Place-based anti-speculation housing policies

Place-based anti-speculation housing policies are based on a territorialised diagnosis of residential vulnerability, using data from the census of vacant housing and illegal touristic uses (elaborated through a job placement programme run by the public agency Barcelona Activa), and a Study of vulnerable areas carried out in collaboration with the Polytechnic University of Catalonia (UPC). Based on the resulting indicators, Barcelona City Council has developed two sets of measures:

1) Acquisition of housing units in the private housing market with the aim of curbing the displacement of neighbours and of increasing the public housing stock in severely stressed areas where there is no affordable housing stock. This policy is usually accompanied by the rehabilitation of these homes and their subsequent management by the Municipal Institute of Housing and Rehabilitation (IMHAB). Since 2015, the City has acquired 661 housing units, with a public investment of €73M.

2) Mobilization of private housing for affordable housing through bilateral agreements with private landlords. This policy is divided between the Intermediation Programme (Rental Housing Pool) and the Cession Programme, managed by the non-profit organisation Hàbitat 3.

2.1) The Rental Housing Pool (Borsa d’Habitatge de Lloguer) is based on bilateral agreements between landlords and the City by which the latter offers incentives in exchange for affordable rentals for a period of time proportional to the incentives received. The City has launched a specific campaign - You have the key - to add housing units to the programme. The incentives to private owners include:

Subsidies and financial incentives:

- Direct subsidy.

- Renovation subsidies.

- Subsidies based on Property Taxes.


- Guaranteed rent payment.

- Household multi-risk insurance.

Management support:

- Legal defense insurance.

- Legal and technical advice.

- Social monitoring and mediation.

- Help on the issuance of an Energy Efficiency Certificate (EEC) and the Occupancy Permit.

2.2) In the Cession Programme, the private owner temporarily transfers the right of use of the home to Hàbitat 3 in exchange for financing its rehabilitation and guaranteeing the collection of an affordable rent. Hàbitat 3 manages the home during the term of the agreement, and is responsible for rehabilitating it with the support of a job placement company. The incentives provided to private owners include:

- Guarantee of payment of the rent.

- Financing for rehabilitation works.

A total of 1,117 homes (867 in the Rental Housing Pool, 250 in the Cession Programme) were managed by the two programmes in 2018, which has meant a direct public investment of more than €2.6M in the Rental Housing Pool. In the Cession Programme there has been a total investment of €1.4M during the 2015-2018 period, 20% of which is public subsidy and 80% of which comes from the rents.

European Responsible Housing Awards 2019

Modalidad Fair financing for housing affordability

Dirección Doctor Aiguader 36
08003 - Barcelona
Barcelona (España)