• Boston city councilors to vote on new Airbnb regulations


    BOSTON - City councilors in Boston will vote Wednesday on new regulations for Airbnb.

    The plan would charge homeowners who want to rent out a room and restricts who is allowed to put up a property for rent.

    It's been a back-and-forth between the city of Boston and the City Council trying to figure out the best solution to protect people who are trying to find affordable housing versus people who own units and want to rent it out for short-term use.

    RELATED: Boston man accused of listing affordable housing unit on Airbnb 

    On Wednesday the City Council will vote on Walsh's revised proposals, and those who list rooms or apartments on sites like Airbnb are watching closely to see how the vote will affect their extra income.

    RELATED: Airbnb host says her home was robbed, trashed by renters 

    Walsh came back to the table with some changes. He took away limiting the number of nights per year a unit can be rented. It was originally capped at 90 nights.

    If someone owns two- to three-family buildings, they will be able to rent out a second unit for up to 120 nights a year, plus their own unit, however they want.

    He also wants revised codes for corporate housing units to clarify this type of use versus commercialized short-term rentals.

    “We have some folks who are using it to get by. No one is trying to threaten that," Boston City Councilor Michelle Wu said. "We also see companies coming in and running defacto hotels, out of residential housing, building profit but on the backs of renters who are getting pushed out."

    RELATED: Town says mansion where murder happened was rented illegally 

    Airbnb has been following the developments and issued a statement saying in part, "We are disappointed the city is pursuing an approach to home sharing rules that violates federal laws, harms middle class Bostonians, and doesn't fully consider input from the thousands of families already using home sharing to pay the bills."

    If the proposal passes, all units will need to be registered with the city of Boston and owners would pay different levels of fees associated with that type of rental.


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