New law on tourist rentals in the Canary Islands

new law on Canarian tourist rentals

Let's try to clarify and dismantle 3 myths:

In recent months there has been a lot of talk about the new law on tourist rentals in the Canary Islands which is apparently destined to revolutionize this sector (at least as we have known it up to now).

As often happens, change tends to arouse a certain discontent in the population, even more so if the interests at stake are mostly economic.

But let's get things in order first: tourist rentals in the Canary Islands are regulated by Regulations on holiday living of the Canarian Autonomous Community, approved by decree in May 2015.

The law intended to regulate tourist rentals of "residential" type homes, allowing anyone who had apartments to rent available to divert their offer towards the tourism sector.

The genesis of this regulation and its unexpected evolution (in 2017 a ruling from the Supreme Court was released which annulled some of its articles) is not known to many, but it is the key element for understanding what is happening today and what the real motivations and intentions of politics.

Add to this the fact that, either as a result of the aforementioned ruling or due to the repeated improper use of this law by "organised entities", in recent years there has been an uncontrolled growth of this phenomenon, which has led to unexpected consequences both at an urban and social level.

Having said that, since this is not the topic of the article, I would like to focus attention on three "hoaxes" that are circulating on the Web and which the Gobierno de Canarias has already taken steps to deny through official documents.

Here are the 3 myths that need to be debunked:

The first hoax concerns the limitation in the purchase of properties and in the exercise of tourist rental activities to foreigners or non-residents.

The Government announces that "discrimination or restrictions based on nationality or residence are not compatible with the constitutional and European Union regulations”. A clear no, therefore, which leaves very little room for interpretation.

The second hoax concerns the possible comparison of holiday homes to other types of tourist accommodation (hotels, tourist apartments, etc.). In fact, the Government makes it known that "holiday homes and other types of tourist accommodation are different from a material and management point of view” and, for this reason, they will be regulated by a dedicated rule, which takes into consideration the real nature of this type of accommodation.

Another topic that has been read recently regarding this new law is the possibility of introducing rules for the regulation of holiday home prices: this is a workhorse of a certain political mentality which, however, once again, is cooled by the promoters of this law, who declare in this regard that “the current legal framework does not allow this, as it is a free market economy”.

These are just three of the points already clarified by Consejería de Turismo y Empleo del Gobierno de Canarias which, being the body from which this legislative initiative was born, today represents the most reliable source from which to draw news on the developments of this ongoing change.

Objective conclusion:

We can conclude by remembering that in any case, until the publication of the definitive law in the BOE (Boletín Oficial del Estado) everything is susceptible to changes and, consequently, any decision regarding possible investments in this sector is totally at the risk of those involved to put your own money.

Distrusting those who dispense certainties on this issue is the only protection tool we have today. The business is not about to end but the rules are about to change: the good news is that those who are able to embrace this change, by making the right choices, will, in my opinion, be able to bring their profits back to the levels of a few years ago.

Article by Marco Sparicius Canary Islands Real Estate Consultant

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