Madrid to regulate holiday rentals with suitability certificates

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Madrid’s Plaza de Oriente view from a holiday rental apartment

Madrid region will regulate all holiday lets with regulations that will include implementing suitability certificates. These will oblige owners to say where they advertise and to inform the police who stays in their property.

Changes to the current law dating from 2014 were outlined by Jaime de los Santos, regional minister for Culture, Tourism and Sport, at a recent parliamentary session. “The current law doesn’t provide all the solutions to the new requirements in the sector,” he said.

One of the first changes to be included are the creation of a suitability certificate for holiday lets and the definition of holiday let advertising channels so that they become subject to tourism regulations introduced in 1999 that allow for fines of between €3,000 and €300,000.

Holiday let owners are also subject to new obligations to improve quality in tourism and national security such as giving the police information about people staying in their properties. “The Constitutional Court has allowed for regional authorities to impose this obligation even though national security is the responsibility of the central government,” said De los Santos.

Owners must also take out public liability insurance, have complaint forms available to guests and provide heating in the property that works. There’s also a set ratio of people per square metre “to avoid overcrowding in small space”.

Holiday lets must have information on emergency telephone numbers, a procedure in place for evacuation both from the property itself and the complex or block. The minster also highlighted that guests should be aware of their civic obligations.

He emphasised that the Madrid regional government “believes in freedom” and isn’t going to set up “rejection procedures” as is the case in other parts of Spain. Nor is it going to encourage tourism phobia. He pointed out that tourism in Madrid is of high quality – the average age of tourists is 47.3 years and most come with their families.

De los Santos said that the draft for the new regulations can be seen “openly and transparently” on the EU website. The text was sent to all member states so that any citizen could view it.

He was adamant that all allegations from associations and the general public will be considered once it’s published in the Transparency Portal in “the next few weeks” since the EU is currently presenting allegations.

He recognised that holiday lets aren’t just a tourist issue but also a planning problem. “This is something councils should take seriously, especially Madrid City Council who have yet to decide how to renew their general planning regulations,” he said.

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