Scottish Government Outlines Response to Short-Term Let Consultation – Safe Host Response

The Scottish Government has recently outlined a plan in response to its consultation on short term lets.

The Scottish Government has issued the following guidance:

  • Introduce licencing for short-term lets, under the Civil Government (Scotland) Act 1982, with a mandatory safety component which will apply to all short-term lets across Scotland. Local authorities will also be given the discretion to put in place further conditions; to help tackle littering or overcrowding of properties, for example.
  • Prioritise work to give local authorities the power to introduce short-term let control areas under powers in the Planning (Scotland) Act 2019.
  • Undertake a review of the tax treatment of short-term lets, to ensure they make an appropriate contribution to the communities they operate in

For the government press release and further information, please click here.

We are in agreement with the ASSC (Association of Scotland Self-Caterers) that the direct to licensing scheme seems to be a strong response. A first stage registration scheme, which has previously been discussed, would have been a gradual introduction to an eventual licensing scheme. This scheme could then have been based on rent pressure and density of short term lets in a given area. For more information, please see our recent blog for Safe Host’s opinion of how regulation could be implemented in the Edinburgh market.

However, one point in the above list that we at Safe Host greatly welcome is the inclusion of a ‘mandatory safety component’. Legislation is already in place in the industry, as we have discussed at length on our website. The enforcement of this legislation is an extremely positive step towards keeping visitors and locals safe in rental properties. We support this decision and will look to partner with the Council.