New Arguments and Terminology Emerge in the Short-Term Rentals Debate

vacation rentals debate arguments[Alvin Brickman for Metrosetter Wire]

Some new arguments and terminology are starting to emerge in the debate around short-term (“vacation”) rentals.  Arguments for and against the practice of renting out a property for periods of less than 30 days are typically easy to predict, but because short-term rental regulation is now being considered by city councils across the country, we’re starting to see some new and more incisive perspectives on the issue. Continue reading

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Metrosetter.com Predicts Increased Regulation of the “Short-Term” Rental Industry

Short Term Rentals Conditional Use Permit Taxes

[Alvin Brickman for Metrosetter Wire]

The “offline” world’s assimilation of Internet technology is effecting changes in nearly every industry. Universal accessibility of the Internet and the increasing amount of user-friendly, intuitive Internet technologies that allow individuals to instantly market their products to consumers around the world has created new business opportunities that were previously untenable and/or too cumbersome to undertake. This is especially relevant in the industry of real estate and, specifically, “short-term” rentals. Continue reading

Airbnb to the Rescue During New York’s “Scarcity” of Short-Term Rentals

Illegal Hotels When New York City Needs Them most

Credit: USAToday.com

[Alvin Brickman for Metrosetter Wire]

In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, many of Manhattan’s residents have found themselves displaced with nowhere to go.  Due to New York City’s recent crackdown on “illegal hotel rooms,” city officials claim that there is a dearth of  rentals for less than 30 days when the city’s residents are most in need of them. But Airbnb’s decision to wave all fees in the 20,000 or so rooms in areas affected by Hurricane Sandy indicates that this couldn’t be further from the truth. Continue reading

Lack of Grace Period in Austin’s Ordinance on Short-Term Rentals

Short Term Rentals Ordinance

Courtesy of kutnews.org

[Alvin Brickman for Metrosetter Wire]

Now that Austin’s short-term rental ordinance has taken effect, some property owners are expressing their concerns about the unexpected complications they’ve been faced with as a result of the now-required application process. Continue reading

Vacation Rentals and the Problem of Online/Offline Reputation

Furnished Rentals Short Term Rentals Shared Sharing Economy

Credit: Chronline.com

[Alvin Brickman for Metrosetter Wire]

As a result of its association with popular companies such as AirBnB and VRBO, the term “vacation rental” has become a dirty word of sorts in the hotel and travel industry. Cities have taken action with increased fines against tenants (and landlords) who have converted their property for use as a short-term rental without a permit, and by taxing online booking sites — like AirBnB — that connect tourists with private individuals offering available rooms (Sankin 2012).   But in addition to financial deterrents, there exists a social penalty (of reputation) that is paradoxically at odds with and enforcive of the new ideology of “sharing economy” (where “trust is the currency”) that is being propounded by many of vacation rentals’ promoters. Continue reading