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Chamber and committees

Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee


Short-term lets regulations

Background

On 22 November 2021, the Scottish Government laid the Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982 (Licensing of Short-term Lets) Order 2022 ("the Licensing Order") in the Scottish Parliament.

The Policy Note to the Licensing Order explains that the Order sets up  a licensing scheme to “ensure short-term lets are safe and address issues faced by neighbours; and to facilitate local authorities in knowing and understanding what is happening in their area as well as to assist with handling complaints effectively.” 

The Committee took evidence on the Order in December 2021 and agreed after a vote  to recommend to Parliament that it should be approved. The Committee published its report on the Order on 12 January 2022.

Read the report

The Committee then  considered an Order delaying the requirement for existing short-term lets owners to obtain a license. The Committee agreed unanimously to recommend approval of the order. The Committee published its report on the Order on 23 February 2023.

Read the report

The Minister for Housing wrote to the Committee on 30 January 2024 to inform it that “work to identify and deliver improvements to operational processes is ongoing, and I will report on these in coming months.” The letter also confirmed that “at the end of February 2024 we will bring forward an affirmative Scottish Statutory Instrument (SSI) that will amend The Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982 (Licensing of Short-term Lets) Order 2022.”

The letter stated that—

      “The SSI will include provision to introduce powers enabling the transfer of short-term let licences and the option for prospective hosts constructing or converting buildings for short-term let use to apply for a provisional licence that can be confirmed once the premises are complete and;

“We are also using the SSI to clarify the period and operation of temporary exemptions, to deliver the intention that these are for a single continuous period of up to six weeks in any 12-month period starting on the date of the temporary exemption (which is set out in the Policy Note that accompanied the original legislation). In addition, guest rooms in specific types of accommodation will be excluded, as will temporary emergency short-term foster arrangements where such arrangements are not the main residence of the foster child.”

However, the Minister made clear that “it is not my intention to amend the types of short-term let requiring a licence (home-sharing, home letting (includes home exchanges) and secondary letting).”

Read the letter

The Committee then received a second letter from the Minister on 29 February “to advise that we are still engaging with stakeholders about its content and refining the provision. The affirmative statutory instrument will therefore be laid slighter later than indicated and I will update you with exact timings as soon as possible.”

Read the letter

Lastly the Committee received a third letter from the Minister on 22 April stating that:

  • The amending regulations would be laid on 16 May 2024
  • An update on the short-term let licensing scheme will be published before the end of June.

Read the letter

The Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982 (Licensing of Short-term Lets) (Amendment) Order 2024

The Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982 (Licensing of Short-term Lets) (Amendment) Order 2024 was laid on 16 May but was withdrawn and re-laid on 31 May.

The Committee invited stakeholders to comment on the Order’s provisions and the responses can be accessed under “correspondence” below.

Your views

The Committee wanted to hear what you think about the suggested changes. It ran a survey to hear people's views.   

The survey closed on 29 October 2021.  

Survey on licensing of short-term lets


Report

The Committee's report was published on 21 December 2021.

Read the report


Correspondence


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