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.​

New criteria to avoid disproportionate fines for irregular tourist lets

26/07/2021 - 13:44

Tourism. Repeat offences will be penalised, with the number of establishments and financial situations of the offender also taken into account.

A new measure coming into force in the coming days sets out more proportionate amounts for fines relating to illegal tourist accommodation. The measure means common criteria for fines, taking into consideration factors such as repeat offences, the number of properties managed for commercial purposes and the economic situation of the offender.

The measure is the latest step in the municipal shock plan launched in 2016 to counter unlicensed tourist flats and regulate them.

Since then, 9,077 fines have been given in accordance with the Act on Tourism in Catalonia, which considers the unauthorised commercial exploitation or promotion of tourist activities or services a serious offence.

Fines initially ranged from 30,000 to 300,000 euros. As from 2017, a change in the Catalan regulations saw this increase to between 60,001 euros and 600,000 euros, or less in cases of occasional lets or vulnerable situations.

The goal of the measure is to distinguish between multiple offenders operating with organised networks, and individuals renting out their flat occasionally to complement their income and for whom disproportionate fines pose a risk to their family economy.

Criteria for applying fines are therefore to be regulated, with fines given in recent years also to be reviewed.

While offences relating to illegal activity with an unlicenced tourist flat is still considered very serious, some cases may be considered serious and a fine of 6,001 euros applied if the following can be accredited:

  • No repeat offences.
  • Voluntary end to illegal activity, visible and verifiable deactivation of all rental ads on tourist accommodation platforms.
  • Commercial activity with just one tourist let.
  • If the flat used for the offence was the usual residence of the offender at the time of the offence.
  • No other property in the city, owned or rented, besides one’s usual place of residence.

A reduction of 3,000 euros can be applied to the proposed fine providing the household income is not over twice the interprofessional minimum salary. Similarly, fines may be increased by 3,000 euros in accordance with each of the following:

  • In cases of professionalised usual places of residence.
  • Repeated presence of the establishment on more than one occasion, through on-site visits from the City Police or municipal inspection services, or a combination of web searches and on-site inspections.
  • Existence of denouncements, complaints or other evidence demonstrating inconvenience caused to local residents.


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