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.​

Decree to guarantee essential services during the state of emergency for COVID-19

17/03/2020 - 13:41

Stay at home as much as possible. For any queries call 010 and if you feel unwell call 061.

The Mayoral decree signed March, 15th following the nationwide state of emergency declared for COVID-19 guarantees essential services such as healthcare, social services, security, public transport and information for citizens. People are advised to stay at home as much as possible to help with prevention.

The municipal decree signed March, 15th establishes that 44% of municipal staff will keep working to maintain essential services needed to guarantee the city operates properly.

Public services operating

  • All services relating the healthcare system, such as hospitals, primary healthcare centres, chemists and healthcare-related transport.
  • Basic services provided by the Municipal Institute of Social Services (IMSS).
  • Cleaning and waste collection services.
  • Barcelona City Police.
  • Fire Prevention, Extinction and Rescue Service, along with Civil Protection.
  • Public transport. Transports Metropolitans de Barcelona (TMB) will be adapting its metro and bus services.
  • District Manager’s Offices.
  • Information for citizens.
  • Mercabarna and the Municipal Institute of Markets, along with the whole food supply chain.
  • Transport of goods, with flexibilization of loading and unloading times.
  • Mobility and maintenance service and management of infrastructures.
  • Cemeteries and Funeral Service.
  • Penitentiary services.
  • Embassies and consulates.
  • Prosecution services, criminal judges, duty judges, civil judges and commercial court judges.
  • Civil, Commercial and Land Register.

Water electricity and gas supplies are also guaranteed.

Mobility services

In line with recommendations from healthcare authorities and in coordination with the Barcelona Public Health Agency, the Bicing service was suspended on Monday 16 March at 3 pm. At the same time, metro and bus services operated by TMB have been adapted to current demand, which is down by between 75% and 80%.

Loading and unloading has been made more flexible and the limits on vehicle tonnages suspended to ensure the supply for essential goods and services. Finally, there will be no fines in regulated on-street parking areas (blue and green zones).

Full information on the measures applied in the city to curb the spread of COVID-19 can be found here.

Stay at home

As a preventative measure and to minimise the risk of infection, people are advised to stay at home as much as possible. Remember you can only get around in the city to:

  • buy food, medicine and essential items
  • go to healthcare centres
  • go to work
  • go home
  • help senior citizens, minors and dependent people
  • go to financial entities
  • walk the dog
  • force majeure situation

During the state of emergency, over four hundred municipal facilities will be closed, including the 148 public parks and gardens in the city with gates.

Citizen Help and Information Offices (OAC) will also be closed. All procedures will be handled by the 010 phone service and the procedures website.

Responsible use of the healthcare system

To prevent the healthcare system from collapsing, only go to your healthcare centre if it is strictly necessary

Remember if you have any queries you can call 010 and if you feel unwell you can call 061.

Health recommendations

  • Wash your hands often.
  • Avoid sharing food and utensils.
  • Avoid touching your face.
  • Cover your mouth with the inside of your elbow when coughing or sneezing.
  • Keep two metres away from other people.

Full information can be found on the Barcelona Public Health Agency website.


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