When it comes to vacationing, more and more travelers are eschewing traditional turndown service at four-star hotels in favor of staying somewhere more homey-as in, actual homes and apartments.Such short-term rental services from companies such as Airbnb are growing in popularity- around 11% of vacationers use short term rentals for their trips, pointing to advantages such as extra living space, lower rates than hotels, and better amenities as reasons for forgoing the traditional hotel route.
Homeowners also benefit from renting out space in the short term; in 2013, short term rentals in Chicago generated $108 million in overall economic activity and created 920 jobs. Short-term rentals have also been proven to generate revenue for the local community (for example, the Airbnb market represents $14 million of annual accommodation spending in San Francisco, one of its most successful cities).
However, despite the trend towards short-term rentals, some cities are responding with laws and regulation that make it difficult for short term rentals to be a viable option for homeowners and vacationers- and Chicago is one if those cities.
In Chicago, those who wish to rent a space in the short-term, face tight laws and regulations. First, rentals cannot be owner occupied, restricting people from renting a couch or spare room. Those renting a space also must spend money in order to make money: Chicago requires the purchase of a $250 rental license, an annual inspection of the rental property (costing upwards of $100), and a 4.5% tax on rental -not to mention that those intending to legally run a business by doing short term rentals may be subject to the Illinois Bed and Breakfast Act, which requires a $100 license. Failure to comply with these regulations can lead to penalty cost between $1500-$3000.
While many vacationers enjoy the perks of a short-term rental, in the end it may not be worth the hassle and costs for a Chicagoan to rent our a space. Where will you stay on your next vacation?
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