Tougher rules hit Airbnb hard in New York

Renting an apartment for a few days of vacation in the “Big Apple” to feel like a real New Yorker will be much more difficult in the future.

This after the city’s government, under the leadership of Mayor Eric Adams, introduced much tougher rules to put an end to the large amount of short-term rentals via platforms like Airbnb.

30-day rentals are now only allowed if the apartment owner has been registered and approved as a host by the City of New York. In addition, the host must be physically present in the home during the entire rental period – and the accommodation may only be rented out to a maximum of two people at a time, according to AP.

Getting approval has also proven difficult. Of the 3,800 applications that came to the New York city office when the law came into effect on September 5, only 300 had been approved, writes The Guardian.

Airbnb: Tourists not welcome

The measures are being introduced, according to the city government, to put an end to the explosive development of recent years, where many hosts would rather rent to high-paying tourists than to local residents.

Murray Cox from the Inside Airbnb network, which gathers information about the platform’s activities around the world, is satisfied with the new regulations.

“Apartments in New York should be intended for permanent living,” he told the AP.

But far from all New Yorkers agree.

Margenett Moore-Roberts, who rents out a room in her Brooklyn apartment, says the austerity is hitting the many small-scale hosts who rely on the extra income to make ends meet.

“They’ve used a very blunt object when they should have used a scalpel,” she says Wired.

Unsurprisingly, Airbnb is also critical of the new regulations.

“The city is sending a clear message to millions of potential visitors. They are simply not welcome to come to New York,” said Theo Yedinsky, director of policy for the platform, in a statement.

Big cities want to rein in development

However, New York is only the latest in a series of large cities where politicians and authorities have tried to rein in the uncontrolled rental of apartments via platforms such as Airbnb and Vrbo.

In Barcelona, ​​a ban on short-term rental of apartments was introduced in 2021. In Berlin, a similar ban was introduced in 2016, and in Paris, too, the authorities have tried to limit the activity.