The Cabinet Secretary for Social Justice, Housing and Local Government has written to the Local Government Housing Planning Committee today to advise it that the Scottish Government intends to lay an affirmative Scottish Statutory Instrument in January 2023 that will seek to amend The Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982 (Licensing of Short-term Lets) Order 2022. This is in order to amend the date by which existing hosts must apply for a short-term let licence from 1 April 2023 to 1 October 2023. I have attached a copy of the letter to the Committee.
This is a one-off six month extension which recognises the wider economic circumstances of the cost of living crisis that is placing pressure on existing short-term let hosts and businesses without significantly delaying our primary aim of ensuring consistent safety standards and addressing issues faced by residents and communities.
Engagement with stakeholders during the course of this year through the Industry Advisory Group (facilitated by Visit Scotland) and the Local Authority STL Forum (facilitated by Scotland’s Housing Network) has proved helpful in preparing for implementation. Your ongoing involvement in these is appreciated. In light of the proposed amendment to extend the deadline for applications from existing hosts, Ministers are re-considering the scope and timing of the licensing review we intended to undertake in Summer 2023. Further information on this will be shared in due course. In the meantime, we are continuing to work with some local authorities to highlight issues where local interpretation of the regulations are causing concern for businesses, and will review Scottish Government guidance to provide greater clarity where this is required.
Fiona Campbell., ASSC’s CEO said:
“The ASSC welcomes this announcement by the Scottish Government and we are pleased our hard work, as well as the efforts from our friends across the Scottish tourism industry, has resulted in this development. The ASSC has been pressing hard for a pause to the implementation of the scheme due to the cost of living crisis so it’s good to know our voices are being heard. Our ongoing concern, however, is that it is not long enough to give our members the breathing space they need to get their licence applications approved in the current climate. We do see this as progress and we will continue to push forward on behalf of our members, however we know there’s lots of work still to do to.”