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House of Lords hears of concern over spread of Airbnb short lets

Members of the House of Lords have heard about the concerns of a Baroness over landlords who choose not to let their properties to long-term tenants but instead prefer the more profitable and less controlled short-term lets via Airbnb.

Baroness Gardner of Parkes - herself a long-time landlord who has let properties in London for several decades - raised the issue during the committee stage of the Renters’ Rights Bill, which is currently going through the Lords. 

That measure concens traditional lets of six months or longer but Baroness Gardner warned that the Bill’s desire to exercise greater control and costs on landlords and letting agents may drive more into the Airbnb short lets sector.

“People are overlooking the situation where, particularly in London, landlords are giving up ordinary residential lettings. There is quite a desperate shortage of lettings for ordinary people wishing to rent, because landlords can make so much more money out of Airbnb, which is totally uncontrolled. I opposed the practice when it came up last year during passage of the Deregulation Act, but no one else did” Baroness Gardner told peers. 

“Now, sure enough, Berlin is bringing in controls. New York, Vancouver—all these places—are finding themselves in the same position. The Mayor of London has acknowledged the problem. It is only capital cities that have ever had that limitation on short lets. Whether it is in the tenancy agreement or not, people are totally ignoring that and simply letting them, because they can earn as much in four months as an ordinary landlord would in the whole year” she continued.

There has been widespread concern over the abuse of Airbnb and similar platforms, not just to let owner-occupied rooms for short periods but used instead to let property that used to be long-term rental accommodation.

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    So......the government fail to build enough new homes whilst selling off social housing which creates increased demand for rental properties. Landlords/investors buy property to rent out to satisfy this demand then get vilified by the government for charging market value which is exacerbated by the level of demand created by the lack of housing across the board. Short-term lets are what some people need - this market has grown quickly as a result. Landlords are hopping on the bandwagon because it works and the yields are better - especially now that the additional 3% stamp duty is in force, landlords have lost the tax relief on mortgage interest and they also have to absorb the changes to wear & tear allowance - so who wouldn't consider the short-term/air bnb route in the face of all these punitive measures? It feels like these changes are more an attempt to deflect blame from the government rather than a genuine way to increase revenues - and why should private landlords take all the flak when the underlying problems with housing are 100% down to successive governments failing to play their part? Would these critics be happy to work for free? Would they not try legally permitted mitigation measures if they saw viability diminish and risk increase? Hypocrites and snollygosters, the lot of them. BUILD MORE HOUSES AND RE-TAKE CONTROL OF PROPER SOCIAL HOUSING - that's the politicians job so they should be made to do it instead of talking nonsense about a scenario they have consistently mismanaged for most of my lifetime.


    ............. landlords have lost the tax relief on mortgage interest....... not quiet yet and spread over a few short years so your comment is exaggeration for the sake of emphasis or the alternate is Mr Manning you do not know what you are talking about just like our Government!

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    From above article "There is quite a desperate shortage of lettings for ordinary people wishing to rent, because landlords can make so much more money out of Airbnb"


    Well spotted.


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