New South Wales, Australia: New Provisions for Short-Term Rental Accommodation (STRA)

April 13, 2021 |

The NSW Government announced that the new statewide Short-Term Rental Accommodation (STRA) planning policy made on April 9, 2021 will go into effect on November 1, 2021 to provide industry participants time to familiarise themselves with the new policy before it takes effect. This is following the establishment of the Code of Conduct, a new set of rules for the short-term rental accommodation (STRA) industry that’s goal is to safeguard the interests of local communities while enabling homeowners to partake in the sharing economy. 

The policy includes:

  • A new definition for STRA, hosted STRA and non-hosted STRA (a new planning framework that is aligned with the Code of Conduct passed in late 2020;
  • An exempt development pathway for hosted and non-hosted STRA, including a 180 day limit restriction for non-hosted STRA based on location;
  • General requirements for short-term rental accommodation, including the need for the premises to be officially registered as such
  • Fire safety standards for short-term rental properties, namely the presence of smoke alarms and evacuation diagrams

The planning framework

The planning framework outlines exempt development pathways for hosted and non-hosted short-term rental accommodations. 

Hosted properties refer to accommodations with a live-in host. These are eligible for short-term renting 365 days a year. 

Non-hosted accommodations are properties hosted by a party or company that does not reside on the premises.

These accommodations are subject to a restriction of 180 days of short-term renting in the following locations:

  • Greater Sydney (not including the Central Coast)
  • Ballina LGA 
  • Bega Valley LGA
  • Byron Bay LGA*
  • Dubbo Regional LGA
  • City of Newcastle LGA

Reservations that surpass 21 consecutive days are exempt from this limit and thus do not count toward the 180 day cap. 

*Hosts within the Byron Shire Local Government Area should note that given its complex nature when it comes to short-term rental accommodation, the policy will only come into effect on the 31st of January in 2022. 

The STRA Register

Finally, as stated in the Code of Conduct, anyone wishing to rent out short-term accommodations must register on the STRA register before 30 July. To register, they must provide proof of consent from the property owner and verify that the properties they manage comply with the fire safety standards defined in the policy. Only properties with valid registration numbers will be eligible for distribution via OTAs. 

More details regarding the new statewide policy, including the new online STRA Register and fire safety standard, can be found by visiting the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment website.
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