SETE, the Hellenic Tourism Enterprise Association of Greece, presented its proposals on Thursday to improve the institutional framework for the functioning of the short-term rental market in a letter sent to Akis Skertsos, Minister of State, Vassilis Kikilias, Minister of Tourism and Theodoros Skylakakis, Deputy Minister of Finance.
Short term rental offers
With the aim, as emphasized, of the need to protect the quality of the country’s tourism product, the need to solve the problem of finding accommodation, which has reached enormous proportions in many parts of the country, the protection of legitimate tourism enterprises from unfair competition, which in many cases exists, since many illegal objects of the tourism sector operate “under the guise” of short-term leases, and in order to increase the revenues of the state, insurance funds and municipalities, in order to more fairly distribute the corresponding obligations among legitimate enterprises and citizens, SETE proposes the following:
Apartment buildings: It is proposed to expressly provide that if all apartments in an apartment building or residential complex are rented out for short-term rental, then this is considered tourist accommodation, which must be licensed accordingly.
VAT: It is proposed to limit the VAT exemption of the received rent only if the recipient of the income is an individual and has registered on the relevant government revenue platform up to two (2) properties in AFM (of which one of the two must be declared as a property in which his own residence is located). Otherwise, and also in any case when the recipient of income is a legal entity, received rent must be subject to VAT.
Withholding Tax: It is proposed to provide for the obligation of each digital platform to hold 5% tax from the total cost of short-term rent, which she then pays to the state.
Maximum number of short-term rentals per municipality: It is proposed to give the right to local authorities, i.e. municipalities, to determine, after a decision by their municipal council, which will be justified on the basis of an appropriate scientific study, the maximum number of real estate objects that can be registered in the Register of short-term rental objects for the territory within their borders.
Collection of council tax: It is proposed that short-term rentals negotiated through digital platforms be taxed in favor of local authorities, which will be equal to 0.5% of the rental price and will be used by the local authorities to cover the increased costs of cleaning, lighting, etc. caused by the operation of the short-term lease.