Booming metropolises on the one hand, desolate communities on the other. While many people are wondering how they are going to pay the rising rents and real estate prices in cities such as Munich, Stuttgart, Frankfurt am Main or Berlin, in rural areas there is sometimes a desperate search for tenants and owners for vacant buildings so that they do not fall into disrepair.
Especially on the subject of Housing show themselves in Germany unequal living conditions. This was already pointed out by the "Equal Living Conditions" commission set up by the Federal Ministry of the Interior. Twelve measures developed by the commission were to be addressed by the federal cabinet. The point urban development and social housing, the Federal Ministry of the Interior now sees as settled.
Study: There is a lack of a regionally anchored housing policy
That from settled however no speech can be, suggests a study of the Bonn Forschungsunternehmens Quaestio, which is present to our editorship. For two years, the company, which specializes in research on urban and regional development, accompanied a project organized by the Federal Association of German Housing and Real Estate Companies (GdW) to investigate regional differences in the housing industry.
The conclusion: there was a lack of regionally anchored Housing and building land policy, the municipalities are due to Debts hardly able to act and the Urban development funding is completely bypassing many cities and municipalities, as they are not in a position to raise the necessary funds of their own.
It is fitting that the German government recently had to admit that the mountain of unclaimed subsidies for urban development has now accumulated to more than half a billion euros.
Criticism from the housing industry
"So far, there is no sign that the necessary 'jolt' is going through Germany to balance out the different living conditions nationwide," criticizes GdW President Axel Gedaschko. It's been just under a year and a half since the Equal Living Conditions Commission presented its recommendations, "but nothing has happened," Gedaschko said.
The study uses the example of Jena and the neighboring Saale-Holzland district to show how closely unequal conditions sometimes lie together. On the one hand, the growing university city with rising rents, on the other, rural structures with empty, decaying houses.
Promotion from above – and from below
"Where public investment fails to materialize due to a lack of financial strength, private investment also threatens to flag," the study says. Or to put it another way: where rents and purchase prices hardly arouse expectations of returns, people do not redevelop and build.
However, in order to make rural areas more attractive, there is a need for more than just federal and state funding, for example, for the expansion of local public transportation. There also needs to be impetus "from below," from the communities themselves, for example in the form of regional platforms. In Jena, for example, this has been done. A municipal working group has been formed. Working together to find solutions for making life in the city and the country equally attractive.
Housing companies increasingly called upon for deconstruction
The federal state that also borders the Saale-Holzland district has a completely different problem: Saxony-Anhalt. The population is getting older on average, young people often move away. "Saxony-Anhalt is facing considerable challenges," the study therefore states.
Supply infrastructure is breaking down, both housing companies and private owners lack funds for renovation and conversion measures. The obvious solution would be to deconstruct buildings. But that is unlikely, especially for private owners, they say.
"For private owners, demolition of their properties often means that a source of income is lost without this loss being compensated or absorbed to the necessary extent," write the study authors. Here, he says, the housing companies are increasingly called upon to adapt the stock and, where necessary, to acquire individual plots of land.