1.800 people show up to view one apartment in Berlin

1.800 people show up to view one apartment in Berlin

Rooms: 2. Rent: 550 euros warm. Interested tenants: 1.749. Everybody knows that finding an apartment in Berlin is competitive, but this really takes the biscuit.   

One flat, 1.749 would-be tenants

An advert for a small flat led to something of a stampede in Berlin on Sunday afternoon. Just a mere 12 hours after the apartment was first listed online, an incredible 1.749 house-hunters showed up for a mass viewing organised by the property manager.

The place up for grabs is a two-room apartment on Meininger Straße, close to the town hall in Berlin’s sought-after Schöneberg district. The 54-square-metre apartment is located on the third floor of a house dating from the 1950s and comes with its own balcony - all for the bargainous price of 550 euros warm (including some extra costs like energy and water). 

To try to maintain some semblance of order as a panic threatened to break out in the stairwell, the property manager used a megaphone to shout instructions to the gathered crowd. Would-be renters were only allowed to enter the apartment in groups of 20 to 30 at a time. 

Reflection of Berlin’s overheated housing market

Several criticised the procedure, with one woman telling broadcaster rbb that it felt inhumane to invite so many people at once: “Somehow, that’s provocative,” she said. Another woman described the viewing as a “disaster” but said that it reflected the current tense situation in Berlin’s housing market. “This is not an isolated case,” she said. 

The property manager, Rolf Harms, justified his decision to let hundreds of interested parties visit at the same time by saying that a pre-selection of tenants had already been carried out. Nobody who was searching for a second home or had a high salary had been allowed to view the apartment. 

The apartment’s lucky new tenant will be selected in a week’s time. 

Thumb: rbb / Arndt Breitfeld



Abi Carter

Managing Editor at IamExpat Media. Abi studied German and History at the University of Manchester and has since lived in Berlin, Hamburg and Utrecht, working since 2017 as a writer,...

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nic_m 19:18 | 16 December 2019

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