Talkin' Birds
Talkin' Birds
Jan 24, 2021
#816 Jan. 24, 2021
Play • 30 min
On our latest show: how and why birds blink; how one birder’s adventure made him rich; a Conservation Salute to a footwear company; and a Sandhill Crane Audio Postcard.
How To F#€k Up An Airport
How To F#€k Up An Airport
Radio Spaetkauf
Rent Freeze #3: Don't Spend It
This month residents of Berlin should experience the biggest collective rent reduction in history. About 340,000 residents - one in six - may be eligible for a rent cut under the Mietendeckel, Berlin’s radical new housing policy. But landlords are doing their best to stop it. On November 23 landlords must reduce rents to regulation levels or face fines of €500,000. Tenants can check if they're paying too much at this website: And they can cheating landlords to the city government here: Anyone who gets a rent reduction should save the money, as they might have to pay it back. The Mietendeckel is being challenged in Germany's constitutional court, with a ruling expected in mid-2021. Jöran Mandik explains the court process - and the judges' red robes. Furnished flats are not exempt from the Mietendeckel. But some companies are offering a buy-and-lease-back service model to help landlords get around the law. Tenants are told they have no choice but to rent both the flat and the furniture together. Other tricks include renting expensive basements, parking spaces and coworking desks inside their flat. Double contracts have become standard: residents are offered two prices - a lower one that matches the rent freeze legislation, and a higher one they'll have ot pay if the law is later ruled unconstitutional. Such double contracts are most likely legal and enforceable, says rental expert Daniel Halmer from (formerly Wenigermiete). But they could still be challenged using the Mietpriesbremse law, an older regulation which limits rent prices under some conditions. What's the effect of the rent freeze so far? If you already have an apartment, the rent freeze appears to be working as expected. If you’re looking for an apartment, things are tougher due to landlords restricting supply. A study by the ZIA found average rental prices have sunk by 5.7% in the first half of 2020. But availability has also fallen by about 50%, as property owners withhold empty flats from the market. For new flats built after 2014 - which are exempt from the Mietendeckel - prices are up 7.5%, and availability has increased by 18%, according to real estate portal ImmobilienScout24. Swedish property management company Heimstaden Bostat isn't deterred by the rent freeze. The company is trying to purchase about 130 buildings with almost 4000 apartments at a cost of €830 million. Heimstaden told us they had factored the rental regulations into their financial planning. Researcher Christoph Trautwetter recently produced a report called 'Who Owns Berlin' for the Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung. He debunks the myth that warned the Mietendeckel would scare investors away. "There is an excess of capital looking to invest under any condition, and ready to accept the Mietendeckel as a condition to invest in Berlin," Trautwetter said. You can read his report here: Next up on this series - who is to blame for Berlin's lack of new properties? We'll also hear from small-time landlords who face financial ruin under the rent freeze. Rent Freeze is produced and presented by Joel Dullroy, Maisie Hitchcock, Jöran Mandik and Daniel Stern. Music by Tom Evans. Artwork by Jim Avignon. Produced in partnership with RadioEins, Berlin's public broadcaster. Support us with a donation!
41 min
Boston Public Radio Podcast
Boston Public Radio Podcast
WGBH Educational Foundation
BPR Full Show: Schooled
Today on Boston Public Radio: Chuck Todd weighs in on CPAC and the state of the Republican party. He also shares his thoughts on how Gov. Cuomo’s nursing home scandal and sexual harassment allegations could impact the N.Y. Democratic party. Todd is the moderator of “Meet the Press” on NBC, host of “Meet the Press Daily" on MSNBC, and the Political Director for NBC News. We ask listeners what they thought about Gov. Baker and Mass. Education Commissioner Riley’s plan to reopen schools by April. Andrea Cabral discusses the recent acquittal of police officers involved in the death of Daniel Prude. She also argues that had former President Trump’s tax records been released earlier, members of Congress would have been more likely to impeach him. Cabral is the former Suffolk County sheriff and Massachusetts secretary of public safety. She’s currently the CEO of the cannabis company Ascend. Andy Ihnatko updates us on the latest tech headlines, from a global computer chip shortage to Facebook’s decision to ban Myanmar’s military from its platforms. Ihnatko is a tech writer and blogger, posting at Paul Reville shares his thoughts on Gov. Baker and Mass. Education Commissioner Riley’s plan to reopen schools by April, and how school systems could address learning loss. He also discusses the mental health issues students are facing without in-person learning. Reville is the former Mass. secretary of education, and a professor at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education, where he also heads the Education Redesign Lab. His latest book, co-authored with Elaine Weiss, is: "Broader, Bolder, Better: How Schools And Communities Help Students Overcome The Disadvantages Of Poverty.” Jared Bowen talks about his recent interview with ornithologist and illustrator David Sibley. He also reviews Minari, Nomadland, and the Boston Lyric Opera’s The Fall of the House of Usher. Bowen is GBH’s executive arts editor and the host of Open Studio.
2 hr 44 min
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