Who owns social housing
Together with all Berliners, we will find out who owns the houses in the city. And how that relates to the rental prices.
The main results
Secret real estate giant in Berlin
With a network of mailbox companies, the billionaire Pears family has disguised the fact that they have long been one of the city's great owners. That's a problem for Berlin. By Lubena Awan, Andreas Baum, Justus von Daniels, Hendrik Lehmann, David Meidinger, Michael Gegg, Sidney Gennies, Michel Penke, Ralf Schönball, Thomas Weyres, Moritz Wienert
10 reasons to research
1. Clarify ownership of your apartment
The lease does not have to state who owns the house in which you live. So you don't know which owner you are dependent on.
2. Provide information for politics
Senate and districts lack an overview of which investors belong to which parts of Berlin. Thus, many measures against property speculation and rent increases are ineffective.
A lot of money is laundered with real estate in Berlin. If the owners are known, this is less easy.
4. Make speculation transparent
The public does not know which investors are particularly fueling the Berlin real estate market. If they were known, business practices could be better regulated.
When buying a house, things are not always right. If the ownership structure is transparent, this can be prevented more easily.
6. Prevent unnecessary vacancies
Despite the housing shortage, numerous houses in Berlin are empty. If the owners are known, it is better to proceed against it.
7. Keep an eye on the state
Many land and real estate belong to the federal government or the city. Citizens have the right to know whether and to whom they are being sold.
8. Disclose tax tricks
Because of the high level of anonymity, some investors and real estate dealers can avoid their taxes.
9. Create transparency, find solutions
Many citizens and initiatives want to discuss solutions to the housing crisis. That only works if they know who owns the city.
10. Question confidentiality
In other European countries, property ownership is public. Is secrecy still appropriate in Germany?
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