Court Ruling Highlights Confusion for Home Sharing in Berlin

A court ruling that Berliners can share second homes has created further legal uncertainty in Berlin and is yet more proof that the Berlin housing law is confusing, disproportionate and needs to be fixed.

The court ruled individuals sharing their second homes while not in Berlin are not impacting the housing market and are not misusing housing.

And while this seems to provide greater certainty for owners of secondary residences, regular Berliners who share their primary homes to boost their income and afford living costs still face confusion and uncertainty. The principles of this ruling should also apply to regular people who share the homes in which they live.

Now is the time to fix the Berlin housing law, end the uncertainty and make clear that Berliners can share the home in which they live.

While Airbnb was not party to this case, we have long maintained that we want to work with policymakers on clear rules that distinguish between home sharing and unwelcome commercial operators.

Home sharing puts money in the pockets of regular Berliners, boosts economic opportunities and spreads guests and benefits across to more communities and businesses across Berlin. Home sharing does not impact the housing market and the law needs to be fixed to recognise that fact.

Last month, we shared news about Airbnb hosts across Berlin who are joining calls for clear home sharing rules in Berlin. The typical Airbnb host in Berlin host made €1,800 by sharing their space for 34 nights last year. Almost 60 percent of Airbnb hosts in Berlin earn below the city’s median household income and a third of hosts say they rely on the additional income to help make ends meet.