Short term rentals getting the short end of the stick?

Everyone’s looking for ways to make a quick buck these days, and renting out their apartments to vacationers on Airbnb or another short-term rental platform is an easy way for New Yorkers to pad their pockets. But renters and property owners need to know that this process is about to become a lot more complicated, thanks to a new law going into effect in 2023.

Here’s what you need to know about the new law as a NYC building owner.

What is the new law?

Local Law 18 of 2022 requires hosts to register their apartment with the city before renting out their homes for less than 30 days. LL 18 will be going into effect on January, 9, 2023.

What are the requirements for LL 18?

The Short-Term Rental Registration Law requires all short-term rental hosts to register with the Mayor’s Office of Special Enforcement (OSE). If the application is approved, the OSE will issue a registration number for the applicant. Booking platforms like AirBNB will need to verify the registration number of any unit before listing it for rent. There will be penalties of up to $5,000 for both hosts and booking services who do not comply with LL 18.

Short-term rental listings for units in Class B multiple dwellings, which have been approved by the City of New York for legal short-term occupancies, are exempt from the registration requirement.

Can anyone register an apartment?

The law limits registration of host-apartments to people that occupy a unit of housing. The OSE cannot grant a registration for rent-regulated and NYCHA units. Registration requests will also be denied for all buildings on the Prohibited Building lists, created by owners who notify the OSE that short-term rentals are not allowed in their buildings.

Are there any additional requirements for short-term rentals in NYC?

The new law, requiring hosts to register their apartments before a short-term rental, does not nullify these existing laws for short-term rentals in NYC:

  • It is illegal to rent out an apartment for fewer than 30 days if the owner or tenant is not present.
  • Hosts may have up to two paying guests staying in their apartment for fewer than 30 days.
  • Every guest must have free and unobstructed access to every room and to each exit within the apartment.
  • Internal doors cannot have key locks that allow guests to leave and lock their room behind them. All occupants need to maintain a common household; every member of the family and all guests must have access to all parts of the dwelling unit.
  • New York State law  prohibits the advertising of an apartment in a Class A multiple dwelling for rent for fewer than 30 days. Fines for noncompliance range from $1,000 to $7,500, and will be issued to the person responsible for the advertisement.

As a NYC building owner, how does LL 18 affect me?

As the building owner, you are responsible for ensuring that your properties are maintained in a safe and compliant manner at all times. You will be issued a violation for any illegal short-term rentals on your property. Consequently, it may be in your best interest to educate your tenants about the new law and assist them in any way possible with registering their apartments for short-term rentals.

If you’re wondering whether your tenants are renting out your units, you can stop the guesswork—the OSE will alert building owners about short-term rental registrations in their buildings. If you don’t like the idea of your apartments being used as short-term rentals you can always have your building listed on the Forbidden Building list with the OSE.

The good news, this is a law that might actually help property owners, as Local Law 18 will enable NYC building owners to stay in the know on short-term rentals in their buildings, and to forbid short-term rentals if they so desire.

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