Berlin residents angered by tourists
Robert has nothing against tourist in his neighborhood. “It is wonderful that people from the whole world come to the city so long they behave themselves” said the resident from Friedrich Street. The problem is that, an increasing number of living apartments are turned to holiday rentals and the young tenants usually come to throw loud parties in the big city. The result is noise and piles of rubbish on the house corridor. “I cannot sleep because of the loud noise” said Robert.
But is this a single case? The Berlin tourism is booming. Meanwhile there are 12.000 vacation rentals with 12.000 beds in the city as the Berliner tenant association estimated. That is good business for the visitor from abroad. The short –time Berliners pay more than the renters but less than a regular Hotel room. That naturally agitates the German Hotel and Catering Trade Association since the sectors revenue is decreasing. Those suffering from the booming business are the tenants living in the converted rental buildings.
According to a study which was carried out, 95% of the interviewed said that they had negative experiences with the visitors. The same problems exist in other major cities such as Munich and Hamburg. Robert thought for a long time that the problem with the annoying tourist would decrease with time but “more rental apartments are being rented to tourists“. He said. Out of 930 apartments in Wilhelm Street, one third was converted to rental flats. Cleaning and laundry service included, “currently there are no more resident apartments but Hotel businesses” he said.
Tenants sue landlords in vain
Since the property management did not react to their complaints, Robert and other tenants decreased their rent. In the case of Robert, he was dismissed out of the apartment and the landlord sued him in return. The process was carried out up to the High Court in Karlsruhe. The manager of the holiday apartments and their public spokesman were not available for an interview.
The politicians and Administration have recognized the problem with the rental apartments, the Senator changed the regulation about the operation of structural works .Requirements for fire safety and escape routes were tightened, apartments with more than 12 beds have to fulfill the same requirements as the hotels do. But they are rarely adhered to. The district Office of Mitte wanted to curtail the flooding of the rental flats but they failed in a Berlin Administration Court. The Office had restricted the owner of a resident flat to rent his apartments to tourist but the judges viewed the matter differently since the owners rented out their apartments with a three to eight months contract.