Cornish hotel worker, 24, says she will be made HOMELESS from next month as out-of-towners snap up properties to use as holiday homes
- Jasmin Or, 24, said she cannot find a place to live in the beauty spot of St Ives
- She fears she will be sleeping rough when her tenancy agreement ends in May
- Cornwall Council said the ‘imbalance in supply and demand’ is at record levels
- St Ives MP Derek Thomas said 100 families compete for each three-bed home
A Cornish hotel worker claims she will be made homeless from next month due to out-of-towners snapping up properties to use as holiday homes.
Jasmin Or, 24, grew up in the beauty spot of St Ives and said she cannot find a new place to rent for when her tenancy agreement ends on May 10.
She has exhausted letting agents and spare room sites, and fears she will be sleeping rough in the space of three weeks.
She said: ‘I’m wondering if this place will seem as beautiful to me when I’m sleeping on a bench in three weeks.
‘There’s no homes left. Everything has been turned into second homes now and that’s the issue.
‘They’re all Airbnbs and a lot of locals have been driven out of their homes now to accommodate for the summer.’
Cornwall Council said there is ‘an imbalance in supply and demand’ that the county has never seen before.
St Ives MP Derek Thomas said in December last year that around 100 families compete for every available three-bedroom home in parts of Cornwall.
Jasmin Or claims she will be made homeless from next month due to out-of-towners snapping up properties to use as holiday homes
She grew up in the beauty spot of St Ives and said she cannot find a new place to rent for when her tenancy agreement ends on May 10
The housing problem in Cornwall was accelerated during the pandemic when ‘staycations’ boomed.
Increased demand for second homes in the beach town drove up prices even further – with the cost of rent nearing that seen in London.
Ms Or pays £800 rent – not including any bills – for a room in a two-bedroom house.
She has no family home she can return to and is now faced with sleeping rough as she believes it would be a miracle to find alternative accommodation with summer approaching.
Renting a property in St Ives through popular lodging site Airbnb will cost her £150 a night at the moment – £4,500 a month.
Cornwall Council paid out almost £170million in Covid-19 grants to holiday let businesses in Cornwall.
It is estimated that more than half of that money went to people who live outside the county.
Many owners of second homes qualify to pay business rates and not council tax, which qualifies for rates relief.
This means the landlords were able to cheaply run their properties in St Ives without contributing anything to the local area.
Cornwall Council said there is ‘an imbalance in supply and demand’ that the county has never seen before
Ms Or has no family home she can return to and is now faced with sleeping rough as she believes it would be a miracle to find alternative accommodation with summer approaching
Ms Or said: ‘In lockdown, I’d go for a walk and look up in the evening to see only a few homes with lights on in town. I could see how many actually are holiday homes.
‘I’ve watched a lot of my friends struggle with homelessness – friends in my age group who work a lot harder than I do. They all sofa surf, it’s not just myself.’
She urged tourists to consider holidays elsewhere this summer to give locals a chance of finding somewhere to rent for a reasonable price.
A spokesperson at Cornwall Council said: ‘The Council is taking a multi-faceted approach to address the housing crisis in the medium term and moving on into the future.
‘This plan will involve more than £300m of potential investment.
‘We are working to get the legislative changes we need at Parliament to be able to control the number of second homes and give us the ability to set a Council Tax surcharge against those homes.’
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