The New York State Senate’s popularity rating just plummeted with its passage of a new bill prohibiting rentals of entire properties for less than 30 days – a major blow to those in New York who have been renting their apartments out on popular home sharing site Airbnb. New York has long been critical of the home-sharing company’s business model, citing violations of the state’s rental laws. Now, thanks to the new bill, it looks like the site is on track to lose a big chuck of its business in NY.
The bill, which was passed by the NY Senate last week, would effectively bring an end to short-term Airbnb rentals of entire homes, which account for approximately 55 percent of the site’s entire NY listings. If signed into law by Governor Andrew Cuomo, those who rent out entire homes in class A multiple-dwelling buildings for less than 30 days without the owner present for the stay would face fines of up to $1,000 for the first violation, and up to $7,500 for the third violation. According to its proponents, the bill is designed to prevent illegal and unlicensed Airbnb “hotels”.
As one would expect, Airbnb is none too pleased with the impending shutdown of a very large part of its business. Airbnb’s Josh Meltzer told TechCrunch: “It’s disappointing — but not surprising — to see politicians in Albany cut a last-minute deal with the hotel industry that will put 30,000 New Yorkers at greater risk of bankruptcy, eviction or foreclosure.”
“Let’s be clear: this is a bad proposal that will make it harder for thousands of New Yorkers to pay the bills,” Meltzer continued. “Dozens of governments around the world have demonstrated that there is a sensible way to regulate home sharing and we hope New York will follow their lead and protect the middle class.”