In the media for some time of a real estate bubble. Actually, the housing prices are rising and Rents especially in the urban areas since a long time strong. However, at the moment only in some Metropolitan areas the price exaggerations cannot be ruled out. It helps that the banks seem to have loosened their lending standards in spite of the good economic situation in great style. Real estate loans are secured in Germany, is still quite good. A Situation that has been observed during the financial and economic crisis in the United States or in Spain, not in Germany so to be feared, even if the prices should fall sharply.

In the recent past, the prices have risen, in particular because people in Metropolitan areas are drawn: While many rural areas – have just lost in the new Federal States – population, population increases in major cities since the mid-2000s. For example, the population of Munich has increased since 2005, to 16 percent, in Frankfurt at 15 percent and in Berlin by 11 percent. About the author

Christoph M. Schmidt, President of RWI – Leibniz Institute for economic research, Chairman of the expert Council for the assessment of overall economic development and Professor for economic policy and applied Econometrics at the Ruhr-University of Bochum (RUB).

in addition, other demo have taken care of a graphic, and social developments, a rising demand for housing in the cities – in particular due to the strong increase in the number of Single person households Between 1991 and 2017, has increased the population by only 3.5 per cent, the number of households by around 17 percent. Therefore, and due to increased claims – is in need of a Person today, on average, significantly more living space than in the past.

The supply of housing in the cities has not followed the rise in demand but what has led to a significant price increase. Thus, the key to the solution of the problem is to create more living space in the cities. However, the construction activity cannot be overnight to expand, especially since the cities have to show for it once the relevant plots of land.

regions more attractive

in addition, the regions beyond the big cities must be more attractive. This requires on the one hand, good mobility concepts and a modern infrastructure to improve access to the cities. On the other hand, on-the – spot studies, training and, above all, jobs have to be created, so that young people can be held in the Region. An important approach for the back is the design of the assessment rates for trade tax. Because the more opportunities for entrepreneurship and growth, the attractiveness of regions for businesses and for workers. But this development takes time.

concepts of the policy are inappropriate

The measures by which the policy is trying to currently, the Problem of rising living costs, unfortunately, are fundamentally unsuitable. The baukinder money has several disadvantages. First, it leads to high Deadweight, for that reason alone, because it should retroactively be granted: The sets no incentives to home ownership education, and indeed favours families that have decided already for the purchase of a House. In addition, seller will take into account experience has shown that such subsidies in their pricing, the baukinder money is likely to come more to the benefit of the sellers as to the buyers of real estate.

Similarly, the rental price brake is the problematic discrepancy between supply and demand will reduce in the housing market – on the contrary, When prices in certain areas are artificially low, exacerbating the disparity between supply and demand. Landlords can afford it, less solvent tenants refuse; this will be even harder to find an apartment.

What would really would help

the aim of leading instead, the Problem of the burden of high Rents with a Reform of the housing allowance. It is intended to prevent low-income households decrease the lease charge in the base backup. To be effective, you should adjust the height of the housing allowance more quickly to the income situation of the tenants. In addition, the income limits increase. In addition, the information of the living should be improved money and more easily accessible – many people do not seem to know at all that you would be entitled to housing benefit.

In conjunction with a reformed housing benefit can also win the social housing of the to – be – missed in the current Form, in many cases to be objective. For this purpose, there are already some good approaches – for example in Bavaria: There are granted in social housing, by income tiered rent subsidies. At the same time, social housing providers will receive the market rent. As a result, prices are not distorted and that the “false occupancy” of social housing by the better off is reduced.

once Again, the following applies: For a complicated and multi-faceted Problem there are no simple solutions. In addition to the extension of the housing grant such a reduction could take the costs incidental to the acquisition of real estate or a free amount of real estate transfer tax, although in the short-term pressure from the market. In the long term, there is no way around but to create more living space in the cities and at the same time make the less trendy areas on the edge of attractive.


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