Short-term rental accommodation hosts, guests, letting agents and online booking platforms will soon be subject to strict new laws, with a mandatory Code of Conduct beginning this Friday.
Parliamentary Secretary for the Central Coast and Member for Terrigal Adam Crouch said the new Code of Conduct includes clear guidance and obligations for hosts and guests, centred on minimum standards of good behaviour.
“The popularity of short-term rentals on the Central Coast has skyrocketed this year thanks to COVID-19 border closures,” Mr Crouch said.
“While the short-term rental sector has gone from strength to strength, what has been missing is a clear set of rules to protect the rights of both hosts, guests and neighbours.
“The NSW Government is introducing this Code of Conduct as part of a broader reform to the sector that protects local communities and ensures the minority of people who misuse short-term rentals are appropriately dealt with.”
Minister for Better Regulation and Innovation Kevin Anderson said a key feature of the new laws was the establishment of an exclusion register, which will introduce a ‘two strikes and you’re out’ policy for unruly guests.
“We have all heard the horror stories of hosts doing the wrong thing or the house guests from hell behaving disgracefully in holiday rentals,” Mr Anderson said.
“If you are going to carry on like that in someone else’s house or neighbourhood, be warned – under these new rules you will be banned, and for a very long time.”
All participants, including booking platforms, will be required to comply with the Code of Conduct and comply with directions from the NSW Fair Trading Commissioner. The Code of Conduct also includes formal avenues for complaints and dispute resolution, as well as the ability for NSW Fair Trading to apply penalties or ban problematic hosts or anti-social guests from booking short-term rentals for five years.
The Code of Conduct comes into force on Friday, 18 December 2020.