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Popular short-term letting website Airbnb has already taken this step, which the Mayor described as a welcome decision.
Airbnb announced in December that it would prevent hosts listing their properties for more than 90 days without planning permission after the problem of London properties being let for profit via short-term rental sites was raised by the Home Affairs Select Committee last year.
Short-Term Lets over 90 Days are Illegal
Many London property owners flout the law and make their properties available to tenants all year round. The law states that anyone letting guests stay for more than 90 days on a calendar year must apply for planning permission, but following the deregulation bill introduced last year, it’s now much harder for councils to identify illegal lets. Indeed, popular property sites happily admit the 90-day limit is unenforceable. As a result, many popular areas in London are let out predominantly to short-term tenants.
Short-Term Lets Bad for London Property Market
Short-term lets are great for tourism, but the trend is having a negative impact on the London rental market. Professional Airbnb hosts are driving up rental prices and reducing the amount of accommodation available for long-term tenants.
Luckily, interventions by the Mayor of London look set to tip the balance back in favour of tenants and local authorities.