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Anti-lets council policy will slash property values, says top agent

A leading agent in an area set to be hit by draconian planning restrictions on holiday lets is warning that the policies will damage property values.

Gwynedd council in Wales is launching a bid to make the use of a home for a holiday let subject to a mandatory planning application. 

It is the first ever council to try this tactic and it is seeking to win Welsh Government consent for it to introduce a so-called Article 4 direction, which means a planning application has to be submitted and agreed to, before a home can be short let or listed for holiday letting.


The Welsh Government last year announced a series of measures to reduce the number of second homes and short-lets: amongst them, planning legislation was amended to allow local planning authorities like Gwynedd to use an Article 4 Direction to control the use of houses as second homes and holiday accommodation.

Gwynedd councillor Dafydd Meurig says: “[Gwynedd council has] … tirelessly called on the Welsh Government for years to tackle the increase in holiday homes across the county, and the effect that is having on our communities … Our residents are being priced out of the housing market … Indeed, recent research has shown that on average 65.5 per cent of Gwynedd’s population is priced out of the housing market, with the percentage increasing significantly in areas where there are higher numbers of holiday homes.”

But now the local media in the area is reporting that a well known estate agent in Wales is earning that house prices may fall in the area hit by the restriction, if it happens as expected in September 2024. 

Martin Lewthwaite - an agent in Gwynedd for 50 years - has written an open letter to residents according to the local Daily Post.

While property owners can seek planning consent to change a main residence to a second home or holiday let, he warns this will be pointless. 

“It seems very unlikely that permission would be granted as they [councillors] are now fervently opposed to second homes in Gwynedd. To some extent, I can understand their reasons behind this. But they don’t seem to realise that these proposals will affect genuine local people that may wish to sell a property for whatever reason. A property is probably the most valuable asset you own. These proposals are going to take away the rights you have to sell to whoever wishes to buy.”

And he warns: "If Gwynedd council implements this drastic policy, it will certainly limit the marketability of your property. It will have a detrimental effect on its value as it will limit the market you can sell to.”

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    I agree it will make them less attractive in a tourist area, thus lower their value. The Welsh are akin the the Scottish, not an area I would like to invest in 🤐


    Please don't lump most Scots in with SNP supporters and especially not with their loony Green helpers.

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    Locals hate second home buyers - until they can't sell to them and have to take lower offers from other locals.


    Good point, they may moan about the prices but it was a local selling to an ‘ outsider’ !! 🤷‍♂️


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