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Murrieta’s New Ordinance, Chicago Bans One Nights, Aspen Tax Grab, Miami Beach Lowers Fines

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Happy Friday! The world series is just around the corner.⚾ Football season is just getting started.🏈 And the Lakers just won their 17th NBA championship.🏀 Now that we’ve got you all caught up on sports, let's talk about the vacation rental industry.

Murrieta, CA has decided to move forward with an ordinance that allows “hosted” short-term vacation rentals to continue in the city. With the decision comes a new framework for “non-hosted” (owner is not onsite) properties as well. This is the result of increased complaints about vacation rentals causing disturbances such as noise, overcrowding, trash and safety concerns. We’ve been seeing a lot of this lately and have posted about it last week the week before that, a few weeks before that and earlier in the summer… Now why would the city do this, to help out the neighborhood? Or for the city to collect more tax? Surprise surprise - the new ordinance sets up the collection of a Transient Occupancy Tax. This amounts to 10 percent of the rent charged by the operator. 

Another one bites the dust. Chicago has officially banned single-night rentals in response to the ongoing COVID party issue. Airbnb has implemented policies to combat this but they’re not always easy to enforce. Imposing a minimum stay seems to be the only way to detour partygoers. But some would ask, won’t this hurt my business? The short answer, yes. According to a report from AirDNA, one-night stays on Airbnb earn an average 17% more revenue throughout the year than those with longer minimums. As more and more cities adopt these guidelines, we urge those partygoers to take a chill pill.💊

Aspen City Council has passed legislation that requires short term rentals to have a business license and a vacation rental permit. This enables the municipal government to collect more revenue, which is currently set at 2% lodging and 2.4% sales taxes, because the license and permit will track who is actually renting out property. The business license will also include a $100 fee, so Aspen is getting their money’s worth all at once.

Did you know that violating short-term rental rules in Miami Beach could cost hosts between $20,000 and $100,000!? These fines were routinely considered the most severe in the country. As of Wednesday this is no longer the case. A reduced fine structure has been implemented at $1,000 for the first violations and $5,000 for repeat violations. This is the first time since 2016 that the fines have been lowered.  I guess if you start out high enough, they do go down once in awhile.

If you haven’t already check out the Product Update we posted yesterday. Also if you missed our Vrbo Over the Years post check it out, you can see 25 years of homepage changes! That’s all for this week, have a great weekend!😁

2 Comments (add yours)

Oct 22, 2020 11:41 AM
Joined Jun, 2016 1102 posts

"But some would ask, won’t this hurt my business?". No. In my market there is no restrictions on one night stays but I would never do them anyway. One night stays in traditional tourist/resort destination scream "party" and invite trashing of the property by a party goers. I do not know why would anyone even consider one night stays and for what purpose. They need one night - they can book a hotel room.

Chris L
Oct 23, 2020 3:28 PM
Joined May, 2017 199 posts

Yep. Branson (my market) isn't exactly party-central, but even so, when I tested allowing one-night stays during gap periods, I found that a good quarter to third of them left the place relatively trashed. That was an experiment I put to an end quickly.

Even in the off-season when I lower my rates to "stupid cheap" levels, the cleaning fee makes my place more expensive than the equivalent number of hotel rooms to my bedrooms. Someone arriving in the evening and departing in the morning really isn't there to take advantage of the benefits of a vacation rental (e.g. cooking meals, using resort amenities, etc.), so why else would they be interested in renting but for a place to treat as a place to engage in too much, er, revelry?