Landlords Turning to Holiday Lets

A whole lot of private rented properties are being put up on “holiday let”. No one seems to bother about breaking the 90-day planning rule, and most of them browse the Internet and find their tenants online. This has caused a lot of problems for the regular tenants who just can’t seem to find houses as most of them are let out to tourists for much higher rents.

Research indicates that there is a considerable increase in the number of listings on the Internet, particularly in the past year. Moreover, most of the ads blatantly announce that properties are available for more than 90 nights in a year, which is in stark contravention of the rules laid down for holiday letting. The result of these ads is that there is a considerable increase in the number of properties available for “holiday let”.

While the above is the scenario in London, the trends emerging elsewhere are not very different. According to the survey conducted by RLA over 7% of the 1,500 landlords covered in the survey have been offering their properties as holiday lets. They have been getting these temporary tenants by advertising on portals like Airbnb or some portal or the other on the Internet.

If not for the holiday rush, most of these properties would have been available on regular long lease in the private rental sector, making life a lot easier for the locals. The startling truth is that with this trend of “holiday let” emerging, a few hundred thousand private rented homeshave shifted from the conventional private rental market to the latest boom in the “holiday let” market, where short let accommodation fetches much higher rents with less hassles.

Most of the landlords blame the recent changes in the tax sector, which has forced them to consider letting their properties on short term basis. What makes things worse is the difficulty in selling property due to CGT, which most of the property owners feel is quite unjustly thrust on them. The net result is that there will be very few properties available for rent on long term basis, putting the common people to a lot of difficulty.

The RLA is trying to prevail upon the Government to scrap the mortgage relief changes, so that the property owners can be wooed back to the regular way of letting out their properties. The need of the hour in London and most other parts of the country is for many more new homes that can be made available on long-term rent basis.