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Byron Shire

Short-term rental accommodation

The NSW Government has announced new provisions for Byron Shire local government area (LGA), which include changes to the number of days permitted for non-hosted short-term rental accommodation (STRA).

New provisions specific to Byron Shire

Previous STRA provisions in the Byron Shire LGA allow for a maximum of 180 days per 365-day period for non-hosted STRA.

Byron Shire Council submitted a planning proposal to reduce the number of days a dwelling within the Byron Shire local government area can be used for non-hosted, short-term rental accommodation. The new provisions have been introduced in response to the proposal.

The new provisions establish a 60-day non-hosted STRA cap for the entire Byron Shire LGA, with the exception of two 365-day mapped precincts in and around Byron Bay Town Centre and at Brunswick Heads. These 365-day precincts are mapped in the Housing SEPP.

Timeline for the new provisions

The new 60-day non-hosted STRA cap provisions in the Byron Shire LGA will come into effect on 23 September 2024, providing a 12-month transition period for the community and industry to prepare.

The existing provisions remain in effect until 23 September 2024.

From 23 September 2024, non-hosted STRA dwellings in the Byron Shire LGA that are subject to the new 60-day cap will no longer qualify as exempt development if a STRA dwelling’s usage has exceeded 60 days and its registration period starts before and ends after 23 September 2024.

Hosts will need to wait until their annual 365-day STRA dwelling registration period is renewed before being able to use their dwelling for non-hosted STRA. 

Background to the rule changes in Byron Shire

In some NSW council areas, there are limits on the number of days that a property can be used for non-hosted STRA.

The changes in STRA provisions in the Byron Shire LGA are in response to the identified undersupply of housing, particularly affordable and diverse housing, across the LGA.

In June 2022, the former Minister for Planning and Homes authorised Byron Shire Council to proceed with the public exhibition and finalisation of a planning proposal, which proposed to limit non-hosted STRA to 90 days a year in parts of the LGA.

The planning proposal was exhibited between 1 September and 31 October 2022, and received a large number of submissions.

Given the potentially significant economic impacts of the proposal, the Minister decided to seek advice from the Independent Planning Commission (IPC) on:

  • the status of housing and rental affordability and rental availability in the Byron Shire, including the impact of non-hosted STRA as well as recent flood events
  • recommendations to improve housing affordability and rental availability in Byron Shire
  • the economic contribution of the STRA industry in Byron Shire, and any potential economic implications for Byron Shire with the introduction of Council's proposed 90- and 365-day dwelling caps
  • whether it recommends the Minister should finalise the planning proposal, with or without amendments, or whether any further information may be required.
     

Reasons behind the rule changes in Byron Shire

The new non-hosted STRA provisions in the Byron Shire LGA respond to the IPC’s findings that the housing market and housing pressures in Byron Shire are different from other Australian locations, and the social impact of non-hosted STRA is more significant. The IPC also found that the Byron Shire STRA industry plays a significant role in the visitor economy.

In response to its findings, the IPC recommended:

  • that the planning proposal by Byron Shire Council to amend the Housing SEPP and apply a non-hosted STRA cap of 90 days across the Byron Shire, with the inclusion of some designated precincts with no STRA cap, is unlikely to achieve its stated objective of easing the housing crisis
  • that the Housing SEPP be amended to provide a 60-day cap on non-hosted STRA in Byron Shire.

A balanced response to Byron Shire’s unique housing challenges

We’re in a housing crisis and a proportion of non-hosted STRA in Byron Shire is contributing to the lack of affordable and available long-term rental housing.

The new 60-day non-hosted STRA cap in Byron Shire, excluding two 365-day mapped precincts, is a direct response that aims to assist residents in finding long-term rental properties or affordable housing options.

This change to Byron Shire STRA rules is one integral action being undertaken as part of the council’s broader approach to addressing the housing crisis.

The decision to implement the provisions followed advice from Byron Shire Council that it will provide more than 4,500 new homes in the region by 2041.

More work will be rolled out to implement Byron Shire’s plan to increase its housing supply, and the department will monitor the council’s progress in delivering its commitments.

More information

More information on changes to rules for short-term rental accommodation in the Byron Shire LGA is provided in frequently asked questions (PDF, 76 KB).

Further information on the council’s planning proposal can be found on the NSW Planning Portal and NSW Independent Planning Commission.