Many Sydney inner city residents against Airbnb letting as 'full-time investment': Survey

Many Sydney inner city residents against Airbnb letting as 'full-time investment': Survey
Many Sydney inner city residents against Airbnb letting as 'full-time investment': Survey

Despite the popularity of Airbnb, a recent survey reveals that more than 40% of Sydney’s inner-city residents oppose short term renting as a full-time investment and believe strata should be able to ban short-term rentals.

The survey of 1000 residents was commissioned by the City of Sydney Council.

However, the majority of residents supported short-term letting on home sharing platforms such as Airbnb and Stayz if the host stayed in the property or was away on holidays, according to The Australian Financial Review.

But a huge 42% were against short-term letting if it was used as a full-time investment. Only 35% said they are in favour of short-term letting as a full time investment.

The report said 45% only support short-term letting for a limited number of days a year.

Earlier this year, Sydney was ranked the second highest city to recoup investment on a home using a peer to peer rental service like Homeaway or Airbnb with an expected yearly return of 11.96% by peer-to-peer motorhome rental platform SHAREaCAMPER.

The new survey’s finding comes as cities get increasingly tough on Airbnb as a full-time investment tool. Both London and Paris each have 90 day and 120-day limits on entire home rentals on Airbnb.

The survey has sparked off a debate.

Airbnb's head of public policy ANZ Brent Thomas said "one small survey in one corner of inner-city Sydney is hardly a representative or robust basis for policy making right across NSW" and the majority of Airbnb hosts are people who rent out their home, rather than property investors.

Sydney is one of Airbnb's top ten cities globally, with over 22,000 listings.

"The vast majority of our hosts in Australia share their primary residence - the home they live in - for an average of just 30 nights per year," Thomas said.

Airbnb is running an "Airbnb Citizen" campaign asking hosts to fight for "fair home sharing rules" in NSW.

Stayz advisor Richard Colbeck said the short-term letting platform supports a "reasonable framework" to address "genuine amenity concerns" in cities, particular strata blocks.

But Stephen Goddard of Owners Corporation Network, which represents strata, said the survey results show there should be "sensible regulation" of short-term letting.

"We don't want to ban short-term lets, we just want to give apartment owners a say on whether or not it occurs in their respective buildings," Goddard said.

Carol Giuseppi of Tourism Accommodation Australia, which represents the hotels industry, said the survey results show residents support "sensible caps" on the number of nights an entire property could be short term-let.

An NSW parliamentary inquiry had previously recommended Airbnb operators should only be subject to "light regulation".

But in an options paper released in July, the NSW government said it was considering a range of options, from industry self-regulation to giving strata the power to put restrict or prohibit apartment short term letting.

It is also considering putting a restriction on the total days per year that a place can be used for short-term letting. The consultation is ongoing and submissions are due close on October 31.

Airbnb Rental Laws

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