Is it legal in Spain if my landlord increases my rent?


Our landlord (Barcelona) wants to increase our rent with the Consumer Price Index (around 10%) starting September 2022. They also want us to pay the extra 10% difference retroactively on all of the last 18 months. So, say, if we paid rent 1000€ (as an example) in February 2022, they want us to pay now another 100€ for the CPI difference applied retroactively.


is such a retroactive rent payment per the above example legal? I thought a rent increase with CPI would only apply for rents going forward

per “Ley 11/2020 por la regulación del precio del alquiler”, we checked the rental price reference index for our apartment (using cadastral reference) and we are actually currently paying a bit over that amount. The extra 10% would take the rent significantly above the specified amount in the rental price reference index. Is this legal? Can they get in trouble?

Last question: do you know any attorneys specialized in such issues and moderately priced?

We’ve had a great relationship with the landlord so far, I suspect he wants us out to use the apartment as Airbnb since tourists are back and will likely make them more money.


These are the answers of some Facebook group members:

“hey for sure can’t. There is a 2% limit now. Barcelona offers free legal advice for this. Google “servei d’Habitatge de Barcelona” and you can make an appointment for assesorament-consultes legales”

“The law says they can not increase the rent more than 2%, even if taxes are higher. If I was you I would change the key of the door so they cant come into your apartment and go to court, or leave. Real state market in bcn is a cheat even for locals, they bloody bastards to be fair. Also, never, ever, ever react to any of the flats annouced in facebook, they pretty much all scam or subletting, which is indeed illegal.”

“Retroactively never. The index is just a reference, they could indeed charge more. But they can’t increase 10% this year I think.”

“By law is 2% , and it can be apply on the month when the contract was signed if was sept can not be retroactive. I posted u the legal documentation above .”

“Don’t pay more than 2% extra. They can’t kick you out without a court order. That will take ages to obtain.”

“As has already been stated here, the demand for retroactive payment is almost certainty not legal.

Your contract will (should) state an agreed amount of rent payment per month, which (presumably) you have paid. You have therefore, to date, fulfilled the terms of your contract. Your landlord making any sort of demands for a retroactive payment would almost certainly be a breach of contract, as any reasonable contract should never allow for such a ludicrous set of conditions. I would consider reporting your landlord to the relative agencies for having the audacity to suggest something so unreasonable. Disclaimer: Not a lawyer, this is not professional legal advice.”

“If your landlord attempts to evict you over this, you should check the termination clauses of your contract as you may be able to refuse such an eviction. If your contract is for a fixed period (e.g. 1 year up to December 31st) and there is no clause allowing for early termination by the landlord, they would be in no position to evict you. In general, rental protections in Spain are quite strong.

While I do not have direct experience in the matter (so please take the following with a pinch of salt), I have heard some discussion that once a rental contract is signed, the landlord cannot legally refuse the contract being renewed for a total of 5 years (starting on the date the contract was signed). They *can* put the rent up (in line with what the law says in terms of percentages), but the only circumstances in which they can evict you early is if they want to use the home themselves or for their direct family (parents, sons/daughters). Document everything. If you have a phone call with them, write them an email and clearly state “As per the phone conversation on [Date], we agreed the following…”

If things turn sour, you want EVERYTHING written down. Even if it’s just a record of what they said and claimed, even if you didn’t agree (e.g. “You proposed XYZ, which I confirmed was not acceptable based on law ABC”).”

“Get a lawyer ASAP and start looking somewhere else to live, this is a typical “bullying” by Spaniards to get you out. Beware, from now on, ALL your communications must be written, e-mail, Whatsapp is accepted by a court.”