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 measures to tackle the housing crisis and increase housing supply

21/06/2024 - 15:07

Housing. New structural measures will be promoted to increase the supply of housing, through the conversion of housing from tourist use to residential use and the reform of the 30% social housing reserve measure to make it effective.

The aim is to guarantee the right to housing for the whole neighbourhood and to increase the stock of affordable housing across the city.

The decree law approved by the Generalitat de Catalunya on 7th November, which regulates tourist housing, will be applied in a number of Catalan municipalities with problems of access to housing, in order to eliminate the 10,101 tourist apartments that have the corresponding authorisation to carry out this activity in the city. The aim of this measure is to ensure that as many apartments as possible are used for residential and non-tourist purposes, thus increasing the city’s housing stock.

This decree law will be applied in its full scope and will not promote a new urban planning approach that declares the tourist use of dwellings compatible with that of habitual and permanent residence and, as foreseen, five years after its entry into force, all tourist apartments in the city will disappear and be prohibited. By November 2028, there will be no tourist apartments in Barcelona.

In addition, the Special Urban Plan for Tourist Accommodation (PEUAT), which since 2017 has regulated the implementation of all types of tourist accommodation establishments, will continue to carry out controls once all the tourist apartments have disappeared. Since 2016, around 10,500 sanctions and 9,700 cease and desist orders have been issued, and the 6,000 monthly apartment advertisements have been reduced to between 300 and 400, which the municipal inspection team detects and requires the platforms to immediately deactivate. In addition, up to 3,473 apartments that had been used for illegal tourist activities were returned to normal use.

A real and effective measure of 30% protected housing

At the same time, work is underway to make the 30% social housing reserve measure effective in new developments and major renovations, so that the private sector can take real responsibility for promoting affordable housing in Barcelona. Since its approval in 2018, only 93 homes have been added to residential parks in accordance with the licences granted, of which only eight have been completed.

The new proposal, which will now begin to work with the political groups, aims to maintain what was already provided for in the 2018 MPGM and to extend it to new options for private developers to make the 30% effective, on the one hand by transferring the protected homes to other plots, and on the other hand by opening up the possibility of a social promoter being in charge of the execution of these homes. The reform of the 30% reserve also aims to facilitate the renovation of houses, increase their number and thus guarantee the quality of the housing stock.

It also maintains the City Council’s right of first refusal for the purchase of the resulting homes. Currently, the City Council has 5,000 homes in some stage of execution, which will become more than 3,300 homes delivered under this mandate. These homes are the result of both the direct promotion of the Municipal Institute of Housing and Renovation (IMHAB) and the alliance with third parties such as non-profit organisations, the metropolitan operator HMB or Incasòl.