Airbnb restrictions aim to block summer house parties

Business

SAN DIEGO – It might be a little tougher to book a room through Airbnb this summer as the short-term rental site aims to crackdown on house parties, especially during Fourth of July weekend.

“Honestly, I think it’s a great policy,” said Craig Gerulski, who owns four short-term rentals in the San Diego area.

For the holiday weekend, Airbnb is only allowing guests with positive reviews to book whole home rentals for one-night stays. The site points to President Joe Biden’s hope that by July 4, the U.S. will be able to claim its independence from COVID-19. Airbnb aims to keep house parties from popping up that weekend.

“As soon as COVID-19 hit, all the bars and clubs got shutdown,” said Gerulski, who started eliminating single-night stays months ago at his properties. “Everyone just started booking house parties. We had a lot of problems with that. And one of the changes we made was making it a two-night minimum stay, and that pretty much cut out 90% of parties.”

A real estate advisor told FOX 5 that the move could help short-term rental owners in their fight to stay in local neighborhoods.

“It’s going to help a lot more of these communities to accept an Airbnb,” said Kristofor Karnegie, a real estate advisor with Pacific Sotheby’s.

He said the tougher restrictions could help Airbnb expand into new neighborhoods where HOAs block them.

“Being that Airbnb is looking at the people they are putting in the home now, and putting certain criteria to abide by, I think it’s going to open up a lot of HOAs, and communities will be a lot more accepting of these people coming into homes.”

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