Young Spanish get money to leave their parents

Spain decides to help its youth with subsidies for renting a place or buying a home in small Spanish towns.

House Spain Mallorca
The Spanish government wants to help its young population have better access to housing | Street in Mallorca, © Tania Van den Berghen

As Spanish youths stay longer at their parents’ homes because they can’t afford their own place, the government of Spain will subsidize part of their rent.

The Youth Rental Bonus scheme aims at improving conditions of access to housing and facilitating the emancipation of young Spanish.

Spanish between 18 and 35 years old may receive up to 6,000 euros (US$6,800) – €250 per month – for a period of up to two years to finance the rent. They may request the government subsidy now if they earn less than €24,000 ($27,500) a year. The government has provisioned €200 million annually for this Youth Rental Voucher.

Subsidies for access to renting and property ownership

The subsidy “is an important element so that housing (prices) stop being such a hurdle for youth emancipation“, Housing Minister Raquel Sanchez said at a news conference on January 18.

It goes on top of a 5-year rental assistance program. Combined with the voucher, the government can end up covering up to 75% of the rent for two years.

Young Spanish can also receive financial support up to €10,800, or 20% of the price if they buy a property in a town smaller than 10,000 people and live in it for at least five years.

Older emancipation is not a phenomenon specific to Spain’s new generations. They are called bamboccioni in Italy, for big babies, while the country has some of the highest shares of home ownership limiting offers for rentals. In France, they are called Tanguy out of a movie depicting a 30-year-old student with parents craving to see him leave the house.

But it’s an increasing trend in Spain. As many as 55% of 25-29 year-olds in 2020 still lived with their parents, one of the highest shares in Europe according to Spain’s official data. It increased by 6.5 percentage points since 2013.

One in four 30-34 year-olds lived with their parents in 2020.

Spain’s youth struggles to find a job in the country largely explain it. In Spain, 29% of people under 25 are registered as jobless.

Critics of rental subsidies argue it tends to further increase rents. Moreover, the population who lives just over the threshold may feel unfair not to receive financial support.

Housing plan for decent homes

The program is part of the State Housing Plan 2022-2025 which seeks to bring more “decent housing” to the population. The government will inject €3.3 billion ($3.7bn) into the plan.

The program also provides a rental assistance program for older low-income tenants or in situations of sudden vulnerability. It will also increase immediate residence solutions for victims of gender-based violence, homeless people or people subject to eviction.

Spain should also increase supply of low-rent accommodation in the longer term.

Read more about Spain

Plan Estatal de Vivienda 2022-2025, Government of Spain, Free access

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