Nicola Sturgeon to unveil plans for crackdown on Edinburgh Airbnbs

Nicola Sturgeon will today unveil plans for a crackdown on Airbnb and other short-term letting agents, amid growing concerns over the impact on areas like central Edinburgh.

Edinburgh residents who are fed up with AirBnB. Picture: Greg Macvean
Edinburgh residents who are fed up with AirBnB. Picture: Greg Macvean

The First Minister will set out plans amid concerns that housing is becoming unaffordable for young Scots. New regulations are being introduced to make short-term lets subject to the same rules as hotels and B&Bs.

“For many people, accommodation provider Airbnb has enabled cheaper, more flexible travel,” Ms Sturgeon will tell delegates at the SNP conference in Edinburgh today.

“It’s one of the reasons Scotland’s tourism industry is booming.

“But for others – particularly in tourist hot spots, like the centre of this city – it is making it harder to find homes to live in. So today, we are setting out new plans to help cities like Edinburgh and islands like Arran, get the balance right.

“We are asking for views on a new system of regulation to make short term lets subject to the same controls as any other accommodation.

“We want to give councils the power to control the number of lets and ensure they make a contribution to the services they use.”

Many Edinburgh tenement owners say their lives have been made a misery by “party flats.”

Ms Sturgeon’s announcement is part of a package of housing measures, including a further £150 million in support for first-time buyers.