Edinburgh to be a Short Term Let Control Area

Edinburgh has become the first local authority to introduce a Short-Term Let Control Area. It covers the entire City of Edinburgh Council area.  A control area is there to preserve the character of a community and to ensure that housing serves the people who live there.

From 1 October 2022 any new operators or hosts of short term lets must have a licence in place before they can let out the room or property. Anyone who has been renting out a room or property prior to this has until 1 April 2023 to apply and will be able to continue to operate in the meantime. All licences must be in place by 1 July 2024.

Orkney Islands Council is still consulting on its proposed policy on temporary exemptions and on the fees that will be charged for the licence. The consultation closes on 7 August.

Click on this link: Short-term Lets – Consultation – Fees for Licences and Duration

Discretionary powers enabling local authorities to designate short-term let control areas came into effect in 2021. Separate legislation introducing a mandatory licensing scheme for all short-term lets in Scotland was approved earlier this year.

Orkney Islands Council could have imposed additional conditions – “but has chosen not to do so.”

Commenting on being the first in Scotland to have A Short Term Let Control Area, Leader of Edinburgh Council Cammy Day said:

“It paves the way for Edinburgh becoming the first short-term let control area in Scotland. For far too long, too many homes have been lost in our city to the holiday market.

“In fact, around a third of all short term lets in Scotland are here in the Capital, so their associated issues of safety, anti-social behaviour and noise have a detrimental effect on many of our residents. We will now progress implementing the changes and the next step should be looking at whether we can apply a cap on numbers, too.”

The regulations on Short Term Lets became law when it was passed by the Scottish Parliament. The vote on the 19th January 2022 fell into two parts.

  1. That the Parliament agrees that the Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982 (Licensing of Short-term Lets) Order 2022 [draft] be approved. For 68 (SNP, Scottish Greens) Against 53 (Conservatives, Labour, Lib/Dems)
  2. That the Parliament agrees that the Town and Country Planning (Short-term Let Control Areas) (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2022 [draft] be approved. For 87 ( SNP, Scottish Greens, Labour) Against 33 (Conservatives and Lib/Dem)
Image credit Helen Armet

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