In May, Berlin officials put into effect a controversial ban on property owners renting out their home or flat on popular services like Airbnb, but a court ruling issued on Tuesday may provide some relief to those who want to make a little extra income off of their unused properties.
Three individuals challenged the city’s ban after finding that renting out their second homes in Berlin, when they are not using them, could carry a fine of €100,000 if listed on sites like Airbnb.
Tuesday’s ruling is more of an exception to the new law for those who own second homes in Berlin and want to rent out the space to vacationers during the times of the year that the owners are living in their primary home.
Berlin was motivated to create the ban out of concerns that rental sites were reducing the available housing in the city, but in this specific case, the court decided that renting out a second home doesn’t make a difference in availability.
The ruling does not reverse the ban all together as the decision only requests that area officials make an exception for the three individuals that brought on the case. While it does pave the way for more exceptions, there doesn’t appear to be a clear option, as of yet, for others to become exempt from the law.