Airbnb Not Welcome In WeHo

WEST HOLLYWOOD—A West Hollywood city task force has formally recommended that the city ban Airbnb and other short-term vacation rental competitors.

Other neighborhoods have tried and failed to implements such bans, and technically, short-term rentals are not allowed in most Los Angeles residential areas. However, on the Airbnb website alone, there are hundreds of short-term listings available in West Hollywood.

For some West Hollywood residents, short-term rental listings have worn out their welcome.

West Hollywood’s Shared Economy Task Force is imploring the city to escalate its stance against such listings, demanding websites such as Airbnb and Homeaway explicitly say that short-term rentals are forbidden by law in the area.

The proposal has met resistance from homeowners who list their properties on short-term rental sites. Unlike those listing leased apartments, these homeowners are not violating any lease agreement by making their property available for short-term use.

A model for the West Hollywood Shared Economy Task Force could potentially come from San Francisco’s recent initiative, one that requires residents to register with the city’s Planning Department.

Once registered, San Francisco homeowners are not permitted to rent their properties for more than 90 days per year. The initiative has also banned short-term rentals lasting fewer than 30 days.

If successful, the task force could effectively squash a short-term rental market in West Hollywood that includes nearly 800 available rental locales.