Surge in Airbnb makes permanent homes harder to find
A study by London Councils claims that 2% of London housing stock is advertised for short-term letting on platforms including Airbnb, Booking.com, and TripAdvisor.
The survey, by the body representing the capital’s 33 boroughs, found that more than 73,500 flats and houses are available on the six leading online letting portals – equating to one in 50 London homes.
London Councils says the trend is making it harder for London residents to find a permanent roof over their heads. The figures also follow reports of short-term lets being used as a base for antisocial parties, criminal activity and prostitution.
London Councils has called for greater regulation of the sector, including compulsory registration and more powers for local authorities to crack down on irresponsible owners.
Darren Rodwell, executive member for housing at London Councils, said: “At a time when almost one in 50 Londoners is homeless, it’s ridiculous that, potentially, one in 50 London homes is rented out as a short-term let.
“The market is growing out of control. Boroughs are hearing more and more complaints about short-term lets linked to antisocial behaviour and even criminality.”
London residents can currently let out their homes for up to 90 nights a year without needing planning permission.
The survey found the properties on the online letting platforms, Airbnb, Booking.com, HomeAway, HouseTrip, Niumba and TripAdvisor.
According to London Councils, the capital risks “lagging behind” other cities when it comes to regulation of the market – such and Paris and Barcelona, which have mandatory registration and heavy fines breaches of the rules.
Read more about this story on the Evening Standard’s Homes & Property website.