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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.​

110 cohousing flats to be built on 5 municipal plots of land

15/05/2017 - 20:15

The resolution of the cohousing competition makes five plots of municipal land available for five cooperatives to build in the districts of Ciutat Vella, Sants-Montjuïc, Sarrià - Sant Gervasi, Nou Barris and Sant Martí.

The cohousing model puts ownership in the hands of a cooperative, while the land is offered with surface rights and remains publicly-owned. Residents in these communities are not owners, but members of the cooperative who live there under a system which offers indefinite rental at a more affordable price and joint management of communal areas. The winning cooperatives in the competition are: La Xarxaire SCCL, Llar Jove SCCL, Associació Parkformes, Associació Cohabitatge Cooperatiu and Sostre Cívic SCCL.

During the presentation of the competition results, the Councillor for Housing, Josep Maria Montaner, highlighted the harmony of the projects with the local territory, noting that this model “has much to do with the municipal government’s fight to prevent gentrification”. The five plots of land where the new cohousing blocks will be built are in the districts of Ciutat Vella, Sants-Montjuïc, Sarrià – Sant Gervasi, Nou Barris and Sant Martí.

The resolution of the cohousing competition provides a boost for new forms of accessing and relating to social housing which prevents property speculation, guarantees stability over time for users and fosters communal management of the buildings. It also bolsters the city’s affordable property stock and provides new opportunities for cooperatives and social housing promotors.

Besides making municipal plots available, the City Council is also in contact with ethical and cooperative banks to facilitate funding for the projects.

Projects already under way

Last October, Barcelona City Council ran a public competition to award seven plots of land around the city to be used to build cooperative housing projects offering surface rights or cohousing options. The competition was limited to cooperatives promoting new forms of accessing and relating to social housing which neither depend on ownership nor rent. A total of nineteen projects were presented by twelve different entities. Finally, projects for two of the sites were disregarded.

The five promotions which will go ahead come on top of the two already under way: work started in February with a project to provide 28 wooden homes in Can Batlló, and in mid-April work began on another project to provide a further five flats in C/ Princesa, in Ciutat Vella.


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