Hello. I am a new Airbnb host (since June) and find myself in the midst of Victoria enforcing regulations.
I invested in a home with two suites in Fairfield. I became I've had good experiences as a traveller. I travel using airbnb because it's more affordable, it can have a living room and kitchen that allows for socializing with travel companions, and I prefer to be in a residential neighbourhood than off a major road or downtown.
Until the Tenancy Act provides owners with more rights than tenants, my preference is to continue short term rentals since it's not yet "enforced" by the Act, ironically ensuring I have more rights as an owner. There are pros and cons to both long and short term rentals. I was a landlord of 3 apartments in Toronto for 10 years, where I had renters stay for longer than 2 years... and some for 5. I've also had renters not pay and had to wait 2 months before they left (that, I'm told is a relatively a short duration of major annoyance). I've considered both short and long term rentals thoroughly and am inclined to accept the cons of short term rentals in order to 1. make the most money I can from my investment and 2. protect my property as best I can. In my opinion, the Act is actually NOT helping the city's issue of not having enough long term rental properties. If the city cannot afford to build affordable housing for its residents and thus must rely on investors to provide additional accommodations, the city should really be making a better effort to thank people like me who don't buy houses and leave them empty purely for long term benefits, or absentee landlords who don't care what goes on.
And there clearly seems to be a big push by Tourism Victoria and hotels. Isn't competition healthy? Perhaps the city should consider how Airbnb promotes Victoria tourism by providing a more affordable alternative to travellers.
With all the reporting in the paper lately, my neighbour has become unhappy because he says this "hotel" affects the quality of his home. I don't get it. All my guests so far has been courteous and respectful. There has been no noise issue whatsoever. Would my neighbour be happier if I rented out to a bunch of rowdy students who party every weekend? I will try to have a conversation with him about this. ARGH.
Has a group formed in support of short term rentals? I don't mind paying my share of taxes and having some regulations in place. However, those regulations shouldn't be written to shut down anyone who wants to make a little money and be fair to the property owner. It is expensive to live in Victoria. Shouldn't we be able to do what we can to better our living situations? ... even if I already have a roof over my head?