The Minister of Construction assumes that the processing time will be longer
WIf he tries to get the subsidy as part of the housing benefit reform at the turn of the year, according to the Federal Building Minister, he must Klara Geywitz wait several weeks for payment. “It can be assumed that the processing time will increase more,” said the SPD politician of the “Bild”. “If you submit an application by January 1st, it will be decided in March.” The housing benefit for January and February will then be paid out retrospectively. Geywitz therefore spoke of “additional volume” coming to the housing benefit offices.
That housing benefit is a government rent subsidy for households that do not receive social benefits but are still short on money. From January, more households in Germany should be relieved. The housing allowance is also to be increased by an average of 190 euros per month, as the Bundestag decided last week. According to the government, two million households could benefit from the new housing benefit, 1.4 million more than before. The Federal Council still has to approve the reform at the end of November.
North Rhine-Westphalia’s Building Minister Ina Scharrenbach (CDU) told the news portal “The Pioneer” that the housing benefit reform could not be implemented in the local administrations in the short time available. “There is a massive lack of staff to implement this reform – by the way, the municipalities pay for it themselves.” The IT must be reprogrammed so that the applications can be processed at all, quoted the Scharrenbach portal in its newsletter “Capital – The Briefing”. “It takes between four and six months in the federal states.”
The Federal Association of Consumer Advice Centers had warned of overloading the offices at the beginning of the new year when implementing the housing benefit reform. “At the beginning of the year, there is a risk of official chaos, so that people would have to wait weeks or even months for processing and payment,” said association leader Ramona Pop recently to “Welt”.