Welsh consultation on taxing of second homes and self catering lets

The Welsh Government is seeking views on local taxation on second homes and self-catering accommodation.

There has been considerable coverage and debate recently about the availability of affordable housing in Wales, which has led to the spotlight being pointed at the levels of second homes and self-catered holiday lets in some communities.

Although not a pan-Wales issue, the numbers of second homes and holiday lets have provoked strong feelings in some parts of Wales with communities claiming demand has priced younger generations out of the local housing markets.

The Welsh Government states as part of its introduction to the consultation: “Ensuring that local people can live affordably in the communities in which they grew up, and the health and vitality of Welsh as a thriving community language, are top priorities for the Welsh Government. Our Programme for Government includes a number of commitments in this regard, not least the hugely ambitious pledge to deliver an additional 20,000 low carbon homes for social rent across Wales and the development of a Welsh Language Communities Housing Plan.”

In July, the Minister for Climate Change Julie James set out a three-pronged approach to address issues of affordability and the impact of second homes and holiday lets on communities and the Welsh language. As part of this work, possible changes to local taxes were mooted to support local authorities in managing the impact of second homes and self-catered accommodation in their areas.

This latest consultation focuses solely on that aspect.

The Welsh Minister for Finance and Local Government Rebecca Evans concluded: “These are complex matters which vary greatly in their impact across Wales, and any changes to the local taxes will need to be considered alongside the other measures set out in our wider approach.

“We encourage everyone in the communities affected and elsewhere in Wales, whether they live, run businesses, own property, or deliver public services here to respond to this consultation.”

You can find the full consultation details here. Deadline for any submissions is November 17, 2021.