Planning permission plan for holiday homes

People wanting to use a house in Cornwall as a second home or a holiday let could now need to gain planning permission.

Councillors voted to approve a plan by Helston South and Porthleven councillor Andrew Wallis, that would force property owners to seek permission.

The move came after concerns at the scale of holiday lets and second homes, and the effect this has on local buyers and housing stock in the more popular areas.

In some areas the figure is as high as 40 per cent, with over five per cent of the total housing stock taken up by holiday homes.

The government will now be asked to create the relevant legislation, to gain a "little bit of control" and " protect communities".

Mr Wallis said: "In some areas the numbers are quite staggering. I firmly believe it all comes down to a balance between the different types of dwelling in an area, however it is hard to find that balance when there is not way to control certain types of housing, like second homes.

"I think it is about time some sort of legislation is brought into use. Sadly, it needs Parliament to do this, and so far, they have done little, if anything to bring in legislation to control certain housing types. So instead of waiting, I have decided to act and at least get something started that will bring in some sort of legislation."

He added: "It is not about stopping or banning these types of dwelling, but bringing in some controls before it is too late for our communities."

The motion that was approved states:

1) This Council believes, in principle, that the law should be changed to ensure that those dwellings which are not main residences, commonly known as second homes, are clearly and separately identified as a planning class and that any person wishing to change their main residence to eg a holiday let or second home be required to apply for planning consent.

2) A letter signed on behalf of the Council by all the Group Leaders be sent to the Prime Minister, the Deputy Prime Minister, the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government and the six Members of Parliament for Cornwall asking that the legislative means of achieving the principle set out in paragraph 1 of this resolution be urgently explored and pursued.

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