MRBTA has welcomed last week’s announcement by the State Government on initiatives to deliver better regulation of the short-term rental accommodation (STRA) sector.
A number of these initiatives are aligned with MRBTA’s advocacy, which calls for considered regulation of the sector to ensure that visitors have a quality experience, negative impacts on residents are minimised, and competition with other short term accommodation providers is fair.
The initiatives include:
- The release of the State Government’s final Position Statement and Guidelines for tourism and short-term rental accommodation. Draft Position Statement documentation had previously recommended development approval exemptions for unhosted accommodation renting for less than 90 days within a 12-month period. In line with advocacy from MRBTA, the City of Busselton, and the Shire of Augusta-Margaret River, this exemption has been removed for regional areas, and will instead defer to the policies of local governments. This is good news for this region’s traditional accommodation providers, as we have two local governments which have robust policies in place. We commend the State Government on their pragmatic approach to this matter.
- The development of a new state-wide registration scheme for all providers of short-term rental accommodation. This new scheme will be integral to implementing a ban on the advertising and booking of unregistered STRA properties. It will further support our local government’s registration and compliance efforts, and MRBTA’s policy that STRA properties must be registered with their local government in order to become a MRBTA member.
- A new $10,000 financial incentive for STRA owners to transfer their property to the long-term rental market. This will assist to address the longstanding and complex issue of housing availability, noting there is not one single solution to the issue as it manifests itself in our region, or in others across the State. Here in the region, there are continued collective efforts to address the issue of housing availability, with recent outcomes including the development of new worker accommodation facilities at Southern Stars Holiday Park in Dunsborough. Efforts to secure further dedicated worker accommodation for the region continue through the Margaret River Region Worker Accommodation Steering Committee.
Further information is available here:
- Short-Term Rental Accommodation (STRA) Initiatives (www.wa.gov.au)
- Position Statement Planning for Tourism (www.wa.gov.au)