More controls in Spain to prevent holiday rentals pricing locals out of popular tourist areas

Costa Blanca's Gandia hospital 19 covid patients five less than week ago. Image: World Health Organisation.

AUTHORITIES in leading Spanish tourist destinations have introduced a raft of measures aimed at curbing short term holiday lets.

Rent rates have risen by an average of between 10 and 15 per cent in more desirable areas of Spanish cities in the last year, according to letting website Idealista. 

Critics of websites such as AirBnB and Homeaway claim rising numbers of tourists and a jump in the amount of landlords renting out apartments to them has resulted in residents being priced out of lets.

AirBnB have claimed their services offers a chance for residents to profit from tourism by renting out their apartments.

Local governments have stepped in with measures aimed at managing the sector and capping these escalating prices.

Councils are aiming to curb the rise in prices which they fear are pricing locals out of areas popular with tourists.

Madrid

Local authorities in Madrid have passed proposals from Mayor Manuela Carmena for regulating tourist accommodation.

Measures include barring tourists letting short term from using the same entrances to residential buildings as locals in the city centre. This would affect 95% of existing holiday rentals in the area, according to council estimates.

Under the new plan, a housing unit rented out to tourists for more than 90 days out of the year the owner will have to apply for a commercial license.

Barcelona

Barcelona City Hall has shut down almost 2,400 unlicensed tourist apartments and has made many sites pull their ads for irregular lets.

The Special Plan for Tourist Accommodation bars the use of residential buildings for holiday lets.

Ada Colau, Barcelona’s mayor, has asked the Spanish government to reform legislation making rental leases longer and capping prices.

Fines for landlords who attempt to force residents out to make way for tourist lets have recently come into force.

Measures requiring developers to set aside 30 per cent of lets for affordable housing have also recently been passed.

Palma de Mallorca

Palma’s council approved regulations of holiday rentals including banning tourist apartments throughout the city except single-family homes in specific areas.

Last August, the regional government of the Balearic Islands passed a law allowing each island to decide whether to allow holiday rentals or not.

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