Short term Airbnb rentals have been in the news recently as across the Lower Mainland residents, stratas and politicians struggle to figure out how to deal with the effects of short-term rentals.
Any policy addressing the issue needs to balance the rights of property owners to use their property as they like, the rights of stratas to govern as their residents want and the needs of communities like White Rock, where residents are finding long term rentals being taken off the market for more lucrative Airbnb usage.
While I appreciate that lending out an extra room or part of a larger house on Airbnb (or other such services) can be a way that new homeowners pay their monthly mortgage bill, White Rock should not be losing long term rental units to short-term usage.
If elected I would push for the following policies governing Airbnb and other short-term rentals in White Rock.
Only principal residences may be a short-term rental
A business license must be displayed in the entrance of any short-term rental property
Pass a bylaw allowing strata councils to fine short term rental units up to $1,000 a day. The provincial government has passed a similar regulation that goes into effect November 30th, but I believe that White Rock should still pass a bylaw (as Vancouver has done) so that the rule will stay in effect if the provincial government changes their rule in the future.
Ensure that any short-term rental units match the building codes that are enforced on longterm units
Update: I feel it’s only fair to give credit to the current council who have adopted the first and fourth point of my policy in a new bylaw.