Cases of squatting have increased by 37% between 2018 and 2022. The average length of the process to recover a home is 20.5 months explains the newspaper Expansión. The phenomenon of illegal squatting in Spain has become more prevalent in recent years, as the data show: last year, 16,726 complaints were filed, which is 37% more than the 12,214 in 2018, although the maximum was reached in 2021 with 17,274. During the last legislature, which lasted significantly less than the four years of rigor due to the early elections, there were more than 55,000 complaints in this regard. This is the result of adding the data from 2022 and 2021, already mentioned, to the 14,792 from 2020 and the 6,648 from this year between January and May, according to the data on known facts of illegal occupation of properties compiled by the Ministry of the Interior.
But is squatting causing concern in Spain? Despite the fact that the figures for the start of this year are 11.2% lower than those for the same period last year, the report titles Los españoles ante la okupación de la vivienda en España. Opinión, preocupaciones y propuestas (The Spanish and squatting in Spain. Opinions, concerns and proposals), published by the Línea Directa insurance company states that yes: 77% of Spaniards believe that the phenomenon has already acquired the category of “social problem”, compared with 8% who see it as something residual, according to a survey of 1,700 people. Furthermore, 24% consider that there is a medium or high probability that their property will be occupied and 31% know someone directly or indirectly who has suffered a problem of this type.