Council Set to Pass New Short Term Rental Restrictions

San Antonio City Council, after six months of debate, will vote later this week on measures to regulate so called 'short term rentals,' the new on line trend of renting out your home, apartment, or condo to visitors, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.

Casey Whittington, who is a member of the Planning Commission which has already signed off on the regulations, says the people who rent their homes using on line platforms like Airbnb support the propsosals, which include collecting the city hotel-motel tax.

"A lot of them just want to know where to send the check, or whether they can build it into the platform, be it Airbnb or VRBO," he said.

The regulations include the following requirements:

1) All rental properties must receive a permit and pay a $100 registration fee

2) All units must be equipped with fire extinguishers, smoke and CO detector, emergency exit, and a posted evacuation plan.

3) All noise and parking restrictions applicable to the neighborhood must be followed.

4) Existing city laws covering maximum number of occupants must be enforced by the owner

5) Property cleanliness requirements will be enforced

6) All property will be inspected if complaints are received

7) Hotel motel taxes must be collected

8) Property owners will be stripped of their permits for not following regulations.

"We are at a place right now where can start implementing this system and the city can count on more than a million dollars a year in additional revenues," Whittington said.

There are also rules prohibiting short term rentals from being used as meeting venues, party rooms, or food service establishments.  There are also limits on how many short term rental permits can be issued, depending on such factors as the location of the street, access to a major thoroughfare, and the number of homes on the street.

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