What new subsidy payment is Vienna offering for renters?

A new payment bonus for renters has been approved by the Vienna City Council, totalling €55 million - here's who is entitled to it and how much you can get.

What new subsidy payment is Vienna offering for renters?

Austrian rents are about to become more expensive (again), as The Local reported. Another round of rent increases is due in July, with the so-called “category rents” expected to rise by approximately 5.5 per cent. 

This would mark the fourth increase within 15 months and significantly burden about 135,000 households affected by the changes. In addition, other homes will also see a cascading effect leading to higher operating costs for nearly all renters in Austria. 

The Chamber of Labour (AK), the Austrian Federation of Trade Unions (ÖGB), and the tenants’ association are expressing alarm and renewing their call to implement rent control measures, as reported.

READ ALSO: What will become more expensive in Austria in June?

New one-off payment for renters

Because of the increases, the Austrian capital Vienna has approved a new “Gemeindebau-Bonus“, which should provide relief for hundreds of thousands of Viennese currently living in the social apartments (Gemeindewohnungen)

The €55 million payment is set to come to renters in September 2023, according to a decision by the Vienna City Council on Tuesday, May 30th. 

“Community building in Vienna has always stood for social cohesion. Through the multi-stage Gemeindebau-Bonus, the City of Vienna and Wiener Wohnen show what it means to look and act socially accurately,” said Housing Councillor and Deputy Mayor Katrin Gaál (SPÖ) in a press statement.

“Especially in the current difficult times, it is particularly important that people receive tangible support and do not have to fear losing their apartment,” she added.

According to the Viennese authorities, renters in the social apartments will receive half a net monthly rent in the first step starting at the beginning of September.

READ ALSO: What is it like to rent a home in Austria?

How will the payments work?

The new “multi-stage Gemeindebau-Bonus” comprises three measures that specifically benefit the residents of Wiener Wohnen’s municipal housing complexes, according to the City of Vienna.

At the beginning of September 2023, all tenants of a municipal apartment will receive a special payment in the form of a credit for half a net monthly rent.

At the end of the calendar year 2023, those tenants whose rent was increased in the years 2022-2023 will receive an additional credit in the form of a payment bonus. The amount of credit is based on the extent of the increases that took place in the period. 

READ ALSO: What cost-of-living payments could residents in Austria receive in June?

Additionally, the government wants to facilitate the agreement of installment payments for tenants who “fall behind financially” to pay their outstanding rental debts.

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Austria to hike amount to be paid out for 2024 ‘Klimabonus’ payment

Austrian authorities will soon start sending out the so-called Klimabonus payment, and it will be a higher amount than last year.

Austria to hike amount to be paid out for 2024 'Klimabonus' payment

The Klimabonus or climate bonus is a part of Austria’s eco-social tax reform, a set of measures to promote climate protection.

One such action includes a tax on CO2 emissions, which increases fuel prices and affects Austrian drivers. The annual Klimabonus payment aims to offset this expense. 

The payment of this year’s climate bonus will see an increase due to the higher CO2 pricing, and so will range between €145 and €290. Last year, the bonuses varied from €110 to €220. The new figures were announced by the Austrian government after the meeting of the Council of Ministers on Wednesday, May 15th, reported ORF.

Payments will be made after the summer

You will receive the bonus if you have had your main residence in Austria registered for more than six months.

As during the precious years, the payment will be made after the summer – by bank transfers and postal deliveries via RSa letter. If you received the payment to your bank account last years, you should update your account details to to ensure that everything is in order.

READ ALSO: Vienna reveals new plan for how to move away from gas heating

How much will you get?

The idea is that people who live in cities where they can rely on eco-friendly public transportation will receive a lower portion of the bonus. Those who instead have limited access to public transportation and need to pay higher costs, such as for using their car for travelling, will receive a larger portion of the bonus.

The government has created four different categories which decide how much residents in different locations will receive.

  • Category 1: Urban centres with very good infrastructure and excellent public transport facilities, such as Vienna. In Category 1 regions, there is no additional regional compensation, so the payment remains at the base amount (€145 per person).
  • Category 2: Urban centres with good infrastructure and solid public transport facilities, including cities like Graz, Salzburg, Klagenfurt, or St. Pölten. In Category 2 regions, the regional compensation is 33 percent of the base amount (€195 per person).
  • Category 3: Urban centres and surrounding areas with basic public transport facilities or good basic public transport options. Examples of category three regions are Groß-Enzersdorf, Wolfsberg, or Mittersill. In Category 3 regions, the regional compensation is 66 percent of the base amount (€245 per person).
  • Category 4: Rural communities and communities with only basic public transport facilities. Examples of category four regions include Mariazell, Werfen, and Sölden. In Category 4 regions, the regional compensation is 100 percent of the base amount (€290 per person).

READ MORE: Austria climate activist aims to take fight to Brussels