LA Airbnb Hosts Air Concerns About Potential Restrictions

LEIMERT PARK (CBSLA.com) — Southland Airbnb hosts are voicing their concerns about potential new short-term rental regulations being considered by the Los Angeles City Council.

These hosts rent out rooms through the popular home-sharing site in order to help with expenses. The restrictions would limit the rooms available to rent and cap the number of days someone can rent out a room to 180 each year.

About 40 Airbnb hosts from across L.A. gathered in front of City Hall on Wednesday to express their worries over the possible restrictions.

One of the hosts at City Hall was Peggy Sturdivant, who told KCBS2/KCAL9 Reporter Craig Herrera that without the extra income from renting a room in her Leimert Park home, she might be out on the streets.

She is retired and was sharing a mortgage with an uncle. But when he passed away, she turned to Airbnb. She’s been renting out a room for a year.

“I would have lost the house. No doubt,” said Sturdivant.

“If I use up my 180 days, what am I going to do the next six months?” asked Sturdivant.

Roy Samaan of the Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy says there is a market for Airbnb but more restrictions should be made.

“Especially in hot markets like Venice and Hollywood, it’s removing rental units from the market especially when we don’t have enough to go around as it is,” said Samaan.

He says it’s pushing up the rent and pricing Angelenos out, and they don’t want to see Airbnb become commercialized.

Airbnb estimates that hosts in L.A. will generate about $37 million in tax revenue and say that a 180-day cap could cut it by $15 million.

A committee will look at the restrictions sometime next week and then send it back to the City Council and the council can decide to either vote on it or send it back for more review.

Comments

One Comment

  1. If the concern REALLY is abusive landlords evicting people and turning whole units into short term rentals, then the city should write THAT ordinance. The proposed ordinance would determine the relationships we have in our own homes. The 180 day cap isn’t just on whole house listings, and the listings limit to 1 active listing at a time (so that if someone has 2 extra rooms, they can only rent out one) imposes restrictions on the relationships we have in our own home.

    The concern pretends to be about neigbhorhoods, but the hotel industry’s front group “Keep Neighborhoods First” and LLANE have refused to work with hosts who rent out rooms in their own homes and refuse to consider the impact to neighborhoods when many hosts, our neighbors, are displaced and lose their homes.

    Home sharing and short term rentals bring in considerable resources, provide jobs, housing and increase consumer spending in neighborhoods. Short term rentals provide temporary accommodations to tourists but also to Angelenos between homes, people relocating to L.A. people who work here on temporary assignment. Short term rentals are the only option between the $300 a night hotel room and the 12 month lease.

    The city doesn’t enforce laws against abusive landlords as it is. And while 7 new luxury hotels are being opened this year in DTLA alone, the city does little to create more affordable housing. The city needs to start with enforcing existing tenants rights and creating more affordable housing and it certainly shouldn’t be wasting time and money harassing people for what we do in our own homes.

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