From next summer, Austria will limit the number of nights for which private owners can rent out their property.
A popular platform that allows people to rent out their homes or spare rooms to tourists has been accused of driving up house prices, crowding out locals, draining resources, and fueling excess tourism. In many parts of the world, cities have begun imposing restrictions on short-term rentals to counter this.
In many parts of the world, cities have begun imposing restrictions on short-term rentals to counter this.
So, in July, Florence announced a ban on the placement of new Airbnb listings and other types of short-term rentals in the historic center of the city. But Italy isn’t the only place looking to limit short-term rentals. Here are all the places where there are bans or restrictions on short-term rentals.
France: Paris limits the number of days for rental housing
Parisians wishing to list their primary accommodation on a platform like Airbnb will need to register with their local city hall. They will be able to rent out their main residence for no more than 120 days a year.
If it is a second home or a rental for more than 120 days, the owners of the apartment will have to formally convert it into furnished tourist accommodation. The city even has a special unit that hunts down illegal rentals and fines violators.
Germany: Berlin imposes strict rules
Berlin has previously banned Airbnb. It has now been abolished, but the strict rules – with heavy fines – remain. Owners listing their property on Airbnb must have short-term rental permission for the entire property. Second housing can be rented for no more than 90 days a year.
In Munich, short-term rentals of entire houses are limited to eight weeks per year, after which a permit must be obtained.
In Stuttgart, owners who short-term rent more than half of their property can do so without special permission for no more than 10 weeks a year.
Italy: Nationwide restrictions possible
Rome, which has already imposed restrictions on short-term rentals, has recently been joined by Florence. Perhaps soon two more Italian cities will join this company: Milan and Venice.
In addition, the Italian Ministry of Tourism has developed a law banning short-term rentals throughout the country. It aims to help popular tourist destinations, many of which are facing a housing crisis and overtourism.
A requirement for a minimum stay of two nights and the maintenance of a nationwide register of short-term rentals instead of separate registers that currently exist are some of the main measures included in the decree.
Netherlands: Amsterdam restricts Airbnb stays
In Amsterdam, hosts can rent out their property for up to 30 nights per year. Anything over this requires permission from the local administration.
Portugal: Platforms no longer licensed
To combat rising rental prices, Portugal has stopped issuing new licenses for Airbnb and other similar platforms (except in rural areas).
All holiday rental licenses will now be reviewed every five years. A new rental price control system is also being introduced. Airbnb owners are also being offered tax breaks if they convert their property into regular homes.
Spain: Barcelona has a rental restriction
In 2021, Barcelona became the first European city to ban short-term rentals in houses and apartments. Hosts are not allowed to rent a room for less than 31 days. A special team checks illegal ads and removes them. Renting out entire houses or apartments is still permitted with a proper license.
In the capital of Mallorca – Palma – it is forbidden to rent housing to tourists in apartment buildings. Airbnb hosts can only rent single-family homes, which must be detached houses or villas.
Valencia is currently fighting in court to ban short-term rentals in the city’s historic center.
UK: London imposes rent restrictions
In London, Airbnb hosts are only allowed to rent out their property for 90 nights or less per year without applying for a change of use. The restrictions were put in place to ensure that short-term leases are sustainable and interfere with the city as little as possible.
Hosts of new listings in Scotland must now obtain a short-term rental property license before accepting any bookings.
In Edinburgh, planning permission is required to rent a second home on Airbnb. The city’s ten-year development plan, announced in December, could allow the council to phase out short-term leases altogether in the future.
In Northern Ireland, anyone who hosts tourists on a paid basis – including through Airbnb – must obtain a certificate from the Northern Ireland Travel Agency.
Where is Airbnb banned or restricted in the US and Canada?
A growing number of cities and states in the US are tightening their rules on Airbnb. For example, in Hawaii, on the island of Oahu, where the famous Waikiki beach is located, they banned rentals for less than 90 days. The island’s counties are also allowed to introduce their own rules to phase out short-term rentals as early as this year.
Memphis, Tennessee, known as the birthplace of Elvis Presley and the site where Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated, is a popular tourist destination. Starting in July 2023, new Airbnb owners in that city will need to obtain a license. This includes insurance for at least $1 million (930,000 euros) and an attendant within 80 km to respond to any violations of city ordinances, such as noise levels.
In early June, New York City made headlines when Airbnb sued the city over a “virtual ban” on short-term rentals. The law, due to take effect in July, imposes strict registration, zoning, and maintenance rules for hosts, who will have to provide proof that they live with their guests on the property.
In Palm Springs, California, short-term rentals are limited to 26 days. At the same time, only 20% of the total number of houses and apartments in residential areas is available for rent. Another city in California, San Francisco, has a 90-day rental limit and many other rules for Airbnb owners.
In Canada, the ban and restrictions on short-term rentals are in place in several cities at once. In Montreal, short-term rentals are completely prohibited to provide enough housing for residents of the city. Vancouver also has a 30-night stay limit where the accommodation must be the owner’s primary residence. And in Toronto, Airbnb hosts can only host guests 180 days a year.
What about Asia and Australia?
Penang Island in Malaysia, a popular tourist destination in the northwest of the country, introduced a ban on short-term rentals in May 2023 to curb antisocial behavior among tourists.
Some types of commercial properties, such as serviced apartments, can still host guests for up to three days. However, they must be registered with the local government, pay an annual fee, and be approved by at least three-quarters of the people living in their homes.
While Airbnb is legal in Tokyo, Japan, regulations introduced in 2018 have caused a drastic drop in listings in the city. Short-term rentals are limited to 180 days a year and must be handled either by the owner living in the house or by a dedicated person in charge of administration. Hosts must also collect guest data for government reporting. In some areas, rentals are only allowed during certain times of the year.
Airbnb isn’t technically banned in Singapore either, but the restrictions mean it can’t be used for most public holidays. The country sets a minimum rental period of three months (or six months for public housing).
In Sydney, Australia, Airbnb hosts are only allowed to rent out their property 180 days a year. Bookings over 21 consecutive days are not subject to this restriction.