William Eichler 09 January 2020

Scottish councils granted powers to regulate short-term lets

Scottish councils granted powers to regulate short-term lets image

Local authorities in Scotland are to be given new powers to regulate short-term lets where they decide this is in the interests of local communities.

Housing minister Kevin Stewart has announced measures in the Scottish parliament to provide councils with the ability to implement a licensing scheme for short-term lets from spring 2021.

This will enable local authorities to understand what is happening in their area, improve safety and assist with the effective handling of complaints, he said.

The licensing scheme will include a new mandatory safety requirement that will cover every type of short-term let and will give councils the discretion to apply further conditions to address local concerns.

Councils will also be able to designate control areas to ensure that planning permission will always be required for the change of use of whole properties for short-term lets.

‘Short-term lets can offer people a flexible travel option and have contributed positively to Scotland’s tourism industry and local economies across the country,’ said Mr Stewart.

‘However, we know that in certain areas, particularly tourist hot spots, high numbers of short-term lets are causing problems and often make it harder for people to find homes to live in.

‘That is why we are empowering local authorities to implement a system that works for their area.

‘By giving councils the power to set conditions around short-term lets licences and put in place planning control areas to tackle hot spots, communities across Scotland will be able to decide what is best for them and their local economy.’

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