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What Airbnb Did To New York City (citylab.com) 340

An anonymous reader shares a report: There are two kinds of horror stories about Airbnb. When the home-sharing platform first appeared, the initial cautionary tales tended to emphasize extreme guest (and occasionally host) misbehavior. But as the now decade-old service matured and the number of rental properties proliferated dramatically, a second genre emerged, one that focused on what the service was doing to the larger community: Airbnb was raising rents and taking housing off the rental market. It was supercharging gentrification while discriminating against guests and hosts of color. And as commercial operators took over, it was transforming from a way to help homeowners occasionally rent out an extra room into a purveyor of creepy, makeshift hotels.

Several studies have looked into these claims; some focused on just one issue at a time, or measured Airbnb-linked trends across wide swaths of the country. But a recent report by David Wachsmuth, a professor of Urban Planning at McGill University, zeroes in on New York City in an effort to answer the question of exactly what home sharing is doing to the city. [...] Their conclusion: Most of those rumors are true. Wachsmuth found reason to believe that Airbnb has indeed raised rents, removed housing from the rental market, and fueled gentrification -- at least in New York City. "

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What Airbnb Did To New York City

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  • by mysidia ( 191772 ) on Thursday March 08, 2018 @12:00PM (#56227399)

    transforming from a way to help homeowners occasionally rent out an extra room into a purveyor of creepy, makeshift hotels.

    How about this: create a law that Limits the number of housing units AND number of days rented out per year which any 1 person or business is allowed to make available for short-term rent without a Hotel permit for each property --- including through any number of business partners or related entities.

    So if you're a homeowner and have 1 or 2 properties which you rent out less than 80% of the year total across your properties, then FINE, allow that ---- You're allowed to have up to a total of ONE rental unit for short/temp housing accommodation (Count that includes Any and all sub-rentals across all properties that occur for a time less than 20 days) rented out 80% of the days each year, OR two housing accommodations rented out average 40% of the days per 1 year per unit, OR three housing accommodations rented out no more than average 26.67% of the days per 1 year per unit.

    (In other words: the more units that are rented out to different tenants, the fewer days you may be renting them out per year.)

    Thus if you have 3 properties in the same city Or have it rented out your properties for a combined total among your properties of more than 290 rental-days, then you're in a "Short-term accommodation business" and must have planning approval and permit your properties as Hotel space --- which if approved by Zoning includes regular inspections, and an additional Tax on each rental.

    Reasonable regulation should allow reasonable rental revenue by an ordinary homeowner BUT prevent wealthy real-estate investors or corporations from exploiting Uber to make large-scale transformations of apartments to hotel rooms, etc.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      People love to invent rules for other people. The more complicated the better. If it's not working, make it more complicated, until it starts working.

    • by eth1 ( 94901 )

      Wouldn't it be much simpler (and closer to the original spirit of AirBnB) to just say you need a hotel permit for short-term rentals at any non-owner-occupied property?

    • by dmatos ( 232892 )

      Neat. I'm gonna go start five numbered corporations, of which I'm the sole shareholder, and buy five properties to put on the short-term rental market. Thanks for your legislation.

    • How about this: create a law that Limits the number of housing units AND number of days rented out per year which any 1 person or business is allowed to make available for short-term rent without a Hotel permit for each property --- including through any number of business partners or related entities.

      You clearly underestimate how easy it is to obscure the ownership of a company. I would welcome the changes necessary to make your proposed law effective though.

  • by Salgak1 ( 20136 ) <salgak AT speakeasy DOT net> on Thursday March 08, 2018 @12:07PM (#56227433) Homepage

    . . . that restricts the supply of new housing, and has strong rent-control in place, and people are SURPRISED that property owners will find a way to to generate revenue, and then optimize that revenue ??

    • and it has zero rent control and almost zero regulations on building new houses. When Builders build they're building luxury houses because they're surprisingly cheap to build and much higher profit.

      It's got nothing to do with Rent Control or supply. The cities where this is a problem (San Francisco, Phoenix, Dallas, Seattle etc) are already out of land. They're being forced to build out further and further from where jobs are, resulting in 90+ minute commutes one way if you want affordable housing. The
  • You cannot gentrify globally. Not enough gentry, I'd say.

    • by alvinrod ( 889928 ) on Thursday March 08, 2018 @12:19PM (#56227529)
      It's one of those inane things that's just used to complain. If well off white people are moving in to a neighborhood it's gentrification. If they're moving out it's white flight. I'm sure if they stayed in place long enough, some term would be created to castigate them for that as well.
    • You cannot gentrify globally. Not enough gentry, I'd say.

      If the gentry has enough cash to justify owning a place in every major city they may want to spend time in (or have for bragging rights), then you certainly can gentrify globally. And that seems to be the case.

    • You cannot gentrify globally. Not enough gentry, I'd say.

      Yes you can. In fact that's the whole point of a market economy - to make money (increase productivity per capita) by improving the efficiency by which resources (including housing and labor) are assigned and used. We used to live in stone caves with dirt floors. Now most of us live in constructed homes where we feel compelled to buy vacuum cleaners to keep the floors clean. That's gentrification.

      Economics is not a zero sum game. You can find

  • by rsilvergun ( 571051 ) on Thursday March 08, 2018 @12:13PM (#56227473)
    and I do wish we could get folks to understand that. Cities didn't limit hotels to "Preserve the Character of the neighborhood" or some other hippy crap. They did it to stop this kind of rent seeking garbage. People have to live where the jobs and rich folk know that. So they can pay damn near anything because they know they can rent it back to somebody and make a profit. Sure there are limits, but they're frighteningly high.

    This crap should just be shut down. Just like this crap was shut down when I was a kid and we called it sub-letting.
  • Studies (Score:4, Interesting)

    by 110010001000 ( 697113 ) on Thursday March 08, 2018 @12:13PM (#56227475) Homepage Journal
    The problem with these types of studies is you will never know if they are correct or not, because there is no way to see what would have happened if Airbnb never came to NYC. Maybe it would have gentrified faster without Airbnb. NYC was gentrifying way before Airbnb came to the city. Of course, speculation is now presented as fact. That will make the funders of this study (the hotel industry) happy though, and that is what this is all about anyway. They can now push to get Airbnb out of NYC.
    • Airbnb does inject a bit of riffraff, if only temporarily. This should slow the gentrification.

    • by q_e_t ( 5104099 )
      There are attempts to model tings like this via agent-based modelling, validating against other cities. The error bars can be pretty big, though.
    • Ummm, you mean compare it BEFORE they showed up....or to other areas that don't have it. Yeah those tenant advocacy organizations are just real bastards for wanting this study...

      "This report was commissioned by the Hotel Trades Council, AFL-CIO, and is cosponsored by a number of New York City community, housing and tenant advocacy organizations, including:

      New York Communities For Change,

      Housing Conservation Coordinators,

      Goddard Riverside Law Project,

      St. Nick’s Alliance,

      Cooper Square
  • Disruption!
    Sharing economy!
    Have your cake and eat it too!

    But clearly, HAD they only used an agile blockchain app...

  • I remember when (Score:5, Insightful)

    by John Jorsett ( 171560 ) on Thursday March 08, 2018 @12:21PM (#56227537)
    ... it was "white flight" when middle-class people abandoned crime-infested, poor, dirty urban areas, and it was deemed bad. Now that people are moving back into these areas and the crime and dirt and poverty are leaving, it's "gentrification" and it's deemed bad.
    • Re:I remember when (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Nidi62 ( 1525137 ) on Thursday March 08, 2018 @12:39PM (#56227677)

      ... it was "white flight" when middle-class people abandoned crime-infested, poor, dirty urban areas, and it was deemed bad.

      Leaving by choice. Still bad because it deprived those neighborhoods of critically needed taxes and other benefits.

      the crime and dirt and poverty are leaving, it's "gentrification" and it's deemed bad.

      Being forced out. Not by choice. See the difference? Gentrification also usually means those pushed out have to move even further away from their jobs, sometimes making those jobs no longer tenable but mainly just increasing transportation cost (time and money) to those jobs. Costs the poor already have a hard time bearing as is.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      It's racist when whites want to live in clean, safe neighborhoods.

  • by swb ( 14022 ) on Thursday March 08, 2018 @12:27PM (#56227583)

    Let me see if I understand this:

    ABnB works because ad-hoc rooms are cheaper than standard hotel rooms.

    So people rush into the ABnB market, removing conventional apartments from the pool of long-term housing, driving up rents as the pool of apartments shrinks.

    So if hotels are losing customers, why aren't they cutting hotel rates to be more competitive with ABnB? Hell, why aren't they slashing staff completely and converting some properties to ABnB only -- or becoming apartments?

    Do we need to reduce regulation on hotels so they can better compete with ABnB?

    Or is it some other thing, like hotels had successfully restricted competition and there was a practical shortage of hotels which drove prices too high?

    • by Anonymous Coward

      So if hotels are losing customers, why aren't they cutting hotel rates to be more competitive with ABnB?

      If hotels could get away with ignoring the same laws, fees, and regulations that AirBnB abusers are ignoring, they would.

      Hell, why aren't they slashing staff completely and converting some properties to ABnB only -- or becoming apartments?

      Zoning. In most major cities, hotels cannot legally repurpose their buildings to anything other than short-term rental because that would put them in violation of the local zoning ordinances.

    • by Nidi62 ( 1525137 ) on Thursday March 08, 2018 @12:53PM (#56227803)

      Let me see if I understand this:

      ABnB works because ad-hoc rooms are cheaper than standard hotel rooms.

      So people rush into the ABnB market, removing conventional apartments from the pool of long-term housing, driving up rents as the pool of apartments shrinks.

      So if hotels are losing customers, why aren't they cutting hotel rates to be more competitive with ABnB? Hell, why aren't they slashing staff completely and converting some properties to ABnB only -- or becoming apartments?

      Do we need to reduce regulation on hotels so they can better compete with ABnB?

      Or is it some other thing, like hotels had successfully restricted competition and there was a practical shortage of hotels which drove prices too high?

      It's the Uber model. Hotels have to live up to all sorts of codes (fire codes, health codes, building codes, etc) and are inspected regularly. Airbnb homes, as private dwellings, are held to less stringent standards. Besides the cost reduction from this, the private homes don't have to pay for housekeeping, maintenance, front desk, and other staff, further reducing their costs. Hotels also have to collect and pay taxes that private dwellings may or may not collect and pay (there may or may not be local laws stating that they have to collect taxes, and they may or may not adhere to those laws if they do exist).

    • by MeNeXT ( 200840 ) on Thursday March 08, 2018 @12:55PM (#56227827)

      Hotels have regulations to follow which Airbnb washes it's hands. Airbnb doesn't care about negative reviews because you can't post them. When things go wrong Airbnb doesn't care, doesn't allow you to post about it on the site, and doesn't refund the payments. It has to hit the media in order for Airbnb to react. When it does hit the media the wash their hands of it by claiming to delist the owner only to find them back again a few months later.

      Regulations should apply to all or to none. If Airbnb is a listing service then travelers shouldn't have to pay commission. If travelers pay commission then Airbnb is the travelers agent and should be responsible for the state of the destination as a travel agent is in some jurisdictions.

      • by sfcat ( 872532 )

        Hotels have regulations to follow which Airbnb washes it's hands. Airbnb doesn't care about negative reviews because you can't post them. When things go wrong Airbnb doesn't care, doesn't allow you to post about it on the site, and doesn't refund the payments. It has to hit the media in order for Airbnb to react. When it does hit the media the wash their hands of it by claiming to delist the owner only to find them back

        That's BS. Clearly you never hosted with Airbnb. Hosts get severely punished for bad reviews over time and many hosts have to go overboard in order to avoid bad reviews. 95% of people are reasonable but that last 5% will bitch no matter what. They seem to expect a hotel room for half the cost of a hotel room and if its not up to high-end hotel standards, they bitch endlessly. To counteract those folks Airbnb weights many reviews before taking action and usually the hosts have to cut their rates after j

    • The difference in price between a hotel and a short-term rental is approximately equal to the hotel tax. And hotels have to meet much higher standards than short-term rentals. So what this means practically for customers is that you are giving up all of the safety and security of a hotel just to save a few tax dollars. And people are flocking to it.
    • RTFA moron:

      "Airbnb was raising rents and taking housing off the rental market."

      But yeah keep thinking it's about hotels. Ass-hole.
    • by SuperKendall ( 25149 ) on Thursday March 08, 2018 @01:11PM (#56227955)

      ABnB works because ad-hoc rooms are cheaper than standard hotel rooms.

      The reason it works is for lots of reasons, that is the last of them. I have often paid more for an AirBnB unit than I would have for the nearest hotel.

      Often you can find AirBnB units closer to where you want to be than most hotels, or in a more desirable location.

      AirBNB units will generally have kitchens and washing machines, both of which may be very hard to find at any price just looking at hotels.

      AirBNB units being housing, are often more secure than hotels and I don't have to worry about an entire staff with keycards being able to access my room, or being targeted by thieves because they know tourists stay at hotels.

      Do we need to reduce regulation on hotels so they can better compete with ABnB?

      That would help but I would still prefer an AirBnB unit if I could get one, over a hotel. Unfortunately because of restrictive regulation, most AirBnB units I've tried getting in large cities (mainly SF and NYC) have always been canceled so I can't take that risk anymore. In smaller markets they have been great though and really been much nicer than hotels.

      and there was a practical shortage of hotels which drove prices too high?

      One last note on this, it does not have to be a shortage of rooms or hotels - the last year or two the Apple Developer conference (WWDC) was in San Fransisco, the hotels decided to collude on higher prices - by that I mean 2-4x above normal rates for that time of year, because they knew they had a captive market for people who wanted to be around Moscone. I'm not 100% sure but it could be a reason Apple finally moved the conference to San Jose.

      • the hotels decided to collude on higher prices - by that I mean 2-4x above normal rates for that time of year,

        It doesn't take collusion for all the hotels in an area to individually recognize periods of high demand and respond with higher rates. And it isn't just for the WWDC.

  • wrong target (Score:5, Interesting)

    by supernova87a ( 532540 ) <kepler1NO@SPAMhotmail.com> on Thursday March 08, 2018 @12:30PM (#56227603)
    Look, don't blame Airbnb, Uber or whatever company happened to come along in this moment, for all your woes. What you're actually mad at is the absolute failure of our governments, public institutions, and elected officials to adapt their services and approaches (or be allowed to do this by a public that seemingly wants to vote by popularity contest rather than efficacy of government).

    Get mad at your fellow city residents who only vote in and approve of city ordinances that let housing stagnate, reward people who've just been here a long time and nothing else, foster complacency and lack of quality in taxi regulation, or believe that voters should have a say in everything and vote out people who happen to implement one rule they don't like.

    Get mad at policymakers who are too distracted with getting re-elected and resisting PAC money to actually focus on governing and making reasonable policies, leaving our basic infrastructure to crumble while they go after higher profile symbolic issues.

    Be mad at yourself, and this system we thought was the best in the world, but actually needs maintenance and dedication to make it work properly.

    Companies are just the messengers.
    • The problem with Uber and Airbnb is that it's not clear how our politicians can collect payoffs. Is it like through an app, or an envelope full of cash? These modern times are confusing to our old befuddled ruling class.

  • I've tried to use AirBnB twice in NYC - in both cases the reservation was canceled, in one case the day before I was supposed to leave (!), because the landlords found out the apartment owners were listing units on AirBnB... I don't see how it can really be changing anything if it's already fairly illegal to list your place.

    Do people seriously not think that the prices of housing there would not have gone up ANYWAY? To blame AirBnB for this is madness. Air BnB if anything is helping people in places like

  • Airbnb was raising rents and taking housing off the rental market.

    Thinking like economists here, this suggests that NYC's problem here is not AirBNB but a lack of affordable hotel options.

    Solution: incentivize the building of more hotels that are affordable.

    We do not need another few hundred lines of law to join the millions already in force, usually misinterpreted, which cause higher costs for everyone.

  • I used AirBnB a few times about 4 years ago. But I got turned off by them when they pushed their updated EULA that required me to promise that I would not be a dick to people. The word salad they used was a great deal more hipster and included phrases meant to make them look like they were the perfect little SJW's. Bottom line is that I don't need some company preaching to me that I have to behave a certain way or I can't use their product. Fine, I'll do both. I'll continue to be a nice person and I won't u

  • Airbnb is a scam (Score:5, Interesting)

    by MeNeXT ( 200840 ) on Thursday March 08, 2018 @12:43PM (#56227739)

    Airbnb takes commission on both sides and when there is a major problem to deal with they disappear.

    If you are lucky enough to book with a decent host you may get what you pay for. Unfortunately when you book with a scammer you are on your own. There is absolutely no help provided from Airbnb. This is based on my personal experience traveling for 30 years so your mileage may vary.

    No business is perfect. This is not about perfection. This is bout what happens when things go wrong. You are thousands of miles away and may have limited funds available or in a completely different culture where communication is not easy.

    Normally with a regular permitted establishment you can verify various independent reviews. On Airbnb only positive reviews are posted. You only find this out when things go wrong. Airbnb does not post negative reviews even though you paid for the full stay.

    Permitted establishments normally are inspected by local authorities which try to ensure a minimum standards. This does not mean that something won't go wrong but there is a bare minimum such as fire regulations. Information posting. Emergency exits. With Airbnb you are no even guaranteed that there will be a place to stay. Again Airbnb takes very little responsibility as to the accessibility or even to the legality of the rental. They haven't even visited the location to ensure that it is fit for the purpose advertised.

    So Airbnb takes commission on both sides of the deal and provides none of the advantages afforded from the regulated and established lodging hosts and when things go wrong you are left abandoned and screwed. The horror stories haven't disappeared they are just pushed under the rug. If it's so bad that the local authorities are left to deal with it, you may hear about it. You can't post negative reviews on Airbnb.

    Airbnb is not a sharing service since you are not required to live with current occupants and takes advantage of the increased costs of regulations which it does not abide with and wipes it's hands from all and any responsibility when things go terribly wrong. Airbnb pretends to be a listing service but implicates itself in every aspect of the business which milks every possible penny and extracts itself from any form of responsibility. I don't know why anyone needed a report to point this out if an individual acted this way people would say that they were running a scam.

  • In my town short term rental housing is prohibited. AirBnB hosts try to get past that by telling their guests to lie. The town has been aggressive about enforcing the laws.

    To some it may sound draconian but no one wants a steady stream of strangers in the house next door.

  • One factor that the study did not look at was the number of vacant housing units. These are units which are purchased as second homes or as refuge houses by rich foreigners who want a place they can use occasionally when needed.
    Most major cities have a lot of housing which sits vacant most of the year. London and Vancouver have recently been in the news for this problem. Rich people buy housing in case they might want to use it someday and it sits vacant most of the time. This removes housing from the city.

  • "Wachsmuth’s research was funded in part by some avowed foes of home sharing—the New York City Hotel Trades Council—and was cosponsored by housing and tenant advocacy organizations."

  • There is a constant war under the surface between AirBnB and the City of San Francisco. It is absolutely taking rentals off the market and increasing marginal rent. It is also being taken over by commercial operators.

    The City is trying to regulate but AirBnB spends more than 10X on advertising (at least on the two ordinances we voted on).

    I'm really of two minds here. I've used AirBnB on vacation and enjoyed it, but I do understand the damage it is doing to the City. It is kind of like Uber in that way. It i

  • Piece Work jobs (ABnB, Uber, Lyft et. al) will cause a race to the bottom

    We've seen this struggle a century or so back.

    People will, eventually, unionize to establish livable wages

  • I guess Airbnb hired a troll firm to "correct the record". Didn't know David Brock branched out.
  • by Marc_Hawke ( 130338 ) on Thursday March 08, 2018 @01:11PM (#56227949)

    The thing I've always 'disliked' about 'room-sharing' and 'ride-sharing' (and I guess to some extent E-bay and Youtube) is that people make it a full-time job instead of a 'community' thing.

    I don't remember the taxi company complaining about the 'ride-sharing' board at the University. If you were going home for the weekend, why not take along a passenger that was going the same way. In general that's the basic idea of Uber and Lyft. I have a car, you're going my way, hop in.

    There was also the 'couch-surfing' phenomenon of a while back. The differences between that and what AirBnB is now are what I see as the problem. It's one thing to allow someone to spend the night in your empty guest room because nobody else is using it. It's a completely different thing to buy a room/ apartment/ house dedicated to having people pay to stay there.

    The 'problem' with Uber and AirBnB is that people have transformed the 'occasionality' of it into a permanent full-time job. It's not a sporadic and almost random thing they offer, it's 'the only thing.'

    • The 'problem' with Uber and AirBnB is that people have transformed the 'occasionality' of it into a permanent full-time job.>

      But only if you want to - I have stayed at a number of AirBnB places where it was not a full time job, they just rented out a room for a bit more money...

      Meanwhile, what is so bad about people who bought places just to rent out? It takes a huge amount of capital to build a hotel, or even run a "real" BnB. But now someone who wants to just dip their toe into running a place to st

    • If you were going home for the weekend, why not take along a passenger that was going the same way. In general that's the basic idea of Uber and Lyft. I have a car, you're going my way, hop in.

      Uber and Lyft are not "you're going my way" services, they are on-demand taxis. There has been noise about Uber becoming the ride providers for medical organizations -- a lift to the doctor's office. The system is being designed so the rider doesn't even need the Uber app, the ride is arranged by the office. If you think Uber is a "you're going my way" service, then you have to realize that you're riding with someone who has to visit the doctor multiple times a day. If they're that sick, should they be driv

  • Obviously there is a huge demand for affordable short term lodging in NYC. Instead of shooting the messenger and punishing homeowners, why not force traditional hotels to lower their rates? It is obviously their fault that rates are so high that people would rather use AirBNB instead.
  • by Pfhorrest ( 545131 ) on Thursday March 08, 2018 @01:22PM (#56228023) Homepage Journal

    I say this every time, but it's worth repeating: all this bad stuff AirBnB does to the rental market, the existence of a rental market at all does to the housing market overall. Owners prefer AirBnB over long term rental which makes long term rental unaffordable. Owners also prefer rental of any kind over sale which makes homeownership unaffordable. Imagine a world where all you can find is ridiculously overpriced temporary housing at AirBnB rates? We live in a world like that already, where all you can find is ridiculously overpriced housing at rental rates.

    Ban rent, and watch housing become more affordable.

    (NB that interest is merely rent on money, so that's got to go too or else it's just the banks instead of the landlords who end up owning the world. Rent and interest, collectively "usury", the fee for a use, are the central failing of capitalism, the mechanism by which wealth concentrates exponentially, undermining the promise of a free market with parasitism by the capital-owners).

    • all this bad stuff AirBnB does to the rental market, the existence of a rental market at all does to the housing market overall.

      The major difference is that the rental market has significantly less vacancy (wasted capacity) and the people who live in rentals are members of the community instead of visitors.

      interest is merely rent on money, so that's got to go too or else it's just the banks instead of the landlords who end up owning the world

      1) Banks already own the world. 2) Being able to borrow money is

    • Ban rent, and watch housing become more affordable.

      There are reasons to rent other than being unable to afford to purchase. Short term commitment, less exposure to fluctuations in home prices, and a much lower barrier to entry. All of these things are ideal if you're feeling out an area before settling down, or if you're at a point in your life where you're chasing new jobs every few years looking for a raise.

      And if you want to ban interest, how do you propose you find a lender to supply the mortgage on your new home? Do you live with your parents until you

  • There are just some things that shouldn't be done. This sort of "service", while I'm sure it sounded like a great idea in the beginning, just as the articles says, it's turned out to be a horror. The internet isn't compatible with reality in all circumstances.

  • Instead of trying to fight these trends by suppressing property values, we should look at putting the gains back in the hands of the local citizens without significant barrier to entry.

    There is so much wrong with this issue. People complain that thier property values are soaring - and it's true higher taxes force poorer people out, but it's also true if they own even a part of thier home it will bring them a significant to huge profit. People complain that thier neighborhood is ailing and dilapidated bu
  • I've seen the city and county use hotels as a wallet for taxes, every few years they keep raising taxes on hotels, 10 bux here, 5 bux there, repeat on and on.
    And you wonder why a hotel is costing 150 a night for a dive. The sticker shock of renting a room and finding a city tax on top is disgusting.

    AirBNB is the result of the overtaxing tourists as easy money.

  • Rowdy Roddy Piper took off the glasses and said, "That's strange. I take these off and I see sweet, caring politicians talking about protecting the people from dishonesty and danger. Put ’em back on... formaldehyde-face taking kickbacks from hotels and rich owners to knock Air BnB out."

  • Sounds like AirBNB is just helping the supply and demand curves reach their equilibrium point. The problem is that people feel property owners SHOULDN'T have a right to do what they want with their own property?
  • on the other hand... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by buddyglass ( 925859 ) on Thursday March 08, 2018 @02:54PM (#56228689)
    ...I was able to stay two weeks in NYC with my family (2 adults, 2 kids) in a clean 1200 sq. foot. two-bedroom apartment in Washington Heights for $120/night. Comparable hotel would have cost me $300/night at least. And my (14 nights * $120/night) went mostly into the hands of an actual family living in NYC (two public school teachers with 2 kids of their own) instead of, say, "Hilton" or "Marriot".
  • by XSportSeeker ( 4641865 ) on Thursday March 08, 2018 @04:14PM (#56229155)

    Get a popular service, find a way to go around regulations, taxation and obstables put in place to stop overgrowth and abuses, find a way to skip welfare and minimum wage/conditions for workers to make a living with it, and sell it as a new paradigm.

    There is no easy route or shortcut for this people. If you are paying less to stay somewhere, paying less for transportation, paying less for services in general, someone is paying more. And there will be consequences for that.

    It's no coincidence that some workers on those sectors are living in conditions reminiscent to the Industrial Revolution era. Crazy hours not enough to even make a living.

    And yes, I fully agree that regulations are far from perfect, that they often don't do what they are supposed to, and that they frequently compose of abuse themselves for business owners... but skipping them away or going around them will eventually have predicted consequences.

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