Sareb has reached an agreement with the Barcelona City Council for the temporary assignment of 200 homes, which will be used to address emergency housing needs. The collaborative agreement was signed this morning by Josep Maria Montaner Martorell, the Housing Minister and President of the Municipal Housing Board (Patronat Municipal de l’Habitage) and Gaspar González Palenzuela, Sareb’s Director of Corporate Social Responsibility.
This is the first agreement that Sareb has completed with a large municipal corporation with the authority to manage housing, as to date previous assignment agreements were made with Autonomous Communities. The first housing agreement signed by Sareb (600 homes) was completed with the Catalan Regional Government (Generalitat de Cataluña) in June 2014, which was then extended in June 2015 by a further 300 homes.
Based on the agreement signed today, Barcelona’s City Council will be responsible for managing the assigned properties for eight years. The agreement involves the assignment of vacant, as well as unlawfully occupied housing, although the weighting of the latter will not exceed 50% of the total. The City Council will be responsible for rectifying the situation of the families that do not currently rent or own the properties.
Sareb will deliver fifty of the apartments to the City Council as soon as possible, to cover the most urgent housing cases. All of the homes are expected to be delivered in H1 2016.
The rent that the tenants will pay will be income linked, so that their rent and basic supplies do not exceed 30% of their current net income.
The homes will be delivered to the tenants in a habitable state of repair, therefore it has been agreed that if any investments are required to achieve this, these costs will be split 50%. The cost of insurance, service charges and extraordinary repairs will be paid by Sareb, while the Barcelona City Council will pay for all of the charges related to the management of the homes, as well as their day-to-day management, measures to prevent illegal squatting, Property Tax (IBI) and other costs.
“Sareb has already demonstrated its commitment to Society and this first agreement with a large city council, is yet another step forward in advancing our existing social policies, without straying away from our core divestment mandate we have been assigned”, explained Sareb’s Executive Chairman, Jaime Echegoyen, who also added “we expect to sign similar agreements with other large cities soon and thereby provide accommodation to those families most in need”.
Sareb has doubled the amount of its social housing for temporary assignment both to autonomous communities, as well as large city councils, which now stands at 4,000 units. Since Sareb approved its affordable housing assignment programme, it has completed seven agreements with autonomous communities (Aragon, Balearic Islands, Basque Country, Canary Islands, Castilla y Leon and Galicia). To date, more than 6,000 people have benefited from the affordable housing rental plans completed by Sareb.