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Christchurch City Council has recently released its plan to regulate Airbnb-style short stay accommodation in Christchurch City.

After months of consultation and public feedback, Council has now put forward its plan to bring in a three-tiered consenting system for 'unhosted' short-stay accommodation (Plan Change 4). The proposed changes to the District Plan would require homeowners to apply for resource consent in order to use unoccupied property for short-stay visitor accommodation. The proposed tiers are as follows:

  • Tier One - 1-60 nights a year - now a "controlled activity". The Council could not decline the application but could apply conditions. Approximate cost: $1,000 - $2,000.

  • Tier Two - 61 - 80 nights a year - now a "discretionary activity". The Council could consider any environmental effects in the consent, including noise and traffic impacts on neighbours. Approximate cost: $3,000+.

  • Tier Three - 180 nights a year - now a "non-complying activity". The Council could only grant the consent if environmental effects were minor. Approximate cost: $3,000+.

Critics of the proposal argue that the cost of obtaining a resource consent would force many people out of the market, which could lead to a shortage of accommodation across Christchurch and Bank Peninsula during peak times of the year.

In rural zones, 'unhosted' visitor accommodation in a residential dwelling would be a "permitted activity" for the first 180 days. Council is also proposing restrictions on 'hosted' short-stay accommodation, where the owners also live in the property, to include limitations around late-night arrivals and departures and the size of functions.

Plan Change 4 is now at the submission stage which provides a further opportunity for public input. Submissions close on 22 October 2020 and will be followed by a hearing, before the Council makes a final decision. If you have any questions about the submission process or short stay-accommodation in general, including which ‘tier’ you might currently be in, please feel free to contact our resource management and property experts to discuss.

If, or probably when, resource consents are required, we can help you through that process too. But in the meantime, if you have a view, make a submission.

Our experts

Please contact a member of our specialist property team if you would like further information on the above.

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