Friday, December 06, 2019

Working Only for the Rent

The island of Sylt in the north of Germany is the most unaffordable place to rent a property in the whole of the country. If you are a low-incomer earner in Sylt then, on average, you will have to pay over half of your salary on rent. The most affordable municipality in Germany is Borgentreich, in the Höxter district of North Rhine-Westphalia. Low-income earners in Borgentreich on average only have to pay 18% of their salary on rent.

Two weeks ago Zeit released an interactive map of rental costs in Germany. Zeit's interactive map How Expensive is Living in Germany? visualized the average rent charged in towns across the whole country. On the map individual German municipalities were colored to show the average rental cost of properties by square meter. As part of its continuing examination of the rental market Zeit has now released a new interactive map which visualizes German rents as a percentage of the average income of a low-income earner.

Zeit's Rental Costs: Working Only for the Rent includes an interactive map which shows the cost of renting in 4,000 municipalities, based on the average rent as a percentage of the average low-income salary in the municipality. For the sake of the map low-income earners are defined as the 20 percent of the local population with the lowest salary. If you hover over an area on the map you can view the local average rent, the average local low-income salary and the percentage of this wage which would have to be paid for the average rent.

Zeit's article also includes three maps which show how much of their salaries low-income earners would have to pay for different priced rental properties. These three maps show the percentage of a low-income salary which would need to be spent on a low-cost rental property, an averagely priced rental, and an expensive rental. Obviously the burden increases with the cost of a property. In many cases a low-income worker would have to pay over 100% of their salary to be able to afford an average priced expensive rental property.

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