The Catalan Government will promote a law to regulate seasonal rental contracts in order to prevent landlords from using this type of rental to “evade the price containment” that will be established under new Spanish housing law. Likewise, “a new regulation of the zoning regulations for tourist dwellings” will be approved, as announced today by the Minister for Territory, Ester Capella i Farré, in an appearance in the Catalan Parliament.
The aim of these actions is “to make use of all the tools at our disposal to guarantee the social use of housing”, especially in municipalities “where use for tourism produces price tensions and does not guarantee a sufficient supply of rental housing to meet the needs of the resident population”, explained Capella.
“Catalonia has exclusive powers in matters of housing and consumer affairs and has the power to implement its own civil law”, said the Minister.
For this reason, the Ministry of Territory will promote the new regulations together with the Ministries of Justice, Rights and Memory and of Business and Labour, and they will complement the procedures already under way to deploy the Spanish Law on the Right to Housing in Catalonia, which protects the containment of rental prices. Catalonia already approved a pioneering law in this regard in 2020, but it was annulled by the Constitutional Court, and recently the Spanish Government approved a new legislative text for the whole of Spain.
In order to put a cap on rental prices, autonomous communities are required to identify those municipalities that will be declared stressed residential market areas. The Ministry of Territory has made public the list of 140 municipalities that meet the requirements of the Law and where 80.6% of the population of Catalonia lives. Once this public notification has been completed, any appeals received will be answered and the final decision will be notified to the Spanish Ministry of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda for its ultimate approval. “Once again, we are the first to initiate the procedures to identify the municipalities where the cap on rental prices will be applied”, said Capella.
Also according to Spanish law, when the flat is owned by a major property owners (10 or more dwellings), the rent may not be higher than the rental price reference index. Catalonia already has its own index, which is up to date, fully in force and was used to implement the regulation of rents already foreseen by the Catalan law. The Catalan Ministry of Territory has already asked the Ministry of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda to approve this Catalan index. “The right to speculate does not exist, the right to access to housing does”, said the Minister, who defended “taking action to remove housing from being subjected to market dynamics”.
Precisely in order to facilitate access to affordable housing, Capella spoke about the Catalan Ministry’s Impuls 10.000 Plan, which “provides for various mechanisms to increase the number of social housing units for rent, with an initial figure of 10,000 flats incorporated in 2026”. Apart from facilitating access to housing, the Ministry will continue to provide aid and mechanisms to prevent evictions due to non-payment.