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How Many Licences Will you Need?

The ASSC has received clarity from the Scottish Government regarding the number of licences that will be required per business.

 This clarity is most welcome.

Accommodation located within a single premises can be covered by a single licence as set out in the Civic Government (Scotland)  Act 1982 (Licensing of Short-term Lets) Order 2022:

Designation of activity

4.—(1) The activity specified in paragraph (2) is designated as an activity for which a licence under Part 1 of the 1982 Act is required.

(2) The activity referred to in paragraph (1) is a short-term let on or after 1 October 2022.

(3) Accommodation that is on a single premises requires only one short-term let licence.

The provision applies to accommodation with shared facilities (such as yurts) or standalone accommodation, such as park lodges, provided they are all on the same premises.

Further details on the provisions within the Licensing Order are included in the policy note para’s 51 – 55, and guidance Pt.1 para 8.3:

8.3. You need a licence for each premises in which you let out accommodation. Premises means accommodation and land on one site; normally premises have their own postal address. So, for example, two neighbouring cottages are likely to be separate premises (each will require a licence), whereas 15 yurts in one field are likely to be counted as one premises (requiring one licence in total).

Where the premises (accommodation and land) are all contained on one site (the same postal address – to note this is different to the same postcode), then this would be considered a single premises requiring only 1 licence to cover all the accommodation units on the site.

Examples of where a single licence would be permissible:

Example Comment
Five purpose built self-catering cottages located on a single site All five accommodation units are on a single site, and therefore considered a single premises eligible to apply for a single licence.


Two cottages within a farm Provided the two cottages are all within the one site, then a single licence could be issued. If the two cottages have separate postal addresses, or are listed on Registers of Scotland as two separate sites then two individual licences will be required.


Bed and breakfast / home share arrangement where 2 bedrooms are let in a primary residence The 2 bedrooms are 2 separately lettable accommodation units within a single premises (one primary residence), therefore a single licence would be required.

Examples where a single licence would not be permissible:

Example Comment
Tenement block with 6 flats, all flats owned by the same owner and all let out as secondary lets. Each flat is a separate premises, as there are 6 accommodation units all on separate sites (all have their own postal address). Each flat requires a separate licence.
Two neighbouring detached houses owned by the same owner and let out as secondary lets. Each house is a separate premises, as they are located on separate sites with different postal addresses, therefore a licence would be required for each house.
A field with 10 permanent lodges at one end of a village, and another field with 5 permanent lodges at the other end of the village This arrangement constitutes two separate premises, as the lodges are located on two separate sites. A licence would be required for each premises.
Guest house / B&B / home sharing type arrangement with a separately bookable annex (secondary let) within the same site. Although located on a single site, the accommodation would require two different licence types (home sharing licence and secondary letting licence). Therefore two separate licences would be required:

  1. Home sharing for the guest house / B&B / home share primary residence;
  2. Secondary letting licence for the garden annex;

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