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airbnb

by antistar Online Now Mar 9, 2013 at 5:46 AM

Anyone have any experience of renting apartments through airbnb or similar service? I'm looking at different options in the city.

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38 Answers
  • Donna_in_India's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by Donna_in_India Online Now Mar 9, 2013 at 5:51 AM

    Hi - we've used vrbo.com and homeaway.com with success around the world. Be advised though that rentals in NYC for less than 30 days are illegal. Although you may not have any issues renting less than 30 days you risk being evicted and losing your money.

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  • goodfish's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by goodfish Online Now Mar 9, 2013 at 6:09 AM

    We've also used VRBO and Homeaway for various cities with success. But yes, NYC has some very specific restrictions regarding short-term leasing. Here's another thread where a NYC member has listed some of the "legal" rental options at apartment-style hotels in the city:

    forum.virtualtourist.com/New...

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  • anilpradhanshillong's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by anilpradhanshillong Online Now Mar 9, 2013 at 6:15 AM

    I had asked a similar question perhaps 8 months ago after meeting a German lady and her husband in Darjeeling. She was renting her place through airbnb.com. To my query, quite a few VT members endorsed airbnb.com.
    I have not used airbnb.com.

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  • walkietalkie2012's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by walkietalkie2012 Online Now Mar 9, 2013 at 7:40 AM

    >

    I am not sure about short-term renting law in NYC but it appears that it is illegal.. I think there is a small print in airbnb website somewhere that says that renters should comply with applicable local laws if any (or something along that line) n airbnb would not be held accountable for any violations commited... airbnb is just an advertising portal n i think they assume advertisers know the local laws.. even in Singapore where I live short-term renting (up to 6 mths) is illegal but still lots of ppl advertise their properties in airbnb or similar portal.. most would feign ignorance..

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  • giampiero6's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by giampiero6 Online Now Mar 9, 2013 at 7:52 AM

    Hit or miss. Depends on the person. Also yes, it can be illegal and unfair to the neighbors who are being subjected to having their building treated like a hotel. It sucks. If you do rent on airbnb you might face hostility (justified) from neighbors. And if you do use it...try not to be a d-bag to neighbors who do things like work for a living and raise families in the place you are passing through.

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  • antistar's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by antistar Online Now Mar 9, 2013 at 11:20 AM


    giampiero6 wrote: Hit or miss. Depends on the person. Also yes, it can be illegal and unfair to the neighbors who are being subjected to having their building treated like a hotel. It sucks. If you do rent on airbnb you might face hostility (justified) from neighbors. And if you do use it...try not to be a d-bag to neighbors who do things like work for a living and raise families in the place you are passing through.

    The ethics of airbnb is an interesting side discussion and I don't mind going there. I actually already thought about this and certainly can see the problem with neighbours renting out their apartments to idiots and party people who don't show respect to their neighbours. But if someone in my apartment block rented short-term to visitors to the city (and I think someone on my floor does just that) it wouldn't bother me unless they actually did cause problems with noise, hygeine, etc. I don't think it would be justified for me to be hostile to people just because they were short term visitors and I had a problem with the idea in general. If I had a problem I'd take it up with the owner or house manager, not the visitors.

    My first and only experience so far of this kind of renting came in Copenhagen. That was a much smaller operation: a local company organised everything for the homeowners, including cleaning, for a fee. I rented from a local theater manager who spent many weeks of the year abroad with productions. Their neighrbours didn't mind me being there at all. In fact because my plane was late landing due to a storm, it was the neighbours who met me at the door and gave me the keys. They saw me every day and were all smiles and conversations.

    And of course I am respectful of my neighbours wherever I am living and no matter how long I am staying, even if it is a hotel. I don't see a short-term visit as a reason for being a "d-bag" to my neighbour, waiter, room cleaner or anyone.

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  • giampiero6's Profile Photo

    by giampiero6 Online Now Mar 9, 2013 at 12:24 PM

    Some in my neighborhood rents on airbnb and it is a huge nuisance...people rent for $$$$$ per weekend and so party all night, park where they want, leave trash etc. There arena consequences because they are gone in a day or two. The lessor feigns ignorance and no consequences except annoyed neighbors and plummeting quality of life. It's a big problem.

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  • gwened's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by gwened Online Now Mar 9, 2013 at 12:41 PM

    Legalities aside, I have rented with www.homelidays.com but not in nyc as even when visited last in 2009 stayed with friends.
    however, airbnb does gets good reviews from renters, the owner is a French lady who made good and now lives in sillicon valley California, its a success story for an entrepreneur.
    cheers

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  • antistar's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by antistar Online Now Mar 9, 2013 at 1:10 PM

    In your example, giampiero, the "d-bag" is the owner of the apartment, not airbnb. He should be dealt with by any means available to his neighbours.

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  • giampiero6's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by giampiero6 Online Now Mar 9, 2013 at 1:34 PM

    I'm with you 100%. The owner is a d-bag and the people who make themselves a nuisance as guests because they don't really care and won't be there tomorrow are also d-bags. Airbnb are also d-bags because they try to skate past the illegalities and place the burden on the owner (and doing their best to hide the legal issue) while making the money on the bookings.

    The whole situation is one that puts the financial reward to owner, renter, and airbnb far above those of the neighbors, cities, and businesses who gain nothing but have to deal with the fall out.

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  • goodfish's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by goodfish Online Now Mar 9, 2013 at 1:44 PM

    From what I understand, one of the reasons the law in NYC came about is because they have a severe shortage of housing in the city. They don't want people buying up apartments simply to use for rentals when citizens are having a difficult time finding places to live.

    One of the other reasons is that many of the buildings are coops: owned and managed by the tenants. For safety/security reasons, tenants are uncomfortable with people coming in and out that they don't know. As far as I've heard, most coops have their own governing laws banning renting to outsiders.

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  • antistar's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by antistar Online Now Mar 9, 2013 at 1:47 PM

    Isn't the case with all unregulated tourism, though, giampiero? Look at what happened to those quaint fishing villages in Greece, Spain and Cyprus during the rush for tourist dollars. The answer is considered regulation that takes into account the needs of all parties, but that's always tough when advances in technology, like cheap flights, changes the game dramatically.

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  • giampiero6's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by giampiero6 Online Now Mar 9, 2013 at 1:51 PM

    There are many reasons why it's illegal which pre-date airbnb and websites like it.

    1. Owners don't have to abide by any laws that govern things like hotels and inna. Things like fire and safety codes.
    2. Owners on airbnb don't pay any taxes or hotel fees which hotels have to pay and go to things like infrastructure and form a tax base for a local town or city.
    3. There is no way to protect neighbors which is what zoning laws do, making certain commercial areas available for transient people, while residential areas are typically not OK to do "hoteling."
    4. Yes if you bought a co-op in NYC for $2 million dollars and really care about what the quality of the building is and safety is, you don't want some totally new, unknown people having keys and access codes to your building just because your irresponsible neighbor wants to make a few bucks renting his apartment to strangers.

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  • giampiero6's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by giampiero6 Online Now Mar 9, 2013 at 1:55 PM

    antistar wrote:
    Isn't the case with all unregulated tourism, though, giampiero? Look at what happened to those quaint fishing villages in Greece, Spain and Cyprus during the rush for tourist dollars. The answer is considered regulation that takes into account the needs of all parties, but that's always tough when advances in technology, like cheap flights, changes the game dramatically.

     Because it has happened elsewhere and ruined other places does not mean it's OK. Your example is good, because it's exactly the negative effect of unregulated tourism.  I'm all for a person being able to rent his place - HOWEVER - there should be regulatory safe guards for all the parties involved. At present there is 0 regulation. For example...if you rent on airbnb and you make yourself a nuisance, you should have your right to rent revoked by local government. Just like a hotel would if they had an illegal rooftop bar that blasted music outdoors until 4 in the morning.

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  • goodfish's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by goodfish Online Now Mar 9, 2013 at 8:38 PM

    The OP asked about renting an apartment, not a room. He was also interested in "or similar service." Those recommendations were provided.

    The specific problem here is renting in NYC where laws are different than in other cities - including my own. So whether AIRBNB or another resource, the often little-known legalities needed to be a part of the discussion.

    I have, BTW, rented an apartment in NYC but did so before the law was widely known among travel community or even enforced to the level it may be now.

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  • ter1413's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by ter1413 Online Now Mar 10, 2013 at 4:08 AM

    .....and it's really not enforced that much. it's on the books as a deterrent..for the most part.

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  • xymmot's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by xymmot Online Now Mar 11, 2013 at 12:21 AM

    I used AIRBNB and myself a airbnb host. It works out fine and I had over 50 guest in my house that were great from all over the world. i stayed in NYC a few times and really enjoyed myself, but you have to really read the descriptions and other peoples comments. I made friends with host in NYC, but still can not get a room sometimes because they are so busy and full. I would book months in advance for NYC and stayed in great neighborhoods and sometimes have a free parking space for me.

    cheers tommy x

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  • footstool's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by footstool Online Now Mar 11, 2013 at 3:26 AM

    Hi Miss Fish!

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  • footstool's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by footstool Online Now Mar 11, 2013 at 3:29 AM

    It is not widely enforced; I agree. And when it is, it is usually in central Manhattan areas where I wouldn't (and couldn't) live. Airbnb is simply a middleman, providing a platform, much like craigslist. The latter doesn't vouch for the honesty of the seller, or the legality of the sale.

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  • antistar's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by antistar Online Now Mar 11, 2013 at 1:26 PM

    Thanks for your feedback everyone! Very helpful and informative.

    Not sure why someone is voting everyone down, but it's not me!

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  • goodfish's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by goodfish Online Now Mar 11, 2013 at 2:06 PM

    Really hope you find the right place, Tim. Let us know?
    (And nope, not me either)

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  • goodfish's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by goodfish Online Now Mar 11, 2013 at 6:23 PM

    jonellis wrote:
    For your info GOODFISH, AIRBNB does rent apartments, houses, rooms, yachts, log cabins, etc. Anything someone might want to stay in. At one time they even had a Mongolian YURT.

    Yes, I am aware of that. My previous reply was in answer to your "All this ended up being was a argument about the ethics of renting a room in ones house."  I took the " a room in ones house" literally as the OP looking to rent a room in a residence the owner also was occupying. As the OP specificed an apartment - and didn't express an interest in sharing a space - that didn't seem to be what he was needing. And the legality around AIRBNB apartments - or those offered by other rental sites - was a consideration in any case within NYC.  

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  • Odinnthor's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by Odinnthor Online Now Mar 12, 2013 at 9:09 AM

    Well good people, you have just demonstrated how a thinking person might not want to be a part of this community. The members in this thread are all veterans, yet as always when it comes to this bloody subject, some go of the rail, but for veteran members thumbing down on each other, because they disagree on a subject, is just childishly petty.

    Don't think we don't know who you are.

    Ther fine print says "was that response helpful?" Most of the comments were directed at each other and not the Original Poster. Who the h*ll are you to decide what is helpful to the original poster? As much as I love VT, every once in a while I am right ashamed to be in a association with some of the miscreants here.

    Further, everyone knows that any sentance that starts with, - "For your information Mr Knowitall......", is a condescending way to start. Even further, those VT veterans, and there are several of them, that have been here for years, yet have nothing on their pages, no contributions, NOTHING, yet under the color of anonymity use VT for personal valet service, feel free to abuse other members who they feel are disagreeing with them, and then duck back into their holes.

    Fortunately, we have a lot fewer of those nightstrikers, than most other travel websites.

    'Nuff said.

    (Original Poster, - I apologize for using your thread to voice this opinion, but it appears that you have all the info you need on that subject, so I did not feel I would ruin the thread. Sometimes there are things that simply have to be addressed.)

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  • Odinnthor's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by Odinnthor Online Now Mar 12, 2013 at 9:11 AM

    Hi Fishy.....d:o)
    I saw that the other greeting to you was thumbed down. I so figured I would give'em somthing to do..........d:o)

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  • goodfish's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by goodfish Online Now Mar 12, 2013 at 6:42 PM

    Bowspirit, when you do a quote and reply, start typing UNDER the thin blue line that appears below the quoted text. Then your reply won't appear in italics.

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  • Odinnthor's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by Odinnthor Online Now Mar 12, 2013 at 6:47 PM

    Hey Jon, here is another one for you to thumb down. Why don't you quit acting like spoiled child, and be a better man? At least have the cajones to at least talk to me like a man, instead of hiding behind, - well an eagle who is clearly embarrassed to be the only thing on your HOme Page

    Eight years on VT, and nothing on your pages. So you just come here to antagonize the other members, - no name, no nothing. Sometimes nothing, says a lot.

    If I was going to thumb down a member I would surely let him/her know I did it, so as not to cast a bad light on the others. Anything less is just cowardice. Yes I said it!

    This new look here is messing with your game. For eight years you have been able to thumb down in complete anonymity. Now that is no longer the case. Are you still going to be a tool, and just come here to antagonize or are you man enough to respond to me?

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  • Odinnthor's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by Odinnthor Online Now Mar 12, 2013 at 6:56 PM

    Hey G., if you feel my response should be deleted, - that is fine with me. I am allergic to bulls***, and I call it as I see it.

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  • travelgourmet's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by travelgourmet Online Now Mar 12, 2013 at 8:23 PM

    You go, my pupule Brah! Geevem the stink eye! The Three Amigos will ride again! :-)

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  • xymmot's Profile Photo

    by xymmot Online Now Mar 12, 2013 at 8:31 PM

    Odinnthor wrote:
    Hi Fishy.....d:o) I saw that the other greeting to you was thumbed down. I so figured I would give'em somthing to do..........d:o)

    the spirit of VT vets, well said O of the pettyness.  I give you thumbs up, this makes me laugh,  We all break laws when we drive a car over the posted speed limit....It's illegal!  why we keep on doing it?  LOL just ranting....thumbs down on the post if you want, I don't care about ratings, I'm here to serve because i want to.

     

    cheers tommy x

     

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  • Odinnthor's Profile Photo

    Re: airbnb

    by Odinnthor Online Now Mar 12, 2013 at 9:02 PM

    Hey Kanaka, - I can't find your message.......d:o)

    Stink eye for sure my ono makamaka.

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