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Government aims for new short-term let rules to be up and running by summer 2024

The new regulatory system aims to bring 12,000 properties back into the rental sector.

PLANS TO FREE up an additional 12,000 rental properties from the short-term let market are back on track with government aiming to have the new regulatory system up and running by next summer.

A decision by the EU Commission scuppered the government’s plan to crackdown on Airbnb and short-term let properties earlier this year when it delayed the plans for a new Airbnb register by nine months. 

Government announced its plans last year for new short-term let register with expectations it could bring thousands of properties back into the market in 2023.

Under the plan, properties advertised for short-term letting via online platforms, such as Airbnb, would be obliged to have a valid registration number with Fáilte Ireland.

Any host offering accommodation for periods of up to and including 21 nights will need to be registered.

Property owners will have to register via the online portal, input their details and confirm they have planning permission, where applicable.

Before advertising properties, booking platforms will be obliged to only advertise properties with a valid Fáilte Ireland registration number.

However, the government was issued a blow when it submitted the proposed bill, to allow for the new register, and the EU Commission delayed the sign off until December 2023. 

Housing Minister Darragh O’Brien spoke of his disappointment about the delays last month, telling The Journal that he was due to meet with the European Commission in December over the ongoing delay.

“I really want this wrapped up as soon as we can,” he said. 

  • Read more here on how to support a project by Noteworthy to investigate why Irish rents are still so unaffordable. 

In the meantime, a provisional deal has been reached between EU member countries to harmonise registration for properties used for Airbnb-style rentals across the bloc and their hosts.

The Department of Housing confirmed to The Journal that this means the Department of Tourism can “move ahead with its legislation providing for the establishment of a short term letting register to be operated by Failte Ireland”.

In addition, the minister is understood to have met officials from Commissioner Nicolas Schmit and Commissioner Thierry Breton in early December, where the new recent conclusion of EU work on short-term lets and how it will operate nationally was discussed. 

It is understood that the Department of Tourism will now move forward with Heads of the Bill in early January with the Bill’s full publication by early February, which will take into account the new EU agreement. 

At the same time, the government will publish the planning guidelines which will compliment the legislation, along with the “rapid implementation of the register”, following the passage of the Bill.

The housing department is understood to be working with local authorities to ensure necessary resources are being provided to implement the new planning guidelines for short-term lets.

Government sources state they are hopeful the new system will be up and running by next summer.

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