Only 20 to 30 Percent Reduction of Short Term Rentals Under New San Diego Regulations

by on April 7, 2021 · 1 comment

in Ocean Beach, San Diego

By Lori Weisberg / San Diego Union-Tribune / April 7, 2021

The San Diego City Council Tuesday formally affirmed its decision in February’ to impose a yearly cap on whole-home vacation rentals that could potentially cut the volume by as much as 30 percent.

To enact the new regulations governing Airbnb-style rentals, the council was required to approve a second reading of the ordinance it approved following a six-hour hearing on Feb. 23. The new’ rules will not go into effect until July of next year. Councilman Joe LaCava, whose district includes La Jolla, cast the lone dissenting vote, as he did in February.

Under the new plan, whole-home rentals that are available for more than 20 day’s in a year will be capped at 1 percent of the city’s more than 540,000 housing units, or about 5,400. An exception, however, was made for Mission Beach, which has a long history’ of vacation rentals that predates the rise of online home-sharing platforms like Airbnb and VRBO. For that community, the allocation is much more generous, limited to 30 percent of the community’s total dwelling units, or about 1,100.

According to an analysis by the city’s Independent Budget Anatyst based on home-sharing activity before the pandemic, the yearly cap could mean anywhere from 1,650 to nearly 2,800 fewer whole-home rental listings that would be allowed to operate more than 20 day’s out of the year. That equates to about a 20 percent to 30 percent reduction in such rentals. For those vacation rentals subject to the annual cap, a minimum two-night stay will be required.

One issue that remains undecided is how the limited number of short-term rental licenses will be allocated. The council has already agreed to return in October to consider a lottery system that would prioritize what it called existing, “good actor” hosts who have been paying required taxes and have operated responsibly. Only one license per individual will be allowed.

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kh April 8, 2021 at 6:17 am

Ok so Campbell lied, what’s new? And she knew better because people had been badgering her about this exact point since her and Expedia’s draft proposal emerged. But she took their word for it over the citizens that they were giving up major concessions.

Also the city budget analyst fails to recognize the duplexes and ADUs that are exempt from the cap, as well as the fact that many self-identified “whole home” listings are not actually that. Some are attached suites, illegal garage conversions, and even camper vans.

The city has not attempted to pinpoint these actual listings or identify which would be subject to the cap. The cap reduction, compared to prepandemic numbers, is closer to zero, or may allow for an increase in numbers.

And if they overburden casual and part-time hosts, local resident hosts, and inland hosts with high rigid fees, you will see less of them and more corporate and super-hosts taking their place, and concentrating in more profitable areas along the coast.


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