Spain has the highest proportion of flat-dwellers in Europe and the lowest percentage of people living in houses, according to a report by Eurostat.
The latest figures on European housing reveal that two out of three Spaniards live in a flat, while in countries such as Britain, Croatia and Norway, more than 80 percent of people live in houses.
Flats are also a popular form of accommodation in Latvia – where 65 percent of the population live in a flat – Lithuania (58 percent) and Greece (57 percent).
Six out of ten Europeans live in houses, so why do Spaniards prefer flats? One answer is that Spain is a heavily urbanized society.
The construction of large apartment blocks boomed under Francisco Franco, who ruled Spain between 1939 and 1975. Many Spaniards moved to the cities from the countryside in the hope of greater opportunities.
On the other hand, Spaniards spend more time outdoors enjoying the good climate than nestled indoors like northern Europeans, giving them less need of a sprawling house.
And while it may seem that many Spaniards live on top of each other, packed into crowded apartment blocks, Spain is actually one of the least overcrowded countries in Europe, according to the report. And what’s more: Spaniards are happy with their living conditions, rating them, on average, 7.3 out of 10.