Local councils will be given new powers to licence and limit the number of short-term lets, such as AirBnB.

 

Na h-Eileanan an Iar SNP MSP Alasdair Allan has backed this announcement from the Scottish Government.

 

A recent study commissioned by the Scottish Government into AirBnB showed that the Western Isles had the second greatest increase in registered properties behind only Edinburgh.

 

The number of short-term lets in Scotland has risen dramatically in recent years – but evidence shows that in many tourist hotspots, people are finding it increasingly hard to find homes to live in.

 

Alasdair Allan MSP said: “It is important that we strike a balance between the economic benefits of tourism to Scotland and the impact on local communities.

 

“I would urge the Comhairle to make use of these powers. We are already approaching the situation in some parts of the islands where whole villages could be full in the summer and virtually empty for six months of the year. We need to ensure that villages are not transformed from communities into resorts in the space of just a few years.”