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Letting an Airbnb will require planning consent if council succeeds

Landlords wanting to let out via Airbnb and other short let platforms in Edinburgh will have to apply for planning consent in future.

The move - agreed this week by the council - follows a consultation with the public as well as industry bodies.

The policy now goes for ratification to the Scottish Government - if it is agreed and the new legislation is implemented in the city, it would require residential property owners wholly letting a property which is not their principle home as an STL - a short term let - in the local authority area, to apply for a ‘change of use’ to a STL from the planning department of the council.


The heavy majority of all respondents in the consultation were in favour of this approach supporting the principle of the designation of a STL control area and for the entire city to be included.

Around a third of Airbnbs and other short lets in Scotland are in Edinburgh.  

At the moment, in addition to planning applications made for STLs, to establish whether or not planning permission is required for properties where this is disputed, the council’s enforcement team looks at each case individually, which is a very lengthy and time consuming process.

The introduction of powers to make a control area follows the council calling for new legislation to tighten up the control of STLs to help manage high concentrations of secondary letting where it affects the availability of residential housing or the character of a neighbourhood.

Also, it will help to restrict or prevent STLs in places or types of buildings where they are not appropriate as well as making sure homes are used to best effect in their areas.



Generally renting out a room/s in your house or letting your property whilst on holiday would also still be allowed, the council insists.

The Scottish Parliament has approved legislation which will introduce a new licensing scheme, which the council also called for, which will come into effect later this year. 

It will address the issues of safety, anti-social behaviour and noise.

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    Another sham Consultation between themselves by people who never done it.
    There will be a fee of Course another money grab by people that never done anything just to see what they can get for nothing.
    Its not the Landlords’s that’s making noise or anti-Social Behaviour. Any laws for the Tenants committing the offence or is this the new legal reset where its not the person committing the Crime that’s Sanctioned.

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    The funny thing is that the SNP 2017 banned any fixed term tenancy, so ALL tenancies in Scotland can be as short as the tenant wants, ending any time with 28 days' notice, even served on day 1!

    The SNP therefore can't ban short term lets without unpicking their crazy 2017 PRS legislation which they will never do.

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    Another hike in Licensing Application fees for Ealing, previously said £1100. + £30. Per room on top would be changed to £50. per habitable room. However, now saying it will be £1300. Application + £50. per room on top for Mandatory HMO License. This means that a normal 3 bed house will be minimum £1550.00 Application fee as every room is counted as habitable including sitting / reception room (possible the kitchen if over 5.5m2). This is disgraceful behaviour by local Authority. They say it will improve the Standard of Housing, how could that possibly be so just increase fees and it will improve Standards, if a Child told you that you would give them a slap.

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    Incidentally that’s £1’000. HMO Application fee increase since first introduced in 2006.

  • George Dawes

    Good . Air bnb are a blooming nightmare


    I love Airbnb. Have transferred 2 of my properties into holiday lets and never looked back. A good example....today I got a 4 night booking which will show £445 in my bank after fees...I'd get around £630 - £650 per month renting it out as a residential..,.OK I have overheads but it makes perfect financial sense to me. No problems chasing rents either..


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