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.​

Regulation of housing rents in the city approved for five years

15/09/2021 - 14:34

Housing. The Full Council gives the go ahead to declare Barcelona as an area with a tense housing market, according to the Catalan law on containing rents.

The Full Council has approved the proposal to declare Barcelona as an area with a tense housing market and will be able to regulate rents for five years. The measure should lead to a 5% reduction in prices linked to the Catalan government’s rent index and also includes homes with over 150 square metres of floor space. Over 30% of people in Barcelona live in rented properties, one of the highest figures for cities in the Spanish state.

To declare the municipality a tense housing market, the city must meet any of the three requisites set out in the Catalan law, which it does by far:

  • Above-average increase in prices: in the case of the city, some 31% between 2015 and 2020, the same as in Catalonia.
  • Average household spending on rents exceeding 30% of income: on average, rent payments account for 49% of household spending in the city.
  • Increase in rents greater than the inflation rate (IPC) for recent year, which stands at 4.6%

The reference price when it comes to signing a new rent contract will be lower than the prices of the previous contract and 95% (thanks to the tense market declaration) of the Catalan government’s reference price index.

The measure will apply from November, once Act 11/2020 has been in force for a year, and remain in place for five years.

Boost for more affordable rent

Work is currently in progress or about to start on 2,300 publicly owned homes in the city, 80% of which will be used for social and affordable housing.

Other measures have also been taken, such as the approval for the move to reserve 30% of new flats and major renovations to protected housing.


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