Edition 1475
19 May 2018
Edition: 1475

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Real estate agents express concern over proposed local lodging laws

in News · 11-01-2018 13:31:00 · 1 Comments

The national association of estate agents in Portugal (APEMIP) has warned that measures debated last Friday in Parliament aiming to increase restrictions on local lodging or Alojamento Local (AL) threaten the well-being of the property market.

Real estate agents express concern over proposed local lodging laws

APEMIP issued a statement following Friday’s debate, saying “the very existence of local lodging could be at risk”. This follows plans to make it compulsory for those letting out properties to seek the approval of condominiums or homeowners’ associations prior to applying for a local lodging licence (AL).
Homeowners of establishments covered by the local lodging holiday rental law had also previously expressed concerns that their business could be harshly affected by proposed legislative reforms.
A total of five law decree proposals have so far been debated in Parliament, but without being tabled for voting.
The reforms to the existing law all call for condominiums to have a greater say over whether or not fellow homeowners can let out their properties to holidaymakers.
But APEMIP says the approval of local lodging regulations some years ago has had a hugely positive effect on the residential real estate market and has served to boost the national market as a whole.
“Local lodging has brought investment, encouraged renovations and brought new dynamism to city centres, while also saving the building and restaurant industries, while also creating jobs for people who would otherwise have had to leave the country”, APEMIP President, Luís Lima, argued.
He added that problems identified by the parliamentary proposals aiming to alter local lodging laws existed long before AL even came into force, adding that this sector generated 120 million euros in taxes in 2017 alone.
He concluded by saying that “leaving the decision as to whether or not a person may rent out their property in the hands of fellow homeowners is letting them become prisoners to envious and bad neighbours.”
The cornerstone of the proposal legislation, which seems set for approval given the broad consensus among all political parties, makes it compulsory for homeowners to approve local lodging at venues such as residential blocks of flats.
The ruling Socialist Party argues that “it cannot be overlooked that the activity is also potentially a cause for concern and upset to people who permanently reside in a building where this system is in operation.”
The Left Bloc and the Communist Party, alliance partners of the ruling Socialists, are proposing that local authorities be given greater powers in regulating the industry. The two leftist parties both want local councils to have the authority to limit the number of holiday homes in a city, town, parish or village to 30 percent.
The Communists also want landlords to take out additional insurance in the event of holidaymakers causing damage to property, both common and private.
The Left Bloc also want a limitation on AL licences of 90 days a year when dealing with a whole apartment, townhouse or villa.
More than 55,000 properties are currently registered across the country, with the majority located in Lisbon and Porto, followed closely by Albufeira.

Comments

It's the 90 day rule that will kill off the industry
by Fred from Madeira on 15-01-2018 02:44:00

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Edition 1475
19 May 2018
Edition: 1475

Read this week's issue online exactly as it appears in print.

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