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Holiday lets set to face extra financial penalties in one part of UK

Landlords in the holiday let market in Wales look almost certain to face hefty new barriers under proposals being considered by the Labour-led Welsh government.

In a bid to make the Welsh housing market more affordable, the administration is calling for a mandatory registration scheme for all holiday accommodation, as well as possible new tax penalties. 

Later this year a pilot area of the country will be identified to trial both the register and changes to local taxes to “manage the impact” of second homes and self-catered accommodation. 


In 2020 Wales became the only part of the UK to give local authorities the power to charge 100% council tax increase on second homes.

Now the Welsh minister for climate change - Julie James, who is also responsible for housing - has set out a three-pronged approach to address the impact of second home ownership on communities.

The three areas of activity will be:

- addressing affordability and availability of housing;

- enhancing the regulatory framework, covering planning law and the introduction of a statutory registration scheme for holiday accommodation; and

- what the Welsh Government calls “a fairer contribution”, using national and local taxation systems to ensure second home owners make a fair and effective contribution to the communities in which they buy.



No details have been set out as to exactly what those measures will look like when enacted, but James says: “The continuing rise of house prices mean people, especially younger generations, can no longer afford to live in the communities they have grown up in. A high concentration of second homes or holiday lets can have a very detrimental impact on small communities, and in some areas could compromise the Welsh language being spoken at a community level.

“…Our new three-pronged approach will kick-start a summer of action which will determine how we tackle this issue now and into the future. I am calling on all political parties across the Senedd to get involved in this, as we look to empower our communities to exercise their right to live in good quality homes, wherever they are in Wales.”

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  • icon

    Wales doesn't want the tourism trade then ? I've never been to Wales and to be honest I don't want to.

  • Theodor Cable

    Went there once.
    Never went a second time.
    Don't ever plan to either.

  • icon

    We live in a coastal tourist resort and occasionally do a holiday let, here and there (along with being a Private Landlord in anther town). The big thing we noticed was, it is many of the locals living here, who book into a holiday camp and let their homes for holiday lets …. The same locals that complain if the likes of us do it! Good luck to locals for making some extra money out of their homes, but, why complain about ‘second home’ owners doing the same thing!
    House prices going up has always presented the same difficulty to local young people and not being able to afford to get onto the property ladder in their own neighbourhood/city - it was the reason I left London many years ago.

  • icon

    There is a difference between holiday lets and second homes. Holiday let's have to be available to let for a minimum number of nights and actually let for around a third of the year. They pay business rates not council tax. Second homes pay council tax. There is also a difference between specifically holiday accommodation with restricted planning to a maximum length of let (usually around 6 weeks) and people buying up potential family homes as second homes. The former bring tourists and money to an area, the latter take homes out of the price bracket of local young people. Local councils are trying to help their local people which can be done without killing the tourist trade. However, for people who can afford a second home, I don't think double council tax will be more than an annoyance so unlikely to have the effect they hope for.


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