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Plans to make Airbnb landlords reach same standards as hotels criticised

airbnb wales welsh licencing

Statutory licensing scheme plans for visitor accommodation in Wales have got the thumbs down from many holiday home owners, short-lets landlords and residents.

The proposals, which will see all holiday homes, Airbnbs, hotels and bed-and-breakfasts licenced under one scheme - is the Welsh Government's bid to bring all property owners under one scheme to ensure they all reach the same standards of building safety and operation.

The proposed legislation is designed to answer one of the key criticisms of those who rent out properties via Airbnb and other platforms, and in particular landlords who have swtiched in significant numbers from traditional long-term tenants to short-term holiday lets - namely that they don't have to attain the same standards as traditional providers.


But respondents to the Welsh government's consultation largely agreed it would create an administrative and financial burden for a market which was highly competitive and already operated efficiently. However, large tourism organisations and local authorities were more likely to agree with the plans.

Most respondents (74%) preferred a scaled fee as opposed to the same standard fee for all accommodation, typically based on size.

Meanwhile, 61% disagreed that such a scheme would ensure a level playing field for accommodation providers in Wales, because there were considerable differences among providers in terms of size, type, and turnover.

Key stakeholders

A further consultation of key stakeholders raised questions about whether enforcement would be solely on the business or also on the platforms promoting them if they didn't have a licence.

Some queried whether a scheme should be scaled on property size to make it fair for smaller rentals and whether those marketed via online booking platforms '� with some earning up to �7,000 a week - were at an unfair advantage.

These respondents thought a figure of �100 was a reasonable fee and for it to be anannual system of registration '� rather than a licence - as several current standards and regulations were already renewed annually.

It was generally felt that non-payment of the levy should mean revocation of licence, with enforcement teams preferably using a light touch, by asking providers to self-certify and then following up if required.

The the consultation in full.


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