The New South Wales government recently handed down their response to the Inquiry into the Adequacy of Regulation for Short-Term Holiday Letting, largely supporting the recommendations.
However, the government will release an options paper in May to further consult with the public and industry on how services like Airbnb should be regulated. Currently, regulations vary from council to council, with bans existing in some.
Anthony Roberts, NSW Planning and Housing Minister, said the extra time would be worthwhile, as it would allow the public to provide their feedback. “This is an opportunity for people that live in strata, for people that rent out their rooms to actually participate in policy,” he said. “I make no apologies for listening to the people of New South Wales in the development of policy.”
The state government gave qualified support to short-term rental accommodations, as well as eight of the 12 other recommendations handed down by the inquiry, with the three other recommendations given full support.
Short-term property management specialist MadeComfy welcomed the government’s announcement, saying their support provided much-needed direction for homeowners and property investors who list their properties on Airbnb.
Of Sydney’s nearly two million properties, only 1.2% have been listed on Airbnb at some stage, suggesting there is still room for growth.
“This support by the NSW Government will hopefully result in short-term rentals being a viable option for every homeowner without fear of legal or financial penalties,” said Sabrina Bethunin, co-founder of MadeComfy. “In addition to that, with the median property price in Sydney having reached over 1 million dollars, households are dedicating an average of 44 per cent of their income to service their mortgages,” Bethunin said. “It means Sydneysiders are considered under ‘mortgage stress’ as they are devoting more than 30 per cent of their income to mortgage repayments."
By either renting out a spare room or the whole property when it’s not utilised, Airbnb and similar platforms provide owner-occupiers with the means to obtain an income to help cover their mortgage repayments or afford their holidays.
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