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What’s the 90-day rule and how does it impact my Airbnb in London?

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What is the Airbnb 90-day rule?

In December 2016, Airbnb introduced a 90-day lettings limit in London to help regulate the sharing economy. The move was welcomed by locals and today the booking platform automatically caps Airbnb bookings to 90-days a year for properties that do not have a planning permit from their local borough to short-let their property.

So, unless you are able to confirm that you have the required paperwork to let your property on the short-term rental market – Airbnb will restrict the number of occupied nights per calendar year to 90-days. What happens when you reach that limit? The platform will automatically close your property’s booking capacity until the end of the calendar year. Whether the occupied days are spread out over several months or in 90 consecutive days does not matter – the limit still applies.

Currently, this rule only relates to properties in the Greater London area although there is discussion of extending it to other major cities. Property owners who ignore the rule can risk fines of up to £20,000.

Why was the 90-day rental cap introduced?

Prior to the rule being implemented, landlords were technically required to apply for planning permission to change their long-term lets to a short-term rental.

London recognised the global shift in how we travelled and experienced cities, as well as the economic benefits it would bring to its citizens. So, deregulation was put into place to relax the rules. It stipulated that short-term rentals were allowed – for up to 90 days. Airbnb introduced a feature on their platform to enforce the rule in early 2017.

How can I ensure that I comply with London’s short-term rental regulations?

There are a few options that you can choose to work within the rules.

The first is renting your Airbnb as a short-term let on the platform and then, once you have reached the 90-day limit, turning your listing into a medium or long term rental. If you indicate to Airbnb your listing is a ‘90+ days’ rental. Airbnb will not take your listing down and by doing things this way you will be fully compliant with the local regulations for the Greater London area.

The downside of this option is that it can be harder to find Airbnb guests who want to lock in a stay of more than 90 days but, no fret, there are plenty of alternative rental sites that you can refer to promote your property for longer-term stays.

Alternatively, if you are keen to turn your property into a short-term rental, you can apply for an Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST). This will make sure that you are fully compliant to rent our your property for more than 90-days and avoid any potential legal complications. This will provide you with a guaranteed regular income as well as give you more flexibility as a landlord as you can block out dates to access the property, whether for personal use or maintenance.

How can GuestReady help?

STAA Accredited

GuestReady works with hundreds of hosts across London to make sure they can achieve the best results for their Airbnb whilst complying with local regulations. GuestReady is STAA accredited, ensuring consumer protection and that properties are fit for purpose.

We help hosts optimise their earnings and letting cycle by listing their property on multiple platforms during peak times in order to maximise earnings in the high season.

There are many ways we can help you get the most out of your Airbnb listing in London so be sure to contact our team today!

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