City Officials, Airbnb Come to Agreement for Home-Sharing Compliance

Enforcing new regulations that went into effect Nov. 1

By Sam Catanzaro

The Los Angeles City Council has approved an agreement with Airbnb that will pave the way for a compliance system to help enforce the City’s home-sharing ordinance which went in effect November 1.

Under the terms of the agreement, Airbnb is the first short-term rental platform to commit to working with the City to develop an online system that will streamline the registration process for hosts, promote compliance, and automate enforcement.

“This is an important milestone and we believe this new system will serve as a model for other cities looking to leverage technology and partner with Airbnb to legitimize home sharing. We look forward to working alongside city staff in the coming months to develop, build, and launch our most advanced compliance system to date.”

Once implemented, the registration system will enable Airbnb and the City of Los Angeles to verify a listing’s registration status.

According to Airbnb, 1.8 million guests used the platform in 2018.

The regulations, passed by the Los Angeles City Council last December set a 120 night limit on STR activity, bans rent-controlled units from being rented out and allowing hosts to only rent out their primary residence.

The regulations define “primary residences” as places where hosts live for at least six months out of the year. By allowing STR activity only in primary residences, City Council hopes to crack down on “super hosts” who operate multiple home-sharing properties throughout the city. In addition, the rules passed by City Council prohibit hosts from renting out more than one STR unit at a time within the City of Los Angeles.

On top of the primary residence requirement, these rules also set a 120-night annual cap on STR activity in the city. Hosts, can, however, request an exemption from the City to operate beyond this cap for an $850 fee, if they have had received no citations in the past three years. Hosts who have received a citation can pay an $8,500 fee to have their case reviewed to operate beyond the cap.

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