The Housing Consortium of Barcelona has just renewed the agreement with the Hàbitat3 Foundation to give continuity to the programme that allocates vacant homes from private individuals for social rent.
The Councillor for Housing and Renovation of the Barcelona City Council, Josep Maria Montaner, and the president of Hàbitat3, Carme Trilla, have signed the renewal of this agreement promoted by the Bureau of Third Sector Entities of Catalonia.
Thanks to the agreement, the Housing Allocation Programme will continue for four more years. This project, which is part of the Citizen Agreement for an Inclusive Barcelona, aims to capture vacant homes and assign these homes to the Social Rent Fund, to then be allocated to the Emergency Commission and the First Home Service.
Under this agreement, the two administrations that are part of the Housing Consortium of Barcelona – the Barcelona City Council and the Government of Catalonia – will contribute a total of 19 million euros in 4 annuities. Of these, 15 million will come from the City Council and 4 from the Government. The Hàbitat3 Foundation will also contribute 1.6 million euros to the development of this project.
With the renewal of this agreement, compliance is achieved with one of the agreements reached at the last General Meeting of the Consortium, held on September 21. The ceremony was chaired by the Mayor of Barcelona, Ada Colau, and the President of the Government of Catalonia, Joaquim Torra.
Flats for the Emergency Commission and the First Home Service
With this new agreement, which renews the Housing Allocation Programme, the aim is to allocate a total of 426 private homes to be ceded over the next four years. Of these 426 homes, a total of 350 will be assigned to the Emergency Commission, while the other 76 will go to the First Home Service.
So far, the programme has managed 300 homes, of which 50 were allocated to the First Home Service. One of the objectives of the Hàbitat3 Foundation is for the owners of these homes to keep them in the programme.
At the same time, the entity has set as a new objective to search for vacant homes belonging to natural and legal persons that can also be incorporated into the programme, thus increasing residential resources.
Guarantees for the owners of allocated homes
The Housing Allocation Programme anticipates that the Hàbitat3 Foundation will formalise the cession of vacant flats with the owners of these properties. The owners will receive economic compensation for this cession.
The Foundation will also manage the rental of the homes. The flats will be given to families selected through a process overseen by the Housing Consortium of Barcelona to ensure that they meet the requirements to access social housing.
The programme also includes an option for renovation of the allocated homes. In this case, the Foundation will cover the renovation work, compensating the owner of the flat for up to 80% of the cost. The other 20% will be covered by the programme.
This programme furthermore offers a guarantee to the owners that they will collect rent payment for their flats for 36 months, regardless of any circumstance. The amounts of these payments are set at close to the market price.
In addition, it is guaranteed to the owner that their property will be returned in the same condition as when it was assigned, and that neither the management costs nor any incidents related to the property will be charged to them.
Guaranteeing the right to housing access
Hàbitat3 is a non-profit organisation that aims to guarantee the right to access decent housing to disadvantaged people, in order to put an end to residential exclusion, and to have in place a support plan to facilitate their social inclusion.
The Foundation carries out this task in collaboration with other organisations, and also with public administrations such as the Barcelona City Council and the Government of Catalonia.