I am updating and adapting here a reply I gave to someone on THIS post because following the successful first year review of 2013’s tourism legislation, and 2015’s decree regulating private tourism letting there is understandable confusion over what properties can be rented out in what way and under what conditions. The following is the final situation, verified by legal opinion.
- If you have a residential property you can let it out long term under urban letting legislation wherever it is, with a long-term residential contract;
- or you can let it out short term in one of two ways:
- either as an arrendamiento de temporada (a contract for a specific purpose other than tourism/holiday) under urban letting legislation;
- or as a vivienda vacacional as defined by the new touristic regulation required by article 5 of urban letting law.
These vivienda vacacional (VV) lets must be in non-touristic areas, and owners must have made a declaración de responsable. I will be posting more about this “declaration” in due course, but it is not a minor issue, and comprises a range of documentation, legally-binding official statements, and compliance with regulatory prerequisites as outlined HERE. The final regulation is HERE. Moreover, owners must be registered for IGIC, and charge it on all invoices for all lets, and submit quarterly IGIC returns (see HERE). In addition, the statutes of the community of any property involved in VV lets must also not expressly prohibit commercial holiday rentals (many do, particularly in newer residential complexes). Infractions of the VV regulation are defined as “very serious”, and so with defined fines ranging from €30,000 to €300,000. Given that fines for illegal letting tend to be issued in the middle of bands, I would expect fines for violations of the new regulation to be around €150,000.
- If you have a touristic property, you cannot let it out privately for holiday lets. This is fundamentally banned by tourism legislation which requires lets to be operated through the sole agency system – and deems any lets under 3 months to be touristic, and now complemented by the new regulation which says that VV lets must not be in touristic areas. Touristic property owners can either let out for holidays through their on-site sole agent, or via a temporada contract of between 3 months and a year. Fines for general infractions of these aspects of tourism legislation fall into the “serious” band, and so range from €1,500 to €30,000 – they are typically €15,000 -18,000 or so.
To clarify touristic and non-touristic areas, these are “areas” not complexes. This will be officially clarified in due course, but I fully expect it to be a definition based on the land classification in an ayuntamiento’s PGO (general planning arrangements).
All I would add to the above is that any owners still in doubt need as a basic first step to clarify with their local ayuntamiento how their land is classified, both in terms of the specific plot a property is built on, and the zone generally. There are some areas of Tenerife, for example, where land is mixed tourist-residential, normally coastal towns, and even these are excluded specifically – Callao Salvaje is an example of such an area.
The Canarian private letting lobby association Ascav has assessed that private holiday rentals in 90% of those properties which could have been brought into legality have now been confirmed as illegal. They say that they are horrified that the government has broken its pre-election promises to “regulate” the sector. They believed that they would be allowed to holida let widely, but as I’ve said previously, “regulation” was always likely to increase official control rather than loosen it, and as I suspected, instead of having to fall on its sword and yield to the private letting lobby, the Canarian Government has now coordinated its legislation and tightened loopholes so that the situation is more restrictive rather than less.