A TENANT’S union is calling on Edinburgh’s council to commit to regulating short term lets in the city.

Living Rent will unfurl a banner that reads “homes not holiday let” later today on Victoria Street, Edinburgh.

The council’s guidance on short term lets was passed by a unanimous vote at Edinburgh City Chambers, the plan was to make it more difficult for short term lets to be granted planning permission.

However, in June, the guidance was declared in part “unlawful” by the Edinburgh Court of Session after short term operators raised £300,000 to challenge the council.

Research by Admiral suggests that there are 278 renters per 100 rentals in Edinburgh, coupled up with 400,000 visitors to the capital city for the Fringe, this shows according to the union that guidance needs to be implemented in order to better regulate the short term let market.

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Edinburgh is in the midst of a housing crisis and has not been helped by the “uncontrolled explosion in short-term lets” over the last decade, according to Eilidh Keay, chair of the Living Rent short term let campaign.

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She continued: “But Edinburgh is a real city, with real residents - not some tourist resort. 

“It should not be that a few landlords with deep pockets are able to hold a city council to ransom. 

“This city needs clear firm guidance to ensure that residents have somewhere to live and are not forced out of the city they call home.”

A resident in the Edinburgh’s Old Town, Maxwell Scott-Slade, says he doesn’t know who is neighbours are as they change every week.

He said: “This constant change has completely eroded the community where I live. When I have challenged the landlords directly who operate the short term lets, they have become verbally aggressive and have sent me threatening notes through my door and emails to my inbox.

“Any long term tenants that do exist are at risk of getting evicted without notice just before the festival. This happened last year when we just started to cultivate a relationship with our longer term neighbour.

"She contacted me via Instagram to say she was moved out because the landlord was selling the flat. The flat in question has become a short term let ever since, there was never any intention to sell it. I lost my only neighbour to another short term let.”

Another tenant in Scotland’s capital, Elise Corry, says those on stag dos have caused “havoc for the permanent residents”.

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She continued: "Whether it was waking us up at night by mistakenly knocking on other flats’ doors or playing loud music, these temporary residents were equally difficult to hold accountable as they were here one week, gone the next. 

“Scotland needs to act now and control levels of STLs to ensure permanent residents have a good quality of life in their own homes. Business cannot be prioritised over the health and well-being of communities.”