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Michael Gove has announced major new proposals that would require planning permission for short-term lets, such as Airbnb, if approved.


Posted on Monday, February 19, 2024

The new law would require people letting out their property as a short-term holiday home to seek permission from the local authority under a new “use” category.

A mandatory national register would be set up providing councils with information on short-term lets in their area.

Tourism minister Julia Lopez commented: “Short-term lets provide flexibility for homeowners and give tourists more accommodation options than ever before, but this should not prevent local people from being able to buy or rent homes in their area.

“The government is committed to getting the balance right to ensure both local people and our visitor economy can thrive.”

Airbnb has welcomed the proposed new rules.

The planned changes are part of the government’s long-term plan for housing.

The government also intends to introduce associated permitted development rights – one allowing for a property to be changed from a short-term let to a standard residential dwelling, and a second that would allow a property to be changed to a short-term let. Local authorities would be able to remove these permissions and require full planning permission if they deem it necessary.

Both of these measures are focussed on short-term lets, and therefore the planning changes and the register will not affect hotels, hostels or B&Bs.

Further details of these measures will be set out in the government’s response to the consultations, including the timeline for implementation of the register, the use class and the individual permitted development rights – with the changes being introduced from this summer.