Wednesday March 02, 2016
Vancouver Airbnb listings increase as rental vacancies fall below 1 per cent
"This isn't people just going away for a couple of weeks and renting out their homes ... These are people that are probably renting out apartments permanently." - Data analyst Murray Cox on Airbnb listings in Vancouver
Tens of thousands of tourists from across Canada and around the world visit Vancouver each year. In response to the demand for accommodation, a growing number of Vancouverites are listing their condos and homes for short-term rental on Airbnb and other websites where property owners can rent out a temporary space.
But with the vacancy rate at under one per cent, the growing popularity of short-term rentals is driving some residents out of town.
And the problem is not unique to Vancouver. It's also hitting Toronto and Montreal, where the number of Airbnb listings is growing.
Guests in this segment:
- Karen Sawatzky, writing her masters thesis on the impact of Airbnb on the Vancouver rental market.
- Murray Cox, creator of Inside Airbnb, a website that collects data on Airbnb's impact on residential communities.
- Geoff Meggs, councillor with the City of Vancouver for the past eight years.
The Current contacted Airbnb for comment and received a written statement which says in part:
"Airbnb was started to help our founders pay their rent and stay in their homes. The vast majority of our hosts are everyday people who have just one listing and share their space a few nights a month to help make ends meet."
Are you benefiting or hurting from the rise short-term rentals? Is finding an affordable place to rent getting harder where you live?
This segment was produced by Vancouver network producer, Anne Penman for our series The Ripple Effect.