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Mallorca gets tough on private holiday rentals 

Magaluf and Palma Nova are to get tough on owners who illegally rent out their homes for holidays after blaming them for saturation in the tourist hotspots.

Mallorca’s government says new rules in the busiest areas will mean owners can only rent out their villas or apartments for 60 days a year.

This will apply to hotspots around the coast and those further inland which are deemed “saturated” by tourists.

Palmanova, Magaluf, Santa Ponça and Peguera will all be included in this first wave, as well as Bellavista, Cala Blava, Son Verí Nuevo and El Arenal.

Also included are Alcúdia, Randa (Algaida), Ariany, Banyalfubar, Port des Canonge (Banyalfubar), Orient (Bunyola), Ullaró (Campanet), Deià, Llucalcari (Deià), S’Empeltada y Ses Coves (Deià), S’Eglaieta (Esporles), Estellenç, Es Carritxó (Fela-nitx), Fornalutx, Marratxinet (Marratxí), Pollença, Es Vilà (Pollença), Es Vilà y La Font (Pollença), Santanyí, Llom-bards (Santanyí) y Ruberts (Sencelles).

The popular areas of Ses Salines, Sóller, Biniaratx y L’Horta (Sóller), Valldemossa, Es Port, S’Arxiduc and Son Ferrandell will also be included.

“Figures show holiday rentals on the island account for 54 per cent and in Palma, 90 per cent is illegal,” said a council spokesman.

At one stage last summer, there were more people staying in Mallorca than those who live there.

Residents of Mallorca have been up in arms over the number of tourists flocking into the islands, saying they are being pushed out of their own homes and have to face the daily problems of packed beaches, congested roads, noisy streets, dirt, rubbish and anti-social behaviour from drunken holidaymakers.

Pressure groups say too many people are being allowed to holiday in Mallorca but the government has put the blame on tourist rentals, saying the market is flooded and it is this which is causing the problems.

No new holiday places are to be allowed in the saturated areas and this includes hotel rooms as well as tourist rentals.

Only homes that already have an official letting licence will be allowed to continue.

Those caught flouting the law will face hefty fines of between 20,000 and 40,000 euros for any owner who illegally rents to tourists and up to 400,000 euros for AirBank-type websites and agencies that published offers not authorised by the tourism department.

In protected rustic land and in the so-called exclusion zones, NO holiday rentals will be allowed.

The new rules will come into force once the “Plan for the Intervention of Tourist Areas” is formalised.

At the moment, there is a one-year moratorium until this August on the new Balearic tourist rental law which was approved last year.

Territorial councillor Mercedes Garrido said: “”The illegal offer has no place in a saturated site. We have to be very strict. If a mature area is saturated, it is saturated. There is no there is no place for more places.”

Madrid has adopted the same type of tough rules.