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18/10/2021

Berlin house seizures would be difficult to replicate here, Maynooth University expert claims

Huge surge in students applying to Kildare's Maynooth University

FILE PIC: Maynooth University

An Assistant Professor at Maynooth University (MU) has said that the recent house seizure referendum which took place in Berlin yesterday would be hard to replicate in Ireland.

Berlin citizens recently backed what is being described by Euronews as one of Europe's most radical responses to gentrification: seizing 240,000 apartments from so-called mega landlords.

The referendum pass through with a 56 per cent approval rating.

Dr Rory Hearne, who teaches Social Policy at MU, has said that there are legal issues surrounding the potential move should it be considered in Ireland.

He told KFM Radio Station: "I think there are two things in it: in terms of Berlin, it isn't necessary constitutional, so there are legal steps that will have to go into actually implementing this."

"Also, it will cost (a lot) and it is a radical measure," he added.

The implications of the vote in Berlin means that private landlords that hold more than 3,000 units in Germany could have them expropriated and instead substituted into the city’s affordable housing stock.

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