Edinburgh’s Short-Term Let Landlords Get More Time To Meet New Standards

Edinburgh landlords who offer their properties for short-term and holiday lets have longer to comply with strict new legislation following an announcement by the Scottish government.

The city’s new licensing scheme came into effect on 1 October 2022 following an act requiring all local authorities to introduce regulations. All short-term lets were required to be licensed by July 2024, and existing landlords were given until 1 April 2023 to apply.

Short term let registration deadline extended

However, this will now be extended to 1 October 2023, giving landlords an extra six months to register. The Scottish government plans to legislate for this change in January, which it says takes account of the impact of the cost-of-living crisis that is putting pressure on existing short-term let landlords and businesses.

New landlords are unaffected by the change and must apply for a licence before using a property for short-term lets, such as an Airbnb or holiday home.

Exemptions To The Short-Term Let Licensing Scheme

The Edinburgh City Council website provides full details of all the legislation, including temporary exemptions for events such as the Edinburgh Fringe and significant sporting occasions, which must be applied for in advance.

The licensing scheme requires Edinburgh landlords to apply for change-of-use planning permission and to put in place more stringent safety requirements similar to those required for houses of multiple occupation (HMOs) and in excess of those needed for long-term lets.

Switching from short to long-term lets offers stability

Switching to long-term lets is an option many short-term let landlords have been considering, and since the new legislation was announced, Clan Gordon has been approached by several property owners who have decided to make the move.

While short-term lets can be lucrative, especially during the busy summer period when the city is packed with tourists, long-term lets offer stability and a regular income. Plus, many landlords who own flats in the city’s tenement blocks have no choice – they either need to switch or sell as their properties are deemed unsuitable for short-term lets and will be automatically refused a licence.

The only exception is if the owners of all properties with a shared hallway or stairwell agree to the change of use.

Long-Term Benefits for Edinburgh property investors

Clan Gordon has been looking after buy-to-let properties for Edinburgh landlords for more than 15 years and has extensive experience in the local property market. Demand for homes is greater than ever, and rents have hit an all-time high, making it an ideal time to become a long-term let landlord.

There are many advantages, too – it’s not as labour-intensive as short-term lets with frequently changing tenants, and those who stay for longer tend to take better care of a property that they’re making their home.

Switching to long-term lets also eliminates the need for all the additional safety requirements now needed for short-term lets, such as the installation of emergency lighting.

For no-obligation advice about switching from short to long-term letting, including guidance on setting a fair rent and advertising a property for maximum impact, book a call with one of our expert advisors.

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