Housing crisis: Munich threatens Airbnb in case of lack of information with penalty money

In the fight against the misuse of flats, Munich requires comprehensive information from the providers. The city imposed 2017 more than 850,000 euros fine.

Housing crisis: Munich threatens Airbnb in case of lack of information with penalty money

In view of strongly rising rents and debate about lack of affordable housing, large cities are increasingly facing purpose of alienating apartments as holiday homes. The city of Munich requires Internet providers such as AIRBNB to provide comprehensive information about apartments that are offered as a whole and for more than eight weeks on platforms for rental to holiday guests. If providers do not meet demand, a penalty payment of 300,000 euro will be due, said social officer Doroe Schiwy.

"We have asked Airbnb several times to develop solutions so that illegal misuse is not supported and concrete proposals are made," Schiwy said. "Nothing happened." That is why social department of city now requests data by means of a decision. "We have refore written a total of six portals and asked m to provide us with relevant data. Airbnb is, however, by far market leader in this field, "said Schiwy.

The reason for procedure: according to social unit, it is quite costly and expensive for city to provide proof of misuse of an apartment. As a rule, advertisements on placement platforms only show an approximate location of apartment and almost all hosts only give a first name or increasingly a nickname. Furrmore, it is not publicly available on platform how often an apartment was actually booked.

More than 850,000 euros fine imposed

According to social unit, more and more apartments for holiday guests are offered via internet portals in Munich. In order to combat misuse, authority shall set up a special investigation team. With success, according to Schiwy: "2017 could be fed back to Munich housing market 298 apartments. 92 legal proceedings were successfully completed and fines of 851,110 euros were issued. " In 2017, 21,000 flats were examined.

The city of Munich also demands more stringent legal regulations from Bavaria in order to be able to act more effectively against misuse. Thus, city requires a registration obligation of all apartments, which are (also partly) offered for a foreign accommodation, a permit requirement for such use as well as an obligation that such apartments are only under right Full name of provider advertised.

Munich is not an isolated case. Cities like Berlin have been complaining about mass rededication of apartments in holiday homes years ago. A new regulation has been in place in Berlin since 1 May: if you want to rent a whole apartment for example via Airbnb as a holiday apartment, you have to register beforehand and need a fee-approved permission by district office. Since 1 August, a penalty of up to 500,000 euros is now threatened if registration is not possible. In principle, private persons in Berlin may rent a second home on up to 90 days a year if y do not have a main residence or or ancillary flats in capital city.

Updated Date: 04 August 2018, 12:00

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