Editorial comment


04•02•19 Welcome to the latest Short Term Rentalz weekly newsletter!


• A few months ago, our ShortTermRentalz 2019 predictions article foresaw further tightening of short-term rental regulations and that is exactly what appears to be happening in Hawaii.


This week, Airbnb has been fighting back against Hawaii's attempt to find tax delinquents on the island by subpoenaing its hosts' records of 10 years of invoices and receipts.


Airbnb has called the action an unprecedented "massive intrusion" into its hosts' private data and thereby claims it violates state and federal law. It also said in a court filing the request would collect the private data of around 16,000 people and the company argued it had seen no evidence why the state of Hawaii should "invade the privacy rights of Airbnb and its users on this massive scale". 


The news represents the latest in a series of clashes between Airbnb and local governments about what data surrounding the hosts of the home-sharing company should be disclosed.


Last month in New York, a judge blocked a city law which would have required rental platforms to reveal their hosts' names and their private information, as part of a supposed crackdown on illegal listings which would result in the imposing of fines. 


In recent times, issues regarding the viability of short-term rentals have emerged in cities worldwide including Paris, Montreal, Munich, Dublin and Vancouver, and these debates look set to rage on.


However, the news coincides with a key juncture for Airbnb as the company prepares to enter into a voluntary agreement with Prague which will require landlords to pay the city for each guest. The arrangement is part of a plan to generate more tourism revenue for Prague and allow the city council to have more control over regulating short-term rental accommodation there. As such, the Prague agreement shows Airbnb is willing to listen to and work with regional and local governments to come to trading agreements which can be mutually acceptable.


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Paul Stevens, reporter




George Sell



+44 (0)7879 652 447


Paul Stevens



+44 (0)7393 293643 


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