The problem with accommodation is particularly acute in Ibiza.

08-08-2012Archive

It is now a familiar enough tale. Inma Benito of the Majorca Hoteliers Federation is just one to have highlighted the impact of holiday rentals on regular housing. She referred the other day to doctors and police not coming to the Balearics because they can't find anywhere to stay.

The problem with accommodation in Majorca was more evident than ever last year. Pollensa, for example, was one town hall to express its concern. Hoteliers, which have partially contributed to the problem by not providing in-hotel accommodation for staff any longer, were having to arrange transport for employees living quite some distance away. They will be doing so again this summer. The police union has spoken to the national government's delegate about the fact that National Police officers don't want transfers to Majorca because of the lack and cost of rented accommodation.

Ibiza, in particular, has a very serious problem. In addition to doctors and police, hotel maids, security guards, trainee journalists are just some others who are confronted by the accommodation crisis.

For the police, there is a daily allowance of between sixty and seventy euros. The general secretary of the SUP police union, Manu Pavón, says that in July and August it is impossible to get a hotel room at that sort of price. Many officers are asking for the union's help in finding somewhere to rent. "We are going crazy looking for places. In the end, they are forced into sharing a place between three or four, if they can find it."

The Guardia Civil are also affected - there are transfers to the islands from both forces in the summer - and the situation now means that Ibiza town hall is offering some accommodation, while the Council of Ibiza is urging the use of apartments at the military residence normally reserved for vacation use. Pavón states once more that officers are no longer volunteering to come to the Balearics.

For trainee journalists who have internships with media companies, they are giving up these opportunities because of the accommodation problem. Seasonal workers in hotels, according to Juanjo Riera of the Ibiza and Formentera Hoteliers Federation, are now deciding against coming. They don't get paid as well on the mainland but with rents as they are in the Balearics, they are better off not coming. The Palladium Hotel Group says that it isn't recruiting from outside the island. "We know they will come and not find somewhere to live," explains Ana Montero, the deputy director of human resources.

And Minorca isn't escaping the problem. Pau Puig of the Hotel Artiem Carlos III in Es Castell suggests that it is a new phenomenon for the island. "We're encountering something that hasn't happened before. Many workers who want to come to Minorca cannot find anywhere." Pablo Sánchez, a seasonal worker in Minorca for the past six years, says that this year he will have to settle for a room. "Usually I've been able to find a house. This time I'm waiting to see two rooms. I can't get anything else. Meanwhile I'm in a hostel."

Comments

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David Williams / Hace over 3 years

This makes no sense at all. We have an apartment not 5 minutes from the Porto Pollensa Guardia Civil that we cannot rent to tourists while it would appear that there are members of the Guardia Civil struggling to find somewhere comfortable to live. Surely there must be a way to put us in touch with them or put them in touch with us. As luck would have it we have a long term renter there now till the end of October but 2019 is totally free.

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Paul Rollings / Hace over 4 years

I would be more than happy to rent my apartment to several police officers. We are not allowed to rent to tourists and the long term lets are unreliable as the previous comments say - unpaid bills, damage, difficulty with evictions. The Tourist dept. is being narrow minded in it's solution to the problems and Kow-Towing to the Hoteliers demands.

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Sara / Hace over 4 years

Very angry at the stupidity of the powers that be !!! Why you do not enough accommodation is - you have built little over the last 8 years. Europe is no longer in recession. More Eastern block countries have wealth and can afford long term holiday homes. The island has an increasing natural population. Many homes are empty as you cannot easily ask a tenant to leave. Let us blame Air BnB - you will have the same problem next year and the year after. Rents will only increase. Unless you build more properties or you just stop the tourists, then you will not need the seasonal staff ... problem solved

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Ron / Hace over 4 years

You can't blame tourists for everything. They bring the only wealth to the island. We can't live on potatoes, ensaimadas and sobresada. Market forces decide rents - just look at sky high prices in the UK in areas where there are no tourists. Benito mentions that doctors and police can't find cheap rents - nothing to do with her. She says this to divert attention from her own problems. She should only be concerned with her hotel workers. How can they possibly get an annual tenancy when her workers only get at most six month's work? They have to cut their profits and investments in the Caribbean etc. and provide accommodation for their workers as they did before becoming the all powerful controllers of this government. Owners with properties to rent prefer tourists because they pay, go when they say and don't leave bills behind to be paid by landlords

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