On Friday debated the new tenant protection act in the Bundestag. It should be on 1. January 2019 to come into force and, among other things, Rent control, and to expensive upgrades with subsequent rent increases make it difficult. The SPD has contributed to the development of the proposals, Michael Grand, Rapporteur of the SPD parliamentary group for tenancy law go not far enough. The market had developed so rapidly that we must take more radical measures, which may go beyond the coalition agreement.
the WORLD: The tenant protection act is intended to protect tenants in urban areas to high rental prices. Can you regulate the in fact, by law?
Michael Groß: It is at least a first, very important step for more tenant protection. In the case of Rent control, there are some improvements, because the landlord will have to lay at the conclusion of a new lease, the amount of the Vormiete open – in any case, if you request an amount that is more than ten percent above the local comparative rent. Either he has already requested from the previous tenant, then he must place this amount open. Or he has made within the last three years, a comprehensive modernisation. Or is it a new building. In all three cases, the appropriate documentation must be submitted.
the WORLD: the tenants understand that, and will keep the landlord in mind?
Large: After all, a tenant can complain about in the future is easier than in the past, after the completion of the lease for a supposedly high rent in writing. Then must justify the landlord. In case of doubt, but if a landlord take nothing with you, need to the tenant sue for as before, your right in court.
the WORLD: Complicated. Many citizens understand the price does not brake, still.
Large: Therefore, I am also of the view that this Instrument needs to be developed. Actually, it should give a automatism, or to a simple right-for tenants, the rent on its own initiative, on the permissible level lowered to the landlord, with supporting documents, which justify a higher amount. The burden of proof should be reversed. In addition, the rental price should be the brake throughout the entire Federal territory. It is In urban areas with excessive rents must work a price brake for new lease agreements easily and without litigation. And in rural or structurally weak residential price areas with little or no rental growth would have to brake anyway no effect, because the market will in the situation, not higher prices. So is likely to interfere with there’s also no one on it. Exceptions but also here: new building and modernisation. Therefore, the rental price brake is by the way a brake is also not New, as is claimed by some actors in the real estate industry.
the WORLD: your coalition partner, the CDU, is expected to participate in such “development”.
Big: This is probably to be expected, and therefore must be the CDU and the CSU, the question of whether or not you are serious when you speak to the affordable Housing “one of the biggest social issues of our time”. We want a social Pact, in order to make Rent affordable. The Union must decide whether it is on the side of the tenant or the real estate industry.
the WORLD: once again: Will the landlord, where the price brake so far, no matter, now all of a sudden?
Large: First of all, it must be noted also that many private landlords to comply with applicable law and in a fair proportion to their tenants are interested. These landlords are, in my estimation, in the majority, and ensure that the society works Together. But there are too many black sheep, or purely profit-oriented owners. In order to do it. And here tenants need, as already said, better to Sanction.
the WORLD: you are going beyond the coalition agreement.
Large: If the situation on the market developed so fast as now, you have to be within a legislature in the position to react, and the original plan. Basically, we need to prepare now already a landlord and tenant law amendment III, with more stringent rules.
the WORLD: The new rent law also provides for a reduction in the modernisation of the levy from eleven to eight percent. Some landlords feel bullied.
Large: This is nonsense. Actually, we could reduce to six percent or less. The previous modernization apportionment of eleven percent comes from a time in which the mortgage interest rates on the market at six or seven percent. The interest rate gap thus amounted to three or four percent. No one has complained 20 years ago that the levy would have been too low. It could also be lowered to five percent, and a modernization would still be economical – only, the payback period for the landlord would be longer. For landlord’s benefit in the light of the market situation compared to the past a higher and faster increase in value. From my point of view this is a fair balance of interests. By the way, the new law also provides a simplified upgrading process for the landlord, in the case of investments of less than 10,000 euros.
the WORLD: during the new tenancy law was in the time of the vote, the SPD is a paper “before rent turn now”, among other things, with the call for a Rent freeze – a limitation of rent increases to level of Inflation. The sounds now, but after a stalling of the market.
Large: Similar rules also apply in Switzerland. And, is there a stall in the market? The landlords in droves to sell their houses? No – on the contrary, The share of rental housing is as high as almost nowhere else in Europe. And the houses there don’t look like they are about to expire. I am firmly convinced that a rental is worthwhile, even under such conditions, especially in the aforementioned paper, there is a time limit of five years is proposed. Within this period, it could succeed in the market somewhat offset by more new construction.
the WORLD: Here, the Grand coalition has delivered so far. As before, plots of land are awarded to tax, building regulations in Germany are still too complicated, therefore too little is being built and too expensive.
Large: we Therefore propose a number of measures. The SPD is, among other things, for a significant strengthening of public and cooperative housing. In areas with tight housing markets, at least 50 percent of the building areas should go to municipal or cooperative carriers, the price bound in the living room. Municipalities should be given the tools to move to the owners of building land to Build.
the WORLD: Less market, more forced.
Large: It is not obvious that it is the “market” for years, creates its own power to provide for sufficient affordable offer.
the WORLD: Because the legislator and the authorities of the shortage have to see for a long time.
Large: we want to correct as quickly as possible. Even with simplified building regulations and more land. Here, however, must also join in the provinces. Basically, I am of the view: A flat may be a pure income property, no matter in what phase of the market.
the WORLD: Has the SPD actually, in view that your potential voters might want to form residential property, for retirement? Many “normal people” who have no Inheritance on account of failure especially at the high ancillary costs.
Large: The housing premium is a model of success, the effect of which is much too little attention. We have provided for in the coalition agreement improvements relating to both the income and the support amount of the premium. But it is also part of the truth, that the purchase should in addition to cost-down, among other things, the land purchase tax. I’m curious whether the CDU-FDP government in North Rhine-Westphalia is implementing its announcement of the land purchase tax from the current 6.5 percent lower. Other country governments could do that, some States are financially equipped now better than the Federal government. There is, therefore, room.
the WORLD: What is the need to pay the fee, the buyer broker?
Large: Also, I am in favour of the introduction of a broker-ordering principle to purchase real estate. The Ministry of justice is working on a follow-up assessment for a corresponding law. If the seller as the Customer pays the brokerage fee, would save many buyers to part several tens of thousands of euros, which they could use as equity. As a result, more households would be able to make the leap into home ownership. And in the long term, you could also think about to change to the notary fees a little. From my point of view there is little reason to ensure that a standardized certification must be paid for with rising real estate prices higher and higher. Here it could also give lump sums.