Tanca Tanca

Housing Glossary

You will find information here on all topics relating to housing in Barcelona


Accrued interest

The interest applied as a penalisation when the debtor does not comply with repayment obligations. The amount must be established in the contract.

Active supermortgage

This allows the client to choose their loan's benchmark index (MIBOR at three months, six months or a year) so that payment can benefit from lower interest rates sooner.

Adaptable instalment

Characteristic of UCI superloans that allow the borrower to not pay one instalment a year for the first three years if there are problems due to holidays, extraordinary expenses, etc.

Advanced cancellation fee

A commission arising from the financial risk involved in the advanced cancellation of an operation. The applied commission compensates the financial institution for its financial losses.


Direct state aid for paying the deposit on a property.

Affordable housing

Group of social housing or dwellings from social renovation projects that are sold or rented at below-market prices.

Affordable rent

The cost of renting these dwellings is below market prices after being included in operations concerning the rented flat pool, social renovation or social housing promotions.


Payment made to repay a loan.

Amortisation period

The duration of the loan. The contract establishes the date of the first and last payments. The longer the period, the lower the payments are, but the higher the interest. You therefore pay more in the end. The monthly instalment should not exceed 35% of your net income.


Estate agent. A qualified professional who acts as an intermediary between the two interested parties to facilitate the signing of a real estate contract, which can be a rental agreement, a sales agreement or another similar contract. They usually charge a percentage of the sales price as compensation or commission.


A citizen who makes a registration application to the Barcelona Social Housing Applicants Registry, and who represents the other members of the dwelling unit included in the application.


Annual Equivalent Rate. Effective annual cost of the mortgage in terms of interest, commissions and the repayment period. To compare loans, it is not enough to just look at the lowest APR, you also have to compare the conditions, the repayment period and the distribution of instalment payments.

Arbitri municipal de plusvàlua

Former denomination of the capital gains tax on landed property.


The value of a dwelling certified by a specialised assessment company, in accordance with the mortgage market law. This certificate not only indicates the real value of the property, it also serves as a reference for obtaining the necessary financing.


Document in which the owner authorises the tenant to carry out building work in the dwelling's interior.

Close glossary

Housing offices only offer face-to-face assistance by prior appointment, so check out the “Housing calls you” service here to receive the most appropriate personalised assistance. If you also need assistance in energy rights, book an appointment with an energy-advice point (PAE) by clicking here. On the other hand, if you reside in an IMHAB public dwelling you can consult our contact, management and processing channels here.​

    • ->Meeting at Barcelona City Hall´s Saló de Cent
    • ->Several people using a pedestrian crossing in Barcelona city centre
    • ->Outside of a housing office
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    • ->Part of a promotional poster on subsidies for housing renovations, in a municipal office
  • The body that promotes housing services in the city

    The Housing Consortium is a public body, the purpose of which is to undertake functions and activities and provide services related to affordable housing in Barcelona. This body is comprised of Barcelona City Council and the Generalitat, the regional government of Catalonia.

    The Consortium has its own legal status, separate from that of its members, granted through the Municipal Charter of Barcelona, and it has full capacity to act in order to achieve its aims. It also has a public participatory body called the Barcelona Social Housing Council.

    This organisation is responsible for carrying out public housing-related actions in Barcelona, both directly and through agreements. It also plans restoration and renovation projects in the city's neighbourhoods.

    In addition, it is responsible for promoting an affordable rental policy, particularly for young people and other groups with specific requirements.

    Barcelona Social Housing Council


    The Barcelona Social Housing Council (CHSB) was set up within the framework of the Barcelona Housing Consortium, formed by Barcelona City Council and the Generalitat, the regional government of Catalonia. It is a consultative and participatory body that deals with housing policy in the city. The CHSB was set up on 26 February 2007 and is an opportunity to create an effective new space for citizen participation on housing matters, serving as an instrument for generating opinion, proposals and promoting their analysis.

    The Council grew out of the experience of the Social Housing Working Group, set up by Barcelona City Council's Municipal Social Welfare Council. The specific and important nature of the issue led the Barcelona Housing Consortium to create the CHSB, increasing the representation of the various social players and giving it more specific functions, as well as greater involvement in and powers to monitor housing policy and the work of the Consortium.

    What are its functions?

    • To provide advice on all matters on which the Barcelona Housing Consortium, Barcelona City Council and the Generalitat, the regional government, request its opinion.
    • To provide information on draft municipal ordinances and other general provisions that affect housing.
    • To generate debate among the key players in municipal housing policy and to propose actions, producing reports which are submitted to the Housing Consortium and the administrations of which it is comprised.
    • To monitor and evaluate fulfilment of the Barcelona Housing Plans.
    • To monitor and evaluate fulfilment of the Barcelona Restoration Plans.
    • To monitor and evaluate compliance with the future law on the Right to Housing in Catalonia and the plans for implementing the said right produced by the Generalitat of Catalonia, as applied to the city of Barcelona.
    • To participate in the process of defining new indicators linked to the city's housing market.
    • To promote activities and organise workshops and conferences on the social housing priorities defined by the Council.
    • To use new information technologies to extend the debate on housing policy to the general public.
    • To participate in the production of participatory reports relating to Barcelona's housing policies.
    • To produce participative reports and develop its own participatory processes that will be transferred to the Citizen Council and/or the city's governing bodies and those of the Consortium.

    Who are its members?

    The Council has a Full Council and a Standing Committee. The former is comprised of more than sixty members representing the Generalitat and City Council, municipal political groups, public sector bodies and companies working in the housing planning and construction sectors, sectorial participatory councils in the city, non-profit social entities, social entities and associations supporting access to housing, cooperatives, representatives of neighbourhood movements, trade unions, social foundations, universities, professional colleges and associations, among others.

    The Standing Committee has a Chair, a First, Second and up to twelve Vice Chairs who are members of the Full Council and are appointed by the Chair from among the different sectors represented in the Full Council, following consultation with the Full Council itself.