Jasper Ribbers, avid Airbnb host, author and creator of “Get Paid for Your Pad” book and podcast, interviewed me and we got into the nitty gritty of Airbnb. Including the current status of legal issues in New York Cit as well as hosting tips because I always like to leave a trail of goodies in my wake. If you want to check out the interview on his podcast, here’s the link:

EP065: Airbnb NYC: Evelyn Badia Talks about Hosting and Legislation

There are many US cities and other countries have signed “share economy” laws. Even the Queen of England signed an Airbnb friendly law for London rentals. New York is not an easy nut to crack.

During the podcast, I mentioned the sting operation by Linda Rosenthal, New York State Assembly Member. The city is targeting folks in New York who list private apartments in multi-unit buildings and rent for less than 30 days. According to the state law, this type of listing is illegal. If this scenario describes your listing, be aware that officials are looking for such activity.

Airbnb isn’t standing still. Recently, I was part of the Airbnb team that went to Albany to describe to the members of the New York State Assembly how becoming Airbnb hosts has helped us, as well as our neighborhoods, to thrive during challenging economic times. We also presented the economic report subsidized by Airbnb, which states Airbnb hosts and guests brought $1.15 billion – yes with a B – in economic impact to NYC in 2014.

Click on the below photo to view Airbnb's recap video of the Albany trip:

New York state law prohibits Airbnb from collecting occupancy taxes (also known as hotel tax). But in May, New York State Senator Phil Boyle introduced  legislation that would allow Airbnb to collect and pay NY State occupancy taxes.

Here are the links for the presented bills:

Assembly Bill A07809

Senate Bill S5523

As per a general Airbnb email, “Now we need to continue to tell our [the hosts’] stories so other legislators will join Senator Boyle in supporting our community. We also need to tell our legislators that we hope they support Bill S5523.”

Am I excited to be paying additional taxes beyond personal income tax? Not really. We’re not a hotel and don’t provide hotel-like amenities – we don’t offer a concierge, daily maid service, or food services. My opinion is that Airbnb supports the legislation because extra revenue for the city means favorable regulations.

What’s your take on this situation? Do you think occupancy taxes are appropriate for Airbnb hosts to pay? Do you think there should be some other kind of tax beyond income tax? What kind of legislation does your state have to prevent the abuses that the state is trying to avoid?

Subscribe to my newsletter if you want to stay up to date on the ongoing legislative developments with Airbnb in New York State. Plus, I also talk about more practical (and less legalese) tips on being a host your guests will rave about!

Until next time,

Happy Hosting

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