Welsh politicians have slammed news reports for encouraging investors to buy holiday lets in the region, putting the housing market under pressure.
The Telegraph and This is Money have both published articles recently flagging up areas in Wales that offer affordable housing to buy as holiday lets amid the staycation boom.
This is Money’s article highlights tax perks tempting landlords struggling to make a profit from traditional buy-to-lets, and lists the top 10 holiday let hotspots, including Ceredigion in second place, Isle of Anglesey (pictured) in ninth and Gwynedd in tenth place, based on the number of short lets as a proportion of all lets.
Anglesey MP Hywel Evans says the housing market is already under severe pressure. He believes the growth of the second home or holiday home sector prevents local people from buying affordable properties in their native area, and poses a threat to the Welsh language and communities.
“Recent statistics for Gwynedd showed that 40% of homes sold there last year were second homes or to be used as holiday homes,” says Evans. “I have no doubt that the figure for Anglesey is even greater, and in our coastal areas that figure is likely to be higher.”
The deputy leader for Plaid Cymru, Rhun ap Iorwerth, joined in the criticism on Twitter, saying that it showed a blatant disregard for communities. “Encouraging people to see houses as ££££ rather than what they should be – homes. We need legislation to protect our local housing stock.”
Evans wants new laws to be brought in to protect local housing stock, including a change in planning rules, so that buyers would have to apply for change of use permission to turn a permanent home into a holiday home.