‘Airbnb’ properties are under scrutiny
COUNCILLORS have expressed concern that homes that are let out as so-called ‘airbnb’ properties all year round are getting in the way of providing real homes for the thousands in need of housing in Fingal.
Cllr Matthew Waine (Sol) raised the issue at May’s full meeting of Fingal County Council which has also come in for considerable attention in recent months at Dublin City Council.
Cllr Waine said there had been a ‘month on month increase in the number of families contacting us who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless’.
He said that in that context, he was also seeing an increase in rental properties available on airbnb in Fingal. She said that in Dublin 15 alone, he found 29 such properties in a rental market that he said was already ‘extremely tight’.
Cllr Waine warned that the county was heading for major problems if this trend continued and urged the council to ‘ keep an eye on it’.
Cllr Paul Donnelly (SF) agreed and asked if the council had brought enforcement action against any of these properties because entire homes could not be full-time holiday lets under planning laws.
Planning director at the council, Anne Marie Farrelly said that An Bord Pleanála had ruled that these properties represented development but had distinguished between short-term lets and all-year round lets.
She said the difficulty for the council in enforcing the planning laws in this area was distinguishing the two categories.
The senior council official said that the Department of the Environment had issues some advice on the issue and was in the process of preparing further guidance which the local authority was waiting on to devise a way of tackling what appears to be a growing issue in Fingal.