Survey 2: Draft Planning for Tourism Position Statement

Closes 7 Mar 2022


The following pages include 20 questions regarding the definition and treatment of short-term rental accommodation. To help you answer these questions, we have provided background information at the beginning of the section. 

If you would prefer to provide more general feedback on the Position Statement, or short-term rental accommodation in Western Australia, you may skip to Section 5: General feedback

The draft Position Statement and Guidelines were informed by the State Government's response to the 2019 Parliamentary inquiry Levelling the Playing Field – Managing the impact of the rapid increase of Short-Term Rentals in Western Australia.

The Parliamentary inquiry found that current definitions in the Planning and Development (Local Planning Schemes) Regulations 2015 and existing State tourism planning bulletins do not appropriately address the issues associated with short-term rental accommodation or reflect how dwellings are currently being used for short-term rentals. 

As a result, the State Government agreed to: 

  • Prepare a tourism position statement to update definitions for short-term rental accommodation and provide greater guidance to local governments about ways to appropriately regulate the industry.
  • Establish an interdepartmental working group to investigate and make recommendations on a State-wide registration scheme for short-term rental accommodation.

Additionally, the Minister for Planning requested the Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage:

  • Update the Planning and Development (Local Planning Schemes) Regulations 2015 to insert the new definitions into regulation.
  • Investigate the potential for low-scale hosted and unhosted accommodation to be exempt from needing development approval. 

What is short-term rental accommodation? 

Short-term rental accommodation is the common name given to holiday homes, units or apartments offered for short-term letting, usually through an online booking platform (for example, Airbnb or Stayz). 

What the draft Position Statement does 

  • Seeks feedback on proposals to exempt the following forms of short-term rental accommodation from needing development approval: 
    • hosted accommodation (in a single house (or ancillary dwelling), grouped or multiple dwelling, with no more than four adults, or one family and two bedrooms)
    • unhosted accommodation (in a single house, grouped or multiple dwelling for no more than 60 days per calendar year)
  • Retains the intent and policy position of current tourism-related planning bulletins. 
  • Updates definitions to reflect the contemporary use of dwellings for short-term rental accommodation. This addresses a gap in existing State tourism planning guidance to help local governments appropriately manage and regulate short-term rental accommodation.
  • Encourages consistent treatment of short-term rental accommodation in Western Australia, while retaining the ability of local governments to adjust their policy to local contexts.
  • Helps local governments interpret and navigate tourism planning guidance.

What the draft Position Statement does not cover 

The draft Position Statement does not:

  • Change existing local government planning frameworks. Any proposal to amend local planning frameworks must still follow the relevant consultation and approval process established in the Planning and Development (Local Planning Schemes) Regulations 2015. This process involves advertising any changes to a local planning scheme.
  • Apply to all forms of short-term and temporary accommodation including the personal use of a holiday home or sharing with the owner’s friends and family, house swapping/sitting and student exchange accommodation. The draft Position Statement is only concerned with development that is used for short term temporary accommodation not subject to alternative guidance and legislation. For instance, residential parks, park home parks, lifestyle villages and workforce are excluded from the Position Statement. 

What will happen to the current tourism-related planning bulletins? 

Tourism planning in Western Australia is currently informed by the following WAPC planning bulletins and guidelines:

  • Planning Bulletin 49 Caravan Parks (May 2014) (PB 49) 
  • Planning Bulletin 83 Planning for Tourism (June 2013) (PB 83) 
  • Planning Bulletin 99 Holiday Homes Guidelines (September 2009) (PB 99) 
  • Holiday Homes Guidelines – short stay use of residential dwellings (2009) 
  • Tourism Planning Guidelines (2014) 

Once gazetted, the new Position Statement and Guidelines will amalgamate and supersede the above documents.

Page Response
Introduction (Required)
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Section 2: Exempting low-scale hosted and unhosted accommodation information (please read before answering section 2 questions) This page has no questions
Section 2: Hosted accommodation exemption questions
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Section 2: Unhosted accommodation exemptions questions
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Section 3: Defining hosted accommodation and bed and breakfast
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Section 4: General policy approach to short-term rental accommodation
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Section 5: General feedback
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