Short-term rental bans become growing issue for local associations

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With a growing number of communities seeking to ban or limit short-term property rentals for services like Airbnb or Vacation Rentals By Owner (VRBO), local associations and their government affairs directors are working harder to stay on top of these types of situations.

Take, for example, the efforts of the North Shore-Barrington Association of REALTORS® (NSBAR) and local IAR GAD Howard Handler, who says the issue is not new to his area but it is becoming a “hot topic.”

Handler says the question caused debate several years ago in the city of Evanston, just north of Chicago. There, an ordinance was passed in June 2013 requiring owners to obtain a special license for short-term rentals. NSBAR was neutral on the license issue, but won exceptions for disasters, renovations and rent-backs (when owners sell their home but are unable to move out by the closing date and need to temporarily rent the home back from the new owners). It even won a provision that lets all owners rent their property once a year without a license.

Examples of situations like Evanston’s are described in the Oct. 20 NAR story, “The Next Property Rights Frontier,” by Carolyn Schwaar.

“We took the position that we were not there to advocate for those running quasi-hotels and remained neutral on the final ordinance, but we did want to ensure the average property owner maintains the right to rent their property on a short-term basis,” Handler was quoted.

The article also cites the numbers of properties listed with Airbnb, the subject of taxes that owners may have to pay on revenue from short-term rentals. It offers guidance to associations in a white paper, but does not take an official stance on short-term rentals. Read the entire article and find out why.

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