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Tuesday, May 24, 2022
HomeLatest NewsWhy are Sareb's houses still not public?

Why are Sareb’s houses still not public?

Known as the “bad bank”, an asset management company from Bank Restructuring, Sareb owns 45,618 houses in Spain that it has not sold, as well as 21,693 properties in progress and 30,320 building plots, according to the company itself. end of April.

In terms of autonomous communities, the region where Sareb has the most unoccupied houses is Catalonia with 12,731 apartments, followed by the Comunitat of Valenciana with 8,532 apartments; Andalusia – 4124 people; and Murcia with 3434 units. In the lower part are Navarra with 49 and Euskadi with 89 uninhabited houses.

These real estate assets come from financial institutions that received bailouts in 2012 and thus released these toxic-classified assets to lighten their bills, along with billions of euros in loan debt, both packages under the bailout attributed to government spending. mortgage crisis in 2008. During this decade of existence, both the creation of a bad bank and its management have been severely criticized. Mainly because of the accumulation of losses from year to year.

The latest balance sheet corresponding to 2021 certifies 1,626 million euros as such, which is 51.5% more than in 2020. Despite the high figure, according to their reports, they sold 38% of the assets, which is the term with which the financial world refers. to sales operations. Theoretically, the company continues to fulfill its goals. Until now.

In January of this year, a threat arose that seemed to change everything. When the government announced that it would take over 50% of Sareb’s shareholders due to an EU imposition that forced Spain to accept its public debt, it seized the opportunity to expand its corporate purpose by adding sustainability and social utility in black and white. the same royal decree that made the operation possible. The company “will develop strategies for transferring real estate to government entities or non-profit organizations in which it will weigh the social utility of these properties with the goal of maximizing value,” read the text.

The Ministry of Economy was consulted about this rethinking, its sources reply that “social performance is included as an additional element in the management, consistent with its purpose of selling real estate. The social action that Sareb has already carried out recently will be strengthened.”

For the experts consulted, it’s a facelift or a social wash. “You can try to stretch the letter of this new wording into political force,” explains Javier Rubio, a labor lawyer and housing infringement expert at the CAES Center for Social Research and Counseling, “but legally there is no interest rate. , there are no numbers, no indicators to use and that make us cede so much heritage to social housing, and in addition, it is not established that social housing means one thing or another, with rent restrictions, for example.”

Alejandro Inurrieta, Ph.D. in economics and former president of Public Rental Company, similarly appreciates the addition: “The only thing that’s changing has more to do with corporate social responsibility than operations, which remain the same. Sareb has one goal – to liquidate their assets. Due to the demands of the script and the situation itself, they give up part of their housing, but always on a lease, as they would do with any of us.

After months, the property is not transferred

Under the Royal Decree, some or all of the company’s properties can be used to increase the public housing stock of the Autonomous Communities and other institutions with authority in this matter, however, the new rules are more about political will than with legislative duty.

The organization itself, outside the purview of the political narrative of the government team, confines itself to a technical assessment of the situation and interprets that its change in corporate goal is not such, but that “the principle of sustainability is being introduced so that they can promote social housing solutions that meet the best technical standards in this matter. ‘, they explain. It also highlights the fact that since its inception in 2012, temporary housing transfer agreements have been signed with more than fifty autonomous communities and city councils, totaling 3,200 statewide homes out of the 15,000 that have been made available to state administrations. . Since their inception, they have sold 118,500 properties.

On the other hand, the Chairman of the Council of Ministers, the Ministry of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda included Sareb’s appointment in its State Housing and Land Plan 2022-2025, approved earlier this year, including a program that should be available within as a minimum of five years from community-owned housing and from government agencies rented as affordable or social housing. This option is valid, that is, available, from January 19, when the plan went into effect. Beneficiaries may include autonomous communities, local organizations, and other government or non-profit organizations dedicated to promoting affordable housing.

The team of Raquel Sanchez, branch minister, confirms to that more than three months later, no body, city council or region has applied the measure, although, as they explain, “the signing of various cooperation agreements”.

At the same time, the average rental price continues to grow. In Barcelona in April, it reached an average of 1285 euros; in Madrid – 1362 people; 1003 people in Valencia; 1319 euros in the Balearic Islands; 776 in Santa Cruz de Tenerife; likewise 723 in Zaragoza or 713 euros in Melilla, to give a few examples, according to the Fotocasa portal, with an average annual growth of 2.3% in March this year, according to the competition portal Idealistic.

From the latest official data published by the Housing Observatory of the Ministry of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda in 2020, it is known that the number of social housing compared to the total number of households in Spain is 2.5 houses per hundred, which is the same as in Bulgaria. and below countries such as Hungary, Poland, Slovakia or Slovenia. In Ireland, there are three times as many (9%), while in neighboring France there are 17 public housing for every hundred households, as, for example, in the United Kingdom. Compared to the countries of Central Europe and the Baltics, the Spanish figure is almost non-existent: 19% in Norway, 21% in Denmark, 24% in Austria, or 30 social housing units per hundred households in the Netherlands.

If we compare the public fund of the Autonomous Communities with the lists of applications for subsidized housing in each region, and in turn both are faced with the unsold Sareb fund, the results are quite surprising: in the Valencian Community, the second place with more real housing stock The property of the organization, with its With 8,532 apartments still owned by the organization, it will not only cover the total number of requests, but also double them: the waiting list is 4,382, which was recently confirmed by the second vice president and secretary of housing. and Bioclimatic Architecture, Hector Illueca, who for some time claimed to manage Sareb’s homes by incorporating them into the community’s public park.

Illueca has announced a tour to convince other regions in this regard to demand a change of leadership from the government. In his case, the regional fiefdom will be increased by 61% if his claim goes into effect. Catalonia has joined the petition by sending its Minister of Social Rights Violante Cervera a letter to the Minister of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda requesting in the same sense to change ownership and management based on change of shareholders through FROB. If so, then the percentage of growth of the regional public park will reach 81%.

Galicia also asked the government for a “criteria change” regarding the management of the company’s 1,834 homes in the region, which would expand the pool of public offerings by 20% and reduce the waiting list posted on its portal by 12%. There are no more regional leaders who have conveyed this request to the central executive, despite the fact that, for example, in Murcia real estate assets would increase the public housing stock by 136%, in Cantabria they would quadruple or cover According to the information provided by them communications departments, all rental emergency services are in demand in Aragon and more than half in La Rioja. Despite these data, the authorities of the regions do not pay much attention to the transfer of housing stock into the hands of Sarebu to solve the problem of shortage of housing stock.

At the same time, these days, the deadline for registration of amendments to the draft Law on Housing and Public Utilities, which has been under consideration since February 2021 at the Congress of Deputies, and which has stalled in regular extensions, the fifty-second to date, has been again extended. . At the end of this text, and after consultations with parliamentary groups, according to their responses, only United We Can, Compromís and the Canary Coalition have registered proposals to include in the final text that the Sareb real estate passes, because it is a public debt, to be the public property of institutions empowered in areas of housing construction, autonomous communities.


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