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A view of hipster Kreuzberg in Berlin

Survey: Move from Berlin, it is too expensive

Survey: Move from Berlin, it is too expensive

The survey asked one simple question: “Are you satisfied or would you like to move?”

A recent study by German television network rbb published today found that the high price of real estate and rent is pushing Berliners away from the city and into the countryside. At the same time, prices in rural communities on the outskirts of the city are also on the rise and some Berliners are thinking of leaving Germany altogether.

It is always about housing

The survey tried to gauge the situation in the German capital by asking one simple question and then diving into the details behind it: “Are you satisfied or would you like to move?”

Almost half of Berliners want to change apartments, while every four out of ten wants to leave the city outright, looking for more affordable housing. More and more people are flocking to Brandenburg – the more rural-small-town countryside around the capital.

Around 36% of Berliners are looking to move away from the city and out of those, 41% are actually taking that step. These are mostly single-parent households and starter families, some of the groups that have the highest need for affordable housing.

Some of the other reasons why people said they want to leave the city were peace and quiet (56%), lack of security (41%) and air pollution (31%). An overwhelming majority (59%), though, cite high housing costs as the main reason.

The countryside is getting crowded

The rise of property prices in Berlin, as well as people moving away to the country, are not a new phenomenon. However, as the survey points out, average prices for real-estate purchases have tripled in the last 10 years, from 50 euros to 150. There are only five districts on the edge of Brandenburg where the average is under 100 euros: Prignitz, Uckermark and in the three districts in the far south.

Naturally, the closer a district is to the capital, the pricier it gets, with Märkisch-Oderland, Oberhavel and Barnim topping the chart with upwards of 300 euros per square metre.

Christian Hanke, a representative of construction financing firm Interhyp, was quoted in a report by rbb24 saying that people need to be extra cautious when taking out mortgages. He explained that at an average price of 480,000 euros for a home, a lot of the properties are possibly overvalued and long-term loans - potentially volatile, as the region could be experiencing a property bubble.

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