Airbnb is fighting for its survival in New York. Last week, Governor Cuomo signed a bill into law which would put hefty financial penalties on people who advertise short-term illegal apartment rentals on the web.
That could lead to a sharp drop in the number of active listings on Airbnb, the biggest platform for short-term rentals.
Airbnb says it will challenge the law, and has requested a temporary restraining order, saying the new law would cause the company “irreparable harm.” Below is an email Airbnb is sending to his host to fight the city together.
|We have important news to share with our hosts in New York.|
|On Friday, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed an anti-home sharing bill into law. Unfortunately, this ignored the voices of tens of thousands of New Yorkers who rent their own homes to make ends meet. Various news reports, including editorials in the New York Daily News and the New York Post, described the bill as being the product of a special interest backroom deal where the public did not have an opportunity to participate in the process. A majority of New Yorkers have embraced responsible home sharing, and we will continue to fight for a smart policy solution that works for everyone.|
|For so many of you who are listing shared spaces and private rooms, the new law does not impact your ability to continue sharing your permanent homes. The new law also doesn’t prohibit advertising entire home listings in 1–2 family homes or any rentals for 30 days or more. However, it does prohibit advertising short-term rentals that violate the State’s Multiple Dwelling Law, namely, entire home listings for less than 30 days in multiple dwelling buildings (three-plus family units) categorized as “Class A” in New York City (e.g., tenements, apartment houses).|
|Not only do we believe that this law is bad policy, but we believe that it is unlawful in the way the city intends to enforce it. That’s why we immediately filed a lawsuit challenging the act on state and federal grounds.|
|While the case moves forward, Airbnb is committed to working with elected officials to enact comprehensive home sharing regulations. Our proposal — Sharing for a Stronger New York — protects affordable housing by limiting hosts to sharing a single entire home listing in New York City and cracking down on commercial operators who threaten to remove housing from the permanent market. Our policy proposal protects hosts, guests, and public safety by requiring registration, insurance, and tax collection.|
|We invite you to join our Rally for Fair Home Sharing Regulation this Wednesday, October 26, at 11am in NYC. At the rally, hosts will be asking for the chance to meet with Governor Cuomo. Hosts never had the chance to make their voices heard when the backroom deal to punish the middle class was done, but we can still exercise our right to make clear to the Governor and others how important home sharing is to New Yorkers.|
|While our community’s voice may have been locked out of the legislative process, we can still exercise our right to make clear to the Governor and others how important home sharing is as an economic lifeline to many New Yorkers.|
|We’re also committed to helping create the kinds of powerful experiences that happen when hosts like you share their space with people from different communities and cultures. Sharing your space while you’re present remains entirely legal and we hope everyone will consider opening their homes and connecting with travelers from around the world. Likewise, you can continue listing your home for rent so long as the rental is in a 1–2 family home or for a period of 30 days or more.|
|We’ll stay in close touch with you about the lawsuit and how the new law may affect you and your listing. For more information, you can read our full statement here.|
|Thank you for being a part of this community. And we very much appreciate how so many of you have had the courage to stand up and fight for the people against the powerful.|
|Thank you, thank you, thank you.|
The Airbnb Team
PS Enforcement has been postponed again.