The Vorarlberg ÖVP wants to make housing more affordable and support the creation of property with a new housing promotion guideline with attractive loans, spatial planning interventions, the implementation of a land fund and the introduction of a second home tax.
The new guideline should apply from January 1, 2023, and the corresponding decisions in the state government would be made promptly, announced ÖVP chairman Governor Markus Wallner on Thursday.
1.25 percent fixed interest rate for 35 years
Wallner and Housing Councilor Marco Tittler spoke of a rigorous simplification of housing subsidies. The focus is on affordability and ecology. The governor said that attractive loans with a starting interest rate of 0.25 percent are offered through the housing subsidy. Loans over 35 years will also be available at a fixed interest rate of 1.25 percent. In order to enable young families to achieve the equity quota for a bank loan prescribed by the financial market supervisory authority, an interest-free loan over 20 years is also being considered, which could be financed with funds from housing subsidies.
100,000 euros for a family of four
Tittler explained that in the future, when purchasing an apartment – provided that it complies with the guidelines – 60,000 euros will be paid, plus an additional 10,000 euros per child. If it is the first property, another 20,000 euros are added. In such a case, a family with two children would receive 100,000 euros in housing subsidies.
The income limits for housing subsidies have also been increased. For one person, the mark is 3,650 euros net per month. There are still upper limits for construction costs, but these would be increased.
“Bodenfonds” is intended to secure land
With the land fund (Wallner: “This is part of the government program”) they want to get going. They want to take action in close coordination with the municipalities in order to make land available for affordable housing. In addition, the land fund is intended to help secure land for strategically important infrastructure projects. A new reserved area “Förderbare Wohnbau” should also help.
Second Home Tax
As Wallner and Tittler explained, a tax on second homes should prevent vacancies in the state as far as possible. In the future, not only “classic” holiday homes in tourist areas, but also all other apartments – including vacant ones – that are not used as a main residence or for professional or similar purposes should trigger the obligation to pay the fee. It would be up to the municipalities to impose such a levy.
At the same time, the “Secure Rentals” project should be pushed further. Apartment owners are protected against possible costs caused by tenants. Since the start of the project in 2015, around 200 properties have been let through the initiative.