Ontario Tribunal Rules – Toronto Airbnb Owners Lose Short-term Rental Income Gains

Property owners’ appeal against the short-term rent regulations was overturned by the Ontario’s LPAT (Local Planning Appeal Tribunal) on October 15th. 2019. The landlords wanted more rights when making rental decisions for their property. Alas, their request was overturned by the Tribunal.
The ruling has disheartened the city’s Airbnb hosts that were using their properties in such a manner to make a quick buck.

The Ruling

The Tribunal ruled that:

  • Short term rentals mean renting the property on a daily or weekly basis.
  • Short-term stays now cannot exceed beyond 180 days a year.
  • Individual rooms in the owner’s home are exempted from the above restrictions.

The Arguments and the Counter

One of the arguments against the regulation was that short-term rentals, mostly Airbnb hosts, cover a gap that city hotels aren’t able to fill.:

LPAT discovered that a couple of years old regulations maintained a steady balance between the renters and the requirements of the tourists in the city.
Thus, the Tribunal not only upheld the regulation imposed by the Toronto City Council in De-cember of 2017 but clearly defined it as well.

The Benefits

For a city that is facing a severe supply crisis of rental properties, the ruling by the Tribunal has come as a balming relief.

Restricting a property as an Airbnb host has created a shortfall of almost 10,000 properties from the rental listings.
People have always been clamoring for more stringent restrictions to be placed on Airbnbs

The Challenge

The people are now concerned about:

  • How the ruling will be affected? • Will there be a new department or board created to implement and manage it?

  • Will they have to pay more taxes to raise the new department?

  • Will there be heavy fines on those caught flaunting the rules?

  • Will the board rely solely on complaints received?

  • Will the Airbnb barons follow the laid out regulations or will they find a way around it?It will take some time for the changes to become visible. Till then, let us keep our fingers crossed!