A bill which will regulate the uncontrolled online rental of short-term accommodation moved a step closer to a vote in the plenary after yesterday’s discussion in the House Commerce Committee.
It suggests that owners of properties on websites such as airbnb and booking.com, register their accommodation on a special register and those that have an income of more than €15,600 pay taxes.
The bill was drafted by DISY MP Averof Neofytou and EDEK MP Elias Myrianthous.
At the moment, there are an estimated 40,000 properties on online booking sites in Cyprus that are not licensed.
If the law passes, properties will receive a special registry number which will be shown in their online profile. Long-term renters will also have to acquire a licence.
According to the proposed law, apartment owners will have to obtain the approval of the other residents in a building before they register their flats to rent online.
According to Committee chairman Angelos Votsis, the bill aims to regulate the market of online rentals of holiday accommodation.
It has been a long standing demand of hoteliers who have complained of unfair competition from premises that are not subject to the same rules as licensed holiday accommodation.
DISY MP Andreas Kyprianou said that the law will allow some property owners to increase their income, will bring order to the market and generate revenue for the state.
Votsis said that the Committee expects to conclude its discussions in 15 days.
The bill will then go to the Plenary session in October.