Log In

Reset Password

Holiday rental group says crisis is cost of living, not housing

The Bermuda Rental Association of Vacation-Home Owners Association represents holiday rental owners (File photograph)

A group representing holiday rental owners has taken aim at the Government, saying it does not agree that there is a housing crisis in Bermuda.

The Bermuda Rental Association of Vacation-Home Owners also doubled down on its claim that its members were not properly consulted over the introduction of a new fee.

The Vacation Rental (Application and Registration) Fees Act 2023, enacted on September 1, required holiday homeowners to pay between $1,500 and $2,500 per property to operate.

A spokeswoman said: “The Bermuda Rental Association of Vacation-Home Owners does not agree that we have a housing crisis in light of statistical data that shows we have a declining population and the number of derelict buildings, if repaired, could increase the supply even more.

“We believe that Bermuda has a cost-of-living crisis whereby even people who own homes can barely afford to live in this country.”

A government spokesman said: "Having this discussion in the media, without the full benefit of the facts on both sides, is not productive.

“The minister responsible for tourism has made contact with the Bermuda Rental Association of Vacation-Home Owners to discuss the issues and looks forward to a more productive discussion with the association."

Jason Hayward, the Minister of Economy and Labour, said recently that he would rather see Bermudian families living in the rental properties than tourists on a temporary basis.

He said that a shake-up of tenancy laws was being explored to encourage landlords to rent to locals, that he recognised there was a shortage of both affordable housing and holiday units, and that the rental sector needed to be regulated “so that we don’t have a whole proliferation of vacation rentals that erode the affordable housing stock that we once relied on as a country”.

Speaking of the new legislated fee, the holiday homeowners spokeswoman added: “Despite this fee being mentioned in the 2022 Throne Speech, there was no consultation with the vacation rental industry.”

She said that in a meeting last November, Vance Campbell, then the tourism minister, pledged to work towards a resolution but there was no resolution.

The tourism ministry said last week that it considered the fees to be "fair and reasonable, and are being equitably applied".

You must be Registered or to post comment or to vote.

Published May 03, 2024 at 7:52 am (Updated May 03, 2024 at 7:52 am)

Holiday rental group says crisis is cost of living, not housing

What you
Need to
1. For a smooth experience with our commenting system we recommend that you use Internet Explorer 10 or higher, Firefox or Chrome Browsers. Additionally please clear both your browser's cache and cookies - How do I clear my cache and cookies?
2. Please respect the use of this community forum and its users.
3. Any poster that insults, threatens or verbally abuses another member, uses defamatory language, or deliberately disrupts discussions will be banned.
4. Users who violate the Terms of Service or any commenting rules will be banned.
5. Please stay on topic. "Trolling" to incite emotional responses and disrupt conversations will be deleted.
6. To understand further what is and isn't allowed and the actions we may take, please read our Terms of Service
7. To report breaches of the Terms of Service use the flag icon