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Short-Term Lets Licensing Order - draft legislation to be published by end of June

Tue 22 Jun 21

Shona Robison MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Social Justice, Housing and Local Government has written to the Scottish Parliament's Local Government, Housing and Planning Committee with an update on revised plans for the licensing of short-term lets.

In the letter sent yesterday, Ms Robison states that:

"We now intend to publish the Licensing Order in draft in June for a final round of consultation and to lay the Order in September. Licensing authorities will now have until 1 October 2022 to establish a licensing scheme, giving them one year from sight of the instrument as laid to do so. However, the later deadlines set out in the legislation including, in particular, the final deadline of 1 April 2024 for all short-term lets to be licensed, are unchanged. In the rest of this letter, I set out the reasons for taking this approach.

When we publish the Licensing Order for consultation later this month, we will also publish the proposed accompanying documents and draft guidance. As part of this, we will pubish an updated Business and Reglatory Impact Assement (BRIA) for consultation, giving stakeholders the chance to comment on the draft; something which was not possible on the accelerated timetable in 2020.

We are also changing the date on which licensing authorities must have a licensing scheme open to receive applications from 1 April 2022 to 1 October 2022. This is to give them sufficient time to prepare, given that the Licensing Order and guidance will not be in final form until the autumn of this year. It also means that the requirement for new hosts and operators (i.e. people who have not offered short-term let accommodation before) to have a licence before providing short-term lets will not apply until after this date.

However, we do not consider it is necessary to push back the 1 April 2023 date by which existing hosts and operators must have applied for a licence in order to keep operating, nor the 1 April 2024 date by which all short-term lets in Scotland must be licensed. These deadlines are more significant to residents and communities; any issues from short-term lets they currently face will be caused by existing hosts and operators, to which these deadlines apply."

You can view the letter in full here.

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