To see just how ever-present the sharing economy has become in many people’s lives, you only need to check George Osborne’s latest Budget. It announced a new tax-free allowance of £1,000 a year for people who rent out their homes through sites such as Airbnb, reflecting just how mainstream the process has become.
And London is particularly taken with the home-sharing platform. Some 25,357 homes were listed in the capital on Airbnb at the end of the year – the third-highest number of any city in the world. There’s also been a 150-fold rise in the number of London homes listed on Airbnb over the past five years, according to property group JLL, using data from insideairbnb.com. And with tokens like the tax-free allowance thrown people’s way by the Chancellor, it’s unlikely to abate anytime soon.