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Short-term lets now require a licence

There is a new licensing scheme for hosts who let out accommodation to guests who stay on a temporary basis.

Short term lets graphic with the wording "Holiday home, flat, yurt, cottage, B and B, lodge, caravan, spare room".

What is the new licensing scheme? 

From 1 October 2022, all short-term let accommodation will need a licence, unless specifically excluded. This will ensure there is a mandatory set of standards that apply to all short-term lets across Scotland. 

The new licence is a legal obligation, even if hosts occasionally let out a spare room or sub-let while on holiday for example.  

Find out more about the licensing scheme

When do I need to apply for a licence?

Existing hosts (those that have received guests before 1 October 2022) have until 1 October 2023 to apply for a licence. Hosts can continue to offer lets until their application has been determined.

From 1 October 2022 all new hosts need to apply for, and obtain, a licence before they accept bookings and welcome guests. 

Find out more about timescales

A graphic of a computer with an application form on screen.

How do I apply for a licence?

You will need to apply for a licence from the local council in which your accommodation is located.  

If you offer more than one short-term let, each may need a separate licence even if they are in the same council area.  

Find your local council and start applying now


What do I need to know before applying?

  • Your accommodation will need to meet mandatory conditions. Your local council may also set additional conditions.
  • If your accommodation is in a short-term let control area, it is a condition of the licence to have, or have applied for, planning permission. If it is not in a control area, and you do not have planning permission, you may still require this in order to obtain a short-term licence. You should check with your local council planning department to find out.
  • Licence fees will likely vary across different local councils and depend on the size and capacity of your accommodation.

Find out more about the licensing requirements and short-term let control areas

A graphic of application checkboxes and houses.
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