How many legal holiday homes are there in the Canary Islands?

  • Canarian Weekly
  • 25-04-2024
  • National
  • Photo Credit: Stock Image
How many legal holiday homes are there in the Canary Islands?

The initiative launched by the Ministry of Tourism last October to regularise the tourist use of properties, and the introduction of the new Housing Law, has resulted in a 38.5% increase in holiday rental properties over the past 10 months, not forgetting that the regulations are not expected to come into effect until September or October of this year, so the number of VV licenses granted is likely to continue to grow.

Since October 2023, a total of 17,116 new holiday homes were registered, with 1,797 deregistered, leaving a net gain of 15,319 more than in June 2023. The total number now exceeds 55,000, according to a study from the Tourism Department of the University of La Laguna in collaboration with Ashotel on the evolution of holiday housing in the Canary Islands, both by island and municipality.

This trend has been particularly notable in Lanzarote and Tenerife, where there has been an increase of 51.8% and 48.1%, respectively, in less than a year. In the case of Tenerife, its 23,392 registered properties, as of April 17th, represent 42.43% of the total holiday homes in the archipelago. Gran Canaria has 13,394 tourist apartments, 31% more than 10 months ago, and Fuerteventura, with a growth of 24.6%, has surpassed 7,000.

The three smaller western islands only account for 6% of holiday homes, highlighting the different realities between the islands. However, El Hierro has increased by 24.4% (107 properties), La Gomera by 17.4% (171 properties), and La Palma by 10.4% (157 properties), totalling 3,375 properties among the three islands.

This emphasises how a law that regulates all equally would not have the same impact. However, it's important to take into account that these figures only include legally registered holiday properties and not those that may be marketed illegally or not registered or declared.

By Municipality:

The municipalities with the most holiday properties currently are:

Arona (Tenerife): 5,175

Las Palmas (Gran Canaria): 4,361

Adeje (Tenerife): 4,273

La Oliva (Fuerteventura): 3,722

and San Bartolomé de Tirajana (Gran Canaria): 3,527

These figures represent an increase since June 2023 of 1,456 properties in Arona (39.15%), 982 in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (29.06%), 1,395 in Adeje (48.47%), 748 in La Oliva (25.15%), and 902 in San Bartolomé de Tirajana (34.36%). It's worth noting that Las Palmas de Gran Canaria is the only “non-touristic” municipality appearing in the top positions.

Puerto de la Cruz and Tías, on the other hand, have experienced the most relative growth, with 62.51% and 61.54%, respectively, translating to an increase of 622 and 789 holiday properties, respectively.

The study emphasises that holiday housing "can contribute to a distribution of incomes in the territory" because ownership and location are usually more dispersed than in other types of accommodations. However, it also points out that it can "jeopardise the objectives of tourism and territorial planning," significantly affecting the price of conventional long-term rental housing.

230,000 tourist accommodation beds:

Regarding the number of registered beds, the Canary Islands have gone from having 164,789 beds in June 2023 to 230,631. Similar to properties, Tenerife has the highest number with a total of 97,095 beds, followed by Gran Canaria with 57,193, Lanzarote with 35,322, and Fuerteventura with 28,893. In lesser numbers, La Palma has 6,298, La Gomera has 3,922, and El Hierro has 1,908.

The municipalities of Arona, Adeje, and Las Palmas de Gran Canaria lead in the number of registered beds, with 19,352, 18,194, and 17,550 beds, respectively. This represents an increase of 43.21%, 47.21%, and 31.09%.