The time has come! The first flat-share has received a contract cancellation.

We urgently need your help to conduct court proceedings.

With the ruling of the Federal Administrative Court of 9.11.21, which makes the exercise of the right of first refusal practically impossible in areas protected by the Milieuschutz (neighbourhood protection laws), our dream of self-administration has also been shattered. Our houses have been sold to a profit-oriented investor who doesn’t care about our home. In May we informed you that the displacement machine had been started, which so far has mainly affected long-established businesses. Soon it will be the turn of the factory building, parts of which have already been offered up on real estate portals. The flat-share residents have been systematically deprived of their housing rights on paper for decades. The owner assumes that these are commercial leases with partial residential use, which can be cancelled at any time at relatively short notice. 

The first flat-sharing community received a notice of cancellation, which was only averted for the time being by a formal error! This will only be the beginning. We will have to take legal action to obtain tenancy rights for our 8 flat-sharing communities and to avert the expected cancellations. These lawsuits are connected with financial risks that we have to bear in solidarity on as many shoulders as possible. We ask you to look into your wallet and see if you can make a contribution so that so that H48 can remain our home, a social meeting place for our Schillerkiez, a place for subcultures and alternative lifestyles, and last but not least a political organisation and an urban political actor. We are counting on you!

Donation account:

Hermannshöfe e.V.
DE05 1009 0000 2946 4120 00
Payment reference: SPENDE

Your support options

The small but helpful donation (<200€)

You donate a sum of money of your choice up to 200€, which you transfer to the account of our house association (see above) with the reference „Spende“. Every euro counts! If funds are needed, this is the pot that will be used first. If your money is not needed, we will donate it to the Mietshäusersyndikat. No donation receipts can be issued. 

The generous donation under reserve (>200€)

From an amount of 200€ upwards, your donation, which you can transfer to the account of our house association (see above) with the reference „Spende“, automatically falls under this category. If the small but helpful donations (1) are not sufficient, we will tap into this pot. If your money is not needed by the end of all court cases, we will transfer it back to you. If only a part of this pot is used, you will get your money back proportionally (example: if 40% of the pot is used up, you will get 60% of your donation back). No donation receipts can be issued.

The final safety net (>€1000)

With 1000€ or more you can also act as a guarantor. You contractually guarantee us an amount of your choice, which we will ask you to transfer quickly only in the case that the costs due to lost lawsuits exceed the donations (1+2). If you can imagine making a similarly large donation under reserve (2), we ask you to refrain from option 3, because the safety net for us involves uncertainty and administrative costs. 

Do you still have questions or uncertainties? Then write to us at You would like to be kept up to date on the current situation and how you can support us? Then join our supporter mailing list:

You’re not quite sure what it's all about yet?

An acute threat to an important place

The „de-tenanting“ of the factory building would be a catastrophe, destroying what we all know as H48 in one fell swoop. It is not only our private home about which we are worried. Spaces in which up to 14 people all live together, which are increasingly rare to find and offer alternative forms of solidarity for people for whom the nuclear family or isolation are not options, would be lost. Neighbourhood structures that have grown over decades, in which personal friendships as well as political solidarity and organising thrive, would be destroyed. The project space in which political collectives organise themselves, cultural events are organised and the neighbourhood can network would also be a thing of the past. If the factory building falls, the structure that makes H48 a place of resistance against displacement, the rental disaster and real estate and real estate speculation would fall with it. Not only the Schillerkiez, but also this city would have one less actor at the grassroots level campaigning on rental policy. Something valuable that took time and many beautiful coincidences to grow would be lost forever. We can’t let that happen!

What to do? Sue!

We will have to respond to our notices of cancellation with so-called declaratory actions (Feststellungsklagen) and/or eviction lawsuits to defend H48. By means of these lawsuits, each flat-share in the factory building can have a court declare that the tenancy is not a commercial tenancy but (contrary to the words of the contract and the owner’s assertion) a residential tenancy. If this is established, we would be protected from cancellations and exorbitant rent increases under the tenancy law. In order to do this, we must prove that the (former) owner entered into the tenancy agreements with the knowledge and intention that the predominant use of the premises was residential and not for the exercise of any kind of trade or business. This is the case with all flat-shares! Most of them have, as the owner knew, never carried out any kind of business. Rather, the owner the owner has deliberately withheld rental rights from us for decades and avoided the necessary investments for the conversion into residential space. We have collected considerable evidence for this!

Unfortunately, such lawsuits are associated with high financial risks. In the event of defeat, each flat-share must reckon with costs in the event of defeat under certain conditions, which neither can nor should be borne by their residents alone. We must not be prevented from fighting for the right to which we are entitled simply because we have to fear the financial consequences. Thus, we need your help! We need to collect financial securities so that we can continue our struggle and still be able to sleep soundly. In the end, only a fraction of the money will be due for any flat-shares who lose in court. Therefore you can choose between different support options, which we have listed for you below.

This fight has an urban politics dimension

The more flat-shares are able to successfully take legal action, the more sensitive the investor will become and the smaller the profit that can be expected from a resistant housing community with residential tenancy rights. The more of us can stay in our homes, the greater the clout with which we can confront investors in the future and be an enrichment to the housing movement in Berlin. The more we succeed, the greater the likelihood that our houses will end up in non-profit hands, where they belong – preferably the hands of those who sleep, eat, laugh, cry, love, play, rage and organise together. 

You can count on our commitment, just as we must count on yours in this situation. We have always seen and waged our struggle of the past years, which regretfully we are forced to outline for you again below, in terms of its urban political significance. We can confidently claim that we have given a lot. Please do not let us down now, but help us continue. Let’s make the H48 impossible to exploit and turn it into a black hole for capital!

Your H48

You still need convincing? Then please read the following short review of our nearly three years of urban political struggle. Little of this will be new to our friends.

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