MSPs Consider Airbnb-Style Short-Term Rental Licensing Program

Plans for owners of Airbnb and short-term leased properties in Scotland to require a license will be reviewed by a Holyrood committee.

The proposed licensing regime would impose regulations in an attempt to curb the growth of Airbnb-style rentals in popular tourist areas such as Edinburgh.

As part of the Scottish Government’s plans, councils will have until October 2022 to set up a licensing system, with all short-term housing licensed by April 2024.

Existing hosts and operators are expected to apply for a license by April 2023 under the proposed legislation.

Ministers had initially hoped to introduce the new law before Holyrood’s election in May, but pushed back the plans following backlash from some PSMs.

Scottish Parliamentary Elections 2021
Committee chair Ariane Burgess seeks public input on the proposed project (Fraser Bremner / Scottish Daily Mail / PA)

Committee Chair Ariane Burgess said: “The rise in popularity of short-term rentals has undoubtedly brought economic benefits to Scotland.

“However, what is becoming increasingly clear is that these benefits must be balanced with the need to protect our communities and the safety of those staying in short-term rentals.

“The Scottish Government has suggested that this proposed licensing scheme strike that balance, but we want to know if you think these measures are correct.

“Will the introduction of a licensing system ensure that the character of our neighborhoods is protected as well as the protection of those staying in short-term rentals? We want you to let us know.

A survey, which will run until Friday, October 29, has been launched for people to submit their views at https://yourviews.parliament.scot/spice/licensing-of-short-term-lets.

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