Wednesday, October 8, 2014

How Airbnb Just Changed the Housing Laws in San Francisco

This is far from a complete free market solution, but it is another indication of how savvy private sector firms can lean against entrenched regulations. We need to see more of this. If it can be done, to any degree, in the People's Republic of San Francisco, it can be done anywhere.

Emily Badger reports at WaPo:
The Board of Supervisors in San Francisco approved a controversial law on Tuesday that legalizes for the first time — with some crucial caveats — short-term rentals in Airbnb's hometown...

Under the new law, which Mayor Ed Lee is expected to sign, permanent residents of San Francisco who want to rent out their homes through services like Airbnb will have to register with the city for a permit and pay hotel taxes on the income they earn. The law limits rentals to 90 days a year, effectively preventing residences from converting into year-round hotels. Because the law applies only to permanent residents renting out their own homes, its protections also likely won't extend to out-of-towners with permanent vacation homes in San Francisco on sites like VBRO.

Until now, rentals of less than 30 days in private homes were technically illegal in the city, although the ban was seldom enforced.

Airbnb and its backers, who've been well-organized in San Francisco, have argued throughout the public battle that short-term rentals help keep the city affordable for residents who wouldn't be able to cover their rent or mortgage payments without the extra cash that occasional tourists bring.

1 comment:

  1. "We need to see more of this." -- "...will have to register with the city for a permit and pay hotel taxes on the income they earn"

    Wenzel supports raising taxes.

    What a lousy advocate of liberty you are.