Proposed ordinance would limit New Orleans’ homeowners’ short-term rental licences

United States: Short-term rental licences for New Orleans residents who rent out extra rooms in homes where they live full time may be limited under a new ordinance proposed by Residents for Ethical and Sustainable Tourism (REST).

Under the new ordinance, residents would be required to have valid homestead exemptions and comply with safety regulations in order to get licences.

Short-term rental accommodation in New Orleans was made legal in 2016 and the city’s current regulation permits three kinds of rentals: accessory short-term, temporary short-term and commercial short-term rentals.

The first type of rental, accessory short-term, is a rental space inside a homeowner’s property, including a spare bedroom. The homeowners must possess a valid homestead exemption to get this licence and accessory short-term rentals are the only type of rental the ordinance would allow.

On the contrary, temporary and commercial short-term rental licences would not be allowed under the proposed REST ordinance.

In both cases, the licences allow the hosts to rent out whole homes but differ in that the former limits the availability of the number of nights for the rental accommodation to 90 per year and the latter allows unlimited rental nights, however the property must be in a non-residential zone.

The proposed REST ordinance has gained support from the Greater New Orleans Fair Housing Action Center (GNOFHAC).

The group posted on Facebook: “GNOFHAC supports the Residents for Ethical and Sustainable Tourism (REST) ordinance because it will stop STR speculators from displacing residents from our neighbourhoods and simplify the process for struggling homeowners looking to share the home they live in with tourists so they can make ends meet.”

REST is being managed by the housing organisation, Jane Place Neighborhood Sustainability Initiative. On 25 September, New Orleans’ City Planning Commission will meet to discuss the ordinance and make recommendations to the City Council.

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