Landlords with properties within the UK’s key rural and coastal holiday hotspots have been accused of greed as many switch from traditional long-term rentals to holiday lets, ironically persuaded to do so by more generous tax breaks.
A councillor in Suffolk are the latest to berate landlords for switching properties to Airbnb or holiday cottage rental platforms.
Liberal Southwold and Reydon district councillor David Beavan told local media that: There will be no community left…I think they don’t rent locally as they make lots from holiday lets. It’s pure greed.
“The first problem locally has been [that[ prices are inflated and secondly holiday rents going up more rapidly and provide higher returns and are more profitable,” he says.
A property search on Rightmove makes the point; only three properties are available to rent outside of the county’s two ‘working towns’ while hundreds of properties are available on Airbnb at rents of £150-£200 a night which is five or six times the average monthly rent locally.
And while profits from these short-term lets have in the past been offset by long void periods during the low-season, restrictions on foreign travel during Covid means many have been fully booked for months on end over the past year-and-a-half.
Generation Rent has also campaigned on the topic, publishing a blog that also claimed holiday lets are pushing up rents for traditional properties.
It says Cornwall has 62 homes to rent on Rightmove but 10,290 AirBnB listings and that within one village in Wales, three quarters of the houses are holiday homes.
And as LandlordZONE reported recently, Anthony Mangnall, the Tory MP for Totnes, recently declared a housing emergency after local complaints about a shortage of rented properties.
Also, Generation Rent has launched a petition calling for the tax benefits afforded holiday let landlords but not traditional let landlords to be withdrawn, which 43,000 people have signed so far.
The NRLA agrees, saying recently that it wants “to ensure the tax system encourages the provision of longer-term rental property over short-term holiday lets.
“From April this year, the final phase of reducing mortgage interest relief for landlords to the basic rate of income tax will be completed.
“This measure does not apply though to furnished holiday lets. This has encouraged the removal of properties from the long-term market for use as short-term holiday lets.”