The short-term lets platform has been accused of driving up rents in cities, reducing the housing supply and heightening inequality – but from today, Airbnb representatives say they will travel the UK meeting with policymakers and communities to figure out how they can “be good partners to cities”.
Councils currently do not know who in the area has listed their property on Airbnb. But following pressure put on the company by UK officials, the company is getting out ahead of the issue by considering a short-term lets registration system that could make it easier for local authorities to regulate holiday rentals and to cut back on council housing used as holiday homes.
The company will gather evidence from major cities across the UK to produce a white paper on a registration system to be presented to the government next year.
Patrick Robinson, director of public policy at Airbnb, said: “We want to be good partners to cities and work together on a host registration system that is easy to follow, gives authorities the information they need to regulate home sharing effectively, and that ultimately makes communities stronger.
“We hope that other industry players will join us in this important work.”
Earlier this year Mayor of London Sadiq Khan called for such a system to be put in place that would apply to anyone who wanted to rent out a property for less than 90 days in a calendar year.