Who wants to own a village? East German village auctioned off for just $165,000

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The small village of Alwine in the eastern German state of Brandenburg was sold Saturday at an auction house in Berlin for €140,000 ($165,000). Karhausen auction house had set the minimum bid for the 16,000-square meter village at €125,000 ($147,000), according to local media.

The buyer turned out to be the only bidder at the auction, and is now the owner of six homes and numerous barns.

“The winner wants to do something good with this purchase — for the welfare of the people who live there,” said Matthias Knake, a Karhausen spokesperson.

According to Fortune story, Alwine has around 20 residents who are, with the exception of one family, retired. As local news outlets have reported, its dilapidated state is characteristic of much of the former East Germany.

The village had around 50 residents at the time of reunification with West Germany in 1990. However, the coal plant that owned it shut down the following year, so its younger inhabitants moved west. None returned, as per reports.

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