My neighbor complained about my AirBnb, the Town of Salina NY told me that "Nightly AirBnB rentals" were prohibited in residential districts as a "business, commercial and industrial", the notice then told me to "stop all AirBnB operations"
I challenged this in court and lost with the following argument:
As I see it I have a few options…
I’ve read a bit about “Short Term Rentals” and in NYC the real issue there is running an AirBnB from a “Multiple Dwelling” building and whether or not the owners are present while the guests stay at their home.
I’m always home while I have guests, I own my own home, and it seems like this isn’t an issue for Hosts in NYC.
Any thoughts, advice, would be much appreciated.
I feel this is something that ALL airbnb hosts in our area should be concerned about. Other areas like Cazenovia, Skaneateles, and Old Forge are experiencing something similar. I'm curious to know what "real laws" apply. What are the "consequences" if one of us is in violation. I think many people, including local courts/representatives/neighbors, need to understand the vetting process that both hosts and guests undergo. We are policed on many levels and reputations are at risk. But, the culture and relationships that are shared are phenomenal! Many non-airbnbers are naive or simply ignorant and set in "their" ways. We need to educate those who are unfamiliar. I know I'm preaching to the choir here and have much more to say and share. But, seriously, this problem will only get worse unless we stand collectively and do something about it. I'm open to a meet-up in the near future. Nothing wrong with sharing a glass of wine or a beer during the process!
I keep reading about the NYC law that specificaly restricts people renting their space zoned as a multiple dwelling, while they are not home. The NYC law allows "Short term rentals" less than 30 days, if you are also living their at the same time. This is most of us in upstate ny, here's an artical...
I need to find the actual law though, so I can present it in court if I do appeal the rulling that I'm now under.
Have you been able to come up with a resolution? I also live in the town of Salina and received a notice today. When we called codes they told me that although they have not received any complaints about my property, they are now actively searching out Airbnb properties in the Town of Salina.
We are fighting a similar proposed regulation in Gardiner, NY, which is a rural community that are mostly single family homes. They are trying to force owners to always be present if property is a short-term rental. We are organizing and am trying to find a community of AirBnBrs in Gardiner NY.
I also wouldn't mind sitting down and getting the correct defense prepared. I was under the impression we were under the same regulations as the NYC law you stated above. I also own my home (single family, yours is multiple dwelling?) and always have a resident present while I have guests. I am just curious what exact legislature and consequence they enforced upon you?
So apparently my response didn’t post 🙄 but I mentioned how I am also a host and was under the impression we were under the NYC restrictions mentioned above. I’m curious as to what legislation was actually cited and what consequence they are threatening or brought upon you? I would also be willing to get together with local hosts and discuss a proper defense moving forward.
There are so many violations NYC comes up with for transient rentals
To rent in a multidwelling building where you are present you are also supposed to allow access to the whole apartment so the guest technically must be allowed to go into your bedroom for example. There is precendence for enforcement where the host was fined because he did not allow the guest full run of the apartment. I can try to look up the case.
Also check your C of O if you have one, in NYC I believe after 1938 transient rental is a violation of the C of O. Buildings before 1938 do not have C of Os unless they went through a change of use.
In NY/NYC at least they should make a statement as to what laws they are enforcing regarding transient rentals. Just like they do with other laws such as smoking in city parks which is a violation that is not enforced so people know they won’t be ticketed because it is not enforced.
City council members have stated 1 and 2 family buildings are allowed to have transient rentals yet I have heard of city departments coming up with violations such as absence of sprinklers and central fire alarms, they are not necessarily required. For example there are 100s of multistory buildings that were not required to have sprinklers because the code was not in place at the time. There is a case of a hotel that does not have sprinklers that was fined and then subsequently successfully appealed the fine.
it cant be that hard to come up with a list of laws that will be enforced regarding transient rentals. The city does it all the time for other types of violations another example is if a dog defacates on your sidewalk where the dog owner leaves it, the homeowner can get fined for
not cleaning it up. Another, litter 18inches from the curb into the street the homeowner can get fined these are all directly stated on NYC website. So the city makes the violation clear if the offender doesn’t get caught you as the homeowner could be fined.
So why keep the confusion going on at the state and city level do they just want the revenue
that badly? Why not just charge a booking fee that goes to the municipality or make hosts register that meet the municipality conditions why create this situation?
Jersey City, NJ solved this problem surely other municipalities can do the same.
C of O is “certificate of occupancy”, in NYC they didn’t exist before 1938, so buildings prior do not have a C of O that defines “transient residency” unless they did a “change of use” and then applied for a C of O. There may be examples of how an older building has an updated C of O or newer C of O that does not define “transient occupancy” I have not run across them though.
If you have a C of O check to see what it states or doesn’t state. Maybe you have one that doesn’t define duration of rentals and then you can point out that it allows for rentals of any duration maybe that is an argument you can use.
Hello from New Zealand, we have had some similar incidents here and it's happening world wide.
Maybe look up on your Legal systems databases, and on the World Legal Institute databases, we have NZlii databases, there's also Residential Tenancy decisions online.
In NZ they are under the Department of building and housing.
Interestingly the cases that have been heard tend to focus on issues of non compliance in other areas but mention Airbnb.
There's a lot of perceived ideas that are simply not based on fact but people who simply form an opinion about matters they are not legally qualified to.
Personally I think they either have never ever shared accommodation with others and are quite narrow minded.
I've spoken to Property managers and owners of rentals where they have a room occupied by Airbnb guests and they are happy to have responsible tenants paying there rent as they themselves use Airbnb themselves.
Until these local councils start to venture out of there cubby holes there will be issues.
Maybe challenge them under Human Rights laws...rather than council bylaws that are in breach of common laws..
You may also like to look under Google news through "Airbnb" articles to source others who have reached media and send them a msg.
All the best
Thanks, I'm thinking about fighting from the angle of "Due Process" (14th Constitutional Amendment) which dictates that that Law must not be arbitrary, capricious or retaliatory.
According to the town, the "General" understanding of a "Single Family" home in a R1-Residential district allows for 30 day rentals, but views rentals for less than 30 days a "commercial business". If this isn’t arbitrary and capricious, than I have a lot to learn.