A Second Opportunity For Empty Commercial Properties.

Empty Commercial Properties

In our cities the ground floor level of the majority of buildings are destined to commercial properties, even in neighborhoods where the demand for such use is low or non existent. The result is empty properties with no use or potential. This situation worsened after the last economical crisis, when many commercial and professional activities and bank offices closed.

Growing Tourism

The tourism industry has been growing consistently over the last ten years and developing more and more into a diversified demand for accommodation. The option of tourist rental apartments has created new businesses, directly and indirectly, relatively fast. In the majority of cases these apartments are part of buildings where local residents live and have lived well before the current tourist boom, forcing, in cases, to hard cohabitation.

Valencian Authorities Slow to React

The regulation from the local and Valencian authorities is arriving slowly, not completely defined and in many cases not strong enough to provide a solution to the necessities of the tourist rental business and the to the complaints from the ordinary residents.

Regulation in Other Major Cities

Other cities like Madrid or Barcelona have already regulated the activity requiring a separate entrance, which opens the possibility for empty commercial properties on the ground floor to be converted into residential dwelling.

The action ensures a separate entrance and a distance between the tourist activity and the residents properties.

Planning Considerations

However, the process of converting a commercial property into residential requires planning consideration in the area where the action is pretended. A previous permission from the town hall will be required.

At the same time, the property has to be checked in terms of the possibility of providing habitable conditions according to the current regulations. Dimensions of rooms, possible layout, minimum surfaces, ventilation and lighting conditions must be checked before beginning any refurbishment project.

Positive Option

It is a positive option for empty commercial properties and a potential niche for a number of business branches related to the construction and tourist industry.

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Article written by:

Javier Leonardo Rímolo
Gross & Rimolo

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