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Where Home Meets Hotel: Regulating tourist accommodations in the age of Airbnb

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Short-term rentals are not new, but companies like Airbnb, VRBO and HomeAway have facilitated their proliferation at unprecedented levels.  For Vancouver, this has meant a yearly doubling in listings between 2013 and 2015. While rapid, this growth has been largely illegal and unregulated, raising concerns over short-term rentals’ effect on long-term rental supply and neighbours’ quality of life. This study explores both the impact of short-term rentals in Vancouver and provides an analysis of policy options for regulating the short-term rental industry. In doing so, a case study analysis of regulations in Austin, Portland, Denver and San Francisco is used to identify best practices and regulatory concerns. Ultimately a primary residence requirement, combined with special attention to implementation strategies that will increase compliance, is recommended.
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