Banks fined over empty Barcelona homes

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Fotomovimiento on Flickr

BARCELONA Council has issued 12 €5,000 fines to banks with empty flats in the city.

Of the 12, seven of the flats belonged to la Sareb, four to BBVA and one to Banc de Sabadell, national daily El Pais reported, and proceedings to issue fines are under way for another 62 empty flats in areas heavily hit by evictions over the last year.

Inspections are being carried out in the worst affected districts of the city and fines prepared for flats owned by banks that have been empty for more than two years and not rented out, the council reported.

Mayor Ada Colau explained that the council considers it must use fines to encourage empty property to be opened up for rent by those in desperate need of housing.

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