Everywhere in Germany there is a lack of living space.
There are actually enough apartments, say scientists now and bring higher rents into play.
Berlin – The housing shortage in many German metropolitan areas is getting worse.
In order to alleviate the acute shortage, the researchers at the Real Estate Institute at the University of Regensburg are now proposing to significantly increase the rental prices for old, cheap contracts.
This would effectively force those who live in apartments that are too large but do not want to move into a smaller apartment because of the low rent.
Unsurprisingly, the proposal is not well received.
Proposal against the lack of housing: landlords should not keep the money
Basically, the real estate scientists have a huge redistribution in mind.
The 70-year-old, who lives alone in his four-room apartment, should either pay significantly more or, with a rent increase of 15 or 20 percent, see no other option than to move into an apartment that is more suitable for him.
A young family that can't find anything at the moment could then move into his apartment.
"I think it's absurd that people who have been paying low rent for years and decades are so extremely protected in this country, while others can't find an affordable apartment," says Steffen Sebastian, one of the authors of the proposal to the
The housing market is tight.
Can higher rents really help?
© Jan Woitas / dpa
But the scientists go even further: they should not keep the additional money that the landlords would get from such price increases.
Instead, a “landlord soli” is to be introduced, with which state subsidies such as housing benefit are financed.
This would mean that many more people could receive housing benefit than before.
How high the landlord's solos would be would depend on the income of private landlords.
Criticism rains down: the tenants' association and the owners' association think little of it
That's the theory.
And in fact, it has been noticed time and again in Germany that families with children in particular live in cramped apartments, while many pensioners are accommodated in overly spacious ones.
In January, the Institute of German Economics (IW) in Cologne determined in a study that around six percent of households in large cities live too cramped, while another 6 percent live in apartments that are too large.
In households with people over the age of 70, it was even 9 percent who lived too generously.
The IW therefore also concluded that the apartment exchange could possibly remedy the situation.
So the problem is real.
However, the proposal made by the Regensburg experts met with massive criticism.
According to the tenants' association, there is a shortage of 700,000 apartments across Germany - this gap cannot be filled with a redistribution strategy alone.
There is simply a lack of apartments that need to be built as quickly as possible.
The Haus & Grund owners’ association also demands this
From the point of view of the association, building must become cheaper.
Due to inflation, more and more orders are being canceled because the new building can no longer be financed.
List of rubrics: © Jan Woitas / dpa