Airbnb welcomes progress on EU-wide short-term rental (STR) rules that mark a step towards more clear, consistent and harmonized rules for everyday Hosts across the bloc.
The European Commission launched its proposal for EU-wide STR rules in December last year which would give authorities better access to data via a harmonized data sharing framework, providing that local rules are clear and simple for everyday Hosts to follow.
The common position reached by the Council of the EU paves the way for negotiations with the European Commission and Parliament to finalize the new rules later this year, which give hope to many everyday Europeans who are excluded from the benefits of hosting due to fragmented and disproportionate local rules, which were often designed with large scale tourism operators in mind.
“We welcome progress on EU-wide short-term rental rules, which is good news for the EU’s travel economy and many everyday Hosts who share their homes to boost their income and afford rising living costs. As we move forward, we continue to encourage the EU to focus its discussions on disproportionate local rules that undermine the single market and prevent many everyday Europeans from sharing their homes and benefitting from visitors to their communities.” - Georgina Browes, Head of EU Public Policy
Airbnb has long-led calls for EU-wide STR rules and raised a number of points in response the EU’s draft proposals to help ensure that the regulation is effective:
- Streamline data sharing: Airbnb welcomes an EU-level framework to share hosting data. Airbnb believes in a truly single data sharing portal for platforms at the EU level, through which data can then be shared with Member States, and is concerned that the current proposal augments the risk of fragmentation by introducing 27 “Single” Data Entry Points.
- A more active role for the Commission: Airbnb welcomes the proposal setting out principles for proportionate registration at the local and national levels. Airbnb supports a more active role for the Commission in assessing and verifying the proportionality of registration schemes, which would help ensure greater consistency in the application of EU rules and a more equable experience for everyday Europeans across the bloc.
- Enforcing against disproportionate rules: There are a number of areas in the EU, such as Barcelona and Brussels, where complex STR rules restrict the ability of everyday Hosts to benefit from home sharing – even if they share a private room in their primary home. Currently, the STR proposal does not address such instances of disproportionate local regulations that go beyond registration systems. Airbnb believes such disproportionate rules go against the principles of the Services Directive and Member States and local authorities should do more to ensure rules are compliant, or face interventions from the Commission.
The EU is home to over 1 million Hosts on Airbnb – more than any other region in the world – and nearly three-quarters of them share just one home. The typical Host earned just over €3,000* – equivalent to two months additional pay for the median EU household – and more than 40 percent say the additional income helps them afford rising living costs**.
* Data for 2021. Approx $3,225 USD.
** Based on an Airbnb survey of over 36,000 Hosts with bookings between June 1, 2021 and December 31, 2021 and surveyed between February 17, 2022 and March 31, 2022. Margin of error under 2%.