The Green Party is taking action to bring up to 12,000 properties nationwide out of short-term letting and back onto the long-term housing market. This will have a major impact on the number properties currently available for short-term lease in Fingal, including Skerries, Balbriggan, Balrothery and Loughshinny.
Under the proposal by Catherine Martin, Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media, properties advertised for short-term letting to tourists will be required to register and have valid registration number as provided by Fáilte Ireland. This will make the system more transparent and allow a more efficient use of the housing stock. Fáilte Ireland estimates that there are about 30,000 properties in the country available for short-term letting to tourists and the proposal could take as many as 12,000 of these properties out of short-term letting and into the long-term housing market.
The announcement was supported by Councillor Karen Power who said;
“This proposal will have a positive impact on all people living in Skerries, Balbriggan, Balrothery and Loughshinny. A search of Airbnb shows there are over 1,000 full properties currently available to let Skerries for example. This proposal will ensure that these properties are registered and fulfilling their obligations to Fáilte Ireland as tourism and hospitality properties. This would be a major stride to help our housing problems and make more accommodation available to everyone, for residential long-term use.”
Speaking at the announcement, Minister Catherin Martin said;
“This is another important milestone in implementing the Government’s Housing for All policy. We are committed to ensuring that in areas of high housing demand, houses are distributed in the most effective way. The register will provide a level playing field for all accommodation by ensuring transparency and visibility across the sector. The government will make sure that houses built for residential accommodation will be used for residential accommodation.”
The register will give Fáilte Ireland a full picture of the distribution of tourist accommodation across the country for the first time. This will significantly improve the opportunities to promote tourism in Fingal as a whole.
To minimise disruption to the industry, property owners who will be affected by the register and need to apply for change of use planning permission, will be allowed a grace period of up to six months to continue to offer their accommodation for short-term letting while their application is being considered.
It is expected that the relevant legislation will be enacted by early 2023.