The Generation Rent activist group has launched a lobbying campaign, giving a template letter for people to send to MPs ahead of the Budget later this month.
On social media platform Twitter Generation Rent tells its 17,000 followers: “The rise of AirBnBs is denying homes to people who need them. Taxing them properly will mean more #HomesNotHotels. Ask your MP to call on Rishi Sunak to close the holiday let tax loophole at the Spring Forecast on 23 March.”
The tweets include a link where users put in their postcode and receive a letter customised to their local MP.
There is also a request for users to allow the campaign to send it additional material.
The standard letter to MPs reads:
“As you may know, the rise of holiday lets have had a huge impact on areas throughout Great Britain that are popular with holiday makers.
“While the domestic tourism industry is a big part of the economy, and it is important that there is accommodation to support this, the growth of the holiday let sector is taking homes away from people who need to live there and damaging communities.
“I read that the Government has acted to tighten the rules so that second homeowners can no longer avoid paying council tax by claiming that their property is a holiday let.
“This is welcome news, but it is not the solution.
“The new thresholds to qualify for business rates will bring some funds back into local communities – but they will do nothing to make more homes available to local people.
“The tax system still incentivises landlords to switch from renting to local people to holiday lets so they can claim tax relief on their mortgage interest payments.
“If the government wants to help people up and down the country find a home they can afford, withdrawing the tax relief from holiday lets would encourage landlords to start letting to tenants again.”
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