Anger at short-term rental conversion in California

California: Long-term rentals are being converted into short-term rentals rather than providing housing for long-term renters for which the building is zoned in Venice, California.

Previously, more than 58 apartments in the Ellison Building in Venice were specifically aimed at accommodating the long-term rental segment but now just ten tenants remain in the building with the rest being rented out to tourists.

A neighbour told Spectrum News it was draining available housing resources in the neighbourhood.
Alex Poe said: “Right now, it’s basically just a big [vacation rental]. I mean, it’s all short-term rentals. There’s nothing for, or very little, for stable residents that want to live there.”

The building has recently been rebranded as the Ellison Suites but Poe said that the input of short-term rentals had forced many of the existing long-term tenants out of the California neighbourhood altogether.

He added: “I knew people who used to live there and then just had to move out because they’ve essentially been forced out because the short-term rentals are more profitable for the landlord, but it doesn’t do much for residents or people in the community.”

The landlord of the building had reportedly been trying to obtain approval to re-zone the building as a short-term rental space, leading them to rent out more units to travellers.

However, one such renter, Shana Parmentier, said the experience was not what she had been promised.

She told Spectrum News: “When we saw the pictures online, we thought it was a very beautiful old building and it is an old building. But, it’s not that beautiful and it’s not that well-maintained.”

On 13 May, the West Los Angeles Area Planning Commission unanimously blocked approval for the building to operate as a short-term rental property in a vote.

Poe said about the community: “This is a tourist attraction and that’s great and there’s lots of hotels for people to come here. If it’s just going to be tourists then there’s not going to be a real community for them to visit here.”