Troubles in Airbnb paradise

In Australia’s Byron Bay, various authorities are fighting among themselves about putting a cap on short term renting, The Guardian reports.

On December 14, The Guardian wrote that the local town council would be voting the next day on lowering the maximum number of days per year for subletting apartments from 180 to 90. On December 15, The Guardian followed up with an article that says the state of New South Wales had stripped the local council from the right to hold a vote, even though NSW had explicitly appointed the council as the approval authority for the proposal. Real estate developers, property owners, and Airbnb too apparently weighed in on the controversial vote.

The Airbnb platform has contributed to rising inequality in town:

“The Byron community has come under increasing housing pressure over the past few years, with escalating levels of homelessness, rising rents and a rapidly shrinking pool of available long-term rentals exacerbated both by flooding disasters and the Covid-19 pandemic.”

“Up to 35% of housing in the region is estimated to be taken up by short-term rental accommodation, while available long-term rentals have declined by 10% since December 2020.”

Links to articles: 14 Dec 2022 and 15 Dec 2022


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