BHA supports MP calling for Airbnb change

The British Hospitality Association (BHA) is supporting a request for the mayor of London to take action over Airbnb, submitted by the chairman of the House of Commons’ Business, Innovation & Skills Committee.

Iain Wright MP sent a letter on 14 September to Sadiq Khan, stating that “many landlords appear to be operating illegally by letting properties out for more than 90 days per year”.

The BHA said that it supports Wright’s stance “that home-sharing platforms Airbnb enables landlords to circumvent tax, food, health and fire safety regulations”.

Ufi Ibrahim, chief executive of the BHA, said: “As well as enabling rogue landlords, the weight of the evidence suggests that Airbnb is contributing to the housing shortage in London and we join Mr Wright in calling on the mayor to take action.”

She highlighted that the authorities in New York, San Francisco, Berlin, Brussels, Amsterdam, Paris and Barcelona are “taking action to ensure the proper regulation of this new part of the economy and that the economic benefits are not outweighed by social dislocation and other negative impacts.”

Launched seven years ago, Airbnb, which enables property owners to rent out spare rooms, has grown in London from 171 listings in 2009, to over 25,000 in March 2016.

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