City surveys attitudes on Airbnb, other rentals

Some Londoners are losing patience with the delays for rules for short-term house and apartment rentals done through Airbnb, VRBO, and other online sites.

City council will debate a report from city staff outlining the options for regulation later in 2018 — it was pushed back because of other pressures on staff — but in the meantime, the city’s launched a survey for renters, hosts and residents to share their thoughts - writes lfpress.com.

It took 18 months for the city to land on a bylaw that covers taxis and Uber, and the issue still crops up at city hall every few months.

Regulation of Airbnb and similar rental sites doesn’t seem to be moving much quicker.

But it will become particularly important if council decides it wants to slap the four per cent accommodation tax that soon will be added to hotel and motel bills onto Airbnb rentals, too.

Collecting that money without having short-term rentals under some kind of city bylaw would be tough.

But Airbnb hosts such as Candace Keeling don’t think London needs any rules for Airbnb.

“My biggest concern is over-­regulating it to the point it’s going to cost hosts money and travellers money in the end,” she said. “My fear is that Airbnb will lose its value.”

There’s no doubt Airbnb is popular in London. More than 400 hosts used the site last year, with about 540 active listings. The average guest stayed for four nights.

Keeling argued the only regulation Airbnb needs is already built in.

“The app itself already checks ID. It goes through its own security process. Plus, they have the review system, which establishes a level of trust between hosts and travellers,” she said.

Orest Katolyk, the city’s bylaw boss, said there have been very few complaints about those sorts of short-term rentals in London. But other cities have struggled with rentals turning into party central.

“What we’ve found in other municipalities, it’s the bad apples that create the issues,” Katolyk said. “We haven’t concluded that restrictions are necessary, but we want to give council some options.”

Politicians could decide not to regulate short-term rentals at all, or introduce licensing fees and annual inspections. Some cities limit hosts to “owner-occupied rentals” to discourage people renting out rooms in an investment property, like an unlicensed hotel.

The goal of city rules is to make sure Airbnb rentals don’t disrupt neighbourhoods and create trouble, Katolyk said.

But Keeling said city council shouldn’t target Airbnb and other short-term rental sites.

“There can always be problems popping up in any rental situations,” she said, arguing renters understand what they’re getting when they use Airbnb.

“People should have the freedom to choose,” she said.

Read more news of London on our site.

lfpress.com
City_surveys_attitudes Airbnb
If you notice an error, highlight the text you want and press Ctrl + Enter to report it to the editor
4 views in october
I recommend
No recommendations yet

Comments

Post your comment to communicate and discuss this article.

Society
About 13 million adults in the UK live in areas where at least half of the local banks and building societies have closed, analysis by the BBC reveals. Figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show nearly 6,000 local branches have shut since 2010, a fall of a third. The consumer group Which? called the number of closures "alarming". Trade association UK Finance said closing a branch was a last resort when usage falls. Banks and building societ...
Society
A ban on sales of new petrol and diesel cars should be brought forward by eight years to 2032, MPs have said. The government's current plans to ensure all new cars are "effectively zero emission" by 2040 were "vague and unambitious", a report by Parliament's business select committee said. It also criticised cuts to subsidies and the lack of charging points. The government said it aimed to make the UK "the best place in the world" to own an electric vehicl...
Society
London area home sales fell 15.9 per cent in September from August because of a shortage of homes to sell, and that shortage of inventory helped push up prices by 20 per cent from a year ago, the head of the London St. Thomas Association of Realtors (LSTAR) said. In September, LSTAR reported 776 homes changed hands in London and St. Thomas, compared to a near-record August, when 923 homes were sold. By the numbers Homes sold in September: 776 (a drop of 6....
Society
Radical preacher Anjem Choudary, jailed for inviting support for the Islamic State group, has been released. The cleric was sentenced in 2016 to five-and-a-half years in prison. He led an extremist network linked to violent jihadists, including one of the killers of soldier Lee Rigby in 2013. Choudary, 51, has now served half of his sentence and will complete the rest under strict supervision. Police are preparing up to 25 measures to control him, the BBC...
Society
One of London's front-running mayoral candidates has already put 40 per cent more of his own money into his campaign than the $25,000 limit allowed by law, a move that could put him in jeopardy if he wins the top job, provincial and civic election officials say. One of London’s front-running mayoral candidates has already put 40 per cent more of his own money into his campaign than the $25,000 limit allowed by law, a move that could put him in jeopardy if...
Society
Nearly 150 County of Lambton paramedics are no longer responding to non-emergency calls amid ongoing negotiations for a new contract. Job action as of last Saturday means Lambton County paramedics won’t be doing non-urgent transfers between hospitals for the next while, or keeping ambulance stations as neat and tidy, a union spokesperson says. Nearly 150 Lambton Emergency Medical Services (EMS) paramedics represented by SEIU Healthcare Local 1 stopped resp...
Society
Clapham Junction has been named London’s worst mainline train station for disruption in a survey by leading consumer title Which? Fifty-seven per cent of trains have been late or cancelled at the south London interchange since the beginning of the year, their research found. Their study found King’s Cross was the second worst, with 51 per cent of trains delayed or cancelled, followed by Victoria (47 per cent), Stratford (44 per cent) and London Bridge (44...
Society
Tube drivers on the Piccadilly Line are set to hold fresh 24-hour strike action in a row over staffing and working conditions. The RMT Union has urged members to walk out at 12:00 BST on 7 November until noon the following day - writes bbc.com The union's general secretary Mick Cash said it had become "frustrated" with Tube bosses' handling of a "full raft of issues". Transport for London (TfL) said it was "disappointed" with the new strike. Drivers on the...
Society
The Tate and the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) are calling for a premium to fund arts classes in England's schools. The major arts institutions say league tables and pressures on time and budgets are squeezing out important creative subjects - writes bbc.com Six thousand 11 to 18-year-olds have described how the subjects help build their confidence, in new research. The government says it is investing almost £500m in arts and music. Creative subjects hav...