10,101 Tourist Apartments To Be Removed In Barcelona By 2028

In a way of fighting the housing crisis in the city, Barcelona mayor Jaume Collboni has proposed a drastic measure, removing all tourist apartments in the city by November 2028. By not renewing the tourist accommodation licenses, authorities are hoping to turn these flats into primary homes for residents. 

Coupled with this news is the fact that since 2016 the city has shut down nearly 10,000 illegal tourist rentals with nearly 4,000 flats being moved from illegal visitor accommodation to long-term residences.

This is coming to light five years after the Catalan government’s legislation back on November 7, 2023 which limits the use of tourist apartments in municipalities with a large housing crisis. 

Since the law came into force, authorities have only been able to acquire 93 houses, and only eight of those have become a reality. Along with ridding tourist apartments from Barcelona, Collboni wants to ensure that 30% of new construction will be used for public housing. 

The Catalan capital has seen housing prices increase by 68%, while salaries have increased by 38%. Furthermore, rents have risen by close to 70% in the past 10 years, while the cost of buying a home has increased by almost 40% in the same time period. 

The controversial decision has left the tourism industry stunned as Spain is the second most-visited country in the world. Spain is second only to France according to a report published by Statista in June 2024.

Following November 2028, Collboni stated there will not be a single tourist apartment in Barcelona but this will be met with various opposition and will likely result in a drawn-out legal battle.

Companies such as Airbnb and other rental platforms which host a high percentage of Barcelona’s short-term rental listings, have not commented on the news.