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02/08/2019

Belfast planners probe Airbnb and student accommodation issues

Words: Roger Milne
AirBnb / Shutterstock_474258127

Belfast City Council has started a review of Airbnb and student accommodation in the capital.

A council spokesperson told The Planner: “Following discussions with members of the planning committee, the planning service is currently undertaking a review of short-term holiday lets to understand their planning status and context.

“This review will also consider purpose-built student accommodation to understand how, and if, new developments are maintained for that use.

“After members have had an opportunity to discuss the emerging issues in the weeks ahead, it is anticipated that a final report will be published in the autumn.”

This move follows disquiet from councillors and housing experts over the growth of the lightly-regulated internet accommodation rental sector.

The BBC recently reported figures from analytics company Audrina that suggest there has been a 40 per cent increase in the number of Airbnb and HomeAway bookings in Northern Ireland over the last year.

Already in south Belfast there is concern that former long-term private lets are being transformed into ultra-short-term Airbnb properties.

Image credit | Shutterstock

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