Help for Yolanda Díaz’s mortgages excludes the center of Madrid and Barcelona
Sumar, the platform led by Yolanda Díaz and which integrates a total of 15 left-wing political parties, has placed housing in a priority position within the program that they hope to carry out if they manage to re-edit the coalition government. The candidacy entered the campaign with the announcement of a 1,000-euro aid for mortgaged homes that does not discriminate based on income, however, unlike the controversial inheritance for young people, it does not aspire to be universal. The platform has set a maximum price of 300,000 euros for homes that want to benefit from this ’emergency bonus’, which in practice excludes properties for sale in the center of large capitals and especially, from Madrid and Barcelona.
From Sumar’s economic team they insist that establishing this limit contributes an element of progressivity to this measure, since they understand that the highest incomes would not buy a first home at this price, in any case they would do so to rent it and consequently, they could not be beneficiaries of the voucher. This is how Carlos Martín Urriza, director of the CCOO study cabinet and economist who has joined the Sumar lists in position six for Madrid, explains it. “Our measure is limited by income because it is said that those households that have mortgaged themselves in the last ten years can receive it, because they are the ones that bear the most the rise in interest and only for homes of up to 300,000, because they are what the middle class buys“, he argues in conversation with La Información.
“In the almond of Madrid you do not buy any flat for that price, because they are much more expensive, but we are heading to the red belt, to allocate it to the middle and low incomes, not to the rich,” he points out. The latest data collected by Idealista dated June 2023 show that in the downtown district of Madrid per square meter costs €5,368/m2 on average, which in hypothetical terms would allow access to a flat of just over 50m2 for 300,000. While in the Gràcia neighborhood of Barcelona the average price is €4,491/m2, so the house could reach 66m2. However, in both cases, the homes advertised on the portal for that price are much smaller, less than 40m2, without outside light or require reform.
The perspective changes slightly when the focus is extended beyond the most central streets, as pointed out in a telephone conversation by the Pisos.com spokesman and director of studies, Ferran Font. “In the city of Madrid there are some 3,000 homes for this price and in Barcelona another 2,000, which are not few, account for about half of the ads, around 40% of the total”. circle to the ‘almond of the M30’ or the most central streets of Barcelona, where it would be exceptions of poorer quality, worse located and less than 50m2 in which it is difficult to start a family life project.
Although the analyst recalls that the limit of 300,000 for the home is no less in that right now it is necessary to have savings of about 90,000 euros to pay the down payment for the apartment and the expenses associated with the purchase, Therefore, he values that beyond the central neighborhoods it is a fairly wide range that accommodates middle incomes. Font admits that the proposal has raised doubts in the sector as to whether people who sign new mortgages could also benefit, although he points out that since the years 2020-2021 almost 70% of mortgages are at a fixed rate and, therefore, they are not affected by the rate hike policy of the European Central Bank.
Measures to lower the rental price
The Sumar program on housing, coordinated by the representative of Podemos Alejandra Jacinto, also proposes another package of measures to tackle the problem of rental prices, which affects young people in a special way, but not exclusively. Yolanda Díaz’s platform wants to make a firm commitment to the construction of public housing to be used for social rentalsSpecifically, they have set themselves the goal of increasing the public housing stock by two million units in the next decade. From Sumar they believe that this policy is especially effective because it would increase the offer and contribute to lower prices, they also highlight that the initiative would be self-financing in the medium term through the collection of rents.
From the coalition they are aware that this is not an immediate solution, so they have two ‘b’ plans to intervene in the short-term rental market. Empower the State to declare stress zones included in the Housing Law in the event that the competent autonomous communities have not done so within “a reasonable time” and a second way by which a reference price corresponding to 30% of the average income of those who rent will be established in the zone. This solution is of a fiscal nature, since the owners would be free to put the property up for rent above this reference price, but in doing so they would not benefit from bonuses in personal income tax or corporate taxif it is a background.
In addition, in the field of home ownership, Sumar wants to implement the portability of mortgages that would work in the image of sliding rates. The leftist coalition wants households to be able to switch from fixed to variable rate mortgages and for banks publish their offers on the CNMC portal with the associated risk profiles, so that clients can request the change in the case of giving the profile without the entities being able to refuse, unless they justify it in a reasoned letter. Likewise, they propose that allegations can be made to the Financial Client Defense Authority, a norm that they trust will be resumed as soon as the chambers are constituted.