Las Vegas Airbnb laws no longer welcome real estate investors to rent out properties on popular vacation rental platforms like Airbnb and HomeAway. The City Council put the regulation to a vote this past December.
The New Airbnb Regulations in Las Vegas
Las Vegas real estate investors will no longer be permitted to rent out for less than 31 days in the city. The new Airbnb laws will only allow for property owners who personally reside in the rental to operate legally. Even then, these Airbnb rentals are required to renew a permit with the city every 6 months to avoid any fines or issues with the law.
These new Las Vegas Airbnb laws will likely put 98% of the short-term rentals operating under legal permits in the city out of practice as only 2% of those are primary residences.
Why the Strict Regulations?
As with most major cities outlawing the practice of Airbnb investors renting out whole properties, the idea is to protect local neighborhoods. Many of the proponents of the new Las Vegas Airbnb laws believe that out-of-state real estate investors and their short-term rentals bring about negative consequences to local communities. They claim that property values have decreased in certain residential neighborhoods thanks to the partying, prostitution, and drugs that these short-term rental properties bring with them.
Mayor Carolyn Goodman had this to say about the ordinance:
“For the people who live in the city, it protects our neighborhoods. This is a work in progress, but we can’t keep kicking this down the road.”
She, along with Mayor Pro Tem Lois Tarkanian and Councilmen Bob Coffin and Steve Seroka, all voted for the new ordinance. Tarkanian, whose personal negative experience with an Airbnb rental across from her own home, said the goal is still to find a balance between allowing local property owners to make some extra money and protecting the integrity of Las Vegas neighborhoods.
Related: Airbnb Regulations 2018: Invest in These Cities Where Airbnb Is Legal
Opposition to the New Las Vegas Airbnb Laws
Many opponents of the new ordinance were present on the day the City Council voted, hoping their voices would be heard. Airbnb owners traveled from as far as Montana and Los Angeles to speak out against the restrictions.
One Airbnb rental property owner, Olive Knaus, argued her short-term rental and the $15,000 she invested into remodeling and operating the property, improved the neighborhood rather than hurt it. She said that having to live on the premises would be uncomfortable for all parties involved and is not an answer to the issue at hand.
Airbnb spokesperson, Laura Rillos, pointed out the detrimental effect this new ban on short-term rentals will have on the economy of Las Vegas. An estimated 500,000 of the 42 million annual visitors to Las Vegas choose Airbnb over traditional hotels for their obvious benefits. She argued that the city will be losing out on what it stands to gain from the $30 billion short-term rental industry.
Rillos was disappointed with the outcome of the vote and said:
“While cities around the world are embracing the economic benefits of short-term rentals, the City Council has doubled-down on onerous regulations and added further restrictions. This vote is a disappointing blow to Las Vegas hosts who rely on short-term rentals to support their families and will hurt the local economy.”
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