Airbnb/Short-Term Rentals

Vacation rental hosting platforms (like Airbnb, VRBO, HomeAway and FlipKey) have become an increasingly common feature of the so-called "sharing economy." They are also an increasingly politicized issue in San Francisco, as various interest groups contend that they divert rental housing stock from tenants to tourists, and disrupt the commercial hotel industry.

2014 saw San Francisco's first law legitimizing and regulating hosting platforms, with amendments to the Residential Unit Conversion Ordinance, requiring hosts to register the unit with the Planning Department, obtain insurance and a business license, and pay transient occupancy tax. It also limited, for the first time, the number of days per year a unit could be occupied for transient use. 2015 has seen several competing proposals to amend the "Airbnb law," as well as a failed ballot measure.

Property owners are not currently required to consent to these types of arrangements, and when and if to consent to them is a decision that requires careful consideration. Likewise, ensuring that rental agreements adequately prohibit and protect against short-term rental is something that can and should be done before a tenancy commences.

Whether you are a property owner seeking to register your rental unit on a hosting platform, a landlord confronting unauthorized use of your property by a tenant or simply seek to protect against future problems, Zacks, Freedman & Patterson, PC can help you maintain compliance with applicable law, and keep you apprised of new ones. Contact us today.