Housing in Germany: People living in more space than ever before

Housing in Germany: People living in more space than ever before
Newly built luxury apartments in Berlin in June. Photo: DPA
People are living in increasingly larger spaces, according to data published Wednesday from the German Statistical Office.

New data from Germany’s Federal Statistical Office shows that individuals are taking up an increasing amount of square metres.

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At the end of 2019, apartments throughout the Bundesrepublik had an average size of 91.9 sq. metres, with each inhabitant accounting for 47 sq. metres. That was up slightly from 46.7 sq. metres in 2018.

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In 2010, this figure stood at 45 sq. metres.

At the turn of the millennium, the average person lived in 39.5 sq. metres, up from 34.8 sq. metres in 1990.

At the same time, more and more people are living alone in Germany. Since Reunification in 1991, the number of one-person households has spiked by 46 percent. 

The number of households with three or more people, whether families or flat mates, has decreased by 20 percent in the same period.

Graph translated for The Local by Statista.

Growing number of apartments

More than two million apartments have been built in Germany in the past ten years – yet in many cities there remains a lack of affordable housing.

READ ALSO: The places in Germany where rents are rising rapidly

Researchers put the housing stock in Germany at 42.5 million units in both residential and non-residential buildings. That was 0.7 percent, or 277,400 dwellings more than one year earlier.

In the medium term, the stock has grown significantly: since 2010, it has increased by five percent, or two million housing units. 

In light of numerous construction projects throughout the country, the housing space in Germany has also increased by 6.2 percent to almost 3.9 billion sq. meters.

However, especially in cities such as Berlin, Munich and Frankfurt, large apartments are unobtainable for many due to the high rents.

For this reason, many tenants report being satisfied with less space when concluding new contracts, a recent study by the German Economic Institute (IW) showed.


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