British homeowners who have holiday homes in Spain and France will want to take note. They may soon be kept from renting to tourists, squashing the primary reason that many people have these second homes. New laws will soon be in place that require holiday revelers to rent from larger companies rather than from individual home owners. In France, such laws are expected next week in Paris, Lyon and Marseille. In Spain, these bans are expected to take place next spring.
As Ryan Levitt, who works for the holiday rental website housetrip.com said, ‘This law is closing the door to working and middle-class families who want to book a break to Spain at an affordable price. Instead of being able to share a whole house with friends, you face being stuck with your kids in a cramped hotel room.’
There are an estimated one million properties in Spain that are owned by Britons. Up until now, it was easy for them to bring in income when they weren’t using their holiday house by renting out their properties. Now, however, those second homes in Spain would need a license from the local council, which includes a fee, long waits and headaches.
If the laws influence property owners as they do in Catalonia, the Canary Islands and Balearics then Britons have cause for concern. These places already have strict restrictions and in the past year, thousands of apartments and villas have been fined as much as £15,000 each. Others have been banned from renting out their properties and others are putting their properties on the market. But with the number of sellers, they are finding it difficult to sell.