Millions of German tenants have to adjust to rising housing costs: Germany’s largest real estate company, the Dax group Vonovia, considers significant rent increases to be inevitable given the high inflation rates.

“If inflation is permanently at four percent, rents will have to increase accordingly every year in the future,” said Vonovia CEO Rolf Buch to the “Handelsblatt”. Otherwise, many landlords would get into serious trouble.

“We can’t pretend that inflation will bypass rents. That won’t work,” Buch continued. The real estate giant owns around 565,000 apartments, most of them in Germany.

According to the company, there are 42,000 apartments in the capital alone. However, Berliners can breathe a sigh of relief: the agreements in the capital remain in place.

A Vonovia spokeswoman said on Wednesday when asked: “The commitment to the Senate is: We will not increase our rents in Berlin by more than one percent annually across the entire portfolio.” This was publicly agreed last year. One percent on average means some adjustments can be over and some under.

The wording at the time: “Vonovia and Deutsche Wohnen agree to limit their regular rent increases over their Berlin portfolio to a maximum of one percent annually over the next three years and to the inflation adjustment in the two following years.”