Cornwall Airbnb Short Term Lets

Scale of Airbnb Short Term Lets in Cornwall

It is widely reported that short term holiday lets are significantly distorting local housing markets.  Following a survey by the author of all Airbnb listings for Cornwall during October 2021, there were a total of 11,600 listings on their website.  These comprise a mixture of property types: whole houses to let (short term lets), rooms in private houses, hotels and guest house rooms, chalets, glamping pods and other various other types.  This post for the first time differentiates between all Airbnb listings and short term lets of whole houses and flats, properties that could house local families. Of the 11,6 00 listings over half, 6,570, were identified as short term lets for whole properties.  During the same period approximately 160 homes were available at £2000 or under per month were listed on Rightmove as available for long term rent (120 homes under £1,200 pcm and only 68 under £800 pcm).  This data validates the claims of local people that it is nearly impossible to find affordable houses to buy or to rent.  See also previous reports which first alerted the authors to the problems in Cornwall:  The Guardian view on second homes and Cornwall has 10,000 Airbnbs but only 69 homes available to rent .


Yes, you may ask why is this post on this website, has Cornwall somehow relocated to Scotland.  The answer is clearly no, at least not yet.  However, the impact of short term holiday lets on the housing market in Cornwall is staggering and deserves to be widely published.  This post is here as a mark of solidarity with those born and bred in Cornwall who are struggling to find affordable housing.  Furthermore, it acts as a warning of what may happen in Scotland if the same distortion of the housing market is allowed to continue without legislation to temper and control the growth of these lets.  The Scottish Government seems to be reluctant to introduce nation-wide legislation and continues to prevaricate on the matter.  A matter of real concern: first, to locals who cannot find affordable housing and second, to neighbours of short term let’s who suffer from the anti-social behaviour of people using them in residential areas.  Scot Gov please take note.

Figure 1 Distribution of Short Term Lets in Cornwall

Data Generation
The same techniques as described on the post Distribution of Airbnb Short Term Lets in Scotland were used to collect data.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.