The Rise of Airbnb’s Full-Time Landlords

Scott Shatford, 35, said he’s not concerned about a Santa Monica, California, home-sharing ordinance that took effect in June. It prohibits stays of less than 30 days in homes where the host isn’t living, with fines of as much as $500 per day. He said enforcing the ban will be difficult for the city because Airbnb listings don’t include addresses.

Does anything read wrongly about that quote to you ? It used to be that if someone was as blatant as this is in announcing that thy intend to break the law - someone would do something about it.

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman concluded in a 2014 report that as much as 72 percent of Airbnb reservations in the past several years violated state law.

I was involved in an action committee on Maui some time ago where there was discussion around re zoning whole neighborhoods in order to serve the ‘pent up demand’ for people from the mainland wanting to rent houses on the island for the vacation stays. The emphasis was driven by a few - VERY FEW - greedy people who wanted to make money. I fear AirBNB - if not already - is on its ways to doing the same. Just ‘like’ the ‘Amazon of old’, AirBNB are using loop holes in the law to ‘lower the costs’ od staying in remote places, except unlike the Amazon Sales Tax laws, these aren’t loop holes. They are, quite simply, ignoring the law and even lobbying to change the law.

Airbnb, last valued at $25.5 billion, spent $8.4 million to successfully defeat a Nov. 3 San Francisco ballot measure that would have limited short-term rentals to 75 days a year from the current 90 days.

As so often happens - a really nice idea rooted in ‘sharing’ has been co-opted by big business - and the losers are people. To see more of what I mean - check out this Ted Talk.

[ Source : Bloomberg News ]

November 11, 2015