STAA and Locale unveil platform at Short Stay Show
Short-term rentals trade body the STAA (UK Short Term Accommodation Association) and digital property management experts Locale have partnered to create a new online platform which will equip hosts in multi-occupancy buildings with tools to provide evidence and security to property owners, managers, councils and visitors.
Merilee Karr, Chair of the STAA said at the Short Stay Show at London’s ExCel Centre on March 12th, that the tool will: “Increase the level of transparency between the landlord and the tenant, and represents another significant step in helping the industry to grow responsibly.”
The tool called Trusted Hosts is set to be piloted with selected councils throughout the UK, including Westminster and Manchester, and regulatory bodies in the coming months. The STAA are hoping it will ease the pressure on local councils through easy-to-access guidance.
Karr explains the reason for developing the tool: “Residents not feeling comfortable in their own building due to different people coming in and out, a lack of transparency between tenant and landlord, not knowing who to call if there is an issue, miscommunication with the local councils on simple issues such as when to put the rubbish out or other health & safety concerns.”
The STAA felt comfortable developing the tool with Locale due to their impressive track record with the Shard, the 95-storey skyscraper in London Bridge. The technology used is also not UK-specific so it can be used Europe-wide.
Karr says: “Any building can sign up for free using the technology and any individual in the building has to go through the process of self-certification. This allows both parties to know what is happening in the building, who is doing a short-term rental and so on.”
She believes improving tech within the short-term rental sector is far more effective than a national registration scheme, as MPs including Karen Buck have called for. Karr says: “There are many pitfalls associated with a national registration scheme of properties being rented out via short-term lets on platforms like Airbnb as national systems are rigid and don’t solve localised problems, for instance noisy neighbours.
“There are commercial solutions with companies like Minut which monitors noise, motion and temperature to try and prevent disruption starting in the first place and the neighbour or host becoming frustrated.”