Actions

Airbnb hosts head to Albany in support of new bill

AirBNB pushes for better protection for hosts
Posted at 6:30 AM, Mar 06, 2018
and last updated 2018-03-06 07:49:58-05

Early Tuesday morning, several home sharers in Buffalo who use Airbnb got on a bus to head to Albany, hoping to show their support for new legislation that's now being considered.

The bill would require Airbnb hosts to register their units as short term rentals and tax those units under tourist taxes that already apply to hotels and inns. It would also add insurance requirements. Hosts say this bill will help protect responsible Airbnb users. They also hope that the better protections will, in turn, encourage more people to open up their homes to visitors.

"I just want legislators to hear our side," said Airbnb host Schuyler Banks. "We're going to listen to what any of the concerns that they have are. And we'll come to an agreement so that each side is happy with the process because I think it's good on all sides."

So far, Buffalo has about 500 Airbnb host homes, and just last year about 44,000 people visited the Queen City through Airbnb.

"Airbnb has been totally positive," home sharer Joseph Galvin said.  "I wish I had more properties because I would probably do the same thing."

You can read the full text of the bill here.