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Second Homes

Second homes can have significant impact on the availability of affordable housing: local people have to compete with holiday buyers for housing that is for sale; the price of available house sites can be inflated by people building holiday houses; and some houses never reach the housing market but are maintained by family members who have moved away as a holiday home and potential retiral destination.

Where there is plentiful and cheap land to build new housing this need not be a problem – however in most of rural Scotland planning and land ownership limits the availability of house sites.

As such it is important when gathering information about housing needs and affordable housing to gather information on the extent of the impact of second homes on the local housing market. This can be done by a walk though the community (either real or virtual) using local knowledge to identify the ownership of housing and its current use.

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