Victims of Holiday Letting (VOHL) refutes claims by a director of Stayz, Jordan Condo, that jobs could be lost and economic growth impacted if Byron Shire Council acts to ‘penalise families who let out their holiday houses’.
This is a similar scare tactic argument to that used by AirBnB.
VOHL is concerned primarily by the adverse effects of this ‘industry’ on the social fabric of our community and on long suffering residents who thought that a ‘Residential Zone’ was where people lived.
Stayz and AirBnB would have us all believe that holiday houses are a little sideline for hard pressed families. Perhaps this was true 20 or 30 years ago when we had little fisherman’s cottages on the sea shore or when families just let out their houses for two weeks at Christmas.
We are now faced with an ‘industry’ – a term used by the Holiday Let
businesses. This is big business now with consolidation into management groups and the online operators. This is a business where investors have bought properties with the sole purpose of making great returns from holiday letting. Some own multiple properties. Permanent rental accommodation? Forget it!
VOHL has watched as the industry has watered down its attempts at ‘Self Regulation’. This has been proved time and again with many other industries to be ineffectual.
Our Byron Shire Council is not seeking to penalise holiday let owners by introducing registration and regulation. VOHL, in fact, would like their proposed measures to be much stronger.
Council is not trying to close down all holiday letting. Is it not sensible that these holiday lets comply with all reasonable fire and safety conditions as happens with hotel, motels and B & Bs?
Mr Condo talks of job losses. VOHL has many instances of residents unable to perform their jobs through sleep deprivation caused by a neighbouring holiday let.
VOHL knows of many people who have sold up and got out of Byron Shire leaving their jobs behind, no longer able to contribute to our community.
Studies in other parts of the world have proved illegal holiday letting through the likes of AirBnB has a large negative impact on economic activity.
Doug Luke, VOHL