The accommodation website Airbnb has finally responded to pressure from Labour’s Camden Council, Labour Assembly Member Tom Copley and London housing activists and will restrict home lets via its platform in London.
Airbnb have announced that homeowners in London will be able to let out their entire home for a maximum of 90 days a year. The registered host will have to confirm they have permission from their local council to let for more days than that.
The home-sharing app was being exploited by private landlords across London to turn properties into short-term, hotel style lets on an almost permanent basis, contributing to the housing crisis which is already acutely felt by communities in Camden. Many residents also complained about the nuisance caused by a constant stream of Airbnb guests coming and going from properties in their blocks and on their estates.
Labour’s Leader of Camden Council Sarah Hayward commented; ‘Hundreds of Camden homes have been taken out of the private rented sector and transferred to tourist sector because of platforms like Airbnb. This reduces housing supply, pushes up prices and causing antisocial behaviour problems for neighbours to the properties. I hope other home sharing platforms will follow suit. Thanks to everyone in Camden and beyond who’s worked so doggedly on this.’
London Assembly Member Tom Copley said; ‘Airbnb was supposed to be about people making a little money letting out spare rooms, but it was being abused by professional landlords turning their properties into hotels by the back door’.