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Published on Monday, August 1, 2022

Spain | Young people, emancipation and renting

Young Spaniards emancipate at the age of 30, about three years later than the European average. One of the main reasons for this delay is related to the difficulty of accessing housing at a reduced cost and in a location that meets the preferences of recent graduates.

Key points

  • Key points:
  • The emancipation of young people is mostly carried out through renting. In 2020, almost 50% of households whose reference person was under the age of 30 resided in rented housing, compared to just over 30% who resided in owned housing.
  • Although it seems that renting is the tenure regime that could be most suitable for young people, it is not currently easy to access. First, prices have risen significantly. From 2014 to mid-2022 rents have increased 50% (vs. 20% for housing for sale).
  • The most significant increases occurred in regions with higher economic growth and a relatively younger population, such as the Balearic Islands and Madrid. In addition, the proliferation of the use of tourist apartments is also encouraging price increases.
  • We have to add to this the scarce supply of subsidized housing. According to the OECD, in 2020 the supply of social rentals was equivalent to only 1.1% of the residential stock, much lower than the 30% in the Netherlands and 20% in Austria and Denmark.
  • It is necessary to develop measures aimed at increasing the rental supply and, particularly, the public housing stock. Providing land, simplifying and accelerating licensing processes, promoting public-private collaboration and reducing regulatory uncertainty in order to place unused stock on the rental market.

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