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What NYC landlords should know about the state's proposal to curb Airbnb

Airbnb is an online marketplace that allows tenants, condominium owners and homeowners alike to rent out their homes for a short period of time. Some use the service wisely, while others take advantage of the platform to run illegal hotels.

Critics are pushing for laws to help curb this practice, and legislators are taking note. This was most recently highlighted with the passage of a law by the New York State Senate that is structured to place additional barriers on short term rentals in the city. Additional action by Governor Andrew Cuomo is required before the law goes into effect.

How does the proposed law work? Essentially the proposal requires that advertised rentals be available for a minimum of 30 days. Rentals for shorter time periods would be a violation.

Aren't shorter term rentals already illegal? The short answer is "yes." It is already illegal to offer a rental in New York for fewer than 30 days. This proposal would expand the law to make it illegal to advertise such rentals.

What would happen if someone violates this law? A violation could result in a monetary penalty, and the fees are steep. A first offense could result in a $1,000 penalty and additional violations could cost up to $7,500. It is also likely that a tenant who violates the law would be in violation of his or her lease,

Are short-term rentals really a problem? The hotel industry has been an adamant critic of Airbnb, largely due to the infringement on their market. But they are not the only ones voicing concerns. The Real Estate Board of New York has also opposed the practice, pointing to safety issues.

Short-term rentals are big business in New York City. Read more about the proposed legislation to curb the practice. Consult a landlord-tenant attorney if your tenant is violating the law and his or her lease.

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