Vancouver, CA has passed new regulations banning homeowners from renting out certain kinds of property on short-term rental platforms like Airbnb as part of an attempt to cope with a shortage of long-term rentals. Owners may still rent out room individually or let their principle residence on a temporary basis when on holiday. The city will charge an annual licensing fee of C$49 (€32.80).
Following similar moves in London and Amsterdam, the holiday letting firm announced that hosts in four key Parisian neighbourhoods will only be able to rent out their entire homes for no more than 120 nights per year starting in 2018. The restrictions will bring Airbnb into line with current local regulations. Paris is the platform’s largest city based on listings.
AL Business owners may now find higher water bills in their mail boxes. Once local councils find out that a property is engaged in local lodging, they can reclassify the business, instead of “domestic” or “comercial” as “diversos”. In this case, the water costs more than for a private residential property. One consideration which may justify the increase is the fact that AL creates more rubbish and waste water, and as a result, the City Hall has to increase these basic services.
The State Budget has been passed and there are no major changes to the AL system: no limitations in number of days per year, and no tax increases are coming our way. The exception hits the entrepreneur who earns more than 27.300€ per year with Local Lodging (or as a Sole Trader in other areas); these businesses will have to prove 15% of their costs by presenting the respective invoices to arrive at the 65% exemption.
Tax receipts from Local Lodging (“AL”) grew from €69,000,000 to €123,000,000 between 2015 and 2017, as revealed by the Secretary of State for Tourism, Ana Mendes Godinho. “AL” license registrations also increased almost twofold from 28,000 to over 50,000 over the same period.
The number of overnight stays in tourist establishments has grown in all regions of the country between 2013 and 2016. Overall demand increased in the North and Alentejo, rural tourism in the Central Portugal and Local Lodging in Lisbon, according to the National Statistics Institute.
Letting a bedroom in a private home in Greater Lisbon now costs on average €308 per month – the most expensive in the country – with growth in prices of 14% in 2017. Interest in room rentals, a traditional form of housing for university students and young workers, has quintupled the number of searches carried out over the past year. Due to increased demand, the cost of letting an individual room has risen to an average of €238 per month in Portugal.
Adjustments to current regulations for Local Lodging intended to regulate and respond to excessive volume are being prepared, according to the Secretary of State for Tourism. Integration of holiday letting into the formal economy has been the focus of successive changes to legislation in recent years. In July, new measures were introduced mandating that reservation platforms such as Airbnb or Booking.com identify official registrations of all available accommodations for travelers.
The Left Block, a partner in the governing coalition, proposes changes to current Local Lodging legislation. Under the soon-to-be recommended plan, holiday letting not exceeding 90 days per year should continue to benefit from the current tax regime. Year-round operation – without a limit of days and designated as “tourist accommodation” (Habitação turística) – must be equated with a hotel activity and assessed on the same basis.
The Government is studying a new requirement for Local Lodging that would mandate higher condominium levies for owners who engage in holiday lets. If adopted, it would collide with another bill where the condominiums would be given the power to authorise, on a case-by-case basis, the possibility of owners renting short-term to tourists. The latter proposal was made in absentia and without the governmental consent.