We are all familiar with Airbnb and the services they offer. Most of us have either lived in an Airbnb home or at least heard of stories of people who gave the hotel services a miss to stay in an Airbnb rental property. For travelers, no doubt, it is an excellent option as they get a decent place for accommodation and that too at affordable prices. Even rental property owners are realizing the potential of listing their homes on Airbnb and making quick money.
However, the residents of some of Edmonton’s condos have been unhappy about this emerging trend. A recent article posted by CBC News talks about the displeasure of many Edmonton condo owners, due to the constant chatter and commotion of Airbnb guests in their building. Many residents have approached Edmonton real estate lawyers to tackle the problem. But do we have stringent laws in place to deal with short-term and travel rentals? Let’s discuss this further.
As mentioned above, Airbnb listings are useful for both parties, the one renting the property as well the travel guest. But in case of a condo, there are people living in different apartments who are iffy about landlords turning their residential space into a ‘hotel’. The primary concern in this arrangement is security. Residents feel it is unsafe to have different people come in and out of their building. As a responsible organization, Airbnb does have certain policies to ensure the safety of the hosts and guests. But many residents still feel unsure about strangers living in their condominiums. The risk still exists, after all.
Disturbance to Neighbors
Almost all the complaints that the Condo board has received is regarding the disturbance caused to people due to Airbnb guests being around. In another article by CBC News, a resident talks about how Airbnb occupants started parking their cars beside her (complainer) stall, and going in and out of the unit next to hers. Other complaints include late night commotion caused by the guests and their unscrupulous demands of salt, coffee machine, and various other things from neighbors.
The Law in Edmonton
The main governing law for property rentals in Edmonton is the Residential Tenancies Act and the Condominium Property Act. Both these legislations do not have any laws specific to Airbnb rentals or short-term travel rentals. The laws are generic and cover the basic responsibilities of landlords and tenants, dispute resolution, and remedies. However, Condominium Corporations can include bylaws that prevent landlords from renting out their apartments for Airbnb guests. But for that, these corporations will have to revise their existing bylaws to suit the changing trends in the field of real estate.
The Need of the Hour
As per the CBC news report, condo owners are hiring real estate lawyers to prevent landlords from renting their space to Airbnb guests. But in the wake of so many Airbnb properties, completely banning the process can be difficult. It is, therefore, important that condo boards work towards revising their bylaws. Real estate lawyers should also appeal to the court to make statutory laws for Airbnb hosts and guests. It is important to arrive at a middle ground where Edmonton’s condo owners and Airbnb users are happy.
Have you been facing similar problems in your condo? Let us know, and our legal team will help you sort out the matter.