Balearic homeowners spend the largest chunk of their income on housing in Spain and the local government intends to ease the burden. Balearic president Francesc Antich said yesterday that a study has revealed that the local population, on average, spend as much as 68 per cent of their income on housing, a figure the local government considers far too high. As a result, Antich yesterday unveiled a new project which has been devised to ease the burden on homeowners and help Balearic citizens either purchase properties or renovate rental properties. “Our aim is to ease the concerns and fears most Majorcans have about purchasing a home,” Antich said. The Balearics is the toughest region in Spain to either purchase of rent a first property. On average, 68 per cent of people's income goes on rent, well above the national average of 45 per cent. Some say rents are too high while others claim wages are too low, most National Statistics Institute reports suggest the problem is a combination of the two. Nevertheless, Antich said yesterday that the government intends to help subsidise first time home buyers and it will be ploughing three million euros (500 million pesetas) into the new project with the aim of reducing the financial burden by 68 to 30 per cent. Antich said that this new initiative will be primarily aimed at first time buyers not looking to purchase a new construction in order make maximum use of the existing property market, 46 per cent of which is standing empty, although much needs renovating.

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