The prospect of six-figure earnings is being used to lure tenants and investors into subletting properties via websites such as Airbnb – without owning any of the homes or, in some cases, the knowledge of the property owners.
The potential profits are very real. Research into Airbnb’s online listings has uncovered several “hosts” each with hundreds of properties under their management, with even greater numbers listed on as many as 50 niche websites.
The NSW government is considering an “industry-led” register of holiday lets, and many see this as the best way to curb the commercial conversion of residential lets as short term rentals.
“Without a reliable, independent registry, there is no way property investors can be sure their homes aren’t being used for holiday lets," said Jane Hearn, deputy chairman of the Owners Corporation Network, the peak group for apartment owners in NSW.