Status: 02/23/2021 3:39 a.m.
Cap rental prices? Restrict the construction of single family homes? Experts and politicians are discussing how housing can be kept affordable. Almost two and a half years ago, the federal government launched a housing offensive. Today we will take stock.
By Björn Dake,
ARD capital studio
Horst Seehofer is not only Federal Minister of the Interior, but also Minister of Construction. And as such, he is very satisfied with the housing offensive: “My results are very positive. It is the largest housing construction program that a federal government has ever launched after the years of reconstruction, after the Second World War.”
ARD capital studio
At the start of the housing offensive almost two and a half years ago, Seehofer had promised a total of 1.5 million new apartments. By the end of the year it will probably be 1.2 million. In addition, the building ministry expects around 770,000 building permits.
Seehofer counts as successes: Housing benefit adjusted. Baukindergeld introduced. Social housing built – “at a high level”. The SPD also emphasizes: The federal government spends one billion euros per year on social housing.
Left criticizes the lack of social housing
Too little, thinks the party “Die Linke”. She does the math: Not even 9 percent of the newly built apartments are social housing. That is a scandal.
In 2019, more than 25,000 social housing was built nationwide. But at the same time almost 65,000 apartments have lost their social ties. So the bottom line was that there was less social housing.
FDP demands speed with approvals
Daniel Föst’s balance sheet for the housing offensive is also bad – albeit for different reasons. The FDP MP is the housing policy spokesman for his parliamentary group. “If I look at the facts, then the building and housing policy of the federal government has simply failed”. He enumerates: The rents and the cost of owning a home would rise, the targeted completions of apartments would miss by miles.
Build more, build faster, build cheaper, demands Föst. For example, approval procedures would have to be digitized. A homeowner should be allowed to expand his roof without a permit. In general, the FDP man wants to ensure that more people can own their own apartment or house.
Greens are committed to owning a home
Robert Habeck has nothing against that either. The Greens boss demands that private individuals pay less land transfer tax than real estate companies when buying. He makes it clear that his party does not want to ban single-family houses – as it is supposed to be.
“ The single-family house is part of the ensemble of housing options in Germany. Depending on where people live, how they plan, how the municipalities designate the building areas, it will continue to be part of it and will also be built,” said Habeck.
CSU politician demands an independent ministry
Whether it’s your own house, faster permits or more social housing – Emmi Zeulner thinks that building and living must be given a different priority in the federal government. Her party, the CSU, is providing the Federal Minister of Construction.
Full cities, empty villages
For the Upper Franconian Zeulner, when it comes to building and living, it is important not only to look at the large metropolitan areas – but also at inner cities and village centers. Apartments there are often empty, and houses are sometimes derelict.
To make them more attractive, Zeulner suggests locating universities in rural areas, making monument protection more flexible and increasing tax depreciation.
Dilapidated village centers, land consumption, rising rents – the federal government compiles the answers to these challenges for five hours. But even after this top meeting, there will be – literally – many construction sites in housing policy.