It said a registration system could prevent owners bypassing the “90 day rule” in London through listing on multiple platforms, and help identify rogue operators who allow antisocial tenants to disturb their neighbours.
The call from the US-owned website, which is used by thousands of home owners in London, follows a consultation with dozens of local authorities, community leaders and tourism bosses in partnership with Brighton University and research consultancy BritainThinks.
Airbnb co-founder Nathan Blecharczyk said: “Today, we stand with cities across the UK to back the introduction of a nationwide registration system. City leaders, the tourism industry and Airbnb agree that in order to deliver more sustainable travel, protect housing, prevent bad actors, and support tourism innovation, the Government must introduce a national register for short-term lets operators.
“It is the first and most vital step we must take.”
Under the proposed system, operators would be required to obtain a registration number from the Government or a devolved authority in order to list their homes on a short-term letting platform, such as Airbnb, or offer it offline.
To gain a place on the register operators would need to show they understanding health and safety standards, including requirements insurance, gas safety, and cleaning.
Emergency services such as police and fire services should have access to the register, Airbnb said.