Barcelona, ​​the place in Spain where the most salary goes to rent

Living on rent in the province of Barcelona forces you to allocate more and more of your salary to pay your monthly payment.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
12 May 2024 Sunday 16:25
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Barcelona, ​​the place in Spain where the most salary goes to rent

Living on rent in the province of Barcelona forces you to allocate more and more of your salary to pay your monthly payment. It represented up to 65% in 2023, according to a Fotocasa study with data from Infojobs presented this Monday. They are five points more than the previous year and there is no other part in Spain that requires such an effort: only the Balearic Islands (63%), Madrid (62%) and Gipuzkoa (60%) come close.

All of them are well above the national average of 43%, a record and two points more than last year. The figure by far misses the reference that serves to know if too much is being allocated to rent: it is generally recommended that housing expenses do not represent more than 30% of income. This rate is exceeded in more than 30 provinces.

The study is based on the average salaries of the job offers advertised on Infojobs, a typical 80 m² home and the average rental prices of Fotocasa. In the province of Barcelona, ​​the average salary was 26,336 euros gross per year in 2023 and a rental of 80 square meters took 17,050 euros per year, 65% of the gross income.

At the national level, in a decade the effort has grown more than ten points. “It's not just that salaries are not growing at the same rate as housing, the main reason for reaching the highest level in history (in effort) is that the price of rent is at its all-time high,” says María Matos, director of studies at Fotocasa.

In 2023, salaries increased to an average of 26,245 euros annually, 4.2% more. “The increase in rental prices causes the salary effort that citizens make to access the rental to be well above what is recommended,” explains Matos. Las Palmas, Bizkaia, Valencia or Santa Cruz de Tenerife exceed 50%. Another handful in which Girona, Málaga or Seville remain exceeds 40%.

Only 16 provinces meet the recommended percentage of 30%. The lowest rate of effort occurs in Ciudad Real (19%), Jaén, Cáceres (21%), Albacete, Badajoz, Ourense (23%) or Córdoba (25%). Teruel, Lugo, Almería, Castellón, Palencia and Lleida are also below 30%.

In general, the rate of effort increases from one year to the next. Especially in the Balearic Islands, where it jumps 11 points to 63%, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, with 9 points (to 50%), or Madrid and Valencia (50%), both with 7 more points. They are those in which demand or tourist pressure drives up rental prices. In about five provinces the rate has remained the same and has only decreased in La Rioja, Ourense, Cáceres, Guadalajara, Cuenca, Albacete and Córdoba.

“The rise in inflation in the last two years, especially in 2022, has decreased purchasing power and continues to affect the living conditions of working people,” says Mónica Pérez, director of studies at InfoJobs.