May 15, 2017
Private property rights in Hamburg Germany are under assault by government authorities. More than two million migrants have surged into Germany and are overwhelming the supply of available housing. A shortage of housing has been building for years with rent control laws so strict that construction firms would be unable to recover the cost of construction. To solve the self inflicted housing shortage, the Hamburg government is now seizing vacant property. Some commercial properties have been seized since 2015 and converted into housing. Now residential properties are being seized and renovated to house migrants. The costs of renovating the properties are being charged to the owners of the properties. In a throwback to East Germany’s Stasi spy agency, Greens and Socialists have created a hotline and website so “local residents can report vacant properties.” So far nobody in Hamburg has challenged the constitutionality of the law.