Kezia Dugdale MSP challenged Scottish Government Housing Minister, Kevin Stewart MSP in the Scottish Parliament today on the issue of short term lets in Edinburgh City Centre.

Edinburgh’s heritage watchdog has expressed fears “the character of the Old Town in particular is being changed” by short-term lets, and many other cities across the world have introduced restrictions including the number of nights each year a property can be rented out , the hiring of entire homes , licensing, tax requirements and how these rules should be enforced.

Kezia Dugdale said that if legislation would take over 12 months to introduce legislation around short term lets, the Scottish Government should work with the industry to introduce a voluntary code to protect local residents.

Challenging the Scottish Government to take action to introduce tougher regulations around short term lets, Kezia Dugdale MSP said:

“The Scottish Government need to act as quickly as possible to introduce tighter rules around short term lets across Edinburgh. The apparent lack of urgency on short term lets is a real concern for local residents.

“Following the Edinburgh Festival throughout August I have been inundated with complaints from residents living across the city about the problems they have experienced with visitors using Air BnB and other short term lettings.

“If the Scottish Government is not willing to act promptly, the Minister should work with the sector to introduce a voluntary code to limit the number of days a property can be rented out as a short term let until appropriate legislation is in place.”

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