Legal Analysts

Showing posts with label airbnb. Show all posts
Showing posts with label airbnb. Show all posts

Thursday, July 09, 2020

NYC Reporting Requirements for Airbnb Rentals Amended

On July 7, 2020, Mayor DeBlasio signed into Law Int. No. 1976 which modified the requirement for booking services, like Airbnb, to report short-term housing rental transactions. Essentially, beginning on January 3, 2021, the new law exempts booking services from reporting listings for rooms only, and for up to two (2) guests. They are also exempted from reporting if their property is rented for less than four (4) days in one quarterly reporting period.

Specifically, Section 26-2101 of the Administrative Code of the City of New York is amended to add a new definition for “qualifying listing”:

Qualifying Listing. The term “qualifying listing” means a listing or advertisement that offers a short-term rental via a booking service, and:
1. such listing or advertisement offers or appears to offer the short-term rental of an entire dwelling unit or housing accommodation, or
2. such listing or advertisement offers or appears to offer a short-term rental for three or more individuals at the same time.

Further, Section 26-2102 is amended to exempt booking services from the quarterly reporting of information for transactions associate with a qualifying listing when all such transactions within a reporting period result in the rental of a dwelling unit or housing accommodation for an aggregate of four (4) days or less. The reports must include the address of the rental listing, name address, and contact information from the host, total rent received, among others, and must be submitted to the Office of Special Enforcement.

Failure to comply with the reporting requirements under the Administrative Code of the City of New York may result in penalties not more than the greater of $1,500 or the total fees collected during the preceding year by the booking service for transactions related to the qualifying listing.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

The End of Airbnb in NYC

On October 21, 2016 Governor Cuomo signed a bill into law that amends the New York State Multiple Dwelling Law (“NYSMDL”) and the New York City Administrative Code to prohibit the advertising of certain New York City residential rentals with lease terms of less than 30 days. Although many short-term rentals in New York City are already illegal in order to prevent dwelling units from being used as transient hotels in violation of fire and building codes and other regulations, this law makes it clear that the advertising of such rentals is also prohibited. Now that this bill has become law, those who list rentals on Airbnb and other short-term rental websites may face a fine of up to $1,000 for the first violation, $5,000 for the second violation, and $7,500 for the third violation and any subsequent violations.

In 2010, the NYSMDL was amended to ban short-term rentals with terms of less than 30 days for class A multiple dwellings, which are dwellings used as permanent residences where each dwelling is occupied by three or more independent families. A dwelling is considered a permanent residence if it is occupied by the same natural person(s) for a period of 30 consecutive days or more.

Three exceptions exist to the 30-day restriction for class A multiple dwellings rentals. First, occupants who cohabitate with boarders or lodgers are exempt because they are sharing the space in a license scenario rather than granting exclusive occupancy in a lease, which is a prerequisite  to the applicability of the prohibition on short-term rentals. Next, where the occupants live in the class A dwelling for less than 30 days, but do not pay the permanent occupants for their stay, the restriction is also inapplicable. This situation occurs frequently when friends or family members stay at the residence when the owner is not home. Finally, class A multiple dwellings explicitly do not include hotels, rooming houses, boarding houses, club houses, and school dormitories.

There are also exemptions for some Class A dwelling units that are grandfathered from the prior law. This grandfathering occurred where a Class A dwelling was constructed before a specific date and was historically and continuously used for purposes other than as permanent residences. These units were allowed to convert to Class B (which is a class that includes, but is not limited to, hotels, rooming houses, boarding houses, club houses, and college dormitories) within 2 years after the effective date of the 2010 law if the owners could obtain a Class B certificate of occupancy and complied with all of the conditions and requirements within this 2-year conversion period. However, since these conditions and requirements were quite stringent, many such dwellings did not qualify for this conversion. Furthermore, those that did not convert to Class B by 2012 have missed their opportunity.  

Despite the 2010 law, short-term rental websites such as Airbnb have proliferated, each allowing individuals to list their apartments on these websites for short periods which inherently violate the NYSMDL. Under this new law, New York legislators have stopped the proliferation of these advertisements in their tracks.

The NYSMDL only applies to cities with populations of 325,000 or more. Realistically, this means that NYSMDL only applies to New York City, since it is the only city in the state with  a population of 325,000 or more. This new law essentially marks the end of short-term listings on Airbnb in New York City. In the war against short-term rentals that operate as illegal hotels, New York legislators has won its latest battle.

Thursday, July 07, 2016

What You Need To Know About Short Term Rentals In Southold

In September 2015, Southold passed a law, Southold Town Zoning Code §280-4, prohibiting all transient rental properties, also known as short-term rentals. Thereafter, local folklore emerged about grandfathering a house around the law. Don’t believe the folklore.

As a matter of background, prior to the transient rental law, Southold homeowners were generally able to rent their homes with no minimum durational restrictions. Now, all dwellings located in Southold, except for those on Fisher’s Island, are prohibited from leasing their homes for a period of less than 14 nights. Moreover, when a property is listed on a short-term rental website, the law presumes the dwelling is being used as a transient rental property. This law does not affect the hospitality industry as applied to licensed bed and breakfasts, hotels, and motels. Therefore, if you wish to stay in Southold for a duration of less than 14 nights, you must stay at a motel, hotel, or bed and breakfast.    

As to grandfathering a house around the law, for a non-conforming use to legally continue it must:
  • Not been enlarged, altered, extended, reconstructed or restored; and 
  • Never be changed to a conforming use. 
This last requirement is why Southold residents will functionally be unable to grandfather around the Southold transient rental law. Simply stated, once a homeowner’s property is used for a conforming use that nonconforming use no longer falls under the grandfathering exception. In a short-term rental, once the rental period is over, possession is transferred back to the homeowner in a conforming use. So, the only way to get grandfathering is to always have continuous occupancy at a home by tenants without ever having a break in rentals. This functionally doesn’t happen. Sometimes the best way to challenge a law that you don’t like isn’t to find a way around it, but instead to become active in local government and have the law changed to your liking.

Tuesday, September 01, 2015

Top 5 Risks For Airbnb Landlords

It may seem homeowners have a money tree at their house. It’s easy, just rent your house for the weekend and the dollars will shake into your bank account. Better yet, companies like Airbnb can facilitate the process and get landlords timely and secure payments, right? Making money is never so easy. Here are five risks of using Airbnb. In each, you need to decide if an Airbnb host is a residential property landlord or instead a hotel operator, in order to understand your exposure.

Read the full article by Andrew Lieb, Esq. here.