Airbnb has presented a potential challenge to the hotel industry, with peer-to-peer short term rentals offering more competitive pricing and higher quality spaces. On the flipside, it's presented an attractive option to investors and home owners even here in the Brunswick property market.
Using Airbnb and similar home sharing apps, homeowners can make a small rental income from spare rooms in the property they occupy, or easily manage their own holiday home as an investment property during off seasons.
However, as Airbnb grows legal issues are looming.
Yes, provided you have the rights to lease the space. According to Airbnb terms and conditions, any accommodation listed must not breach any lease or rental agreements and must comply with all applicable zoning laws.
So provided you own the property or have written approval to sublet from the property owner and zoning restrictions allow it, you are allowed to list your Brunswick property on Airbnb.
If your property is a strata title, be aware of complications due to shared walls and common areas. In a 2016 landmark decision, the Victorian Supreme Court found that owners corporations could not legally create rules to ban short-term leases (maximum 30 days) such as those advertised on Airbnb. However, you may find that other members of the owners corporation are unhappy with short term leasing – so consider your relationship with other owners before deciding to list on Airbnb.
While Airbnb is currently legal in Melbourne, recent moves from other major cities suggest change could be on its way.
At the start of June, the New South Wales government announced a crackdown on Airbnb properties in Sydney. As the city with the eighth most Airbnb listings worldwide, according to Statista, this poses massive change. New planning laws to be introduced in the coming months will impose a 180-day cap on Airbnb listings in greater Sydney. Furthermore, owners corporations will be given the right to create bylaws disallowing the use of apartments for short-term stays.
Japan, whose capital has the seventh most Airbnb listings in the world, has also introduced new legislation which came into effect on June 15. All Japanese Airbnb hosts are required to obtain a government-issued registration number and adhere to a number of regulations. Airbnb is required to cancel existing bookings in any unregistered properties 10 days prior to the starting date – a complication impacting a number of travellers.
Short term leasing is a unique process, teetering on the edge of a crackdown in Victoria. For confidence in the way you manage your investment properties, turn to the team at Ray White Brunswick.