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Rent burden: Rents hurt the most in these German cities
Rent burden: Rents hurt the most in these German cities
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Video: Renting in Germany 🏠 ✅- [Everything YOU NEED to Know] 2023, February
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The rent burden continues to advance in Germany: According to a study by the Hans Böckler Foundation on living conditions in the state, large city households increasingly have to sacrifice a huge amount of their income for rent - often even unreasonable sums, so that there is little budget left to live on remains. We show here how much the households are affected and where the rent burden is highest.

Table of contents Table of contents Rent charge: Rents hurt the most in these German cities

  • Four out of ten German households pay more than 30 percent of their income for rent
  • Inequality: low-income households suffer from the rent burden
  • In which major cities is the rent burden the highest / lowest?

Table of contents Table of contents Rent charge: Rents hurt the most in these German cities

  • Four out of ten German households pay more than 30 percent of their income for rent
  • Inequality: low-income households suffer from the rent burden
  • In which major cities is the rent burden the highest / lowest?

In a study by the Hans Böckler Foundation, city sociologists from the Humboldt University in Berlin and the Goethe University in Frankfurt examined the rent burden in 77 major German cities: How much money do households have to spend on their gross rent (including ancillary costs, excluding heating costs) from their net income? As part of this, the researchers analyzed the living conditions for different types of households and income. As a working basis, they used data from the 2013 microcensus.

Four out of ten German households pay more than 30 percent of their income for rent

The results of the study are terrifying: Around 40 percent of households in major German cities have to spend more than 30 percent of their net income on rent: this affects the equivalent of around 5.6 million housing units and thus around 8.6 million Germans, according to the Experts pay too much for living. Because a rent charge of 30 percent or more represents a problematic high exertion that actually exceeds the limits of what can be afforded. After all, households have little income to live on. In addition, with the 30 percent mark, a large number of landlords fear that the tenants will not be able to afford their homes in the long term.

But it gets even harder: Around a million households (around 1.6 million inhabitants) in German cities have to give up more than half of their hard-earned money, and all of this just for rent. The bottom line, i.e. after the rental price has been paid in, is that around 1.3 million residential units have less money than the Hartz IV standard rates offer. Taken as a whole, the average rent burden of all large city households is 27 percent.

Mietbelastung
Mietbelastung

Rent is a heavy burden for around one million German households in large cities, who have to transfer more than half of their income to rent.

Photo: iStock / photoschmidt

Inequality: low-income households suffer from the rent burden

Especially in metropolises with growing population density, there is an emergency with affordable, smaller accommodations on the housing market. German citizens with less wages generally already have less living space and live in more uncomfortable places to live. However, the rental occupancy rate affects these household types far more than richer units. Because the average rent amount for big city households that receive less than 60 percent of median income is 7.20 euros per square meter. In comparison, households that receive more than 140 percent of median income only pay EUR 8.10 per square meter. This results in extreme differences in terms of the occupancy rate: While people with higher wages have to sacrifice 17.2 percent for gross rent, 39.7 percent of the income is lost in economically weaker households.

The social gap is widening, as the scientists say: “With regard to the rental rate, a worsening of inequality due to living conditions can even be observed. The living conditions are not only a mirror of existing inequality, but also contribute to growing inequality through the high rent costs. “(Extract from the report of the research project 2017)

In which major cities is the rent burden the highest / lowest?

It is clear that the percentages in the study do not reveal a clear pattern of which city types are affected by a high or low rent burden in Germany.

Mietbelastung
Mietbelastung

The infographic illustrates the percentage of gross cold rent on net income in all 77 major German cities.

Photo: Hans Böckler Foundation

When you hear “high rents”, you quickly think of Munich. However, the top ten German metropolitan areas with the highest occupancy rate (over 28 percent) include rich cities such as Hamburg and Düsseldorf as well as economically backward centers such as Bremerhaven or Offenbach.

However, it is evident that the most populous state of North Rhine-Westphalia is most affected: seven of the first ten cities come from North Rhine-Westphalia. The leader in the statistics is also the medium-sized city of Neuss: every second household in Neuss is struggling with a rent burden of at least 30 percent of household income. But Krefeld with 47 percent and Aachen with 46 percent are also far ahead.

East German metropolises such as Leipzig, Dresden, Erfurt or Magdeburg are conspicuously less polluted (21 to 24 percent), but the least affected are Wolfsburg and Chemnitz (both 21 percent).

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