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Tusk: “We built 250,000 flats” from government programs. Not exactly

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During the meeting in Łódź, Donald Tusk said that thanks to the “Family on its Own” and “Apartment for the Young” programs “250,000 apartments were built during the PO-PSL government”. However, both programs offered only support in obtaining a loan, no new flats were built under them. We explain.

At the end of February, the chairman of the Civic Platform, Donald Tusk, announced that after winning the elections his party would introduce the “Zero Percent Loan” program. This offer is addressed to people under 45 who want to buy their first flat. According to the assumptions, the borrower would only repay the borrowed amount, and the repayment of interest and bank margin would be borne by the state. At a meeting with young people on February 28 in Łódź, Tusk was asked about the possible negative consequences of the program mentioned by experts – an increase in the purchase or rental prices of flats. “My question is about the security that will be introduced to these programs” – the author of the question specified. He also asked about Tusk’s views on social housing or building housing by the state.

Donald Tusk did not agree with the assessment that programs such as “Zero Percent Loan” must cause increases in real estate prices. In his opinion, the program may increase the supply of housing. “We generally don’t have much influence, see, for example, real estate prices today. Housing prices are galloping, the increase in prices is unprecedented, not because PiS has built too many apartments,” he argued. He went on to talk about the housing programs implemented during the rule of the PO-PSL coalition.

Housing prices did not increase when we built 250,000 apartments using a program similar, but not on such a scale, to a zero-percent loan. I’m talking about the program “Family on its own” and “Mieszkanie dla Młodych”, MdM. Thanks to these two programs, 250,000 apartments were built and real estate prices did not go up radically.

However, both programs mentioned by Donald Tusk provided only subsidies to loans for the purchase of real estate or for the construction of a house.

As part of “Family on its own” and “Flats for the young”, no flats were built

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The “Family on its own” and “Apartment for the young” programs were not housing construction programmes. In this context, Tusk’s words “we built 250,000 apartments” and “thanks to these two programs, 250,000 apartments were built” are considered false.

According to the description on the website of Bank Gospodarstwa Krajowego (BGK) “Family on its own is a government program to support families and other people in purchasing their own flat, implemented in cooperation with lending banks.” Applications for a preferential loan under the program could be submitted from the beginning of 2007 to 31 December 2012. The law introducing the program was adopted in September 2006. The head of government at that time was Jarosław Kaczyński.

According to BGK website: “Mieszkanie dla Młodych is a government program to support young people in buying a flat, implemented in cooperation with lending banks” (original writing). Applications for co-financing from the program were accepted in 2014-2018.

How many loan applications were accepted under both programmes

According to BGK data, in 2007-2015 under both programs support was provided for the purchase or construction of at most 119 316 new properties.

As part of the “Family on its own” program in 2007-2013 granted in total 88 287 loans or support for loans for the purchase of an apartment on the primary market and for the construction of a single-family house.

This number does not include support for the purchase of real estate from the secondary market. And in 2007-2011, most of the grants provided under the program were for such properties; in total, between 2007 and 2013, purchase support was provided 104 073 second hand apartments. In 2012 and 2013, support was already provided mostly for new flats and houses. We assume that the number of concluded loan agreements with co-financing from both programs is equal to the number of residential premises covered by the support. We take into account only the years 2007-2015, a period practically coinciding with the rule of the Civic Platform – Polish People’s Party coalition.

In turn, as part of the “Mieszkanie dla Młodych” program in 2014-2015 accepted 31,029 applications for co-financing own contribution. Until September 2015, the program covered only the primary market. From September it was also possible to apply for co-financing on the secondary market. However, we do not have statistics broken down into the primary and secondary markets, which is why we added the comment “at most” to the above number of 119,316. After the PO-PSL government, 79,373 loans were co-financed in 2016-2018.

How many apartments were built in Poland

Below we present data from the Central Statistical Office on the number of apartments (the Central Statistical Office also includes residential buildings) completed in 2007-2022. These statistics are not commented on by the entities responsible for construction. This is aggregate data on newly built apartments in both the public and private sectors.

Thus, in 2007-2015, 1,314,595 apartments were built. In the years 2008-2015 (almost full years of PO-PSL rule) 1,180,897 apartments were built.

Service Demagog.org.pl On March 10, writing about a similar statement by Donald Tusk from Pabianice, where he argued that the government program led to the construction of approx. housing, considered this statement manipulative.

On March 3, we sent a question to Paweł Graś, Donald Tusk’s closest associate, about the data used by the PO chairman. Graś referred us to the spokesman of the party, Jan Grabiec. He did not answer the questions asked twice. We also sent them to the PO press office, but we did not receive a reply.

Author:Krzysztof Jabłonowski, Bartosz Chyż

Main photo source: Marian Zubrzycki/PAP

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