"We finally need a nationwide rent freeze for six years," Lay told our editorial team.
In addition, the rent brake must be tightened and a "breathing rent cap" introduced - one that allows regional differences in rents between Munich and Chemnitz.
“Everyone has to live.
That's why housing must no longer pose a risk of poverty," Lay demands.
This is how Germany lives: our series on the housing shortage and rent madness
This is how Germany lives: our series on the housing shortage and rent madness
Well-paid job, permanent position: the best conditions for finding a nice apartment?
Not in Berlin, says the tenants' association.
Last option: bribery.
Anyone who builds today needs strong nerves.
Interest rates are rising, there are no skilled workers and there is also a lack of material.
If you try it, you also need a bit of luck – and a financial buffer.
Germany is a country of tenants.
And that's a problem.
Because rents are constantly rising.
What helps against this: property.
No, says Michael Voigtländer.
The state should help with loans.
Living in Germany is getting more and more expensive.
Politicians rely on new construction, tenant representatives on state intervention.
An expert says: Both are not enough.
He has another, more radical idea.
The standard response to housing shortages is often: build, build, build.
But the construction sector is quite harmful to the climate.
One way out lies in the so-called circular economy.
Vote with us.
Ministry of Construction: More money for social housing – and pressure on the FDP Ministry of Justice
When asked by Münchner Merkur
, Klara Geywitz's ministry conceded
that the housing construction targets had recently not been achieved.
You are in a “multidimensional crisis situation”.
More funding does not help "against a shortage of skilled workers, disrupted supply chains and rising interest rates," said a spokesman.
Added to this is the war in Ukraine, which also has an impact on new construction activities in Germany.
The ministry focuses on social housing, the promotion of cooperatives and housing policy instruments such as housing benefit.
The federal government also supports the states in creating housing for students and trainees.
In tenancy law - keyword index rents - the Ministry of Construction sees the Ministry of Justice of Marco Buschmann (FDP) as responsible.
"Because there is a lack of affordable housing, tenants often have no choice but to sign an index lease," said a spokesman.
It would be conceivable to introduce a cap of around 3.5 percent per year.
But this requires one thing at the traffic light: unity.