Two city councilmen called this week for city regulation of smartphone apps such as Airbnb, VRBO and Homeaway that facilitate short-term rentals in Los Angeles.
A motion introduced Tuesday by Councilmen Mike Bonin and Herb Wesson would instruct city staff to study regulations enacted in San Francisco, Portland and other cities, and develop rules for Los Angeles.
Bonin said the city needs “a regulatory model that will put
neighborhoods first while paving the way for short-term rentals to thrive in an appropriate fashion in Los Angeles.”
“The current system, which turns a blind eye to an important industry and its impact on our neighborhoods, our rental stock and the city treasury, works for no one,” he said.
Bonin said such short-term rentals, which are popular in Venice, can help property owners “to augment their incomes, or to give tourists the ability to live like locals.” But abuses can occur in cases in which large numbers of units are purchased by commercial entities and rented out like “de facto hotels.”
Bonin also said the city should be allowed to collect transient
occupancy taxes from the short-term rentals, just as it does with hotels.