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Good move on short-term letting
Queensland councils have welcomed the Palaszczuk Government’s response to short-term letting facilitated by online booking agencies.
LGAQ chief executive Greg Hallam said that, as a member of the State’s Industry Reference Group for short-term letting, the Association applauded Tourism Minister Kate Jones’ stated commitment to reform.
He said the “code of conduct” the Government was proposing and the introduction of a system for data sharing would help councils manage the impact of short-term letting in their local communities.
“Councils appreciate as much as anyone the vital role short-term letting plays in supporting tourism, but they currently cannot manage what they cannot see,” he said.
“These reforms are required so we can more accurately monitor the availability of rental accommodation stock, decreased housing affordability and negative impacts on local communities.”
Ms Jones created the Industry Reference Group in direct response to 2017 LGAQ Annual Conference resolutions calling for a State-wide policy position on short-term accommodation facilitated by online platforms to improve transparency and manage safety concerns.
Noosa Shire Mayor Tony Wellington, who moved last year’s conference resolution to deal with the issue, said Ms Jones’ proposals were in line with what Noosa Council has been advocating.
“Local governments need to be able to identify the addresses of properties that are being let online, and thus far the industry has declined to make this salient information available,’’ he said.
“Actual street addresses can’t be readily gleaned from on-line listings, unless a booking is made.”
Mayor Wellington said analysis had shown most properties let through on-line platforms were in fact entire houses and apartments, not simply people letting out spare rooms in their private homes.
“Somewhere between 30 and 38 per cent are home-hosted with the rest being investment properties. It’s really the permanent letting of entire properties that local government most needs to get a handle on, and the Minister’s statement makes this clear,” he said.
“I look forward to further progress on this important issue via the Reference Group.”
Local Government Association of Queensland
LG House, 25 Evelyn Street, Newstead Qld 4006
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