Nearly 2.8 million of the country's 12 million dwellings were destroyed or made uninhabitable as a result of World War II. In the early 1950s, there were 10 million dwellings available for 17 million households. From 1949 to 1972, 12.8 million housing units were built, a construction rate of over 500,000 a year; since then, new construction has slowed, averaging 357,000 new units annually during 1980–85.
According to 1998 statistics, there were about 36,547,800 dedicated residential buildings, 273,600 homes, and 502,500 other buildings with housing space. About 2,121,900 dwellings had been built since 1994. The average household had 2.2 persons. About 40.5% of dwellings were owner occupied. In 2001, there was a total of about 38,681,800 dwelling units with about 4.4 rooms per dwelling. In 2002, 259,885 new dwellings were built.
In western Germany, each individual has about 36 square meters of living space, significantly more than is found in the eastern states. About 95% of all flats have a bath and 75% have central heating. The housing stock in the new federated states is older than that in the west; two-thirds of its houses were built before World War II, and many have deteriorated and lack modern sanitary facilities.