This is the first use of a law passed in 2015 that allows for property to be seized to be used for refugees: “In Hamburg, property can be expropriated,” translated from “In Hamburg kann enteignet werden,” by Steffen Richter, Zeit Online, October 1, 2015: “The city of Hamburg has decided to seize commercial real estate. This is to ensure the accommodation of newly arriving refugees.”
And now it has happened. Merkel’s Germany is showing a clear preference for Muslim migrants over the rights of its own citizens. And apparently most Germans are too cowed by the prospect of charges of “racism” and “Islamophobia” to utter a murmur of dissent.
“Mitte District is for the first time forcibly leasing,” translated from “Bezirk Mitte führt erstmals Zwangsvermietung durch,” Hamburger Abendblatt, May 2, 2017:
Hamburg. The district of Hamburg-Mitte is now doing what it said it would do: for the first time, empty living space has been taken from its owner and forcibly rented. In accord with this, a trustee is currently renovating six long-term lease apartments on the Ohlendorffstrasse in Hamm. This year, they are to be restored and handed over to their owner, said Sorina Weiland, a spokeswoman for the district. The renovation costs in the middle five-digit range will be billed to him.
As the Abendblatt reported in November, in the fight against the housing shortage, the district had for the first time taken the utmost advantage: expropriation. Since the Hamburg Housing Protection Act became more stringent in 2013, long-term unused apartments can be refurbished and forcibly rented by the trustee, who is commissioned by the District Office. In a first for the district, Mitte now has taken six out of eight residential units at Ohlendorffstrasse 15 in Hamm. After the threat of expropriation, the owner was promised that he would be allowed to rent his apartments again. However, this remains only a verbal promise.
The apartments in Hamm have been empty since 2012. Despite previous foreclosures of 18,000 euros, the landlord had refused to bring the apartments back to the market. Therefore the key power over the residential units was handed over to a trustee on 1 March.
Once sanitation requirements have been identified, heating, flooring, plumbing and walls are being renewed. An apartment can even be rented again depending upon its condition, said Sorina Weiland. But the district will only vote for a precise plan this week. Once all six apartments have been renovated and refurbished, they will be returned to the owner.
Until now, the forced lease as a final use of the housing protection law had not been implemented in any Hamburg district. According to the law, an apartment must have been empty for at least four months without noticeable renovation work to be reported to the Office. Only after this can the owner be forced to make a move….