Airbnb placing ‘unnecessary pressure’ on rental markets

Short stay accommodation platform Airbnb is placing unnecessary pressure on rental markets and adding to housing stress in areas with high tourist numbers, according to RiskWise Property Research CEO Doron Peleg. 

Mr Peleg this week said that people seeking long term tenancies cannot afford to pay the rates achieved by short term leasing for holidaymakers. 

Mr Peleg said in tourist spots such as Byron Bay, Airbnb had helped force long-term tenants out and increased property prices.

RiskWise Property Research CEO Doron Peleg. Photo: Riskwise

RiskWise Property Research CEO Doron Peleg. Photo: Riskwise

“In areas such as these, and particularly in beachside suburbs, we see the overall demand for properties by investors and owner-occupiers going up,” he said. 

“Investors know they can use the property for Airbnb and many put in place leases that last 10 months, so they are vacant during summer for holiday-makers. 

“So, when buyers try to enter the market they are faced with competition from investors which drives prices up.

“Those looking for long-term leases generally aren’t keen on moving every few months so then that also encourages them to buy, which again means there are more competing for properties and pushing prices up.

“It’s a phenomenon which we are seeing around the world.”

Mr Peleg said limiting Airbnb to certain areas would help balance the market but it was an “ideal world” scenario. 

“The affect it has on tourism destinations is extremely detrimental for local tenants and it also impacts hotels and other accommodation in the area as they generally can’t compete,” he said.

“It has a sustained impact on the entire population and actually makes demographic changes.

“If the proportion of short-term stays is high it pushes families out, not just because they can’t afford to live there, but also because they don’t want to live next door to party houses.”