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Los Angeles Sets Strict Rules Against Airbnb Hosts To Help Affordable Housing Crisis

By Sharelle Burt

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Los Angeles is over all of the Airbnb horror stories, so they put new regulations in place to help customers have a better experience and assist with the city’s housing issue.

On Wednesday, the City Council passed an ordinance that has been on the agenda since 2016. Host Compliance LLC, a company monitoring short-term rental compliance, reported that out of 23,000 homes in the area, only 10,000 of them were listed as short-term rental units. The issue is that these units could be used by people in need of long-term housing, causing a rift in L.A neighborhoods and continuing the issue of affordable housing.

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This new ordinance bans Airbnb from all rent-controlled and other short-term rental platforms, or properties with affordable housing. Hosts are only allowed to rent out their actual residents, living there for a minimum of six months a year. There’s also a limit of how many days a year hosts can rent out their space, 120 days a year. If they want to rent it out for more days, hosts will have to pay the city a fee of $89. City Councilman Mike Bonin says that these new rules aren’t being put in place to regulate honest hosts, but more so to get rid of “bad” hosts who are turning living spaces into “rogue hotels.” Some Airbnb hosts disagree.

At a recent city council meeting, some hosts came to testify that renting out their properties are helping them pay their mortgages, which are highly expensive in the major west coast city. “Homesharing and vacation rentals play an important role in allowing Angelenos to directly benefit from 48 million visitors who travel to Los Angeles every year,” Airbnb San Francisco spokesperson Mattie Zazueta said. “The city needs a comprehensive short-term rental policy that regulates all short-term rental activity, including its long-standing vacation rental market.”

The new rules are set to affect the entire city of Los Angeles and be active in July 2019.

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