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.​

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  • The future of the right to housing, debated

    The Barcelona Housing and Renovation Forum (FHAR) is an initiative of the Municipal Institute of Housing and Renovation (IMHAB) of the Barcelona City Council, organised with the aim of bringing together professionals from the sector, both public and private, to discuss, develop and evaluate the future of housing rights in the city.

    It was held between March 19 and 21, 2019 at the Barcelona Contemporary Art Museum (MABCA) and saw the participation of more than forty experts from administrations from throughout the State and internationally, as well as private sector professionals from around the world who are linked to social and academic movements. For three days, they all put forth their ideas and proposals for facing future challenges and providing solutions to the current situation.

    The FHAR programme was organised around five main themes: planning of housing policies; creating and rethinking affordable housing, responding to the emergency, co-producing with other agents, and regulating the market.

    The FHAR is the first Housing and Renovation Forum in Barcelona and is part of a series of conferences that the IMHAB has been promoting since 2016 to reflect on the future challenges of the sector.

    Opening 19.03.2019

    Global challenges and local solutions into the right to housing


    Raquel Rolnik, lecturer in the Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism of the University of São Paulo

    Josep Maria Montaner, councillor for Housing and Renovation, Barcelona City Council.


    Cristina Fallarás, journalist and writer


    Morning 20.03.2019

    Measure to plan. Generation of indicators and presentation of the state of affairs 


    Carme Trilla, president of the Barcelona Metropolitan Housing Observatory

    Mario Yoldi, director of Planning and Operative Processes in Housing of the Basque regional government. 


    Beatriz Toribio, Director of Studies of Fotocasa


    The role of administrations in the crisis of access to housing in cities


    Javier Martin Ramiro, Director-General of Architecture, Housing and Land at the Spanish Ministry of Public Works

    Judith Gifreu, director of the Catalan Housing Agency 

    Javier Burón, manager of Housing and Renovation, Barcelona City Council. 


    Irene Peiró, journalist

    Evening 20.03.2019

    Presentations of the BCN-NYC Challenge finalists 

    Presentation of the three finalist projects:

    • Elastic Living
    • Everyday life Housing Networks
    • CAH-ATRI



    Anna Majó, director of Digital Innovation, Barcelona City Council 

    Eduard Cabré, coordinator of International Relations from the Barcelona Housing and Renovation Department



    Intergenerational Housing. Approaches to different vital needs


    Gaspar Mayor, manager of the Municipal Housing Trust of Alicante

    Zaida Muxí, architect and author of the book Women, Houses and Cities

    Ana Fernández, architect at Cohousing Lab.


    Laia Grau, architect and urbanist



    Work in progress. Presentation of six new-build projects and public housing renovation projects in Barcelona

    Presented by their architects 



    Joan Carles Melero, director of Tecnical Services at the IMHAB

    Morning 21.03.2019

    Responses to the emergency: prevent, halt, house


    Judith Cobacho, from SIPHO and Associació Vincle

    Lucía Delgado, PAH Barcelona spokesperson

    Fernando Díaz, representing Càritas


    Maria Assumpció Vilà, Ombudsman service of Barcelona


    Co-production with private sector:  mixed capital agents 


    Ricard Fernández, manager of Social Rights at Barcelona City Council 

    Gerald Koessl, Austrian Federation of Limited Profit Housing Associations. 


    Anna Gener, president of Aguirre Newman


    Community Co-production: cooperatives in transfer of use and Community Land Trusts


    Joaquin de Santos, manager of the European project Sustainable Housing for Inclusive and Cohesive Cities (SHICC) in the Community Land Trust Bruxelles (CLTB)

    Maria Antònia Garcías Roig, manager of the Institute of Housing of the Balearic Islands (IBAVI)

    Vanesa Valiño,Head of the Councillor’s Office for Housing and Renovation, Barcelona City Council


    Mara Ferreri,  post-doctoral researcher at the IGOP (UAB)

    Evening 21.03.2019

    Fight against gentrification


    David Bravo, architect and consultant at Barcelona City Council

    Rui Neves Bochmann Franco, councillor for Housing and Local Development from Lisbon City Council


    Núria Benach, Professor of Geography at the UB and a member of Espais Crítics


    Collaboration and control to guarantee correct use of housing

    The census of empty houses, by Fuentsanta Alcalá, director of Housing Discipline of the IMHAB

    Santa Coloma de Gramenet case study, by Joan Manel González, municipal architect in Santa Coloma de Gramenet

    The renovation aid and the Barcelona Observatory for Architectural Restoration, by Núria Pedrals, architect


    Josep Casas, architect and co-director of the post-graduate programme in Housing Policies (COAC)


    Generating affordable rental housing


    Bojan Schnabl, member of the Housing Research Unit of the Vienna City Council

    Reiner Wild, executive director of Mieterverein Berlin

    Jaime Palomera, spokesperson of the Barcelona Tenants Union

    Elga Molina, PhD in law and a senior lecturer in Civil Law at the URV


    Cristina Fallarás, journalist and writer

    Expert’s opinion

    The global challenges of the right to housing

    Raquel Rolnik

    Professor at the Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism of the University of São Paulo


    The planning of housing policies

    Mario Yoldi

    Director of Planning and Operative Processes in Housing of the Basque regional government. 

    The role of the administration in the management of housing

    Javier Martin Ramiro

    Director-General of Architecture, Housing and Land at the Spanish Ministry of Public Works


    Intergenerational and gender vision in housing

    Zaida Muxí

    Architect and author of the book Women, Houses and Cities

    The creation of non-profit housing

    Gerald Koessl

    Representative of the Austrian Federation of Limited Profit Housing Associations


    The Community Land Trust

    Joaquin de Santos

    Manager of the European project Sustainable Housing for Inclusive and Cohesive Cities (SHICC) in the Community Land Trust Bruxelles (CLTB)


    The co-production of housing in the Balearic Islands

    Maria Antònia Garcías Roig

    Manager of the Institute of Housing of the Balearic Islands (IBAVI)


    The municipal management of housing in Vienna

    Bojan Schnabl

    Member of the Housing Research Unit of the Vienna City Council

    The communities of tenants in Berlin

    Reiner Wild

    Executive director of Mieterverein Berlin

    The citizen involvement in the right to housing

    Cristina Fallarás

    Journalist and writer