Standstill instead of new construction

Standstill instead of new construction

Panel: How can life be breathed back into the market?

400,000 new apartments per year? Not possible, according to official statements from the Federal Building Ministry. What can be done to boost new construction?

Rising interest rates, exploding material costs, a lack of skilled workers, expensive regulations - new housing construction, which is so urgently needed in Berlin, is increasingly at a standstill. There is hardly any hammering, bricklaying and plastering going on in Berlin, despite all the lofty goals of the city's leaders. In fact, the market has almost come to a complete standstill for the past nine months, said Carsten Sellschopf. The chairman of the VBKI Real Estate Committee moderated a panel organized by the VBKI and the New Ways for Berlin initiative, which explored ways out of the construction crisis.

Without a significant increase in rents, new construction in Berlin is practically no longer possible, explained Maren Kern. According to the head of the Association of Berlin-Brandenburg Housing Companies (BBU), no apartment can currently be built for less than 5,000 euros per square meter - in return, investors would need rents of 16.50 euros to cover their costs. However, a rent level of 6.50 to 7.50 euros is considered socially acceptable - and politically desirable. So what can be done?

Dr. Hinrich Holm suggested thinking about changing the funding objectives. The Chairman of the Board of the state-owned Investitionsbank Berlin (IBB) put forward the idea of focusing more on the mid-price segment in particular - EUR 10 to 12 per square meter - as part of the funding efforts. It was clear that public budgets would be permanently overstretched with subsidies of 10 euros per square meter. Instead, he suggested supporting the large number of Berliners who could not afford rents of 16 euros or more per square meter, but for whom 10 to 12 euros would be affordable. Relocations would also free up more existing apartments in the lower price segment. "There is enough social rent in the city, you just have to free it up," says Dr. Holm.

In addition to the revenue side, the panel also looked at the rise in construction costs. Despite all the rationalization efforts (serial construction), there is certainly no silver bullet to reduce these costs. Jörn von der Lieth, head of the Evangelische Hilfswerkssiedlung (HWS), suggested starting with the cost-driving standards and recommended a differentiated approach. Do student apartments really have to be equipped with expensive elevators?

The Berliner Morgenpost and the Berliner Zeitung also reported on the event.


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