| Ramzi Chamat
Housing is a major issue for many countries around the world. In Switzerland, this topic is even more crucial given the country's sustained demographic and economic growth. The availability and accessibility of housing have thus become central concerns for citizens, real estate professionals, and policymakers.
Switzerland, known for its economic dynamism and quality of life, faces a significant challenge: a marked decrease in the vacant housing rate. This situation, observed for the third consecutive year, raises concerns about the real estate market's ability to meet the growing needs of the population. Faced with this shortage and rising rents, the Swiss Union of Real Estate Professionals (USPI Switzerland) has decided to take the initiative by proposing a series of measures. The Swiss Union of Real Estate Professionals (USPI Switzerland) has expressed its concerns about the continuous decline in the vacant housing rate in Switzerland, which is now at 1.15%. This situation has led to a housing shortage and an increase in rents. To address this situation, USPI Switzerland has proposed six main measures:
The first revision of the Federal Spatial Planning Act (LAT) was deemed too strict. USPI Switzerland suggests giving cantons more flexibility to define their construction zone needs.
It is proposed to relax the arable land area (SDA) quotas, taking the example of the canton of Vaud, which has a high quota despite its economic development.
Cantonal master plans should no longer be required to consider ISOS inventories, as they tend to immobilize constructions in cities.
It is suggested to lighten certain ordinances, such as the Federal Noise Protection Ordinance, which prevents the conversion of old commercial areas into housing.
The conditions for filing oppositions in construction police matters should be strengthened, as they currently slow down housing construction.
USPI Switzerland believes that the right of preemption, as used in the cantons of Geneva and Vaud, does not create new housing and infringes on the guarantee of private property. It should therefore be set aside.
These proposals aim to increase the housing supply and stabilize rents in Switzerland.
The housing shortage and the high cost of rents in Switzerland are not isolated problems but reflect a global trend in high-growth areas. USPI Switzerland's proposals offer an interesting perspective on how to address these challenges. However, the effective implementation of these measures will require close collaboration between the various players in the real estate sector, authorities, and the population. Only a joint effort will ensure a future where every Swiss citizen will have access to affordable and quality housing.
Source: USPI Switzerland
Keywords: USPI Switzerland, Vacant Homes, Real Estate Market, Rising Rents, Real Estate Measures, Quality of Life in Switzerland, Housing Shortage, Swiss Economic Dynamism.