Villas In Lanzarote The Letting Laws

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The letting laws for villas and apartments in Lanzarote and other Canary Islands have been the subject of much debate over the past few years. Many statements have been made by elected presidents of villa and apartment communities intent on stopping holiday rentals in their community in an effort to impose their will on uninformed property owners. They are largely bluffing and bullying. Apart from the right of any citizen to inform the authorities of what they believe to be any infringements of any law (in this case Clause 38 of law 7/1995), they have no legal authority to impose their views and are seeking to exploit the unfortunate legal ignorance of owners. Here are the facts as I understand them.

1. Touristic Sites.

If you own on a Touristic complex (Licensed with the Dept of Tourism) then Canarian Law Clause 38 Section7/1995 is applicable and there must be a sole agency who runs all the letting on the site. This can either be the community itself or an outside agency. Either way the sole agency must have 50% +1 of the properties under its control in order to operate as the sole agency. The site must be licensed by the Dept of Tourism and owners can only rent out through the sole agents. If there is no sole agency because they cannot achieve 50% +1 then NO ONE is allowed to rent.

2. Residential Sites.

If you own on a residential villa or apartment site then Spanish Law of Horizontal Division is applicable and takes precedent and there are no restrictions applicable on individual owners of private properties renting out providing they agree the terms directly with their guests.

You are quite entitled to advertise and arrange all the rentals yourselves. You are acting legally providing you ensure the guests are fully aware before they arrive that it is a private apartment on a residential site with no on site reception and that you provide them with a 24 hour emergency contact telephone number of a person who will be responsible for the guests during their stay.

As to the future, it could be that the authorities will seek to amend the current laws and to regulate the situation. Eventually all villas and apartments used as holiday lets may have to be licensed so that basic minimum standards and suitable third party liability is provided for the tourists but without the need for a sole letting agency for each community.

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