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Sunday 19 February 2023

Europe starts to crack down on Airbnb properties

Portugal has unveiled a package of measures aimed at tackling a housing crisis, including a ban on new licenses for Airbnb properties and other short-term holiday rentals.

Rents and house prices have skyrocketed in Portugal - and many other parts of the world - as tourists flock to one of Europe's most affordable holiday destinations.

The tourism boom is a key factor in rents in Lisbon jumping 37% in 2022, local news service WIO reported.

Portugal also signalled the end of its controversial Golden Visa programme for new property buyers from abroad.

Foreign property owners will now only be eligible for the visas if their properties are used as their own home, or placed in the long-term rental market.

Prime Minister Antonio Costa told a press conference in Lisbon that new licences for tourism businesses - like Airbnb properties - will be prohibited, though rural areas will be exempt.

The move aims to make more properties available to locals who have been priced out of the rental market.   

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