The potential change in the legislation regulating short term rentals in the UK has progressed as peers debated the bill late in October.
However, although in need of updating, the legislation is there to safeguard tenants to ensure homeowners provide safe, well maintained accommodation over a short period of time.
In principal, the voice of the serviced apartment sector, The Association of Serviced Apartment Providers (ASAP), agrees and supports the change in legislation; the 90-day rule has been in place without change for over 30 years and is extremely out of date when applied to the short term rental sector in London, which has changed beyond recognition within that time. Despite this support for change, James Foice of ASAP is urging the government to be cautious in its deliberations saying: “The Government must also ensure that safeguards – for example compliance, health and safety and insurance – are in place to give customers the protection they need.”
Corporate bodies have been using serviced apartments for years; it is one of the fastest growing sectors among business travellers and those relocating for work, and one which is welcoming increasing numbers of families and tourists seeking an alternative to hotels and B&Bs when visiting London and other cities around the globe. However, to date this sector has not had a governing body that protects customers, in particular private individuals. By having professional assessment criteria, such as those being implemented by ASAP, customers are able to make an informed choice when booking a short term let in the capital with safeguards in place to protect them in the event of anything going wrong.
Sid Narang, Managing Director of House of MoLi, comments: “As a member of ASAP we appreciate the value of an association that ensures the professionalism and integrity of serviced apartment operators. The House of MoLi prides itself on reaching the stringent quality standards laid out in ASAP guidelines and has recently received very high scorings from ASAP. Their work is invaluable to assure customers that they are protected when taking out a short term accommodation let.”
As previously mentioned, reforming these outdated renting rules can only be healthy for the London accommodation sector at large but only if Government considers carefully the consequences of any reform they plan to implement and ensure safeguards are put in place to protect customers.