Singapore to seek public views on short-term home rentals

SINGAPORE: The Singapore government, which has charged two men with unauthorised short-term letting of apartments, plans to seek public feedback on a regulatory framework for allowing such accommodation.

The move comes as strict rules on short-term property rentals in the city-state, a keen early adopter of the sharing economy, have invited some complaints, as it seeks a balance between encouraging new disruptive industries and keeping them in line.

While there’s a place for short-term letting, the government will review and consider safeguards to ensure it does not negatively affect the “amenity” of residential estates, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) said.

A coming public consultation will seek feedback on a framework for allowing short-term accommodation in private homes.

This week, Singapore charged two men with unauthorised short-term letting of four apartments, its first such prosecution.

They were charged under the Planning Act for renting out condominium units for less than six months without permission from the URA.

If found guilty, the two are liable to a fine of up to S$200,000 (RM600,000) per offence.

The rentals were arranged through Airbnb, which was not referred to in court documents.

Airbnb says it has 8,700 listings in the city-state.

Singapore has high population density, and its limited land area means a majority of the 5.6 million people live in apartments. — Reuters

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