Short term lets to be regulated by Tourism Ministry from January onwards

Do you rent out your apartment or house for short periods and live in Andalucia? Well, as from January (if the decree is passed next week) you’ll be operating as a tourism business and will be expected to apply for permission and regulation from the Andalucian Ministry of Tourism.

See, the tourism ministry of Andalucia is completely controlled by the Hotel industry, and they have been lobbying hard to prevent people from renting out their apartments for short term lets. “Unfair and illegal competition” is how the Ministry of Tourism is describing the practise, and they say that 2015 will be the year they will stamp out this illegal tax avoidance.

According to Minister of Tourism Rafael Rodriguéz, up to 25% of all tourists who come to Andalucia stay in illegal housing. By which he means they aren’t regulated by his department. Instead, these people will be expected to be good little citizens and check into their local hotel. I don’t think he can really say that people who come and stay with friends, or rent an apartment for a week, are “illegal tourists”…

The Junta is already planning their III “plan de calidad turistica” for next year which seems to mainly involve finding people renting out their apartments and coming down on them like a ton of bricks. They will be cross referencing their database with the tax authorities.

Anybody who wants to rent out their home for days or weeks will from next year be expected to inscribe themselves into the Registro Turistico de Andalucia and must comply with the (quite strict) rules to ensure “quality legality and harmony for the tourist”. Inspections by the Ministry will be carried out and you will be expected to operate as a business with licenses, local townhall permissions, insurance and the lot.

The Ministry of Tourism is controlled by the Spanish Communist Party in the coalition government, but old Rafael Rodríguez seems to have forgotten his socialist principles and is quite happily eating from the hands of the big hoteliers.

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