More Cities Are Banning Airbnb — Here’s What It Means For Locals And Tourists

It'll probably be tough for some, but many more will likely benefit. More Cities Are Banning Airbnb — Here’s What It Means For Locals And Tourists Giphy

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Like many other tech startup companies, Airbnb began with a model aimed at disrupting an existing industry … in this case, hotels.

But many guests have pushed back against things like hidden fees and laborious check-out duties. Then there’s arguably the most important critique of all: the role Airbnb and other short-term rental platforms have played in exacerbating a global housing crisis.

Cities push back

We’ve already reported on efforts in New York City to dramatically scale back the number of short-term rentals available in that city, but the Big Apple isn’t alone. Barcelona, Spain, is on track to implement a complete ban within a few years and Germany's capital city of Berlin led the way with a ban dating back a decade (although such rentals were subsequently permitted under certain circumstances).

A number of municipalities in California have passed their own ordinances cracking down on short-term rentals, and the effort only seems to be gaining steam around the world.

What it all means

At its root, these new restrictions stand to deliver quite a blow to Airbnb. While citywide bans affect all short-term rentals, this one company dominates the market with more than 50% of all such online rentals booked on its platform.

And plenty of individuals are likely to oppose this trend — from homeowners making extra cash by renting out their property to travelers who prefer staying in a home or condo to renting a traditional hotel room.

It could also cause hotel prices to increase, as they have in New York City over the past year.

But proponents of these regulations say it’s the best way to return many properties that have been transformed into short-term rentals to residential properties, thus increasing affordable housing opportunities and preserving the authentic local feel of neighborhoods around the globe.

Chris Agee
Chris Agee July 9th, 2024
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