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.​

Open House BCN 2021 puts the spotlight on Mediterranean architecture and social inclusion

18/10/2021 - 15:39

Housing. Over 200 spaces are open to the public, including the Can Fabra, Bon Pastor, La Xarxaire and Cirerers housing projects promoted by the IMHAB.

Now in its eleventh edition, the architecture festival 48H Open House BCN is on 23 and 24 October and enables visitors to discover new spaces which are not normally open to the public. This year’s programme offers over 275 activities, with visits to 227 buildings, 27 guided itineraries and 21 open itineraries. Activities are being offered in Barcelona, L’Hospitalet de Llobregat, Badalona, Sant Joan Despí, Santa Coloma de Gramenet, Vilassar de Dalt and Sitges.

Four of the buildings open to visitors are housing developments by the Municipal Institute for Housing and Renovation (IMHAB) and Barcelona City Council. Two are the social housing projects at Can Fabra and Bon Pastor, while the other two are the cooperative housing projects La Xarxaire and Cirerers.

Can Fabra

This project in Unit G at the former Fabra i Coats factory includes 46 homes with social rents for young people and the new headquarters for the human towers group Colla Castellera Jove de Barcelona. Conceived by Roldán Berengué Arquitectes and promoted by the IMHAB, the project recently gained the FAD Award for Architecture 2021 for its capacity to turn an old factory into reconditioned social housing while conserving industrial heritage and taking into account sustainability and integration with the surroundings.

Address: Carrer de Parellada, 7-11, 08030 Barcelona
Times: Sunday, from 10 am to 2 pm
Type of visit: guided tour without reservations

Bon Pastor

This social housing project consists of a block of 54 homes which maintains the outdoor lifestyle model that went with cheap low-build houses in the Bon Pastor, adding intermediate spaces between public space and the private space of the homes. Conceived by Peris + Toral Arquitectes and promoted by the IMHAB, the project for this block consists of a remodelling process which started in 2006.

Address: Carrer de Biosca, 23, 08030 Barcelona
Times: Sunday, from 10 am to 2 pm
Type of visit: guided tour without reservations

La Xarxaire

Designed by La Mar d’Arquitectes, this building is integrated into its historical environment through its façade and ground floor. The project offers a healthy, pleasant and environmentally sustainable building. Thermal conditions inside will be enhanced through cross ventilation and solar protection (venetian blinds) in the homes, as well as a design for a rooftop cultivation space. The building will also be made from wood (a renewable material reducing the weight of the building, its energy costs and CO2 emissions compared to conventional construction), with grey water to be re-used for watering and WCs.

Address: Passeig de Joan de Borbó, 10, 08003 Barcelona
Times: Saturday, from 10 am to 7 pm
Type of visit: guided tour without reservations


This was the winning project from a public competition for municipal plots of land to be used for cooperative or leasehold housing. The building has a programme for 32 homes with communal spaces, and at eight floors will be the tallest construction in the Spanish state to be built with wood (structure using cross laminated timber). Designed by Celobert, this will be a passive building with a minimum energy demand in terms of climate control and the production of hot water, and also organic, using materials with the lowest ecological footprint, preferably organic. Visits to the building were recently offered as part of Sustainable Food Week.

Address: Carrer del Pla dels Cirerers, 2-4, 08042 Barcelona
Times: Sunday, visits at 10 am, 11 am, 12 noon and 1 pm
Type of visit: guided tour with reservations

Spotlight on Mediterranean architecture and Coderech for the 2021 edition

This year’s Open House BCN puts the spotlight on Mediterranean architecture. The goal is to discover and understand the past, revising it to be able to design a better and more sustainable future and guarantee good quality of life.

At the same time, the festival will be paying homage to José Antonio Coderch de Sentmenat, a disciple of J.M Jujol who left his mark on Mediterranean architecture. Coderch modernised it and adapted it to the parameters of the modern movement, fusing the functionality of rural architecture with building techniques from the time, without losing its essence. His works include the Trade towers (1986), the block of homes at the Cotexeres de Sarrià (1968) and the Institut Français de Barcelona (1975).