November 24th, 2022

Pros and cons: Restrictions on building a house

Although costs have risen, many people still dream of owning their own home

PRO: A luxury, not a right

The building industry is jubilant because the desire of Austrians to own a single-family house is still unbroken – despite inflation and the energy crisis. But desire is not reality, and in the latter it is becoming increasingly difficult for normal earners to get a loan and build a house. Recently, there have even been calls for a house-building bonus and a reduction in VAT on building materials and services.

On the other hand, there are critics who have been calling for some time for the construction of new buildings to be reduced to an absolute minimum. According to the motto: the best house is the one that is not built. Because new buildings consume land, resources and CO2. In Austria, an area the size of 16 football fields is sealed every day – making us the front-runner in Europe. Moreover, there are many vacant buildings in the country. There should rather be subsidies for all those who take over existing buildings and breathe new life into them. The tip of the iceberg: even today, new building land is dedicated in Austria every day, although more than a quarter of the already dedicated areas are still undeveloped.

The current calls from the building industry sound as if building houses is a human right. But this is not the case. Those who build new houses harm the climate and afford themselves a luxury, not only at their own expense, but at the expense of all of us.

CONTRA: Who are the bad guys?

A villa with a pool for everyone, including hundreds of square metres of pesticide-soaked turf. That’s not possible. And that cannot be the lifestyle of the future on this planet. But we won’t get anywhere in the climate debate by distributing simple cards for good and evil. Are all those who want to build a cottage now surely on the wrong side? Would a vegan house builder be better in this distribution of roles than a tenant who eats meat three times a day? It’s not that simple.

Building a house has become a problematic issue. There is no entitlement and certainly no right to it, of course. But we should treat the dreams of (young) people with care. For some people, owning their own home is part of their dream, something they want to work hard for, something they want to “build”. This also has strong symbolic power: I believe in a future for myself and my children.

This is precisely the kind of strength we need in a society whose younger generations are already partly gripped by apocalyptic rigidity, who even think that nothing is worthwhile any more.

Yes, thoughtless land sealing ruins nature and thus our lives. But regulatory restrictions on private dreams of building a house are the wrong way to go. It would be better to have alternatives such as green facades in affordable rental houses, attractive, green residential buildings. Then the choice would also look very different.

Source:, 24.11.2022

About Mosam Real Estate

Mosam Real Estate was founded in 2017 and is headquartered in Vienna. The owner-managed company sees itself as a comprehensive real estate service provider and residential developer. The focus is on the high-quality marketing of residential and commercial properties throughout Austria, as well as the renovation and construction of residential buildings, taking into account the current possibilities of sustainable and climate-friendly building materials and construction methods.

For further information, please visit

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