Haunted Landlord

The Return of the evicted tenants

With the help of a bot we call particularly ruthless real estate companies and landlords and confront them with the fate of the tenants displaced by them. The ghosts of the past return to haunt their former landlords.

How does Haunted Landlord work?

We researched some of the worst cases of eviction, gathered people's firsthand stories and recorded these statements read by actors. Using the recorded statements, our programmed bot calls the offices and the private numbers of the estate-owners (both individuals and companies) and plays the stories of the displaced people. The bot is calling at random times of day and night for one week.

The affected houses

Why this action?

The means that real estate owners use to rent out their homes at higher rates are sometimes inhumane, leaving a deep mark on the lives of those affected. But because it is enormously financially worthwhile in the current legal situation, dirty tricks to get tenants out as well as forced evictions take place everywhere and over again. The state protects private property, profit maximization and speculation more than the right to housing. Of course, the costs are borne by those who are already financialy precarious and depend on affordable housing

Many of these stories go unnoticed and the victims remain alone with the problems and their anger.

While owners get richers, housing shortages plunge people into dramatic life crises and destroy the social fabric of entire city districts.

With this action we want to make visible and audible this nationwide, structural problem using personal stories to confront the responsible parties with the voices of the evicted tenants and show the consequences of their actions. The power relationship between the tenant and the landlord is inverted - at least for a short time. Those who have been oppressed by their landlords and left feeling disempowered are now raising their voices.

The evicted tenants, who are otherwise only remembered as a short episode of a investment logic, years later haunt the telephone lines of their former landlord.

The houses to those who need them!

Housing should not be a commodity for speculation. As long as the housing issue is left to the 'free market', rent and eviction remain the norm and common means of private profit maximization. The structural conditions that favour this need to be addressed.

What happens with the city and who is allowed to live here, affects us all.

Fortunately, there is resistance everywhere. Tenants are raising their voices, organizing and defending themselves. Forced evictions can be prevented by collective action. Networking between the initiatives has already been successful in many cities. The pressure is increasing. Housing speculation must become increasingly difficult and unprofitable. The tenants voices need to get louder and louder. The houses for those who need them!

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