• Spain's news in English

How to leave the family home: A Spanish guide

George Mills · 3 Jun 2014, 12:30

Published: 03 Jun 2014 12:30 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

How to hang a picture on a wall, the best way to stack a freezer, how to save on bills: these are just some of tips in Home Sapiens, a modern Spanish guide to housekeeping.

The book was put together by two young Spaniards, 25-year-old graphic designer Alicia Aradilla and her 27-year-old journalist partner Sergio Alonso. It started out as a blog and the pair have now printed 1,000 copies. 

But is a guide like this really necessary?

"It's very hard to leave home in Spain when unemployment rates for young people are around 55 percent. And those young people who are working are only earning €1,000 ($1,350)," author Sergio Alsonso tells The Local.

"That's why Spaniards aren't leaving home until they are 29 years old. In the UK and Germany it's 24."

On top of that, there is the cultural baggage. "Most young people just aren't prepared when it comes to moving out of home," Alonso explains.

"They wait until they are part of a couple before they move out of home," he says.

"Check how much toilet paper you have left so you're not left short."

"There is also not much of a culture of renting in Spain, so people tend to wait until they can buy something."

Alonso admits, too, that parents don't always place pressure on the children to move out. "They don't realise how important moving out is for children, that it is a key part of growing up."

Some 300 copies of Home Sapiens have now been sold and Alonso says they are "delighted" with the reaction — not just from young people but also from older people who recall moving out as a key moment in their lives.

Humour, too, has helped. "Most of these types of books are written by older people who have no idea what it's like for young people now," Alonso says. "Our guide is different."

Story continues below…

Alonso also believes the Spanish government can help young people to move out earlier.

"The government needs to create a social housing scheme using all the empty housing in the country," Alsonso says.

"The rental prices would be symbolic, but everyone would have to pay their water, gas and electricity bills, and it would be great stimulus to the economy.

"It's what this country needs." 

George Mills (george.mills@thelocal.com)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Recipe: How to make fabada - traditional Asturian bean stew
Photo: Flavio Lorenzo Sánchez/Flickr

The hearty Asturian dish is a perfect lunch on a cold day... and don't forget the crusty bread and cider!

Brit 'paedo' held on Costa del Sol after Most Wanted appeal

One of Britain's most wanted fugitives was arrested on the Costa Del Sol following a tip-off from an expat just hours after his face appeared on a public appeal.

Spain's parliament approves deficit reduction measures
Photo: Images Money/Flickr

Spanish lawmakers approved on Thursday measures to reduce the public deficit and keep it under the target agreed with the European Union.

'Cubism and War' show opens at Barcelona Picasso Museum
Pablo Picasso Harlequin and Woman with a Necklace. Photo: MP

Barcelona's Picasso Museum unveiled an exhibition on "Cubism and War" on Thursday depicting how one of the most influential artistic styles of the 20th century survived the First World War.

Why this bionic limb pioneer doesn't believe in disability
Hugh Herr has been award Spain's top science prize. Photo: FPA

The Local speaks to Hugh Herr on winning Spain's top science prize and how being an amputee doesn't make him disabled.

Dine in the buff at Spain's first nudist restaurant
A buffet of organic food will be served on "human tables". Photo: Innato / Facebook

Spain's first naked dining experience is to arrive on the island of Tenerife following the success of a similar venture in London.

Spain's top court overturns bullfighting ban in Catalonia
Photo: AFP

Spain's Constitutional Court on Thursday cancelled a bullfighting ban in Catalonia in what is likely to exacerbate tensions between Madrid and the separatist region, and between animal activists and fans of the tradition.

Out of the dark: Five years on from Eta ceasefire
Eta members made a ceasefire declaration in January, 2011. Photo: Gara / AFP

Five years after armed separatist group Eta declared a permanent ceasefire, Basque journalist Alberto Letona is still wondering when the dialogue will begin.

Hunt for ten most wanted Brit fugitives hiding out in Spain
Call Crimestoppers if you recognize these faces.

These fugitives from British justice are thought to be hiding out in Spain. Do you recognize anyone?

Eta 'not dead' but Spain focus moves onto jihadism
Archive photo of a pro-mural in the Basque Country. Photo: AFP

Five years after Eta quit violence, the Basque separatist group has yet to dissolve but it poses little threat and authorities have shifted their focus to fight jihadists, says Spain's chief anti-terrorism prosecutor.

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Madrid parish church faces fine over 'too noisy' bells
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Celebrate expat life at Madrid’s THRIVE convention
Fury after kids told to bring their own loo roll to school
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Disney announces plans for Don Quixote action movie
Activist tells 8-yr-old matador wannabe with cancer 'just die'
King to make last minute push to avoid third vote in Spain
Amazing photos of Catalonia's 'human tower' contest
What's on in Spain: October 2016
'No way, Jose! You'll never get your hands on our Rock'
Recipe: How to make a classic Spanish tortilla de patatas
Chorizo in paella? Go back to cooking school Jamie Oliver
Spain in eye of a perfect storm after 10 months without govt
Thousands share clips of life for 'Spain in a Day' film
Ten incredible Spain locations for Game of Thrones season 7
Analysis & Opinion
Why moving to Spain could be the best decision of your life
Seven reasons why autumn is the very best season in Spain
Spanish study finds four types of personality. Which are you?
New search underway for civil war grave of poet Lorca
Bison found decapitated on Valencia nature reserve
Forgotten Voices: What Brits in Spain think about Brexit
One dead and 14 injured in blast at Spanish resort
Game of Thrones want extras 'with muscles' to film in Spain
Thousands march in Madrid to push for bullfighting ban
jobs available