VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – The owners of 820 illegal short-term rental units listed on Airbnb and other sites are facing tough action from the City of Vancouver, including big fines.
New rules aimed at cracking down on short-term rental units came into effect in September. The city says since then, more than 2,000 files have been opened.
In one case, a company running 35 short-term rental listings at two properties has been hit with a $20,000 fine for the first property. The city adds a trial date has been set for the second.
The city says two other operators pleaded guilty to violations of the short-term rental by-laws and each were fined $2,500.
Chief License Inspector Kathryn Holm says before the short-term rental bylaw came into effect Sept. 1, Vancouver had more than 6,600 short-term rental listings. On Dec. 2018 that number reduced to 4,589 and then went up slightly to 4,720 on Mar 6 #vanpoli
— Lasia Kretzel (@lkretzel1130) March 14, 2019
Mayor Kennedy Stewart calls the figures “encouraging.”
“This program is one of many designed to move more supply into the long-term rental market because housing in our city needs to be first and foremost for those who live and work in Vancouver.”
The City of Vancouver brought in rule changes to encourage property owners to rent long-term to help increase housing affordability.
The city is reminding operators who are using a 2018 licence that they have to renew for 2019 to make sure they are complying with the city’s regulations, noting nearly 70 per cent have already done so. Those who don’t have a valid 2019 licence could face enforcement.