On a NYC forum I’m on, a member just posted that she followed all the same rules we do (owns a single family home, lives there while she hosts) but just got fined $12k by the city anyway.
I haven’t done the “unlist and delete” option, because maybe there will be a change, but between feeling persecuted by Airbnb’s star system and now the city too, I don’t think this will work for me and my family in the short term. Maybe we’ll rent longer term. Maybe we’ll move my teenager into the spare room. Maybe we’ll house a refugee family. I don’t know.
But if I post less often, that’s why. No new guest stories to entertain you all with. Sniffle.
Or I’ll be doing strictly word of mouth/ friends and family. Not sure. Really just reeling from this new attack. Ugh.
@Alia_Gee. I am so sorry that this has become so stressful for you. That isn’t supposed to a total drag to make a few extra bucks.
There has to be more to this story. What was the infraction that accompanied the notice of a fine? Was this a neighbor complaint? Any chance she really isn’t always there?
Lots of chances… but I’ve heard stories from other NYC hosts that they’re getting cited for not having sprinkler systems, for instance. That’s not something you need in a residence or even an apartment building, but is required for hotels. You can refuse to let nyc dob agents enter your home without a warrant (this is the standard advice given to any newcomer to nyc by kind neighbors), but now they’re writing up citations that if they can’t see that you have it (because they haven’t entered your home) you must not have it.
NYC has not been Airbnb friendly for a while, but now they’re just crushing us. Since I’m feeling persecuted by my federal government (twitch gop tac plan), I just can’t handle it from local, too.
You know… just from being a part of this forum for a really long time, I know for a fact that some people post here and don’t give the whole story sometimes. Whether it’s to make themselves look better or just a bit of amnesia or an exaggerated call for sympathy, keep in mind we don’t always hear the whole story. Plus these big cities have tighter regulations than the burbs. Chances are good that OP left a few details out.
I get your stress and I am sorry you are delisting. Would you continue to post here though? We enjoy your personality and advice and don’t want to lose you as a forum friend.
Sorry to hear about this situation.
I am wondering if there might be something else involved that resulted in this fine. On airbnb they say that when you share your home in NY is allowed under the Multiple Welling Law for periods of less than 30 days.
1000000% Agree with @konacoconutz.
Oh no! You are the BEST writer! Do you have a blog or something? I like to stay with Air when I visit my daughter in Bushwick – have been watching the listings shrinking and shrinking.
@Alia_Gee I agree with the above posts. It is a pleasure to read your postings. I feel like you’ve let us really see more than a glimpse of who YOU are. If I went to NYC I’d love to stay with you, too… kids and all! (My large family is now grown & out and I actually miss it from time to time.)
I’m sorry to say that I"m going through this too. Airbnb is changing the housing world and various communities are either embracing it with an ever-increasing inability to cover expenses, or shutting down anyone trying to be a host.
I hope things change for us both! And yes… please continue to visit here from time to time. Maybe some folks from here will stay with you and you’ll really have something to write about.
So much is changing … is the platform maturing and peaking? What used to be a fun, hip and daring thing to do… stay with real people in exotic places!! Or host —and make a little pocket change the fun and easy way!!! Has become rather like drudgery and more tedious in recent years.
Hosts are paranoid and OCD like never before. Burnout is a thing. We break our necks to be perfect for guests and they crack us anyway about some little thing we didn’t even think of. Reviews have sucked the life out of some of us, and just make us want to quit in Totality.
Guests have become entitled and demanding. They want the 4 Seasons at half the Motel 6 price. They are the demand-a-refund-for-sneeze generation.
I just had a guest walk off the property, claim they had allergies and want their money back. Sigh.
Since when did the damn fun go right out of it?
That sounds like an article in the making!
Oh, for heavens’ sake! I’m sorry to hear that you’ve had another negative jerk guest. I was so pleased when I recently read your post that you had great guests and your world felt good again. Tell us you’re not giving this last guy a refund.
@Alia_Gee I echo the comments hoping you stay with the forum and feeling sorry and frustrated that this is happening. I always enjoy your comments and especially enjoy the bits of life you share.
That really sucks! These regulations and crackdowns are primarily due to pressure from the powerful hotel groups who charge outrageous fees in NYC and want to keep it going.
Yup. I have followed the rules to the letter. And I don’t even make that much money. (If i work “hard” I make about 8k/ year. We take a lot if days off, and we don’t do groups or same day change overs) But from the posts I’ve read from other hosts, this is not the first time a live in host of a single family home has been persecuted- it’s just the first time they’ve come back long enough to tell us what happened. (12k fine? That’s pretty scary to me)
I know I’m totally acting out of fear, and I may feel differently in a week or a month. Right now… yeah. Curling up and looking insignificant seems like the best survival strategy. (And if you’ve read my posts, you know I’m not very good at quiet)
It is weird being the red headed step child - the rich hotels have banded together with the (very not rich) affordable housing coalitions. Everyone hates us.
They were not really a jerk… they just wanted me to refund their money (they were here during Thanksgiving, a major holiday!) Fortunately, they were not on Air but on another platform which allows a NON REFUNDABLE policy. I even told the guest when they booked be sure to have travel insurance here, as this is non refundable.
I told them politely no, but I would be happy to provide documentation for their travel insurance claim that confirmed they had to cancel due to illness. I also offered them two nights comped within the low season if they ever wanted to come back. I explained how that once they had blocked my calendar the place was taken off the market and I could not re rent it. I had committed to their booking and had provided what was contracted. I was very sorry and hoped the wife felt better.
I never heard back.
I have no bookings until December 22 and am honestly enjoying the silence.
I think this is making an assumption. Really. I think it’s more the municipalities that feel like these are huge zoning violations. Here on Hawaii Island, they are talking about banning us because we have helped caused the homeless crisis. Yes, that is how out of touch they are.
Well, I think the zoning is part of it and cities want their piece of the pie with budgets being tight. But the hotel industry is trying to buy influence through political donations;
They are also creating TV ads to scare people;
I agree. Just because it’s a brownstone doesn’t mean it’s a single family home. It could be 3 units which wouldn’t be ok for str in nyc. 3 or more units are limited to 30 days or more.
No I realize hotels are fighting back but I wouldn’t blame them totally for the crack down on Airbnb. People like to do that here (blame the hotels) and I honestly believe the hotels at least on Hawaii Island, could care less about Airbnb, they have way more business than they can handle and are generally targeting a different kind of traveler.
I also believe, as a longtime host, that Airbnb has gotten out of hand in a lot of places. It shouldn’t be allowed to take over neighborhoods and wreak havoc on quiet residential neighborhoods or change the character of these places. . Offshore speculators shouldn’t be buying up blocks and blocks of housing and listing them. This is wrong.
In fact, the hotel industry is working hard to quash Airbnb.
I believe that they are succeeding to some extent as the cities that regulate Airbnb the most strongly are hotel rich cities: Santa Monica, CA, New York, NY, West Hollywood, CA, San Francisco, CA.