SNP pledges to cut down on second homes


Nicola Sturgeon © ScottishPolitico (CC BY-SA 4.0)

The Scottish National Party is promising to introduce restrictions on second-home ownership and to make housing more accessible to young people in tourist areas.


The SNP has said that it will copy measures taken in Cornwall, where locals have been forced out of the property market, to curb second-home ownership.


Some Cornish locations such Fowey have banned second homes and local authorities can step in if a property is not used as a primary residence.


The SNP is expected to make changes which will only allow new housing developments to be built if they are reserved for local people.


There are approximately 25,000 second homes in Scotland.


Some measures are already in place in Scotland to discourage second homes. In 25 of the country's 32 councils, a 10% discount on second home council tax has been removed.


Currently, holiday-home buyers are required to pay a 4% supplement on the property's purchase price in addition to the Land and Buildings Transaction Tax.


A Familiar Picture


In recent years, second homes have become an increasingly contentious issue due to their adverse effect on communities and the Welsh language.


Second homes now account for more than 5% of the total housing stock in four local authorities:

  • Gwynedd - 10.76%

  • Sir Benfro - 9.15%

  • Sir Fôn - 8.26%

  • Ceredigion - 5.91%

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