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.​

Barcelona hosts the International Social Housing Festival

09/05/2023 - 14:21

Housing. At the Palau de Congressos in Barcelona from 7 to 9 June.

The fourth edition of the most important social housing congress in Europe is being held at the Palau de Congressos in Barcelona from 7 to 9 June. Nearly 2,000 people have signed up for the event, doubling the participation from the last edition held in Helsinki in June. The programme features over sixty renowned speakers and 200 collaboration organisations.

The International Social Housing Festival is the most important event of its kind in Europe and is intended to foster debate on public housing policies and the challenges to be tackled to guarantee the right to housing for all. The festival is an initiative by Housing Europe, the European Federation of Public, Cooperative & Social Housing, and by its allies, operating in 25 countries and managing 11% of the EU’s housing stock.

Notable speakers include the European MP and affordable housing champion Kim Van Sparrentak; Barbara Steenbergen, member of the managing board of the International Union of Tenants (IUT) and one of the world’s biggest advocates of housing unionism: Shane Phillips director of housing projects with the UCLA Lewis Center Housing Initiative; Adrianne Todman, deputy secretary of the US Department of Housing and Urban Development; Tatiana Rojas, deputy secretary of Housing and Urban Planning in Chile, and Bent Madsen and Sorcha Edwards, chair and secretary general of Housing Europe, respectively.

The ISHF is aimed at social and affordable housing promotors and management, research centres, professionals, local authorities, residents and activists. Nearly 2,000 people have signed up to take part, with 40% expected to come from Catalonia and Spain, 50% from Europe and 10% from the rest of the world. The full programme is available here.