It sometimes happens that a depreciated and depressed neighborhood, with no apparent appeal, begins to change. It does not happen from morning to night, but little by little its population and its businesses change, so that living in that neighborhood ceases to be cheap. It is what they have called "gentrification." A poor neighborhood becomes fashionable and is populated by younger, more wealthy people. Everything may look prettier ... but at what price.
The word "gentrification" comes from the English, gentrification. That is why the Fundéu (the Foundation of Urgent Spanish) prefers and recommends "elitisation" or "residential elitism". It is the phenomenon whereby a neighborhood of the center of a city, commercially depreciated and inhabited by low-income people begins to be inhabited by people of higher economic level and usually younger.
The main reasons are the good value of real estate and other advantages such as comfort, the charm of living in the center and the possibilities of rehabilitation of these homes. But it has a dark side: this movement forces the 'native' population - which does not have that purchasing power - to move to other neighborhoods in favor of these new neighbors. All this ends up revaluing the price of the land, the housing and the neighborhood as a whole.
This is what has happened in neighborhoods like Malasaña and Chueca, in Madrid, or begins to happen in those of Lavapies and Usera. And it happens with special intensity in Barcelona, where tourism is doing real damage. It happened to the neighborhoods of Sant Antoni or Poble Sec, the Raval, the Gothic, the Barceloneta, and the same phenomenon begins to appear in Poblenou.
According to a survey by the Casaktua real estate portal, 27% of Spaniards planning to move in the short or medium term would be willing to move to a depreciated downtown area. Eighty-six percent of the interviewees consider that this type of neighborhood is currently in the process of revaluation. 60% think that there is still the possibility of finding homes with good value for money.
The study shows that among those interested in moving to rental housing, 30% said they would move to a devalued downtown area, 43% would have to think more, and 27% would not include this alternative in their options Of search. However, of those who plan to buy, 22% acknowledge that they would have no problem acquiring housing in a poorly rated downtown neighborhood, 43% would have to think about it and 35% would not consider this option.
According to the study, 20% of those living in the center would go to a devalued area, while the remaining 80% would not or would have to think carefully. Of those currently living in the suburbs, only 10% would move to this location, since 90% recognize that it would be an option that would discard. By age, the young people (25-35 years) are those that show greater interest. In fact, 22% would not hesitate, just like those who want to expand the family with children.