Liverpool Council to call for new use class for short-term lets to tackle city's 'party houses'

Liverpool City Council is to lobby ministers to change planning rules to regulate short-term holiday lets, after councillors agreed action was necessary to tackle a proliferation of ‘party houses’ in the city.

Liverpool: Call for powers to regulate Airbnb. Image: Flickr / Phil Fiddyment
Liverpool: Call for powers to regulate Airbnb. Image: Flickr / Phil Fiddyment

Councillors have passed a motion requesting that the local authority write to housing secretary Robert Jenrick to call for a change to planning laws that would create a new use class for short-term holiday lets and require change of use applications from prospective operators.

The council will also request powers to ensure that residential premises may only be used as holiday lets for up to 90 days a year, as is currently the case in London.

According to the motion, which was proposed by Liberal Democrat councillor Alan Tormey and approved by the housing select committee yesterday, the city has seen a range of negative impacts associated with a rise in the number of short-term holiday lets. These include noise and anti-social behaviour from “party houses”, fewer properties available for long-term rent, and increased competition to licensed hotels.

Tormey told Planning: “Airbnb rental properties have an impact on neighbours and it can also lead to the increase in antisocial behaviour. This will help to improve the safety of visitors to Liverpool and also benefit local communities.”

This is not the first time Liverpool City Council has called for measures to mitigate the impact of short-term holiday lets. 

In 2017, councillors passed a motion calling for homesharing sites to automatically cap rentals at 90 days per year and for legislation allowing local authorities to establish registers of short-term lets.

Last year, the Chartered Insitute of Housing published a report recommending stronger planning powers to help councils regulate the rise in short-term holiday rentals.


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