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Airbnb settles with NYC, agrees to share listings info

Mayor de Blasio on Friday announced that New York City and Airbnb have reached a settlement agreement, establishing a new framework for the city’s local law that requires short-term rental platforms to share information about their listings.

Under this agreement, Airbnb will drop its federal lawsuit against New York City, and the City Council will introduce an updated local law.

“Illegal hotel operators who flout the law at the expense of working New Yorkers have no place in our neighborhoods,” de Blasio said. “Finally, we’ll have the critical information we need to preserve affordable housing and keep our communities protected.”

“We have long wanted to work with New York City on an effective regulatory framework, including information sharing — this agreement achieves that,” said Christopher Lehane, Airbnb senior vice president for global public policy and communications. “As we look toward the recovery of New York’s tourism economy, we hope this settlement will represent a continuing relationship and the first step on a path forward for our community citywide.”

“With this agreement, the city will have a powerful tool to detect those who hide behind fake accounts and address those who take housing away from New Yorkers,” said Christian Klossner, executive director of the Mayor’s Office of Special Enforcement. “The revised law would not change in any way the current laws governing whether short-term rentals and their advertisements are legal. We will be able to better protect our communities and visitors, and more fully understand the impacts of the illegal short-term rental market. Now more than ever, transparency is vital to the city’s ability to keep residents and travelers safe.”

Under this updated local law, short-term rental platforms would share information with New York City on a quarterly basis. The report would include all listings that generate five or more nights of bookings per quarter, so long as the listing offers an entire home or allows three or more guests to stay at one time. Information will not be provided for private or shared-room listings with two or fewer guest capacity; for listings that are rented for less than five nights per quarter; or for listings that are in qualifying traditional hospitality locations, based on a list the city will publish.

For all eligible listings, reports provided to the city would be required to include:

  • Physical address of the listing;
  • Host information (name, physical address, phone number and e-mail address);
  • The name, number and URL of the listing;
  • Whether the short-term rental is for an entire unit or part of a unit;
  • The total number of days booked;
  • The amount received by the host for each transaction, as well as the account name and anonymized account identifier relating to those payments.

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